September 16, 2010

Dremel 6800-01 Trio - Review

dremel_trio_1.jpgDremel recently released a funky looking tool called the Trio (and were nice enough to send us one to review). In the great Venn diagram of power tool abilities, it seems to overlap with 'rotary tool,' 'router,' and 'RotoZip (aka spiral saw).' We're generally wary of tools that try to do too much (seems like they usually end up doing not too much of anything) but because of our very high regard for Dremel, we had hope and were looking forward to digging into the Trio.

As it turns out we found some good and some bad. Unfortunately, more of the latter than the former...

Update:
we heard from Dremel and as it turns out, we were using the Trio in an incorrect manner. We've updated the review with some clarifications. Amazing, eh? We write a post about tool safety and then rip this thing out of the box and start using it without reading the instructions...."

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (6) | social bookmarking

September 15, 2010

DeWalt 12-Volt Max Cordless Screwdriver - Review

dewalt_screwdriver.jpgA few months ago, we packed up and headed out to DeWalt HQ (they call it Black & Decker University), and got a first look at their new 12-volt line (our post on the subject is here). While there, we got to get a little time with the tools, but we were anxious to get them out in the real world.

So thankfully, DeWalt recently sent us a sample of their new 12-volt cordless screwdriver and we've had a chance to introduce it to some jobsite tasks (as well as some non-jobsite tasks that we designed only to push the tool to the edge), and here is how it fared...

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

September 14, 2010

DAP EnergySaver High Performance Air Leak & Gap Sealant - Review

dap_energysaver.jpg

A while back, DAP sent us a tube of their new EnergySaver Air Leak & Gap Sealant. It's been sitting on the desk for a while because, well, who cares about sealing their house in the middle of July? Not us, we've got mowing to do. But the seasons do change and here we are. So last week we cut open the tube, prepped a few window casings, and checked out the label to see if there are any specific instructions that go along with the product. Which is exactly where problems started...

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

September 9, 2010

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers - Review

irwin_groovelock_three.jpg

So as not to use the name of Irwin's competitor in the review, we'll use advanced subterfuge techniques which will ensure that you'll have no idea who we're talking about. You'll basically need a Navajo code-talker to figure it out.

Although they're technically called tongue and groove pliers or groove joint pliers, they're really only known as Channell*cks and if you consider yourself even remotely handy, you've got to have a pair. They're useful for their ability to grab, clamp, twist, pull, and grip just about anything. The unique opening and closing of the jaw lets a fairly small tool grip on to things that are up to 3 inches wide.

irwin_groovelock_jaw.jpgRecently, Irwin has made an alteration to the classic design. Their new version is called the GrooveLock and the jaw adjustment is now done, not by opening the jaws all the way and sliding the lower jaw up, but rather with a little release button at the hinge of the tool. Just press the button and slide the jaw. They sent us a few samples so that we could try them out.

To the user this new button method means a few things:

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 7, 2010

Duo-Fast DF225C Coil Siding Nailer - Review

df_siding.jpgFirst off, we need to thank the people at Duo-Fast. They not only sent us this gun to review, but they sent it in, like, February or something. A loooong time ago. They've been very patient while we've had it and not once sent out a 'wtf?' email. There is only one to-be-reviewed item that we've had longer (and that one we've had for about three years). We're a bit embarrassed that it took us eight months to get this one out, but it's amazing that when you're looking for a siding project, siding projects are hard to find....but anyway...

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 26, 2010

Megapro 13-in-1 Ratcheting Screwdriver - Review

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A while back we got an email from a reader who was so enthusiastic (or possibly coked up) over a tool that we felt compelled to contact the manufacturer for more information. The tool is the MegaPro 13-in-1 Ratcheting Screwdriver and this is what reader David had to say:

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

August 25, 2010

Milwaukee Fastback Flip Open Utility Knife - Review

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As part of their steadily growing line of hand tools, Milwaukee recently released two new utility knives, the light and lean Fastback and a larger, submarine-style slider. Since, for years, we've been in a pathetic and forever-failing pursuit of the perfect utility knife, we were thrilled when Milwaukee sent us a Fastback to try out. Would it meet our apparently 'too-high-for-the-industry' standards and be the knife of our dreams? Or would it prove once again that the perfect knife is one made of unicorn horns and dragon scales?

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (6) | social bookmarking

August 11, 2010

Bosch BNS200-18 Brad Nailer - Review

bosch_brad.jpgLast year, Bosch got into the pneumatic game with a lot of fanfare, most of it centered around something they called Full-Force Technology. In a normal pneumatic gun, a portion of the air blast enters a reserve chamber and is used to reset the firing pin. Bosch removed these chambers and figured out a way to create an entirely separate second blast of air in order to do the dirty work of pin resetting. Without these chambers, a lot of bulk could be removed from their guns, and without a portion of the air used to reset the firing pin, the guns could be more powerful, 10% according to Bosch.

Well they recently sent us the BNS200 brad gun to check out and we put it to the test, first in regular use and then in the shop. In this second setting we directly compared it to two other solid guns that we have; our old reliable Porter-Cable and the gold standard of brad guns, the Cadex 18.50.

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 6, 2010

Worx GT 24-Volt Trimmer - Review

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If you read the site, you know that we've recently had some big problems with a variety of string trimmers. The end result is that we're now cutting a good part of the tall grass out in the field by hand (for the rest, we got our pal with a field mower to stop by). So that's all fine and dandy, but what about the little stuff that grows around the well head and the flower beds? Since it's assumed that Mrs. Tool Snob would not be thrilled to see a scythe slashing away at the grass around her heirloom roses, we need another option. Thankfully, Worx recently sent us one of their new 24-volt trimmers to try out. We were hoping that it would solve our problem. So for the past few months we've been spending some QT with the tool and we've come to our conclusions.

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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (4) | social bookmarking

July 20, 2010

Senco Fusion F-15 Cordless Finish Nailer - Review

senco_fusion_hero.jpgThere's been a lot of buzz around the Senco Fusion. And if you're to believe what Senco has been saying about it, there should be. To give it all some context, you need to know that, to date, the technology behind cordless finish guns seems, well, incomplete. There are the gas powered guns, which take a battery and a removable gas cartridge, but they smell terrible and have the added expense of replacing the gas cartridge. Then there are the nailers powered by a flywheel motor, which have solved the dual fuel problem (as well as the odor), but are lacking in power, particularly when dealing with hardwoods. So there are options out there, but you're getting yourself into a tradeoff; sure I don't have a compressor or hoses, but I've got a smelly gas cartridge or I've got a gun that has some difficulty with mahogany. There isn't any ideal situation out there.

So the Senco Fusion seeks to fill this gap and combine the best of both arenas. Its goal is to fuse the manueverability of the cordless gun with the power of the traditional pneumatic nailer. And how does it attempt to do this, you ask?


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Doug Mahoney at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

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