Inspired by the thread on "what do you carry on your truck", I'd like to ask: what kind of rig do you carry on your body?(nothing kinky here!). Being a older electrician, I'm constantly experimenting on carrying an even load on my tool pouches. What has currently worked out is having most of my hand tools on my right side and wire nuts, assorted screws, Fluke T6 multimeter and a few other hand tools on my left. I try not to carry a hammer anymore since I don't do residential work now (I just use the electricians hammer...linesman's!). I actually put this stuff on a scale and try to keep it down to a bare minimum like a backpacker would and balance the right and left bags. It does get hard on the lower back, so I usually empty it all out once a week and start over. I've tried carrying a tote tray with stuff I need on a job, but with service work you don't know what you'll get next, and when you dump the remants of your little project in the van (on the way to the next job) you get all these little piles that have to be sorted out sooner or later. By the by, It's great being able to b.s. with other sparky's on lifes burning questions..keep up the good work!
I wear the Klein Powerline rig(padded tool belt) with the 19 pocket tool pouch on the right and the 2 pocket utility pouch and Fluke T6 on the left. Been using this rig for close to 2 years and really like it. It has held up better than I thought it would-still almost like new. I have emptied it out and thrown it in the washing machine a couple of times and it comes out looking new. The wide, padded belt is very comfortable and doesn't seem to wear me out like my old leather one did.
I operate via the same 'balanced' philosophy. Recently I got one of those new 'cordoba' or whatever that black material is called belts. The only thing is, i find myself going thru doorways sideways.....
I have the same as Fred- Klein Powerline series, and its great. I'll never use a leather tool puch again. I have a tool bag on the right and parts bag on the left. I try to keep it light by taking out the tools that I wont need depending on the job. The only drawback is what Sparky said, you have to go through doorways sideways. But this setup is great and has tons of room in the toolbags.
I've tried all kinds of "set ups". I have a Klein canvas tool bag that is 12 years old, and still kicking. I also have a Klein tool pouch with leather belt that my Dad bought in the late 70's, and it is still "running". I usually look at "what" I'm going to need for each project that I work on through out the day. If I'm roughing in walls all day, I dump the tool pouch, and carry my tools in my back pocket, large wire "pulls" call for different tools, etc, etc, etc. I always wear a nail apron. Carhart makes a canvas nail apron that is the best I've ever used. I have one that is at least 6 years old, and I have no reason to believe that it will give up the ghost any time soon. In my tool pouch, I always have Ideal sidecutters, (2) pair of Channel Lock 430's with one set having the handles stripped, Klein "dykes", Klein needle nose, Klein or Ideal screw drivers, (3) flat tip, with one being an 1/8" blade 12" long, (2) phillips with one being 12" long. You would be suprised how often long screw drivers are more needed than shorter ones. I like Stanley tape measures. They recently came out with the "Fat Max", and I love it. It's hard to beat 35' length with about 10' of "reach". I could list other tools, but I wouldn't want to bore you all with the long list. As for all those back aches due to wearing tool pouches, take 2 wire nuts, and call me in the morning.
Hmmmm let's see , I'd have to say I like keeping my pen in my shirt pocket, always seems more handy there, I like to switch from blue to black ink now and then , but mostly I use Black, I also like to keep it on the right (mine) side of the pocket, I have all kinds of pens, When I Inspect the home shows and computer shows , they always have good pens they give away , so in a way I never run out of pens . he he he
Rough-In: Carpenters tool pouch with tape-measure, hammer, torpedo level, utility knife, dikes, needle-nose, and a straight blade Klein screwdriver, a regular sharpie and an ultrafine sharpie.
Trim-out and service calls: Klein pouch (old leather one) with suspenders, hammer, tape and screwgun holster on the left, tool pouch hanging on the right with the above tools and adding crimpers, 1/4" and 5/16" nut drivers, three sizes of Klein straight edge screwdrivers, one phillips, a "grabber" type screwdriver, lineman's, volt-tic, two shorty screwdrivers, an Ideal wirenut wrench, and this neat little 7" bolt cutter that comes in real handy for stubborn KO's and cutting other metal parts.
[This message has been edited by sparky66wv (edited 03-31-2002).]
-Virgil Residential/Commercial Inspector 5 Star Inspections Member IAEI
I've had a huge Klein leather tool pouch and a big Craftsman leather tool/nail pouch on the other side, both on a nylon belt. I had every imaginable tool squeezed into that set-up, but I've found I never actually wear it anymore, it's so big and heavy. So now I have a Carhartt 4 pocket nail/tool apron, and I put in a half dozen tools I know I'll use right away. Volt tick, pliers, a few screw drivers, then some screws, wirenuts, tape, whatever. More manageable, eaier to wear around. If I really need something else, I'll run for it. You can't have everything possible right at hand all the time, even with the huge tool belt I always ended up needing the one thing I didn't bring.
OK...a small leather mutipocket pouch on my right containing: (1)large flat blade, (1)Klein needle nose, (1)Klein D9000 lineman pliers, (1)ideal T-stripper-I only use it to cut & trim wire with, (1) Excelite cushioned lead trimmers-for cutting tie wraps, (1) folding curved electrician's knife for cutting single & multiconductor jacketed cable, (1)6 in 1 combination screwdriver-nutdriver, (1)Fluke tic tracer, (1)25' Stanley steel taple, and 3 prong outlet tester. BUT-I still carry both my big Gatemouth tool bags (60lbs each) to the jobsite for all the rest I'll be needed throughout the day & week.
By the way, I think its ridiculous that many electricans still buy the large Klein "burglar" bag.
At the night gig I use a Klein 5100 series (I think) pouch, the company provides it and I am one of few who uses it. Pulling around a roller cabinet and chest to change a fuse seems kind dumb. Sideline gig I use a pouch(no name, ok I'm cheap) with an Ideal parts bag on the other side.