brycerider wrote:Get quality that will last - cheap stuff is like cheese and will damage your bike. A good set of t Handle allen keys are a good start - can recommend Pedros. Cable cutter (Park is good) plus a chainwhip and lockring spanner (Shimano is good). Also a workstand - several options.
If you have a carbon bike then you should get a torque wrench. The Shimano Pro is best value for a reasonable one but Park is also good.
...and if you have an unlimited budget, you can buy the entire Park catalogue and be fully set.
Hardly required for a new mechanic though.
Good allen keys are a great investment. Cable cutters are a godsend (although, in truth, I tend to cut outers with a dremel these days rather than cutting them).
Chainwhip can be any old rubbish I used a home-made one until I got around to buying a cheap tailor-made one). My cheap cassette lockring socket has done plenty of work, and shows no signs of age... if it was in any danger of failing, it would munch itself before damaging a lockring. A BB tool is useful, but really, for the number of times it gets used, a newbie is just as well to get a LBS to do the job. All my bikes still have square taper cranks, and my cheap crank puller is still working fine after many years. I've trashed a couple of chain breakers, so my next one will probably be a big$ one... relatively speaking.
Cheap tools aren't made to last, and better tools are better. But cheap tools tend to damage themselves before they damage bikes, and if they start getting a bit questionable then they should be chucked out and replaced with something of decent quality.