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Old February 9, 2012, 07:48 PM   #1
KBP
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gunsmithing screwdrivers

Looking to buy a decent set of gunsmithing screwdrivers. Any suggestions? I'm sure this has been discussed somewhere on this site before. I don't want to buy junk, but I don't want to be taken on the price either. Suggestions on what is a good set to get or a good online place to get a decent set will help! Thanks!
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Old February 9, 2012, 08:01 PM   #2
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Brownell's or Wheeler.
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Old February 9, 2012, 08:32 PM   #3
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By far, the best and the industry standard are the Brownell's Magna-Tip.
The Wheeler's are made in China and aren't the quality of the Brownell's.

There are more sizes of bits available, and they're smoother and higher quality than any others.
I recommend buying one of the law enforcement size handles. The standard handle is too big for most work, and the stubby is just too short.

Buy one of the sets, then add bits as you need them:

http://www.brownells.com/.aspx/cid=0...arch=magna_tip
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Old February 9, 2012, 08:34 PM   #4
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Yep, love the Magna-Tips from Brownells.
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Old February 9, 2012, 09:34 PM   #5
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I prefer tools made overseas.
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Old February 10, 2012, 08:11 AM   #6
Don P
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Brownell's Magna Tip. American made, lifetime guaranty. Wheeler made overseas and of a lessor quality. As they say you get what you pay for.
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Old February 10, 2012, 03:27 PM   #7
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Wheeler is fine for a hobby guy !
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Old February 10, 2012, 05:04 PM   #8
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Wheeler is probably fine. After all, he won't be working on my guns
Brownell's gets my vote.
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Old February 11, 2012, 04:19 AM   #9
triggerman770
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screwdrivers

with the Brownell's should you twist or break one you just email the bit # and soon one appears as if by majic
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Old February 11, 2012, 06:32 PM   #10
Fleet
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Quote:
Wheeler is fine for a hobby guy !
Until you break one and scratch your gun because of it. Same problem with Chapman. I've twisted Brownell's bits, but never snapped one.
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Old February 11, 2012, 07:09 PM   #11
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Bought Chapmans years ago and have never had any complaints.
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Old February 11, 2012, 07:44 PM   #12
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quality steel and a big handle

whatever the brand,

most scratches arrive right after too much force is being used by the user and it you start pushing in a direction where the blade slides out control.

A bigger handle mean much more leverage which means much less force on your part to achieve the same results.

A short shank to me is also desirable to control the tip as well.
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Old February 13, 2012, 10:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Quote:
Wheeler is fine for a hobby guy !

Until you break one and scratch your gun because of it. Same problem with Chapman. I've twisted Brownell's bits, but never snapped one.
+1

Quality bits bend before they break. The short Brownells magna-tip driver gives the user excellent control.

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Old February 14, 2012, 07:45 AM   #14
Don P
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Quote:
Wheeler is probably fine. After all, he won't be working on my guns
Brownell's gets my vote.
Made me spit coffee all over the key board with this reply!
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Old February 14, 2012, 08:04 AM   #15
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I'll put in another vote for Brownell's, have had my set for years and years and they have been good.
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Old February 16, 2012, 10:32 AM   #16
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Sorry Don, I'll send you some rags to dry your key board. Maybe you should install a spit shield.
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Old February 16, 2012, 05:48 PM   #17
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i got a couple of craftsman screwdrivers i use, but then again all my screwheads are chewed up
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Old February 17, 2012, 04:19 AM   #18
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Brownells definitely!! Another thing I like to do is to buy their hollow handle driver and buy bits specific to the gun I'm dealing with. That way with the driver in the bag, I can always work on the gun it's made for at the range. Like SASS shoots and a set for my Vaquero's (Brownells has already packaged that idea for this gun and it's sold separately). Smithy.
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Old February 17, 2012, 04:50 AM   #19
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I'm a Snap-On kinda guy for the most part. With knowing how much of a snob I am when it comes to my tools for work and my shop, I still like Wheeler's sets. Brownell's is the better made....and made here. However, I have the Wheeler set and don't regret receiving it. I've yet to come across, while working on guns as a hobby, where the Wheeler set has failed me. I mean, we're working on small, small hardware here....not some frozen 3/4" rusty frozen nut on an engine crossmember.
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Old February 17, 2012, 07:30 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shane Tuttle
I've yet to come across, while working on guns as a hobby, where the Wheeler set has failed me. I mean, we're working on small, small hardware here....not some frozen 3/4" rusty frozen nut on an engine crossmember.
+1
I've never had a problem with the Wheeler bits. The sixty or so bits on my board are a mix of Brownies and Wheeler's. I make a custom three piece set of bits for a particular high dollar black powder revolver. I start with Wheeler bits and modify them as needed. I've sold dozens of these sets and not a single complaint from the end users.

Using the correct tip thickness and width is much more important than the brand name.
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Old February 17, 2012, 08:09 AM   #21
rebs
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I bought Chapman's a long time ago, I twisted off two bits and ordered new ones. While waiting for the new ones to come in the mail, I twisted off another one. I have had them for about 30 years so I got my money out of them and perhaps over that length of time the metal broke down or something.
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Old February 17, 2012, 09:48 AM   #22
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I have an old Lyman hollow handle. Plus I have bought a bunch of extra bits for it. But, really, my go-to screwdrivers are old, regular, screwdrivers that I have ground to fit particular screws. The gunsmithing sets are grossly overpriced for what you get. Meaning, a lot of the bits you pay for will never be used.
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Old February 19, 2012, 09:30 PM   #23
William T. Watts
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Another vote for Brownells, they have probably the best screw driver set available to the gunsmith today, I have never broken any of the tools in my set nor damaged a firearm with them.. Quality tools are worth whatever you pay for them, I disagree with Rifleman 1776, I believe in using the proper tool for the job, and no they are not overpriced either! I still have my complete set 13 years after purchasing them. I almost stayed in Colorado after school but my wife wanted to come home, ARKANSAS, Go Hogs!! William

Last edited by William T. Watts; February 19, 2012 at 09:37 PM.
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Old February 20, 2012, 08:52 PM   #24
hootey
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Forster

Have a full set of Forster Gunsmith screwdrivers. Had em bout eleven or twelve years. Got em from Brownells........
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Old February 22, 2012, 01:44 AM   #25
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I have so many screwdrivers, I should be on the TV show "Hoarders"

What I prefer to do is buy old quality name brand screwdrivers for 25 cents, in quantity, at garage sales. They have paint, rust, and dullness.

I clean them off with a wire wheel and grind them to the size and shape I want.


I have ~ $200 cheap Chinese imitation of an end wheel grinder.
I make various fixtures to hold things so they slide in the slot on the end tables.

The grinder will also help make the 55 degree tool for cutting Mauser barrel threads.
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