My Grip/AC/General Production Toolbelt

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My Grip/AC/General Production Toolbelt

Having the perfect tool belt can save you a lot of time on set by quickly getting what you need. Whether it is a screw driver, lens cloth, gloves, tape or even a battery, being able to get these tools with out leaving your DP or Gaffer can be a huge advantage. I want to walk you through my kit and show you how to build one of your own.

Leatherman Multi-Tool

Before you buy anything else, the most important piece of the kit is a Leatherman. You can find them everywhere and there’s a ton to choose from. My recommendation is to get one with locking tools. This will last you a long time so no need to go cheap. I have the Super Tool 300.

With this alone, you will have a lot at your finger tips and it is something you will use on every shoot. Yes, every shoot.

empty tool belt

The Tool Belt/Pouch

There’s a ton of options and depending on the projects you work on you may need a large one or something very small. I went with something on the smaller size because I don’t need too much at hand and I didn’t want to wear something large for 10+ hours. After a lot of online searching I landed at Home Depot and got myself an 8-Pocket Organizer. This has been a perfect size for me to fit everything I need. In addition, I got a separate belt. Reason for this is to quickly take off when not needed.

tools layed out

Tools I Carry

Each job requires different tools depending on cameras and crew size. Even when I DP, I like to have this belt close by because it has what I need and it’s organized. Here is a list of what I carry on a typical shoot:

  • Leathermen
  • Pen
  • Dry Erase Maker (for follow focus markings)
  • Black Sharpie
  • Lens Cloth
  • Lens Blower
  • Gloves (hot light or grip)
  • 2″ Black Gaffers Tape
  • 1″ Blue Camera Paper Tape

Get What Works for You

Once you’ve worked a few times in your role on set, you’ll quickly see what it is you always need and from there you can choose the ideal belt. There’s a lot of options out there so do a little research and find what will best help you do your job. If any of you have built your own post some pictures! Would love to see your setup.


  1. Trent
    March 10, 2014

    Nice article Rob. I actually don’t have a tool bet yet, but it’s something I’m going to hop on ASAP.

    • Rob Ruscher
      March 13, 2014

      Thanks Trent. I definitely find it helpful to have. Just makes you quicker on set.

  2. Christopher Phillips
    March 13, 2014

    Awesome post. I’ve been looking at getting a belt and the ones at Home Depot look just as good as the “custom” specialty belts everyone is offering at high prices.

    Good to see some common sense out there.

    • Rob Ruscher
      March 13, 2014

      Thanks Christopher! Glad you enjoyed it. And yeah I don’t see any difference between the Home Depot belts and the ones on B&H. My AC has a Home Depot belt and is working a great for the feature I’m DPing.

  3. MrTbonemain
    May 2, 2014

    Great post.

    I always have a little LED flashlight I carry along with the above listed. It can be helpful when working in the dark, either on stage or on location, plus if you need to look in and work on something on camera, it can be helpful. The LED means batteries last forever.

    I use the “free’ ones I get coupons for in the mail from Harbor Freight/ Northern Tool, that makes them disposable. I have several screw driver sets, alan keys etc that I keep in my tool bag also that I get here, again, because they are cheap and disposable, but its not needed to start out.

    The trick is to only have what you need to get the job done. The first gig I got as a PA/ grip, I showed up on set with a full tool belt and the Key Grip just laughed and sent me back to my truck and told me to come back with just a flashlight and my leather man.

    Great posting keep up the good work!

    • Rob Ruscher
      May 5, 2014

      That’s a great addition. A little flashlight can be very useful. And you definitely don’t need a whole tool belt for most shoots. Thanks for the comment!


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