Best Ratchet Set Reviews 2017

There are certain tools that you just have to have around you, even if you’re not a professional handyman. One of such tools is the ratchet set. When it’s time to choose a ratchet set, it could get very confusing. We understand this so we’ve taken steps to make the process easier for you. We spent some time researching into ratchet sets and have discovered five brands that make great sets. As a way of helping you choose correctly, we’ve also selected one ratchet set from each brand for review so as to give you an insight into what each brand has to offer. After looking at the products we’ve reviewed, you can then decide to look at the wide selection of ratchet sets offered by these brands rather than having to search far and wide.
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Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Drive Size
Socket Type
Pieces
Material
Tooth Count
Our Top Choice
Craftsman 230-Piece Mechanic's Tool Set
Craftsman has maintained its position as America’s bestselling tool brand through its dedication to quality and durability. It’s empowered tradesmen the world over to succeed on thousands of jobsites.
Durable tools, tough carrying case, includes 230 pieces for all sorts of jobs, and comes with convenient lifetime warranty.
The tools are loose in the case and will fall around when the case is moved.
1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 inch
6 and 12-point
230
Alloy steel
Info not provided
Best Value
TEKTON Vanadium Steel Drive Socket Set
TEKTON is for skilled and intelligent individuals with a passion for great tools. It focuses on exceeding its customers' expectations by always delivering superior hand tools.
Features 6-point socket. Ratchet is well built, feels good and strong in your hands. Comes with durable case that holds tools tightly, has an excellent finish and great customer service.
There are complaints of the ratchet handle being short for some.
3/8 inch
6-point
45
Vanadium steel w/ chrome finish
72
Apex Tool Group Crescent Mechanics Set
Apex Tool Group is focused on the continuous improvement and provision of high quality products to its customers at affordable prices, using prompt and efficient delivery systems.
Contains a versatile array of essential tools. Well-built and nicely polished with no sharp edges. Backed by a lifetime guaranty. Features 1/4’ Drive Quick-Release Ratchet and sturdy carrying case.
The molded case doesn’t hold all the tools in place.
1/4, 3/8 and 1/2inch
6 and 12-Point
170
Chrome vanadium steel alloy
72
BOSTITCH Pass Thru Socket Set
BOSTITCH is operated on a long running history of high standards and innovation which has enabled it to stay competitive and evolve with changing times and technology.
Comprehensive set that doesn’t skip any size. Each tool has an excellent fit and finish. The ratchets are solid and hold on to sockets tightly.
Socket set is a bit large for fitting into smaller areas.
3/8 inch
6-point
65
Chrome vanadium steel
72
Stanley Drive Mechanic’s Tool Set
Stanley is known for quality, reliability, innovation and value. It’s dedicated to the continuous improvement of its products to ensure optimal functionality.
Ratchets are high quality and durable. The sockets are sturdy and won’t strip any bolts during use. Every piece can be tightly secured in the case.
Socket size markings are written in small prints.
1/4 and 3/8inch
6-point
7 Size Options
High alloy, heat-treated steel
72

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How Do I Choose the Best Ratchet Set?

(Updated )
The Boys Scout motto is: Be prepared! Prepared for what exactly? Answer: For any eventualities. Many men have won the hearts of pretty damsels by being prepared with the right tools at the right time. How better to win a lady’s heart than by galloping to the rescue with your tool belt strapped around you and saving the day by fixing some damaged pipes?

Those were the good old days when ladies expected men to be their heroes. Though many ladies no longer require knights in shining amour, the Boys Scout’s motto remains true. There’s nothing as annoying as trying to do something with the wrong tools. If you’ve ever been to the mechanic’s workshop and seen the ease with which some very tough jobs are handled, you’ll agree that almost 50% of that ease comes from the content of the tool cabinet. Bad tools can make a skilled person look incompetent.

You cannot claim to have tools if you don’t have a ratchet set. This is a convenient way to own a set of tools that can come in handy in many situations. You may not always have a complete tool box in your car, but you can at least have a ratchet set which can help you through some really tough times.

In this guide, we’ll help you choose the best ratchet set for your needs. We’ll show you features to watch out for and will also explain how they impact your use of the equipment. By the time you’ve read through this guide, you’ll have a better idea of what you need to get.
Price
There are a lot of factors that can affect the cost of a ratchet set. Among these are the items in the set, the number of items, the quality of the set and of course the brand. To make this easy for you, we’ve narrowed down our range to cut off cheap ratchet sets that offer no value, leaving only sets that can at least offer the value they promise.

For between $15 and $210 you can get a good ratchet set. Needless to say, the features of the set you get will be greatly determined by what you pay for it. A $20 ratchet set isn’t likely to offer you the same as a $200 set. Determine the features you need and get ready to pay for what you want.
Features
There are a couple of features that can affect how effective a ratchet set will be. It therefore makes sense that these features should influence the decision of which set to choose. Some of these features include:
  • Socket type
  • Ratchet tooth count
  • Release mechanism
  • Drive size
  • Material
  • Number of pieces
  • Reverse mechanism
  • Case type
  • Finishing
Construction and Design
One important feature of a ratchet to consider is the socket type. The socket type could either be 6-point or 12-point. This simply refers to the number of sides or angles the socket has. A lot of sockets available today are 6-point, meaning they are hexagonally-shaped. A lot of users prefer the 6-point socket because there’s the assertion that it allows more torque to be applied without rounding off shoulder corners.

The 12-point sockets on the other hand are great for working in tight spaces, namely because you have more starting positions and only need to turn it by 30 degrees to get it to slip unto the fastener. With the 6-point socket, on the other hand, you’ll need to turn it by 60 degrees. To settle the debate as to which is better, getting a set with both the 6-point and 12-point sockets will be the best bet.

Another important thing to consider is the tooth count. Most of the ratchet sets reviewed here are 72-tooth. Tooth count on 3/8-inch-drive ratchets will vary from 36 to 72. The more the tooth count, the better. Let’s try to explain this. Inside the ratchet head, there’s a gear system that controls the entire operation of the ratchet. With more tooth count, you need a shorter back swing to get the next bite. You’ll especially find this very helpful when working in tight spaces.

Additionally, due to the fact that internal resistance from fine toothed ratchets is less, it’s very unlikely that on a return stroke, a bolt or nut would come unscrewed. With a fine-toothed ratchet, you only need a 5 degree movement to work the ratchet as against the 10 degree movement that’ll be required for coarser tooth ratchets.

There’s an erroneous view that fine-tooth ratchets are not as strong and coarse tooth ratchets. This is totally not true. Every 3/8 inch ratchet is required by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) to be able to withstand a minimum torque of 1,800 inch-lbs. and this is regardless of the size of the tooth.

You don’t have to worry so much about the drive size if you’re getting a set. At least everything in the set will work well together. The drive size only becomes an issue when you want to use other sockets with the new set. If this is the case, check to ensure the drive size is right before purchasing.

A ratchet set will have varying number of pieces in the set. Much more than the number of the pieces, ensure that the included pieces are essential and not just pieces you may never need. It helps to have an idea of what you’ll be using the ratchet set for most of the time.

Most if not all ratchets are made of steel of varying compositions. You of course need to have a very tough material that can handle the demands that’ll be placed on the ratchet, a primary kind being chrome vanadium steel.
Performance and Ease of Use
When considering ease of use, one important thing to look out for is the release mechanism. The release mechanism is what allows the socket to pop out of the ratchet. Many ratchets have a quick release mechanism which makes the process easy. Others that don’t have a quick release mechanism will require that you pull the socket off, which could be difficult with oily hands.

Another thing to consider is the reverse mechanism. A ratchet could have a lever or a dial design. Depending on the conditions under which you’re working, one may be preferred to the other. If you’re working in an open space, any of the two will do fine. However, when you’re working in a tight space, you’ll find that the lever design is more convenient.

Does the finishing on your ratchet set matter? Well, if you want to clean them conveniently then it certainly does matter. Smooth finishes allow for easier cleaning as against textured finishes. You decide which you prefer.

Finally, we’ll consider the case, which is also an important factor seeing as the case will help keep you ratchets and sockets organized and safe. Generally speaking, cases that hold up to heavy use are those with hinges and snaps with pin and draw-bolt latches. You should also give more consideration to cases that provide secure storage so your tools won’t be falling around inside of it.

Take your time to find exactly what’s right for you.

What is the Best Ratchet Set?

Choice plays a part in everything we do in life. Choosing a ratchet set will depend largely on your personal preferences which may be determined by the use you want to put your ratchet set to. Having read through our guide, you’ve seen some features and how they can impact your use of the ratchet set. As we begin to review out top 5 selections, you should be on the watch out for those features that are important to you. Let’s begin!
Our Top Choice
The Craftsman Mechanic's Tool Set is a durable, complete set of tools that includes 116 sockets, 12 and 6-point, in metric and standard. This set provides all you need to handle the simplest and the most complex tasks. Want a smaller set? Try the Craftsman 56-piece Universal Mechanics Tool Set, its ratchets are protected by black oxide for a better gripping ability.
Craftsman 230-Piece Standard and Metric Mechanic's Tool Set with a Silver Finish

Craftsman Ratchet Set 50230


Features
From its inception in 1927 till date, Craftsman has maintained its position as America’s bestselling tool brand through its dedication to quality and durability. It’s empowered and inspired tradesmen from all works of life to excel at their endeavors.

The Craftsman Mechanic's Tool Set is a durable, complete set of tools that include 116 sockets, 12 and 6-point, in metric and standard. This set provides all you require to handle tasks as simple as tightening screws or as complicated as rebuilding an entire engine.

Its features include:
  • Durable, silver finished alloy steel
  • 1/2, 3/8 and ¼ inch drives that are quick-release
  • 116 sockets that are in standard and metric measures
  • 2 bars for extension
  • 6 combination of wrenches in metric and standard
  • Magnetic handle
  • 40 screwdriver bits
  • 12 nut drivers (metric and inch)
  • 40 hex keys
  • Lifetime warranty (doesn’t cover screwdriver bits)
  • Carrying and storage case
Best Value
The TEKTON Socket Set is a set of 3/8-inch drive tools which includes sizes 5/16 through to 3/4 inch. It features a 6-point socket and 72-tooth ratchet, all made from high-grade chrome vanadium steel. Need just a ratchet and not a full set? Try out the TEKTON 1457 3\/8-Inch Drive by 7-Inch Composite Offset Ratchet, which features a quick-release mechanism.
TEKTON Vanadium Steel Drive Socket Set — Available in 4 Sizes and 2 Styles

TEKTON Ratchet Set 13101 — 3/8-inch, 45-pc., Socket Set


Features
TEKTON is a company for those skilled and intelligent individuals with a passion for great tools. The brand focuses on exceeding the expectations of its customers by consistently delivering superior hand tools.

The TEKTON Socket Set is a set of 3/8-inch drive tools which includes sizes 5/16 through to 3/4 inch. It features a 6-point socket that grips perfectly avoiding round-off and a 72-tooth ratchet that works fine in tight spaces. These are all made from top quality chrome vanadium steel to ensure strength and durability.

Its features include:
  • All sizes from 5/16inch to 3/4 inch (8 to 19 mm)
  • Universal joint
  • 6-inch long extension for extra length
  • Finely geared 72-tooth finely geared ratchet that needs only 5-degree swing arc to work
  • Available in 4 different sizes and 2 different styles
  • 6-point sockets with high-torque that prevents round-off by gripping the fasteners flat sides rather than the corners
  • Top quality chrome vanadium steel finished in chrome plate
  • Storage case that’s compact and tough
The Apex Tool Group Mechanics' Tool Set is a carefully assembled selection of hand tools from the Crescent brand. It’s comprised of essential tools suitable for mechanical, industrial, and basic consumer applications. If you only need the ratchets then check out the GearWrench 81230P 120XP Teardrop Ratchet Set, which includes all 3 drive sizes (1/4”, 3/8”, 1/2") in a full polish finish.
Apex Tool Group Crescent 170-Piece Mechanics' Tool Set with 1/4’ Drive Quick-Release Ratchet

Apex Tool Group Ratchet Set CTK170CMP2


Features
Apex Tool Group is a company focused on the continuous improvement of its product and the provision of high quality goods and services to its customers at affordable prices, using prompt and efficient delivery systems.

The Apex Tool Group 170 Piece Mechanics' Tool Set is a carefully assembled and extensive selection of Crescent brand hand tools, comprising tools which are essential and more than adequate to handle most mechanical, industrial, and basic consumer applications.

This product’s features include:
  • A carefully chosen selection of hand tools
  • Updated model of the popular CTK170CMP
  • A blow mold case that’s sturdier than before
  • Drive tools of sizes: 1/4 inch, 3/8 inch & ½ inch in SAE & Metric
  • A plastic case that is sturdy and foldable, providing easy transport and storage
  • Adherence to new ASME and ANSI specifications
  • A guarantee of full satisfaction
The BOSTITCH 65 Pc Pass Thru Socket Set is made with an innovative design that grants it a lower arc swing, higher torque ratcheting, and better accessibility to produce an entirely different grade of hand tools. Need something simpler and more affordable? Try the BOSTITCH BTMT72275 Specialty Wrench Bit Set; it comes with a low profile bit ratchet for one-hand use.
BOSTITCH Pass Thru 65-Piece Heavy Duty Ratchet and Socket Set

BOSTITCH Ratchet Set BTMT72287


Features
Established as a wire tightening company in 1896, BOSTITCH has operated on a long running history of high standards and innovation. This has enabled it to stay competitive, evolving with changing times and technology. Little wonder it has become the industry titan it is today.

Constructed using chrome vanadium steel, the BOSTITCH Pass Thru Socket Set is a durable set made with an innovative design that grants it a lower arc swing, higher torque ratcheting, and better accessibility, to produce an entirely different grade of hand tools.

Its features include:
  • Ratchet suitable for heavy-duty use
  • A gear with a 72-Tooth system
  • Pass Through Design
  • Rubber grip handle for the ratchet
  • Chrome Vanadium Steel material
  • Size markings that are well stamped fir durability
  • A case that’s blow molded, providing tools protection and portability
The Stanley Drive Mechanic’s Tool Set features a max-drive design that gives it 15-percent more torque. It’s constructed of durable high-alloy steel for durability and has been heat-treated for improved performance. Need a more extensive ratchet set? Try the Stanley Black Chrome and Laser Etched 69-Piece Socket Set, which comes with 30 1/4-inch sockets, 33 3/8-inch sockets, and much more!
Stanley Drive Mechanic’s Tool Set with Max-Drive Design — Available in 7 Sizes

Stanley Ratchet Set STMT71648 — 40-Piece


Features
Stanley has long been synonymous with quality, reliability, innovation and value in the tools market. Till date, it remains dedicated to continuously testing, designing and improving its products, ensuring quality and maximum functionality.

The Stanley Drive Mechanic’s Tool Set features a max-drive design that gives it 15-percent more torque. It’s constructed of durable high-alloy steel for durability and has been heat-treated for improved performance. It also includes a 72 tooth count ratchet for smooth operation in tight spaces.

This product’s features include:
  • Set with 40 pieces of sockets
  • Body made from chrome vanadium, adding strength, torque, and durability
  • Increased performance with heat treatment
  • A 72 tooth gear which requires just a 5 degree arc swing
  • Anti-corrosion ensured by the polished chrome finish
  • Six specialty bits
  • Available in 7 different sizes
  • Easy mobility and storage with the tough, durable case
  • Tools that meet and even go beyond ANSI standards

Get the Best Ratchet Set of 2017!

Thank you for taking the time to read through this guide and review of the best ratchet sets around. Hopefully we’ve provided you with enough information to help you choose the ratchet set that’s ideal for you. Without wasting any more time, go right ahead and place your order so you can begin to enjoy your new gear.

Our Top Choice
Craftsman 230-Piece Mechanic's Tool Set
Best Value
TEKTON Vanadium Steel Drive Socket Set
Apex Tool Group Crescent Mechanics Set
BOSTITCH Pass Thru Socket Set
Stanley Drive Mechanic’s Tool Set