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Owning a well-loved guitar comes with the responsibility of making it last a long, long time. And one of the best ways to do that is to invest in a great guitar repair tool kit.
The best guitar setup tool kits for maintenance and repairs include all the appropriate tools and care items necessary for keeping your instrument at its best. Kits should also include a protective carrying case to safely and conveniently hold everything in one place.
If you’re in the market for a guitar setup tool kit, keep reading. I’ve reviewed 6 of the best kits available on the market today (and all can be found at Sweetwater) to help you find one that’s right for you.
What are the Best Guitar Setup Tool Kits?
Guitar Setup Tool Kits Reviews
The GrooveTech Guitar Player Kit is a basic kit that even a novice will find easy to use. This pack comes with an Easy Setup Guide, unlike some of the other kits listed here. If you know your instrument needs a fix but are terrified of breaking your guitar, this guide will make sure you don’t make a mistake.
It comes with eleven color-coded hex wrenches so you can adjust the truss rod on any kind of guitar.
The carry pouch has a clear window to see all the tools included with your kit. These tools include a string cutter, string winder, a screwdriver, a ruler, and a thickness gauge. It even includes a capo.
- Easy Setup Guide instructs you on how to make different repairs.
- Allows for truss rod adjustments.
- Includes a capo, unlike many other kits listed here.
- Fairly basic toolkit without many extras.
This guitar tool kit is a little more expensive than others, but for all the tools and add-ons you get, it may well be worth it. The MusicNomad Ultimate guitar kit comes with Guitar Polish, One oil, and F-One oil, so you can repair your guitar and clean it off and condition fraying wood.
It also comes with a 36-inch by 17-inch work mat and a gel neck cradle, so you won’t have to worry about scuffing up the back of your instrument as you work. A string cutter, string winder, and a bridge pin puller are included in the package, too.
The pack features a 26-piece tool set to complete adjustments to the action and setup of your guitar. The only thing you don’t get are hex keys to adjust your truss rod. But if you prefer to get a professional luthier to work on your truss rod, this may not be a dealbreaker.
- Includes MusicNomad's acclaimed oils and conditioners.
- Work mat will keep your guitar safe.
- Includes bridge pin puller to protect guitar top.
- No hex keys included, so you cannot adjust the truss rod.
- Much costlier than the other kits listed here.
If you love Ernie Ball’s guitar strings, you’ll also love the Ernie Ball guitar repair kit. This kit comes with a microfiber cloth and Wonder Wipes, so you can polish up your guitars without using tons of conditioning oil.
This string cutter is extremely heavy-duty, so you can easily cut through even your thickest bass strings. You also get a peg winder so you can make quick string changes.
The zippered carrying pouch also contains a six-in-one screwdriver, a ruler, and a hex key set, so you can make adjustments to the truss rod.
- Hex keys included so you can make a truss rod.
- Sturdy shell keeps your tools safe.
- Perfect for quick changes.
- Simple kit without too many extra tools.
This kit is a great compromise between price and quality. If you want a guitar conditioner included in your kit, this guitar set up kit comes with Dunlop’s Formula 65 solution and a microfiber cloth. It’s perfect for cleaning up your fretboard and body, and it’s safe to use on your beloved guitar every day.
The Dunlop System 65 kit itself has a semi-rigid shell that’s much more durable than some other kits here, so you don’t have to worry about accidentally breaking a tool or having one poke through.
In addition to all the standard guitar tools that come with this kit, you also get a powered flashlight, so you can make adjustments even during a gig in a dark room.
- Formula 65 conditioner included.
- Comes with plenty of extras, including fret collars and a micro cloth.
- Includes a flashlight for easier repairs during gigs.
- Some reviewers point out that the hex keys aren't universal to every guitar.
This is the preferred guitar kit of Nita Strauss, the current touring guitarist for legendary rocker Alice Cooper. If you want a guitar maintenance kit that’s tried and true by professional guitarists, this is the pack for you.
The D’Addario Nita Strauss Hurricane Kit comes with a 9V battery and a headstock tuner, so not only can you make repairs to your instrument, you can make sure that you’re always in tune. The string height gauge, winder, and multi-tool will enable you to fix your setup exactly how you want it.
Not only that, it comes with D’Addario’s patented Hydrate Fingerboard Conditioner and XLR8 String Cleaner, so you can keep your strings in great shape.
- Perfect for touring musicians.
- Rugged case will keep the tools organized and safe.
- Includes a headstock tuner and a 9V battery.
- You may not need a headstock tuner or 9V battery.
Unlike the GrooveTech Player Kit, this Compact tech kit is designed to be carried onstage. You might have a little bit less functionality than a full kit, but it comes with all the guitar tools necessary to stop a broken string from being a disaster.
This kit comes with a screwdriver and a 19-piece magnetic bit set to go along with it. It also has both inch and metric hex keys, thickness gauges, and a string cutter. You also get a string-winder. And like the other GrooveTech kit listed here, you get a capo packed in.
If you’ve ever fumbled with all the tools in a full-sized maintenance kit during a gig, the GrooveTech Stagehand Compact kit might be perfect for you.
- One of the most cost-effective kits.
- Extremely portable.
- Comes with a capo.
- Doesn't have all the extra guitar tech tools that more complete kits have.
Guitar Maintenance Tool Kit Buyer’s Guide
When there are so many guitar tool kits out there, it can be overwhelming to look at this list and try to figure out what kind of kit is the best for you. The best guitar maintenance kit for you isn’t necessarily the most expensive one. Rather, it’s the one that includes every tool you’ll be regularly using.
Here’s how to determine what tools you need in your guitar maintenance kit.
How To Choose the Best Kit for You
First, ask yourself these questions to see what you need to keep your guitar in shape:
- What kinds of guitars do you need to make adjustments to? Your guitar type will dictate which guitar kit you need. If you think you’ll need to cut bass strings, invest in a kit with heavy-duty string cutters like the Ernie Ball Musician’s Tool kit. If you have a vintage guitar that needs a little extra love, consider buying a kit with guitar polishes or conditioners such as the Dunlop System 65 Setup Kit, the D’Addario Nita Strauss Hurricane Kit, and the MusicNomad Ultimate Workstation.
- Will you need to make any quick string changes onstage? If you think you’ll ever find yourself in a position where you need to quickly change your string in the dark, make sure you have a flashlight and a string winder.
- Do you need to adjust your truss rod? If you need to adjust your guitar’s truss rod, make sure you purchase a kit like GrooveTech Guitar Player Kit or GrooveTech Stagehand Compact kit that comes with a set of hex keys.
Determine the Guitar Setup Tools You Need
Here are the tools you should have available to help repair your guitar.
- Hex keys
- String gauge
- String cutters
- Ruler or thickness gauge
- Microfiber cloth
You might not need to buy a kit that has all of these tools; you can get microfiber cloths, flashlights, and rulers at your local Walmart or convenience store. If you want to buy a simple kit and add tools as you need them, you could end up saving yourself some money.
If you have extremely high-quality instruments, or if you’re a touring guitarist who needs top-of-the-line tools, you’ll probably want to invest in a kit that has all of these items.
These six guitar toolkits will help you keep your guitars in great shape. Guitar maintenance is a critical part of making sure that your guitar continues to sound great. You’d be surprised at what kinds of adjustments you can make to your guitar all by yourself and how drastically you can improve your sound.