Tools! – A peek inside the back of the LJ and what I carried with me on the NHT

A good overlander is prepared to fix and maintain their rig while out on an adventure.  The ability to fix a broken or ill-performing rig can, in some situations, mean the difference between life or death.  As an east coast person I doubt it would ever come to that for me, but last time I checked AAA doesn’t like to go deep into the woods to recover broken vehicles.

My first toolbox.  Nothing beets an old trusty rusty Craftsman toolbox.


Having a good toolbox is one thing, but having your tools organized inside that toolbox is just as essential has having good tools.  Toolrools are a great way to keep tools secured so they don’t rattle, keeping them organized so you can find them,  and the pockets are a great way to visually inventory your tools so you don’t leave any behind.

Top two rolls: SAE and Metic combo wrenches
Bottom roll: assorted pilers and snips

Another bonus of using tool rolls is they can be hung off your vehicle or on a chair making them easy to get to when a flat surface isn’t easily accessible.

Fleshing out the tool rolls are a few assorted hand tools.

C-clamps are great to have in case you have to do any work on brakes or if you need to bend any metal.  Also work great when pressing in u-joint caps.

Great for working on vehicle electronis such as radios, inverters, and fuse boxes

Hex keys and torx bolts are becoming more and more common on vehicles these days.  Never hurts to have your own set.

More sockets than any one man needs… unless you own a Jeep.

 Inside a Pelican 1500 series case I carry a full set of sockets, drivers, and extensions.  This is probably overkill for the average overlander, but I like being “that guy” who is prepared to not only work on his own rig but someone else’s in the group or random strangers along the way (like a pair of bikers I met in North Carolina while on the “No Highways Tour”).

US Navy Drive Knife makes a great utility knife
A hatchet also doubles as a small sledge.

A good utility knife and a hatchet are great to carry while overlanding.  Not pictured, but in my jeep all the time, is a Gerber “Multi-Tool.”  I also carry a Smith and Wesson SWAT pocket knife on me at all times.

I also carry a few items not pictured that I think are good to have.  An OBDII Scanner is a must (especially for me given my proclivity for the dreaded CEL), along with zip-ties, fluids, and spare parts.  I honestly didn’t carry too many spare parts with me on trip knowing I wouldn’t be too far from a parts store.  Spare U-joints, a sper-belt, and a clean air-filter were about the only spare parts I had one me or carry with me on a daily basis.

Hope this helps give you an insight into not just what I carry and why but some ideas into what you (or someone in your group) should carry when on your next overland adventure.

0 thoughts on “Tools! – A peek inside the back of the LJ and what I carried with me on the NHT

  1. First time Jeep owner (less than a month). Realized I don't have any socket wrenches in my toolkit. Can you recommend a good socket wrench set with a nice selection of ratchet wrenches, extenders, etc?

  2. Sorry for the delay in response. I was on the road the last two weeks for the Appalachian Rendezvous and Overland Expo East and soon I'll be on the road to Vermont.

    For a socket set I'd be looking at something like this: http://www.craftsman.com/craftsman-19-piece-3-8inch-dr-inch-and-metric/p-00924963000P?prdNo=39&blockNo=39&blockType=G39 I kinda wish those were out when I put my kit together. They also have wrenches (which I do have I just need to swap them into my kit) and they are slick.

    Hope that helps. If you have other questions let me know and i can respond in greater details once I'm back from the Vermont Overland Rally which is coming up next.