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I have a few socket sets. Not brilliant ones but do the job for light weight stuff. I’m now looking for a robust set that would last a long time. Ideally a set that I could use on my impact drivers and air guns. It’s a mind field. 

Is it really worth paying mac tools and snap on prices or would a half decent Bahco set do the job. I remember them being good years ago but not so sure now.

i don’t really have a set budget but I’d be in the hundreds rather than the thousands.

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Bahco are pretty good i believe I have a lot of britool and gedore sockets that have had a lot of use heavy use in some cases and they are fine.i have 1/4,3/8,1/2 and 3/4 drive.some I have used on Air impact guns do show signs of wear on the square of the drive.They are 40 yrs old though.

Really I should have used specific impact ones as they are made for that specific task.So if I did it all over again I would buy impact sockets as I needed them.

It really is down to what they are used for.


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Halfords Advanced - way cheaper than Mac Tools or Snap On and the best guarantee. My sons' friends in the motor trade use Halfords Advanced, who change any broken tool without a receipt. No more disputes with Snap On about abuse of the tools etc. Mac are also excellent with warranty claims.

Avoid Snap On unless you have a friendly dealer. Current warranty - original owner with original receipt.

Bahco are part of Snap On, but a chunk of their tools are made in Argentina. Some of Bahco's older sockets - 20 years ago - were made in Argentina by Indestro and are excellent. The current offerings don't have the same chrome finish and are matt finish, but okay.

Signet are decent tools, although made in Taiwan - same factory as Gearwrench, Toptul, Halfords Advanced and Blue Point. Despite all being made in the same place, I have found Blue Point ratchets to be rubbish.

If you can get an American set - just do it. SK (the best), Wright, Cornwell, Easco, Armstrong, Proto, Allen, KD.

You can use chrome finish with an air gun, but they do split. If you are going for just one decent set, just go for impact sockets. I have about 50 different makes of sockets and have broken the odd one of any make, but I have only ever had one impact socket break on me. I have used dirt cheap impacts right up to Snap On, but the Snap On is the only one I have broken from memory.

Out of the lot - Halfords Advanced impact sockets for the best value.

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I was a car mechanic for 10 years before joining the military, 

and I can hand on heart (after spending 1000’s on Mac and snap on) say that Halfords tools, tent tools and even BandM tools are the same!

yes they don’t have lifetime warranty, but I would rather spend £40 for a 3/8ratchet set from eBay, than £270 for a single 3/8 ratchet.


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