Our pals over at Pro Tool Reviews have whipped up another edition of their Pro Tool Innovation Awards. It's basically a fast and easy guide to all that is new, cool, and interesting in the tool world. There's a lot to like too, some of which we've never even seen before, like the Mag-Lok Long Handle Tool System or the Wolverine Cabor Boots. There are also plenty of tools from companies like Milwaukee, Klein, and Bosch, all places where we've come to expect innovative ideas.
Its compact design easily fits between studs, joists and rafters. Engineered for durability, the nailer is built to withstand the toughest jobsite conditions and requires less maintenance than any other Paslode pneumatic framing nailer in history.
The 8.4-pound nailer is designed with the center of gravity close to the trigger, providing optimal balance. Refreshed with the end-user in mind, the nailer's over-molded grip delivers extra comfort and the adjustable rafter hook adds convenience while easily moving out of the way when it's not needed.
The cool part is that they're giving seven of these things away (one each month). To toss your name in the hat, just go to www.paslode50.com and answer a couple questions.
This actually happened sometime last year and we keep meaning to mention it. Better late than never, I guess. But if you're a hardcore tool type and this is boring, old news to you...well, sorry 'bout that.
But yeah, Ridgid's new website is about a million times better than the old one. It's organized in a much better fashion and really puts a good presentation on the company's tools. We're fans of Ridgid and like the new look.
Can you imagine stopping at a gas station in the middle of nowhere and a semi pulls up next to you and out pops some dude with this thing in his hand. Oh, just scraping a little ice, no big deal. Nothing to see here.
OK, so we promise that we're not going to turn this site into a PR machine for Kickstarter ventures, but we wanted to mention this one. It's a strange shovel that looks like it probably works and the dude is really, really close to hitting his mark. There are only a couple more days left and he's about 8K short of where he wants to be. He's already raised $52K and if he doesn't break the 60 mark, he gets nada. That's how it works.
So check out out the shovel and maybe throw him some coin if you're into it.
This is just too cool and bizarre not to mention. Rockler is selling a kit for the Koostik, an iphone speaker that just works on natural acoustics. No electricity, no volume buttons, just wood with some strange 'ear canal' looking channels carved through it.
From the press release:
"When the iPhone is placed in the Koostik cradle, the music is instantly amplified due to the carefully designed sound channels and acoustic chambers. The sound will fill the room without using any additional power beyond what the iPhone uses to operate," says Scott Ekman, Rockler's Vice President of Marketing.
It apparently amplifies the music by two to four times, so you're probably not going to be able to shake the windows with Sepultura. But a little Chet Baker while you're reading is entirely doable.
The kit comes in two pieces (body and face frame) and is unfinished, so you can put it together with any flourishes you want and coat it with whatever makes you happy. It costs $50. Which is about half of the price of one if you buy it assembled
It's a great competition and it's cool to see the champs. Everything is broken out into categories so it's easy to browse around. It's totally worth your time to head on over. While you're there, stick around and dig into the rest of the site. It's all good.
Why not bring in the holiday weekend with a little disorderly conduct and indecent exposure? There's really not a whole lot to say here, so we're going to leave it at the above picture and the following sentence from the Smoking Gun piece. You can decide for yourself whether you want to click through to the link or not (you probably will).
Officers were dispatched to [Home Depot] "in reference to a male and female entering a display shed on the property, closing the door behind themselves and remaining inside,"
Probably just checking to see if there's enough room for the wheelbarrow and the lawn mower.
If you're reading this and you don't get the Grainger catalog at least once every couple years, there's a disconnect going on. You've got to get on that one. It's even free.
It might even be the most massive catalog in the history of catalogs. Coming in at over 3-inches thick and having 4674 pages, the thing is truly a beast. And what's in the Grainger catalog, you ask? It would actually be easier to list the things that aren't in the Grainger catalog. It pretty much has everything associated with building stuff. It's hard to sum up in a few sentences.
The average product blog is loaded with fast flowing information that heads in the front door and out the back without even stopping for a high five. Because of this overload, relevant and important posts are buried just as quickly as the lame ones. The format also makes it difficult to do thorough side by side comparisons or full-on category reviews because they take so much time and that just doesn't work with a (nearly) daily schedule.
So anyway, the solution is TheSweetHome. In a way, it's the anti-product-blog. The articles over there are absolutely epic in scope and consist of what have to be the deepest product dives on the internet. The pieces are long, thorough, and very engaging (particularly considering how long and thorough they are). The site just launched a couple weeks ago and I've been part of the team of writers involved with the project. At this point, I've written two pieces (and a third is in the docket). Combined they've taken me about 100 hours of research and writing time. It's safe to say that it's a little different from blog posts that can be done in less than 30 minutes.
So far I've looked at cordless drills and home tool kits. Keep in mind that the audience is the average person and not the un-average gear-head like most of you reading this. While you're at the site, make sure to browse around a bit, there's some pretty fascinating pieces over there.
Our good friend Marc who runs the great site HomeFixated, has just launched two more websites making him, in technical terms, an internet mogul. He sent us info on his new projects and they're definitely going to appeal to anyone who reads our little tool blog on a regular basis.
Features clever tips and tricks that will help you: be a better chef, make things spotless with ingenious cleaning tricks, turn you into the life of the party with clever tricks, repurpose household items, and enhance your sex life (no guarantees on the last one). You can also expect more construction/tool/woodworking hacks to appear there in the coming months.
The tagline for the site is "Where DIY meets WTF" (oh yes I did!), but really this site is showcasing the world's worst craftsmanship and the worst judgment when it comes to construction and home "improvement". If you don't laugh (hysterically) at some of these pics and videos, you are a made of stone!
Personally, our tastes run closer to HomeFail than HomeHacks, but that's just us. Our entire house is a HomeFail, so maybe that has something to do with it. But go and check out the sites, they're cool.
Everyone should have at least one of these things. I'm lucky enough to have three. These saws have seen it all and as long as I can keep replacing the cords, which seem to get severed a lot, they'll be getting handed down to Tool Snob Jr. in about 20 years. They are long since past the days of being used as a normal jobsite saw and are now well into their second careers as 'special forces.' The footplates are a little bent up and the bevel on one of them is immovable. I keep one outfitted with a masonry blade, and two with wood blades, but it's hardly wood that they're cutting, more like multi-layer asphalt roofs and concrete-coated form work. I don't care what happens to them and they don't seem to care what I do to them. It's a relationship that works.
I don't use them all the time, but when I need them, they're golden. It wasn't too long ago that I had to trench my basement slab out for some plumbing and the Makita was there to do the work. Who wants to use their nice woodworking saw for that kind of abuse? But that's the life that these saws live. They fill in the cracks and because they're the ones that take the hits on the dirty work, they keep my other saws nice, clean, and sharp.
The big one on the right, that's the roof cutter. If that saw was a person, it would be Leonard Smalls from Raising Arizona. I have no idea on the quality of current day Makitas, but these older ones are real monsters.
Our pals over at Tool Nut, a great online tool retailer, also operate Festool Products. We've gotten to know them over the years and they've become our go-to source for Festool gear and whenever we post about a Festool item, we happily link over to them (even though they're Jets fans).
They're doing a little community outreach and have offered to supply a few cool items for us to give away to you guys. Two Festool T-Shirts and Two Festool Hats. Pretty sweet.
So there are two ways to get your name in the running:
1. Answer this question in the comment section: If you could get any Festool product which one would it be and why? Kapex, Track Saw, 18-Volt Drill? Check them all out at festoolproducts.com.
2. In the comments, let us know if you can think of a funnier sports moment than when Mark Sanchez sacked himself and fumbled off the ass end of his own offensive lineman. If you don't believe us, check it out here:
Oh man, was that hilarious.
So after maybe a week, we'll choose some names out of a hat and be in touch with the winners.
OK, this is a little odd. The other day, I drenched my Ansell ActivArmr Heavy Laborer Gloves (reviewed here), so I plopped them right next to the woodstove to dry them out. Well, apparently, one of them somehow found its way to the woodbox and seemed to have hitched a ride on a log right into the stove. I spent better part of the morning looking for the lost glove and when I opened the stove to start a fire, I saw its devastated remains among the ashes.
But what remains is what's interesting. I've long heard that many high quality work gloves are woven with some heavy duty additives, but I've never actually seen what it looks like. Well guess what? When you burn the rest of the glove off, you're left with something that looks like a very delicate chain mail hand. It's pretty cool looking. Ansell says that their glove is woven with Kevlar and stainless steel. Since Kevlar does burn and melt, I have to assume that what's left is 100% stainless.