I am a Canadian automotive mechanic moving to Scotland to work, and I am in the process of deciding what to ship over (by boat). Just wondering what standard of tool is needed. I have both metric and US imperial sizes and wonder if I need to ship the imperial size over? I have some air powered tools as well, and am guessing they are fairly standard over there too? I'm not planning on bringing anything electrical as I've heard they won't last too long plugged in with an adaptor due to differences in the electrical supply in the UK. Also, I would like to know whether shops (dealers or independants) provide any tools (ie. specialty, or expensive ones) for mechanics in their employ. Thanks.
You'll need both Metric and Imperial, but you'll use the Metric more than anything else.
Air tool connectors are standard - you'll be fine.
Electric tools may or may not work. Check the rating plate on the tool; if it says 110V only, don't bother - sell it before you leave, unless you're planning on working on construction sites in the UK, where 110V is mandated for corded tools. You might need to change the plug, but otherwise you'll be good.
If it says 110-220V (or 240V), the tool will work - you'll only need to change the plug.
For supplied tools; most shops and dealers will have specialist tools for the vehicles they service, but most mechanics will build a set of their own over time anyway (a general rule is, you can borrow a tool three times; after that, you'd better have purchased your own). Things like specialist OBD devices, that cost thousands - there's usually only one or two in the shop.