I've always advocated TEKTON as a great option for the budget minded wrencher, but combo wrenches were one of the weaker areas of the line. The carbon steel construction was fine for a road set or something, but I was hesitant to put my name on the line to recommend them as a primary set. I'm not implying carbon steel wrenches aren't usable, but they are certainly lower grade wrench than the alloy wrenches we're accustomed to today.
As we've seen time and time again, TEKTON is constantly improving their line to bring better quality products to the table, at a price Joe Homeowner can stomach. This time they've made what I believe is their biggest leap yet.
Introducing The New TEKON Combos
Sporting Chrome-Vanadium Alloy construction, robust flat-top beams, extended length, “flank drive” style off-corner engagement, and flawless high-polished chrome finish, these new wrenches are a night and day type improvement over the previous models.
Available in sets from 9-33 pieces, these wrenches are nicer than anything you'll find on the shelf at the big boxes.
18765 9-pc. SAE Set (1/4-3/4 in.)
18767 11-pc. SAE Set (1/4-7/8 in.)
18769 13-pc. SAE (1/4-7/8 in.)
18772 15-pc. SAE Set (1/4-1 in.)
18785 9-pc. Metric Set (8-16 mm)
18787 11-pc. Metric Set (8-19 mm)
18789 13-pc. Metric Set (7-19 mm)
18792 15-pc. Metric Set (8-22 mm)
90186 22-pc. SAE/Metric Set (1/4″-7/8″ and 8-19 mm)
90191 30-pc. SAE/Metric Set (1/4″-1″ and 8-22 mm)
As I mentioned previously, theses new combos have nice robust beams. They aren't Williams Supercombo robust, but they are thicker than average. The beams also feature a flatter surface on top, so they feel pretty good in your hand.
The open ends are no frills. Good fastener fit, but they don't feature any type of special machining like Proto's Anti-Slip Design® or Snap-On's Flank Drive+®. The box ends do however feature an off corner design that places the contact points away from the corners of the fasteners, which should appease the 12 pt. haters out there. The finish is flawless. They're the type of nice, thick, chrome you'd expect to find on a higher end wrench.
While the wrenches are Taiwan sourced, each set comes in a surprisingly nice rack that's made in the USA. It's a rubber rack you'll actually want to use, not the cheap plastic type you'll instantly throw away.
TEKTON touts these as being longer than standard wrenches for extra leverage. That is true as they are a hair longer than a traditional Craftsman Raised Panel or Gearwrench, but they are still considerably shorter than my long panel combos from Proto and Mac in most sizes. I should elaborate that they tend to run shorter as they get bigger. For example, the 1/4″ is actually a tad longer than my long pattern Proto, but by 9/16″ the Proto is noticeably longer with the difference remaining pretty consistent throughout the set. Wrench length is like bourbon whisky, every maker does it a little different than the rest, but what you prefer is a matter of personal taste.
In true TEKTON style, these wrenches are solid performers at an affordable price. They're quality enough to use as a primary set, but affordable enough to toss in the truck box for an “on the road” situation. They're far better than the wrenches they replaced in the line, and they're something TEKTON can sell with confidence. As always, they're backed by TEKTON's Forever Warranty, so you can have confidence in them too. With Christmas just around the corner, that 22-pc. #90186 SAE/Metric Set (1/4″-7/8″ and 8-19 mm) is a great gift idea at under $60! Check out all the new sets available over at Amazon.
Thanks for reading and as always, stay tuned to TIA for more from TEKTON.