Looking for the locksmith tools to cover most of the brands and the budget is around 10k euro. I would like original tools that have updates. I will mostly do European cars vag, French, cars, fiat group, bmw, mb ….2005-2015.
10k is peanut for tools in today’s locksmith market.
You may cover old non keyless go models with that investment. If you already have major workshop tools. If you need soldering equipment, stock, and programmers you’re wasting time, as 10k will get you decent soldering station, power supply and cheap programmer.
Good laptop for this job is 1-3k depending on brand, accessories, speed and quality.
Programmers start at 500USD, and you will need at least 5 different
stock for keys 20k
Key cutting machine 3-10k
Lock decoders 2-5k
Special tools for BMW,MB 20-30k
if you want to do all brands , then save your money , there isn’t a tool on the market that covers all models and years on all brands .
top end multi brand tools like abrites are around £24k plus tax but still lots of gaps , cheaper token based tools like zedfull and smart pro are cheaper at around 3.5k plus tax , but you pay in tokens for every key you make , then there’s multi brand tools like autel im608 great kit at around 3.5k plus around £800 a year fee for online access and updates .
on a 10k set up you are limited to china kit , lonsdor and obdstar will give you coverage but no where near all brands and models .
as has been said , take just lishi picks , they don’t have full coverage on all brands and models , but there are 100 plus tools in set , so a full set of lishi is a good 2k .
a good cut to code machine , you won’t find one that cuts everything on a budget , but these are between 1k and 7.5k you get what you pay for in reliability and coverage
then there’s stock , it’s ok having the tools and the machines but you now need the stock , there are well over 1500 different remote keys used across the brands , if stocking them all then you need a stock value far higher than your budget allows .
all this before you even start looking at what diag you need , and 1 is not enough , you need multiple programmers as well as eeprom and dump tools.
you can get a set up for 10k , but it will be china kit , it won’t do all it claims and will have big gaps , you will pay for updates or buy new machines for new coverage . you won’t have a lot of stock as will not have budget for it .
set your sights lower to some brands and you can scrape a start up set up with 10k .
then of course you have to learn to use it all , and that will take a lot of time and practice .
Plenty of options for french cars and fiat, obdstar, lonsdor, etc , vvdi 2 is good on vag and ok on bmw, vvdi mb is good on Mercedes.
im608 not great on psa and renault , good on mb .
abrites excellent on psa , renault and fiat , good on mercedes and ok on bmw
with bmw you need eeprom tools and dump tools to back up the cas unit for when it goes wrong for all tools.
none of the tools give 100% coverage on mb and bmw in your budget .
autohex is great choice for bmw , but will eat up a huge chunk of your budget for just 1 brand but is by far the best and safest.
just for vag, bmw and mercedes you need a number of tools, and these makes can be the most hassle , judging by how many kill them , so good tools and knowledge on these help , obdstar and lonsdor will be fine on the french cars and most fiat.
for vag theres 6 lishi tools , for bmw theres 3 lishi tools, for mercedes theres 3 tools , for psa and renault theres 8 common tools , fiat theres 3 common tools , so just on these you need 23 tools to cover the years , but for euro cars the full set for euro is around 80 tools .
now your cut to code machines , you need to find cut to code machines that can cut vag keys including the 3 hu162 keys , merc keys for hu64 , most will do the french stuff though some struggle on va6 series and sx9 , so its fitting the right machine to your coverage needs , pointless having the software and not being able to cut the key .
vvdi2 full , vvdi MB and either obdstar or lonsdor will give you alot of coverage but still has fails and gaps , these will eat up over 4k of your budget , ok eeprom reader and dump tool possibly another 1k , so 50% of budget depleted , cut to code machine and some lishi eat the rest , but gets you started with ok kit but it is just a start .
you will get a set up with reasonable coverage for 10k , but it will just be a set up to get you started , the one thing with keys and diag is you dont stop spending , and you get turned over by many diag makers , poor quality keys etc , buying dust catchers is something we all do , todays go to tool is next years dust catcher , its a trade of very deep and always empty pockets
though if not looking to do all keys lost and you only want to do spare keys where customer has a working key already , then your set up is far lower and you can get a very reasonable set up for your 10k as dont need lishi and dont need cut to code machine and dont need such good diag .
abrites , autel im608, lonsdor etc all have fair coverage on Japanese brands , each has something another hasn’t , each has its fails , just as each has its strengths , even gscan can surprise . tango has AKL solutions for plenty of Toyota too . the more options you have the wider coverage you have when one fails another succeeds.
Credits to @ rapidlocksmiths