Must-Have Motorcycle Tools

I’m a newly licensed motorcycle rider and even a newer motorcycle owner. One of the first challenges with bike ownership is having the must-have motorcycle tools, but first, try to figure out which tools are the ones that you need.

Over the years, I collected my home tools to work on my automotive DIY repairs and house maintenance, so I had a good head start on the motorcycle tools I needed.

However, if I was new to doing basic engine maintenance and got my first motorcycle, I wondered what the must-have tools for motorcycle owners are.

Must Have Tools For Motorcycle Owners

I also cover must have supplies for your motorcycle garage.

I aim to list the tools I either have or had to purchase to do essential maintenance on my motorcycle, a TaoTao TBR7(TaoTao TBR7 Review & Specs). Since the TBR7 Dual-sport bike is a special Chonda, it’s a bike not known for reliability and the performance under-performs in its stock version. To make it worse, these bikes are usually hard to find a professional mechanic to work on. Typically, the owner does all of the motorcycle’s maintenance, upgrades, and repairs. Something I knew when I bought the motorcycle.

Must-Have Motorcycle Tools T.O.C.:

Bonus Section: Motorcycle Shop Materials

2022 update: I have a second motorcycle now: Boom Vader Gen 2 125cc motorcycle. (Boom Vader (My Chinese Grom Clone) First Ride Review) So my tools are getting twice the work out.

Why Motorcycle Owners Want Their Own Tools

Even as a novice motorcycle owner, I realized I had purchased a blank slate of a machine that I wanted to immediately upgrade. I made minor design changes to the motorcycle, only removing the factory dirt-bike decals( Removed The Dirt Bike Decals ) and later removing the stock hand guards(I broke them: TBR7 Plastic Handguards Are Trash). 

Most of the motorcycle upgrades I did to the TBR7 were performance-based since I wanted to turn that dual-sport bike into more a street motorcycle that could handle the higher speeds of the highways. Didn’t change too much from its dirt roots, so I can still go off-road with the TBR7.

My Automotive Tools, Now My Motorcycle Tools.

As I mentioned, I have done years of DIY automotive repairs on my cars. Also worked/working on my mountain bikes. I liked learning, buying tools, and getting work done with my own hands.  

Liking to tinker and use tools makes me sound like a great motorcycle owner since much of the work we do is by ourselves on our bikes. So I have a collection of basic hand tools.  

If you are new to doing your work on engines or motorcycles specifically, I hope this list of must-have motorcycle tools will help. If I forgot any tools, feel free to contact me, and I can add them to this list.

Author’s Notice: This page contains affiliate links, for which I may earn a commission by their use. Also, as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying Amazon purchases.

Combination Wrenches (Metric and/or SAE)

Before you run out and get yourself a great set of combination wrenches for your bike, check if your motorcycle has metric-sized components or SAE sized (inches).

Typically motorcycles today are built around metric unit-sized nuts and bolts, I am told. However, SAE unit fasteners on ‘American’ motorcycles like the Harley Davidson (HD) brand exist. However, metric-sized fasteners can also be found on the Harley Davidson motorcycles unless they are very old.

So once you know the type (metric/SAE) combination wrenches you need, be sure to get a properly sized wrench set you can abuse without losing sleep. My wrenches are typically lying in a pile on the floor next to the bikes.

My Metric Combination Wrenches are big time must-have motorcycle tools.

Some recommended basic combination wrenches. Considering how my wrenches find their way to the floor, I might buy this combination wrench set to mount the tool roll on the wall for quick and easy storage.

26-Piece Combination Wrench Set with Roll-up Pouch,
wrench set metric and standard.

3/8 – Inch Drive Ratchet and Socket Set.

Again, be sure you know the size of the fasteners on your motorcycle. Metric and/or SAE(inches). Then be sure to get a ratchet set with enough sockets to cover every size nut/bolt you can. Note: Some nuts/bolts are huge and may require a larger ratchet set. See #3.

My 3/8ths ratchet set was purchased by my Wife, Cherie. It’s a “Popular Mechanics” brand sold at Walmart decades ago. It was a Father’s Day present when I had no kids. She bought them for me and said they were from our cat, Hershey. Still have that set today, and using them reminds me of her silly humor and beautiful smiling face.

My 3/8th socket set, from the 90's.

Nice thing about ratchet sets today, they include the smaller 1/4 – inch as well. Check out this Amazon “Best Selling” Set.

1/4-Inch & 3/8-Inch Drive Socket Set
with 72 Tooth Reversible Ratchet

1/2 – Inch Drive Ratchet and Socket Set.

I got by much of my life with a 3/8 – inch drive ratchet and socket set, but as I started working more and more on my motorcycles, I realized I was under gunned. Motorcycle triple trees, axle bolts, and nuts require a larger tool. So I picked up a 1/2 inch ratchet and socket set that helps.

This larger 1/2″ ratchet and socket set comes in handy with cutting the time needed to do a chain readjustment on my TaoTao TBR7 motorcycle ( TBR7 Motorcycle Chain Adjustment ). Now that I have the Boom Vader( Boom Vader Gen 2 Review – First Ride ) and stretching out that new chain( Boom Vader Motorcycle Chain Replacement ), the 1/2 ratchet and socket set comes in handy with that bike’s chain adjustments.

I picked up a cheap 1/2 inch drive ratchet and socket set and am looking at a higher quality tool set that can also be used with an impact wrench(when I get one).  

Considering how I buy tools and use them for life, I want a new ratchet set with many sockets I can use forever. Looking at this set right now:

SAE/Metric Impact Socket Set W/ Adapters & Ratchet Handle

Rolling Stool For Garage With Tool Storage

Working hunched over on your motorcycle will hurt your back after a while. I have a great hydraulic motorcycle lift, but I don’t want to lift my motorcycle every time I want to work on it and till it’s nice to sit down while thinking on your bike.  

My Rolling stool new, today it's full of tools and a mess, but helps my back.

Realizing I wanted to be comfortable while doing upgrades( TBR7 Upgrades & Boom Vader Upgrades ), I needed a place to sit, move around quickly, and a place to keep my most common tools within reach. I plan on doing a further into why I picked this version of the garage rolling stool, but I will cover some of the Pros and Cons of this design:

Square Rolling Garage Stool Pros:

  • Cheap, yeah, I’m a Chonda owner, which means I am frugal.
  • Wide base – if you ever moved around on one of these stools and got a screw jammed up under a wheel, you’ll appreciate the broad base. Tipsy, can I say?
  • Large tool storage area under the stool’s seat – My tool storage area has grown to look organized like a kitchen drawer, but I know where my frequently used tools are, and it’s always within reach.

Square Rolling Garage Stool Cons:

  • Wider- Yes, this is a con, but not much. The round rolling garage stool takes up less floor space but has less tool storage under the seat.

Well, that is it in a nutshell. Getting a rolling garage stool has helped me with my back, and I have my favorite garage tools always within reach.

This is the garage rolling stool type I have:  

Red Rolling Creeper Garage/Shop Stool with Tool Tray

Get A Magnetic Parts Tray!

Let me repeat this, Get A Magnetic Parts Tray for your motorcycle bits and pieces!

I cannot believe how often my little magnetic parts tray saved the day by keeping all my parts from rolling around the garage. I even ran into the parts tray with my rolling stool, and the parts remained in one place.

FYI, if you don’t like the parts tray on the floor, the parts tray also is magnetic from underneath. So I’ve stuck my parts tray to the bike’s forks and kept my parts in one place and off the floor.

Magnetic parts tray attached to TBR7 motorcycle fork.
My magnetic parts tray on my TBR7 motorcycle fork.

I cannot tell you how much time and hassle I save by picking up one of these parts trays. It’s on my shopping list to pick up several more so I can have one everywhere in the garage. So, again Get A Magnetic Parts Tray for your motorcycle parts!

Also, the parts tray(real cheap) I picked up was cheap insurance against losing those tiny motorcycle parts.

The kind I have currently, but I will be buying a larger tray set later:

Magnetic Parts Tray for Screws, Nut, Bolts, Small Tools

Motorcycle Shop Materials

I know these aren’t tools, but I wanted to put these items we use(and consume) when we work on our motorcycles. These items should be in our garages, so we do the job right the first time.


First, I’ll talk about motorcycles in general. They vibrate and shake more than cars, and cars have a nice safe metal cage around the driver and passengers.

My point is that essential parts on the motorcycle shake come apart, and there isn’t much safety margin for protecting the rider and passenger. So keep things together, and use a threadlocker.

The running joke is when you buy a Chonda bike or a Chinese Dual Sport Motorcycle; you need to buy gallons of threadlocker due to how loose parts are. I don’t suggest gallons, but having a big bottle is handy with DIY motorcycle maintenance, repairs, and upgrades.

Tube of blue threadlocker.

Since this is a safety item, going with a name-brand threadlocker is ok, but I buy cheap threadlocker as long as it works.

Loctite 243 Blue Medium Strength Threadlockers, 1.69 oz.

Shop Towels

Blue shop towels for your garage.

Not that I was being cheap, but I was grabbing what was handy. I was using regular kitchen towels when I was doing work on the motorcycle.

I get dirtier and messier when I work on the bike. I am wiping something out of oil, dirt, and grim when doing simple motorcycle DIY maintenance(URL & URL), and kitchen towels leave too much lint. They don’t absorb as much as shop towels.

I got my hands on a roll of shop towels and loved them to save money. I will be buying in bulk. Even when the towels are dirty, I can still use them to wipe up the floor in the last effort to get every penny out of these oil magnets. I recommend them, buy them in bulk.

Scott Shop Towels Original, 12 Rolls

Back To Top.

Picture of me, as a New Motorcyclist.
Just Me…Newly Licensed.

Hi I’m Tom, A New Motorcycle Rider and Blog Author.

I am a new rider(Pa Learners Permit at the end of 2020, and I received a Pa Motorcycle License in 2021 after passing a Motorcycle Safety Course).

I bought my first motorcycle, a TaoTao TBR7, at the beginning of 2021 and have been doing upgrades on that motorcycle since.

I added to my motorcycle collection by buying a Boom Vader Gen 2 in 2022, and that Grom-Clone motorcycle has been upgraded by me as well.

I continue to ride my Boom Vader Gen 2 motorcycle as well as my TaoTao TBR7 dual-sport bike.

Read more on my About Me page.

Fun Fact: I’ve only been on one group ride.