How to Choose a Tool Belt
As a physical worker in the field of construction, you know how important it is to have a solid and reliable tool belt that allows you to carry with you the majority of the tools you’ll need for the day. Tool belts really help your efficiency and performance, as the tools and fasteners you need are normally no further than around your waist. However, in order to be at maximum efficiency, there are a couple things to factor in when choosing your next tool belt. They are design, material, weight, and size.
Design is the first thing to look at. Tool belts are generally designed with a certain group in mind, whether it’s framers, electricians, carpenters, drywallers, and anyone else. The difference between these can be massive, as framers require large pouches with suspenders to help carry the weight, while electricians pouches may be a little smaller and suspenders may not be needed. So, the first task is to narrow down what tool belt will work best for what you spend the vast majority of your time doing. Once you know that, the field is cut way down.
Many construction workers find themselves switching between tasks with regularity depending on the job they are at. What I do in this situation is get a good sized set of pouches that can be emptied when you don’t need as many tools and fasteners. You can never create more room in the pouches, but you can always take items out to take weight off.
Occidental Leather Tool Belt
Tool belts and pouches come in several different materials today, with the main choices being leather, nylon, and canvas. Leather is the traditional choice for many, as it’s very durable and wears in well to your waist. There are many reports of leather pouches lasting decades if the sewing job was top notch. They can handle the toughest abuse out there as well. The only downsides to leather are the price and weight.
Nylon tool belts are heavy duty as well and can be lighter than leather belts. They may never wear in as well as leather and won’t last as long either, but the prices are always much cheaper. Nylon is the solution if you are doing tough work but are on a budget for your tool belt.
Canvas is probably the least used out of these materials and I don’t have a lot of experience with it. It does seem like it would be lighter duty but is clearly the lightest out of these three, as well as cheapest. It would be a great solution for workers who don’t need many tools or fasteners.
Though we already mentioned which belt is the heaviest and which is the lightest, it is worth pointing out again that it is a very important factor to look at. A pound or two of difference can make a significant difference when you’re on your feet wearing a belt for 10 hours a day, 5 days a week, all year long. Weight can be especially important to older workers or those with back problems. Suspenders can really help distribute weight better as well, but it’s still weight you are carrying.
Size is really the last factor to look at, and though it seems obvious, make sure to buy a belt that fits your waist well. Some belts may come in a one size fits all, so if that’s the case, don’t be afraid to trim the belt to fit your waist better so you can actually tighten it all the way up.
Choosing a tool belt is completely a matter of finding what works best for you and your work. Take full advantage of your belt and watch your efficiency go way up. Read more on this site to find suggestions and reviews of the best tool belt for each sub-industry like electricians, framers, and more.