Everything you will ever need as a mechanic aside from electric and air operated tools. (even then 1/2 of most of the harbor freight stuff works pretty well.) The only thing i would ever buy from snapon would be ratchets and special sockets/tools. such as pitman arm sockets, even then i would just go straight to OTC and buy it from them for half the price.
snapon electronic tools are a waste of money and often down right shit for how much you pay for them, aside from the digital torque wrench which is absurdly overpriced but does work well i wouldnt buy a single electric tool from snapon.
it is downright sickening to see some of these snapon dealers making six figure incomes off of mechanics, and all they do is order a tool and hand it to you so you can go make money and have dem shiny ass name brand tools yo. This is just my bitter opinion though.
to be honest, I've been using Kobalt from Lowes for the past 6 years and they're still holding up! Nice heavy build quality with a lifetime Warranty. Not CHEAP but also not EXPENSIVE as well. Plus, they offer "mechanic kits" online that come your basic essentials. SAE or Metric i believe.
I like craftsmen for decent price and quality but buying tools for home and work I can't always always afford to buy craftsmen stuff so I buy harbor freight tools to. Like stated harbor freight has a good warranty/return policy (kind of like Walmart, they will take anything back). Their air stuff is usually a little under powered vs name brand stuff though. Don't buy pipe wrenches from harbor freight thought, they don't like to bite alot of times and I've had them get stuck a few times (at least the steel orange ones)
harbor freight makes some really really good stuff and then some really bad stuff.
Just check reviews on things because the good stuff is about a quarter of what they should cost.
Their ratchets have been holding up for be just fine, also almost all their air tools Ive had for the last 10 years have been perfect. Especially their impact wrenches.
I only own a 4 or 5 snap on ratchets and 2 are skipping gears. But snap on usually send you new ones for free
I wouldnt trade my snap on ratchets, 3/8ths extensions+sockets, and combo wrenches for the world. Also the hex bits seem not to break even close to as much as other brands.
With that being said, i tend to cheap out on 1/2 sockets, especially impact sockets. Ive had my sets of 1/2" chinese impacts for YEARS and never had an issue. I also cheap out on air tools all the time. It usually pays off. $20 for a right angle drill vs $250 off the snapon truck is a good savings.
Yeah I agree with Kobalt, been steering away from Harbor Freight on heavy duty stuff, I have broken too many of their sockets wrenches. For sand paper, small wiring stuff, gloves, and little hand tools in a pinch on the cheap though....
My Kobalts have been abused and/are held/holding up well, and they are backed by a no questions asked lifetime guarantee. I snap the 3/8 drive off of it, get a new one. Drop it in water and the gears seize, new one.....
Harbor freight is really hit or miss, as was said read reviews. I have a broken 3/8" craftsman (need to bring it in) and stanley ratchet in my toolbox and grabbed the harbor freight one for $10 because I needed something that day about a year ago: 3/8" Heavy Duty Composite Ratchet
It feels like plastic, but it feels and works great and has been my go to ratchet for over a year now. I have not even bothered to have my craftsman one repaired/replaced since it broke over a year ago.
If you are a backyard mechanic just go to the pawn shop and find a busted Craftsman socket wrench and a bag of sockets, under $10. Warranty replace the wrench. Screw driver set, wrench set from Harbor Freight,$5-$10. Shouldn't need much more than that.
I did never regret going with DeWalt for my power drill and impact driver. A friends Milwaukee was kinda like their beer, a little weak.