Buying a boat should include tools. Not because a boat isn’t built well, but because anything can happen on the water.
A while back while riding in an unnamed Elite Series pro’s boat for practice for the Bassmaster Classic, we needed some tools for a minor repair.
“They are in the back compartment,” he said.
While digging in an old tackle box in that compartment, I found a rusted mess of “tools” that were welded together, gummed up and in a condition that even Royal Purple Maxfilm couldn’t repair. They were sitting in a puddle of water in the bottom of the box. The pliers we needed were in such bad shape that both of us pulling on either handle couldn’t open them.
It was right then I made a commitment to build a Plano Dry box with the proper tools and to keep them in a dry compartment. I have them in both my little boat and my big boat and will not leave the dock without them.
There are 5 tools that are mandatory in that kit.
1. An adjustable wrench – We call them Crescent wrenches here in the Midwest, and it’s a tool that can be used on a variety of sizes of nuts and bolts. They can be used to both tighten and loosen depending on the need and a good one should have tight adjustments to keep from slipping.
2. A multi-bit screwdriver or cordless screwdriver – There are all sorts of screwdrivers that feature replaceable bits to give you a phillips head, flat head or even allen or star head for tightenting loose screws, removing equipment, replacing broken equipment and more. We found that a handy battery powered screwdriver that accepts other bits is invaluable at times on the water.
3. A pair of needle nose pliers – multiple sets of these pliers should be on every boat. They can be used to cut and repair wire, bend a hook, tighten or loosen a part or get into a tight space to fix something. Not to mention they are handy for unhooking fish.
4. A set of Allen wrenches – These are handy all over the boat and include both regular Allen sizes and star shapes used on many bass boats today. Many people call these torques. Both sets should be included.
5. A pair of cutters – These should be of the heavy duty variety and can be used to crimp as well. I have a set that cut and crimp and they too have rubberized handles. They are handy for tightening connections, repairing them and also great for cutting errant hooks and wires that could be tangled in you or the boat prop. I have seen crab traps, fence, rope, old line and other wire get tangled in a prop and they work perfectly to remove it.
Take the time, build the kit and throw in some electrical tape, fuses and connectors too. Use one of the variety of Plano waterproof boxes to store it all. They fit nicely in the boat and don’t leak.