A Guide to Specialty Automotive Tools

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Engine assembly can be a tough and time-consuming task. Here’s a basic guide to automotive machine shop tools that you’ll need to master the craft.

Micrometers and Dial Bore Gauge

Micrometers will be your biggest expense, but are invaluable to engine assembly. You’ll use them to measure crankshaft journals and set up the dial bore gauge for use on other parts of the engine.

Rod Bolt Stretch Gauge

You also need a rod bolt stretch gauge. This aids in maintaining engine longevity and keeping bolts clamped down.

Torque Wrench

You’ll need both 3/8 drive and 1/2 drive torque wrenches. This will cover the low and high end of the torque range.

Clearance Range

You’ll also need clearance ranges to figure out how much power the engine will put out. You will need to take into account the different types of engines you’ll be working on because they all have different ranges.

Ring Compressors

To install a piston and bore, you need a ring compressor. Ring compressors come in a variety of sizes based on your preference and the engine you’re building.

Degreeing Tools

Degreeing tools are required to measure the intake centerline of the camshaft. You’ll also need cleaners and lubes to keep everything running as smoothly as possible.

You’ll likely find that you collect more tools the more engines you work on. If you get get high quality instruments and take care of them, then they will last a life time.


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