July 23, 2008

Zip Sander - Review

zip_sander.jpgZip Sander, you're the one.
You make sanding lots of fun.
Zip Sander, we're awfully fond of you....

Tools that look like bath toys aren't usually up our alley, but the Zip Sander seemed pretty interesting, so we thought we'd take a closer inspection and try one out. And to be honest, we're glad we did. The Zip Sander proved to be a versatile addition to our sanding repertoire for a number of reasons.

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

July 15, 2008

C.H. Hanson Flip Knife - Review

flip_knife_in_hand.jpgIn our work day, probably the most important tool to us is the utility knife. Throughout each day, the knife serves as pencil sharpener, rope cutter, box opener, wood shaver, and everything else you can imagine. No joke the tool is in our hands about 20 to 50 times each day. This is why we were so interested when we heard that C.H. Hanson has just released something called the Flip Knife. The concept here is simple; a utility knife with a blade at each end.

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

July 2, 2008

Festool Tape Measure

festool_tape.jpgIt looks like Festool has a new tape measure that they're offering only while supplies last. And since it's a Festool, it has to be all reinvented and fancypants. But of course (because it's Festool), all of the innovations are smartly done. First, the tape is in both metric and imperial (which to us American users, gives us a nice reference point for our other Festool tools, which are all in metric). Second, the tape has a viewing window on the top of the body, which reads inside distances, so you can just back the tape up to an inside corner and look in the window to get your distance. No more adding some odd dimension like 3-3/16" to get the measurement. Third, the tape has a flip down tap that can be used to mark a radius.

Of course Festool had to show everyone up and reinvent the tape measure. The innovation in that company is seemingly without bounds. We hope they take on the hammer next.

The tape has a maximum distance of ten feet and costs $25. Like we said, it's a "while supplies last" deal, so if you want one, act fast.

At Jamestown Distributors

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

June 20, 2008

Pocket Chainsaw

pocket_chainsaw.jpgSupreme Products is selling something called the Pocket Chainsaw and it looks like the perfect item for some around the yard pruning, camping trips, and any other time when a full-sized chainsaw isn't practical.

The Pocket Chainsaw is light, weighing only 5 oz. It comes with a little storage can that can fit in your pocket. The can is circular, so if you carry the tool around a lot you might be able to get one of those cool Skoal circles in your jeans.

The website shows a movie of the Pocket Chainsaw cutting through a 4" limb in under 10 seconds.

At Amazon.com

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

June 19, 2008

Spot-On #1 Screwdriver with LED

spot_on_screwdriver.jpgHere's one for the "Why Didn't I Think of That" file. A simple screwdriver with a little built-in LED light. There's a button on the handle and the light is somehow built into the screwdriver tip.

We can think of plenty of situations where this could come in handy. But we don't know exactly how the light is integrated into the tip and if this somehow interferes with the screwdriver's performance. It looks like it's only available in a #1 flat tip.

The Spot-On costs $25 and can be had at Hard To Find Tools.

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

June 18, 2008

Channellock Rescue Tool

rescue_tool.jpgMost of us aren't equipped with the right amounts of bravery and selflessness to be a firefighter, But if you want that same feeling without all the smoke and flames, Channellock has released the 6 in 1 Rescue Tool. The tool is designed by a firefighter and even though it's intended for firefighters, it's a one stop emergency tool that would do well in just about any glove compartment.

The tool, which looks like a mutated set of linesman pliers, has six functions; clamping, cutting, prying, shattering, tightening, and shutting off gas valves. Now you too can be just like Denis Leary.

The Rescue Tool sells at Channellock for about $70, but it can be gotten elsewhere for under $50.

Read about the firefighter who designed the tool here.

At Channellock (with a free t-shirt) and The Beach Trading Company

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

June 11, 2008


stand-guy.jpgAnyone who has ever tinkered around on a door has likely made a couple little stands to set the door in so you can work on the hinge side in a standing position. Now, there's something called the Stand Up Guy, which is simply a plastic, adjustable version of that very same plywood stand that you hacked together.

The Stand-Up-Guy is adjustable (their website doesn't say to what dimensions), and works the way the more advanced homemade versions do. The outside ends of the stand are slightly raised, so when the door/window/whatever is placed in the center, the stand lightly clamps in on it. The Stand-Up-Guy has a recommendation from the Handyman Club of America.

The Stand-Up-Guy sells for a whopping $45 apiece! Maybe we'd think about $45 for a pair, but seeing the kind of success that we have with the homemade kind (which usually take us about five minutes to make), we're not sure that this is worth the coin.

At McFeely's

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

May 22, 2008

Mirka Abranet Sheet Sanding Kit

abranet_hand_sanding.jpgSanding joint compound can get pretty messy. We recently did some work in a small bathroom and even with the Shop Vac right up next to the sandpaper, the room still ended up looking like someone had walked in and detonated a bag of flour. This experience, which we've had about 1,000 times, led us to do some research on dustless hand sanding and as a result, we discovered Mirka's Abranet Sheet Sanding System.

Essentially, it's a sanding block with a vacuum port. The abrasive sheets are made of a mesh with thousands of small holes, meaning for easier sanding and far more efficient dust collection, not to mention a longer life for the sheet.

The kit, which looks like it comes with three sizes of sanding blocks, some abrasive sheets, and a vacuum hose costs about $150. A high price, but if it actually works, it might be worth not having to deal with the mess that sanding makes.

The whole concept sounds to us like a great idea, but we really couldn't find much more information on the product. It appears that the abrasive pads are available in stores, but as far as the sanding blocks go, we couldn't find anything other than a .pdf file on their website. We even tried calling them earlier in the week, but haven't heard back.

The promotional flier is here (pdf).

Abranet abrasive sheets at Amazon.com

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

May 20, 2008

Klein Tools Turns 150!

klein_tshirt.jpgKlein Tools, makers of some great hand tools (mostly geared towards electricians), turns 150 this year. It's quite a milestone and to mark the event, they're selling a t-shirt that reads, "My Tool is 150 years old...and still works!" You'd think that with a century and a half to think about it, they'd come up with something better, but apparently not.

It sure doesn't beat the guy we once saw on a paving crew with a shirt that read, "I'm the man from Nantucket."

Regardless of their t-shirt writing abilities, it's worth checking out their line of tools. They're on the expensive side, but they're worth it.

T-Shirt at Klein Tools
Klein Tools at Klein and Amazon.com
Nantucket shirt at Amazon.com

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

May 12, 2008

Artillery Pry Bar System - Review

Artillery_case.jpgWe first met Joe Skach a couple years ago at a JLC Trade Show. Back then, he was displaying his Artillery Pry Bar System with such enthusiasm and glee that it was hard not to like the guy and be curious about the tool. At the time, the Joe was still working out the details for manufacturing and distributing the tool, so he didn't have any for sale. Now, well over a year later, he's finally gotten all the kinks worked out and the tool is available. We got the opportunity to try one out and for the past month we have abused the hell out of the thing. We have to say that not only is it by far the finest demolition tool we've ever used, it very well may be the coolest thing we have ever put our hands on.

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

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