The Art and Joy of Tools

April 7, 2013 at 10:09 pm

At the moment, I do not have an extensive collection of cabinets and storage units for the purpose of collecting vast amounts of tools. Therefore, I like to make sure the few automotive utensils I do possess work well.

Imagine, then, my displeasure when I went to swap a set of  snow tires onto the E30 a few months ago and found that my existing lug wrench would not do the job. This was an all-hands-on-deck, standing on the breaker bar fiasco and the lugs still had more resistance than molasses in January. If you want to feel useless in the garage, try calling your friends and asking if they’re sure it’s lefty-loosey righty-tighty. That’s when you’ve reached rock bottom, when what little confidence you have is completely destroyed by a seemingly simple seasonal tire swap.


Of course, the lug nuts aren’t the problem – it’s the pitiful amount of torque my existing lug wrench was capable of emitting. Therefore, I turned to my friends in the reviewer community at Amazon and sought out their pick of the litter, a lug wrench that was a lady in the streets and an all-out vampire in bed. Enter the Gorilla 1721 Power Lug Wrench.

I’m here to tell you this story isn’t finished yet. I had just enough time this weekend to run the E30 up the street and kick off a hubcap to twist a lug nut. Oh. My. GOD. The lug turned with such ease I thought I had just stirred a batter of vanilla pudding rather than attempted to move a salt-encrusted nut air-drilled to hell by the mechanic who swapped the wheels after my failings months earlier.

I’m actually counting down the days until I can set aside some garage time and get those ugly, skinny, crap-handling tires off and swap the summer set back on. But this time, it’s not for the improvements in handling or looks – it’s for the excuse and ensuing joy of using tools that work.