Tools for the Job

Your tools may look different or may be more or less "fancy-pants", but as long as they do the jobs listed, that's all we need.

Needle-nose pliers - Absolutely essential.  Don't cheap out and buy a crappy pair.  And make sure you have ones with a spring.





Wire cutter - A decent one is nice, but you can probably deal with the little one that comes with the wire stripper.





Wire stripper - You'll thank yourself for this item.  I don't like the ones that double as crimping tools.  Small, just for stripping ones are easier to manipulate and you'll be using this item a lot.  The one pictured is from Jameco (#78991, TOOL,STRIPPER,WIRE,10-30AWG).




Soldering Iron - Simple is fine.  I use the switchable 15/30 watt iron sold at Radio Shack.  It's cheap, reliable, and you can get replacement tips locally ASAP.  I use the small 15-watt tips.








Unibits - These are essential tools.  Basically, it's a step drill that allows you to make varying sized holes with a single tool.  Don't let the $30 price scare you, you will love this thing.  Get at least the 1/2" sized one and probably the 1" size too.  Available at Home Depot or Lowe's or OSH.






Files - You will be happy with a round, rough cut file and a set of finer grit files.  These will be used to get a nice finish on the DB-15 port holes you need.


Dremel Tool - I use one for shaping holes after rough cutting with a drill.  And the only bit I ever use is the High Speed Cutting Tool (third from the left, #115).


Drill and a set of small bits - you'll need small ones like the 1/8" to drill the screw holes for the DB-15.

Small screwdrivers - Not for screwing and unscrewing, but for various tasks like scrapping solder masks, tweeking stuff, solder manipulation.

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