RacetruckRon Dork
1/1/21 1:17 p.m.

So the wife and I are relocating to the Greenville, SC area at the end of this month.  We essentially bought a house sight unseen, only saw it via a facetime tour with our realtor, and are flying in to be there for the inspection.  I want to buy a 4x4 Suburban or a Yukon Denali while we are down south and drive it back to Wisconsin. 

My budget is $5k so mileage and sketch factor are up there a bit but I'm also trying to stick with what I know (GM gremlins and LS engines).  What sort of tools would you bring with on a fly and drive? Socket set, OBD Scanner and a flashlight in the checked bag or is TSA going to have an issue with that even?

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
1/1/21 1:26 p.m.

I wouldn't bring anything at all.

GMs can be fixed anywhere, by anyone.  Parts are in every parts store in the country.

Bringing tools just makes getting through airport security harder.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
1/1/21 1:39 p.m.

Land Cruiser in NC


Lots of miles. Buy it cheap, drive it until settled and the sell for the same price later. 


Mr_Asa UltraDork
1/1/21 1:40 p.m.

I second not bringing anything. 

If you do need something, hit up the local HF/Wal-Mart/Whatever and get an assortment set for cheap.

bgkast (Forum Supporter)
bgkast (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
1/1/21 1:41 p.m.

I would buy a ok quality "mechanic's tool set" from Harbor freight or similar when I got there.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
1/1/21 1:51 p.m.

If buying tools when in NC go to big retailer like Wal-Mart. Buy universal set of cheap tools. Keep receipt. If you use the tools you'll be glad you did. If you arrive back to WI and you have not used the tools, return for full refund. 

Bring a code reader so you can tell if that light is important or not. 

Most important, a good cell phone that works in rural areas to internet research issues. Spare cell phone battery charger to keep that phone juiced. 

Slippery (Forum Supporter)
Slippery (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
1/1/21 1:58 p.m.

My take is he wants to buy a car in NC while he is there to flip in Winsconsin. Therefore the 4x4. Just guessing. 

I would not bring anything either. Swing by Harbor Freight once you land and buy some basic tools. 

RacetruckRon Dork
1/1/21 2:07 p.m.
John Welsh said:

Land Cruiser in NC


Lots of miles. Buy it cheap, drive it until settled and the sell for the same price later. 


I've seen that, while it's tempting I have no interest in Toyotas and have a lot of experience with GM full size SUVs and trucks.  There's a couple Yukons I'll be looking at when I'm in Greenville next week.

RacetruckRon Dork
1/1/21 2:12 p.m.

In reply to Slippery (Forum Supporter) :

Buy in SC (no rust) so I can drive back to Wisconsin and in a couple weeks when we close on a house pull my non-running project truck back down to SC.  Wife and I both have family in WI so buying a large 2wd SUV that we will use for cross country road trips makes zero sense.  I've been mostly looking at 00-06 Yukon Denalis since they got the 6.0L and AWD standard.

RacetruckRon Dork
1/1/21 2:14 p.m.

The no tools makes sense for TSA. I'll probably just bring a code reader in my carry-on.  Buying tools at retail price always hurts me since I already have everything and get a hefty discount on a specific brand of tools when I do need something.

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) UberDork
1/1/21 2:37 p.m.

Bringing a code reader (especially if it's an OBD2 dongle that works with your phone) and a small-but-powerful LED flashlight should raise no eyebrows with the TSA, even in carry-on.

I've never tried wrenches in my checked bag, but I have trouble seeing how that would be a problem.  Carry-on yes, but checked?  If they're worried about a mass clubbing attack at baggage claim you'd think they'd start with the golf clubs.

Edit:  just checked the TSA site, you can actually bring two golf clubs (but not an entire bag) onto the plane as carry-on.  Tools shorter than 7" are explicitly legal in carry-on, longer ones are explicitly labelled as being checked only.  https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring/items/tools

Cooter UberDork
1/1/21 2:48 p.m.

I've never brought much of anything for any of my 2K+ mile Fly and Drives, and none of them were over $2K or newer than 1984.

This is what I brought with me when I drove the '78 D100 home.

Cooter UberDork
1/1/21 2:50 p.m.

That said, you are better off just buying what you need to make you comfortable with your drive home when you arrive.   

I will sometimes buy estra fluids, jumper cables, and a can of fix a flat.    AAA card doesn't hurt, either, though I've never used it on a Fly and Drive.

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
1/1/21 4:54 p.m.

Agree with the buy  there crowd. Bring a HF 20% off coupon, they're almost everywhere now. Code scanner or dongle is the key item to bring with you, and aside from that a light would be one of my first purchases.

OHSCrifle SuperDork
1/1/21 4:57 p.m.

Carry tools you already own in your Checked  bag. 


AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) Dork
1/1/21 5:05 p.m.

Flashlight, cash, ID, insurance info, socks, underwear, spare t-shirt, warm layer, and mechanix gloves in case you need to get dirty.  Fly and drives tend to be rather boring.  Cold startup is the most dangerous part mechanically.  As long as you don't have surprise fluid leaks, or busted radiators or cracked heads, it should be a boring trip.  I always take a backpack with mostly fresh clothing in case I need to get dirty.

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