Selecting a tool belt for the job is not easy since there are multiple factors to keep in mind and personal preference also comes into play. Factors such as stitching, material used for manufacturing it, rivet, seam, belt and buckle adjustability and comfort all make up for a good tool belt. Some of the factors can be ruled out prioritizing personal likings. Even so there are tool belts that have been claimed to be all-in-one tool belts that provide the perfect blend of everything we mentioned above.
In this publication we are going to discuss how these things make up for a good tool belt and how you can consider them to make a purchase that is profitable and will make your job a whole lot easier as well. So let’s get into the things to consider when buying electrician’s or any tool belt for that matter.
Let’s start with …
Nylon Tool Belts/Bags
If you have been looking at tool belts for a while now you might have noticed the nylon tool belts or bags are also available in the market and they provide quite a practical approach as do the rest of them so what does nylon belt bring to the table?
Nylon belts are very light compared to the leather belts and some consider nylon bags to be too fragile to be able to handle the tools which are needed on the job but to be honest it’s all how you carry and choose the nylon belt.
Nylon belts are very light and they provide a comfort level that none of the leather belts can provide to a person with back issues. If you have back issues then you should go for nylon bags, now you will be thinking that nylon will not be able to stand the wear and will be completely useless after couple of years. Well it’s not the case with every nylon tool belt, if you’re going to buy the one which is the cheapest then chances are you are going to get the worst of the lot.
Before buying a nylon bag you should check if the material is rigid and strong enough to withstand the wear of the tools you will carry. Is the stitch single or double? Obviously double stitch will add more strength. Are there any options on the nylon belt for customization? Suspender loop, handles or padded belt and space to hold the tapes. These things can pretty much lead to you being able to purchase a durable and practical nylon tool belt.
All Leather Tool Belts are not the same
By the looks of it when you see a leather too belt you will assume that the material of all the leather tool belts is the same but that is where you will be wrong. There are three types of leather tool belts that you will come across which we will list here and out of the three based on the assumption that field work which requires hardware tools which wear out the tool belts easily, only one is the durable tool belt which will last you years. The three leather tool belts you will find …
Soft Leather Tool Belts (Suede Like Feel) tool belts are relatively inexpensive and will be compelling to buy. If you are buying a tool belt for DIY at home jobs you can go for the soft leather tool belts but if you are buying a belt for the field work you will likely experience blowouts in the pockets of the tool belts made of soft leather in about 12 to 18 months and that is not a very good investment in our opinion.
Two Ply or Bonded Leather next leather tool belt that you will find will be the either two ply or boded leather tool belt. These tool belts will be better than the soft leather type that we discussed above but not as durable as one would want his tool belt to be. The main weak link and the reason behind two ply and bonded leather tool belts not being the toughest of the leather tool belts is there is a sewn part or a bonded part which starts to feel the wear sooner rather than later and those sewn or bonded links start to fall apart especially if you’re going to work with heavy tools.
Thick/Pliable/Saddle Leather is the go to tool belt in our opinion for heavy tools and for the most customization options. These tool belts have no weak links and it’s the hardest and durable leather material available in the tool belt manufacturing. These tool belts cost a lot to buy but in the long run they can easily last for at least 6 to 8 years on a rough usage. Saddle leather tool belts are heavier in comparison but suspender option is always there for extra support.
Comfort and Fit
Wearing a tool belt on the job can be discomforting when you haven’t selected a tool belt that is not the most comfortable. For that purpose you have to keep few things in mind to choose a tool belt that is not discomforting when you wear it and doesn’t disrupt your work. Here are few things you can analyze to ensure comfortable fit on your next tool belt.
Sturdy Buckles are good for overall durability of the tool belt but it is not a good option to have on your tool belt especially when you are not able to slide the buckle around. Having big sturdy buckles can dig into your belly easily and that is not only discomforting but can also hurt a lot. The other thing about the sturdy buckles is that they can scratch or damage the finished surface as well. Being an electrician and being in someone’s house and damaging or scratching something valuable with your tool belt’s buckles is not a pretty picture.
One Size Fits All tool belts are not what they claim to be. These tool belts are manufactured on a stereotype that all plumbers or electricians are generally heavy weighted people or have large waist line and if you happen to be breaking that stereotype and have waist size below 34 inches then you are in for a trouble with “One Size Fits All” tool belt. Before selecting a tool belt make try it on for a size and make sure it fits you good.
Rivets are another factor that caught our attention even though they don’t provide much functionality other than holding the whole tool belt together but there is something that bothered us and we would like to convey it on to you. The rivets on some tool belts are placed at certain places which get in the way of getting the tools out of the belt and the sharp edges are also to look for since they can hurt your hands when reaching for the tools.
Now on to customization, the thing with customization and tool belts is there is no limit to it. The tool belt on it’s own is nothing but a piece of leather but the additional options make it practical and easy to use. The first and obvious thing to look for in terms of customization is the space in the bags attached to the tool belt. There has to be enough space for every tool you use on the job. There have to be dedicated spaces to hang tapes and other small but important stuff. The suspender hooks are the most important of all since having extra support is not a bad thing at all to have.
Pockets and Compartments
The key to a perfect tool belt is that you find the perfect blend of weight and quantity of bags and compartments. For obvious reasons if you go for quantity on the bags you will be increasing the overall weight of the tool belt which will decrease your mobility on the job and it will not be comfortable to wear that tool belt all the time.
The key to finding the bled of bags and weight is to look for a tool belt that doesn’t have a lot of bags but rather have multiple compartments inside the couple of bags which can accommodate the different tools you have for the job. Now it’s up to your preference of the tools and according to your preference you can select the tool belt best suited for your needs.
Your Trait Defines Your Tool Belt
We can point out all the details in a tool belt for you but in the end it all comes down to the trait. If you are an electrician the majority of your tools will be related to screwdrivers and wire cutters which are generally small in size and this situation changes with every trait. Either way the tool belt you choose will have to be light weight and durable at the same time to provide you with maximum mobility and comfort on the job. Keeping in mind these aspects we have compiled this publication and the rest is up to an individual’s personal preference.
Wrapping it Up
To wrap things up choosing a tool belt is solely a craftsman own choice and no one can make it for him since every craftsman has his own preference on the tools and working style so if you ask us to choose a tool belt for you we will not be able to do that because we don’t know how you operate during the job and what kind of material are you best suited to. Some individuals have back pains and require light weight tool belts and some can even do with suspenders for extra support.
To wrap it up all we can do for you is to provide you with general advice which we have in this publication and we can review some of the best electrician’s tool belts which can be used in any trait, you cannot limit the tool belt to a single trait, the link to the publication has been given. We hope you find this publication useful and will help you find the best tool belt for your trait.