October 6, 2008

Clarke Power Products Crocodile Saw - Review

Croc_saw_front.jpgClarke Power Products has recently released something called the Crocodile Saw, which, at first glance, looks like a hybrid between a grinder and those great little trim saws that Makita and Porter-Cable make. The hook on the Croc is that it has the ability to handle wood, tile, stone, and metal. It has a 4 amp motor and a number of interesting safety features to help it along this task. We've had one in the shop for about two months now and have come to our conclusions. Is it too good to be true; to have one saw to deal with all of these materials? Read on to find out.

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

September 19, 2008

Milwaukee M12 Copper Tubing Cutter


Milwaukee is in the process of releasing two very innovative products in their M12 lineup; the Hackzall, which we talked about in an earlier post and the Copper Tubing Cutter, which we're going to go on about now.

The Copper Tubing Cutter is a great little item that cuts through 3/8" to 1" copper tubing. It's simple to use, just put the mouth of the tool over the pipe and pull the trigger. There is no size adjustment, because the tool does that for you. The cutter is nice and small, so it only needs about 1-1/2" of clearance around the pipes. There is also a built-in LED light, so you'll avoid the hassle of trying to hold a flashlight when you're working behind the water heater.

According to Milwaukee, the Cutter can make around 200 cuts on a single battery. This, combined with the longevity of Li-Ion batteries, makes for a tool that needs very little upkeep. Even plumbers aren't making 200 cuts in a single day.

The Cutter is not the first of it's kind. Superior Tools has had something similar, The UltraCut, out for a while (theirs only cuts up to 3/4" tube and does adjust size automatically), but the battery compatibility with the rest of the M12 line and the Milwaukee name will definitely make this a popular tool among tradesmen.

It appears that the cost is going to be about $200 for the tool, a case, 2 batteries, and a charger. It's a lot for the DIYer, who likely won't use it all that much, but for the plumber or HVAC guy, it's a steal

At Amazon.com and Ohio Power Tools

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

September 17, 2008

Ridgid Twist Handle 7" Angle Grinder

ridgid_7_angle_grinder.jpgHas anyone out there every used a 7" angle grinder? We have and it sucked. It was so heavy and so hard to control and move around that we ended up hanging the tool from the rafters with bungee cords to take some of the weight off our arms.

So we're happy to see that Rigid has just released a new 7" grinder with a twist handle. If the handle feature adds even a little more control to the picture, it's one for the positive column.

We didn't find any info on cost or availability, but it's likely to be on the shelves at Home Depot, right next to all of the other Ridgid tools.

At Home Deopt

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

September 12, 2008

Bosch PS50 Multi-X Oscillating Tool

Finally it's here! Bosch's long awaited entry into the oscillating tool world, the PS50 Multi-X. We've been looking at Euro-Bosch's pmf 180 e multi for over a year now, thinking that when they released it in the states, we'd be getting something identical, but that doesn't seem to be the case at all.

First, the new PS50 sits on Bosch's compact 12-volt battery system (much like the PS20 that we reviewed yesterday), so, if we're not wrong, this is the first battery powered oscillating tool out there. This also makes it a nice compliment to Dremel's corded oscillating tool due out in October (which isn't all that surprising actually, seeing as Bosch owns Dremel). Oscillating tools might be the most versatile tools in the market, so a cordless version only makes it more portable, more hassle free and just easier to use.

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

September 11, 2008

Bosch PS20 12v Max Pocket Driver - Review

bosch_max_in_hand.jpgA while back Bosch unleashed their 10-Volt, Lithium Ion-Driver to much acclaim; it was pretty powerful and very compact. But then, some other companies released similar tools that were more powerful by two volts. These new 12-Volt tools clearly out-matched the 10-Volt Bosch, so now, Bosch's 10-Volt has been upgraded to a 12-volt capacity.


When Bosch released their original tool, they called it a 10-volt, because that was the nominal voltage. When the other companies released their 12-volt tools, they decided to pick the name based on the maximum voltage, even though the batteries were pretty much the same. So, you see, Bosch's 10-volt is, and always was, in the same class as their competitors' 12-volts. So, not wanting to get continually screwed by shoppers who rightly assume that 12-volts is more powerful than 10-volts, Bosch has recently re-released their 10-volt as a 12-volt. So those of you who own the 10-Volt, don't hang your head thinking that your tool has already been outdated, because it hasn't. Well, it sort of hasn't. The Bosch 12-Volt Max has an increased speed and torque, both about 25% higher than the previous model. But our point is that the battery is the same.

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

August 28, 2008

Stanley 3-in-1 Tripod Flashlight

stanley_3_in_1_tripod.jpgYou know those creepy photos you can find on the internet, the kind with the frog that wandered too close to the nuclear power plant and now has an extra arm growing out of it's forehead? That's what we think of when we look at Stanley's new 3-in-1 Tripod Flashlight. We've got one of their standard tripod lights and are so used to it that this thing looks like some kind of ghastly genetic mutation. See it there with its freaky little, stunted silver legs and it's three heads all perched up top crowding each other in some Darwinian competition for to be the dominant head?

It's probably a nice light, but it sends a shiver up our spine.

This freakshow costs about $30 and is at Amazon.com

You can also still get the standard tripod light (which reminds us of Wall-E) at Amazon.com

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

August 27, 2008

Bosch Releases 14.4-Volt and 18-Volt Litheon Tools

bosch_litheon.jpgBosch just sent out word that they're finally getting into the 14.4-volt and 18-volt lithium market. Up until now they've kept their Li-Ion tools at the extremes, with either the little 12-volt or the Conan the Barbarian 36-volt. But now, finally, they've discovered their middle ground.

The new tools are exclusively in the hammer/drill/driver category and from what information is available at the moment, they look pretty nice. In addition to there being the two voltages (14 and 18), there are two types of batteries as well. The Brute Tough tools come with a FatPack battery and the Compact Tough come with a SlimPack Battery. The systems are compatible with one another, meaning that SlimPack batteries fit on Brute Tough tools and vise versa. Got it?

The tools also come with a nice 2 year battery replacement policy.


The new tools are as follows:

  • 18V Litheon BruteTough Hammer Drill/Driver
  • 14.4V Litheon BruteTough Hammer Drill/Driver
  • 18V Litheon BruteTough Drill/Driver
  • 14.4V Litheon BruteTough Drill/Driver


  • 18V Litheon CompatTough Drill/Driver
  • 14.4V Litheon CompatTough Drill/Driver

The best news is that this is just the start. After the release of these tools in October, we can expect to start seeing more tools start to appear in the lineup, including a circular saw, a reciprocating saw, and a flashlight, all 18-volts.

Bosch tools at Amazon.com

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

August 25, 2008

Who Runs Bartertown? Dremel Runs Bartertown.

dremel_pet.jpgBecause of the website, we're always checking out Amazon's bestseller list for the home improvement category. And today, for about the billionth day in a row, the number one spot is held by Dremel's Cordless Pet Nail Grooming Rotary Tool. It goes to show you what a little marketing can do. From the looks of it, it's simply a Dremel Rotary tool that comes with a few grinding drums. But it's packaged as a pet grooming tool, so it's bought as a pet grooming tool. They also have a pumpkin carving tool, which looks suspiciously similar.

We looked through the comments at Amazon (the majority of which were positive), hoping to find one of those choice negative ones that is completely irrational and written entirely in caps, but unfortunately, they were all pretty sane. It sounds like the major complaint is that the tool goes through batteries at a good clip. But, like we said, most of the comments are positive, so at the reasonable price of under $25, it might be worth checking out.

For more specifics on the tool, see what our pals at SuperCoolPets have to say.

At Amazon.com

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

August 22, 2008

Dremel Glue Guns


While we're waiting very impatiently for the release of Dremel's new oscillating tool, the Dremel Multi-Max, we thought we'd tell you about three new glue guns that they're adding to their lineup. These new guns are stripped down versions of their existing gun, the 1200 which is for heavy duty work (it even has an LED). Each of the three has different features so it doesn't really matter what you do with a glue gun, you'll likely be able to find one of these four that matches your needs.

According to Dremel:

The only glue gun in the new line designed specifically to hold 7-millimeter glue sticks, the Dremel 1225 Glue Gun (20 watts) is perfect for light crafting projects like school assignments and decorating picture frames. It features a built-in stand and wide base to keep the glue gun upright and help to prevent the glue gun from tipping over while working on a project. It also offers an ergonomic handle for comfortable use and an anti-drip nozzle with silicon tip for protection from accidental burns. The suggested retail price is $5.99.

The Dremel 1230 Glue Gun (40 watts) offers a built-in stand, wide base, anti-drip nozzle with silicon tip plus a soft grip handle for extra comfort and control. It holds 11-millimeter diameter glue sticks and is ideal for home decorating projects and fixing broken household items. The suggested retail price is $9.99.

In addition to the features on the two previous models, the Dremel 1235 Glue Gun (60 watts) offers a textured soft grip handle, a dual temperature setting and power indicator LED light to clearly indicate when the tool is on and heating. This model holds 11-millimeter glue sticks. It is perfect for light DIY projects such as repairing a loose chair spindle or reattaching countertop laminate or cabinet veneer. The suggested retail price is $15.99.

The newest additions to the Dremel Glue Gun line join the brand's flagship model, the Dremel 1200 Glue Gun (80 watts), which offers all of the features on models 1225, 1230 and 1235 plus an LED work light, a light that indicates when the glue gun has reached optimal temperature and three changeable nozzles (one fine, one standard and one wide). This model holds 11-millimeter glue sticks. The suggested retail price is $24.99.

The best part is that they are all Dremel and that's likely to mean quality. But, like the Multi-Max, we're all going to have to wait until October.

Amazon's flagship glue gun, the 1200 at Amazon.com

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

August 21, 2008

Milwaukee Hackzall Arrives for Review

milwaukee_hackzall.jpgWe always like to see something new and different, and that's just what Milwaukee is delivering with their new Hackzall, due out later this year. The easiest way to describe it is to call it a single handed Sawzall, but that's actually pretty far from the truth. For one, it's only 12 volts and when put up against 15 amps of destructive power, it's not up to the same tasks at all. But because it's so small, it doesn't even want to do those tasks, due to the fact that it's busy doing all the things that a full-sized Sawzall can't. Things like cutting in outlet boxes, cutting pipes in cramped spaces, and plenty of other things that you'll discover once you get your hands on one.

We were fortunate to try out a Hackzall at Milwaukee when they released the tool and there, under a very controlled setting, we really liked it a lot. We're curious to see how it does under less controlled circumstances.

Another thing worth mentioning is that when we were at Milwaukee, all of the employees, every single one, seemed very, very happy to be working there. It wasn't the pasted on smiles that you see at some press events, it was legit and almost unsettling. It had us thinking that either a) there's some pretty strong Kool-Aid in Milwaukee, or b) it really is a great company to work for. Our guess is the latter, due to the fact that everyone made eye contact when they spoke to us, as opposed to that having that glazed-over look that you see in George Romero movies.

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

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