Unexpectedly handy tools

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wrote:

Perfect!!!
--

-Mike-
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There are tools for under $20?
Next thing you know someone will have found a piece of wood for less than twenty bucks.
When someone says there's a car that gets 25 or more miles per gallon I'll be 7 feet tall from all the leg pulling.
A useful tool for under twenty dollars - yeah right.
charlie b
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Reminds me of a story.......
I had just started woodturning and we were very VERY poor at the time. I drove over to Woodworkers Source in Phoenix to look at their wood for turning. I found a real good looking block and wondered if I could afford to pay the $7.95 that the price tag showed. I thought I would look around for something less expensive. Well picking through the pile all I found were $40.00 to $90.00 pieces. I looked again closely at the tag on my original piece and saw the faded 6 in front of the 7.95, so it was really $67.95! I went home and picked through my own wood pile.
Handy tools under $20.00? My stainless steel rulers.
Take care,
Craig
www.vintagetrailersforsale.com
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Crepe sandpaper cleaning block. Big one for $7-8 at a woodworking show about ten years ago.
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I have to chime in. My MOST usefull tool in my shop believe it or not is a Craftsman 15lb. magnetic pick up tool. Spend your time metal/woodwortking in a wheelchair for a while and you'll know why. It allows me retrieve all my other MOST usefull tools when I drop them. Second behind that is the long reach grabber for stuff out of reach.
KC
Lobby Dosser wrote:

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kcleere wrote:

A wheelchair is not a prerequisite for the utility of those tools. I seem to have a singular talent for dropping small parts, and sometimes large parts, behind my workbench, under a storage cabinet, etc.. Besides the two you mention, I've also got a humungous magnet I got out of the "free" box at a garage sale - for when I drop a "large" part :-).
But most useful low cost tool in my shop is an old Goodell-Pratt push drill I use to drill screw starting holes.
-- It's turtles, all the way down
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Andy wrote:

1. Good pair of sawhorses, sturdy and the right height -- free from scrap.
2. Straight grained wood frame for use as a sheet goods cutting base -- free panel/frame door from the scrap pile
3. 14" L-brackets, useful in many occasions (idea from John Carroll, Working Alone) -- free from scrap plywood
4. Old brass hinge of the right type (tight hinge, square on the edges) for use as a saddle square -- free from scrap
5. 5 gal. buckets to haul tools in -- free
6. Freud 7-1/4 or 8" thin-kerf blades for use in the TS -- $7 ea.
7. HF clamps -- $13 dollars (what, about 10?)
That hits $20 for me, H
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I opted to spend big money for a pair of saw horses.
http://www.stanleytools.com/default.asp?CATEGORY=ZAG+SAW+AND+WORK&TYPE=PRODUCT&PARTNUMBER 030&SDesc=Telescopic+Metal+Legs+Sawhorse
They are by far the best saw horses I have owned and seen. Light, strong (2500 lb rating*) and best of all, fully adjustable. I was so impressed that I now own 3 pairs.
I do have to admit I am rather skeptical about the one ton+ rating but it should handle anything I can put on it.
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hylourgos wrote:

I've got to weigh in on #2.
I recently took a 6 panel door (used, thus no cost) busted out the panels and attached legs from a ruined banquet table I pulled from the dumpster (also no cost). The door is amazingly rigid and flat. I had read about doing that in a couple of places, including the REC, but I was pleasently surprised at just how handy this is. I use it:
1. To cut panels with the circular saw depth just slightly more than the panel. 2. As an assembly/glue-up table. The lower height is nice. 3. The open areas where I busted out the panels are great to clamp odd shaped things down for cutting or routing. 4. It seems to be just the right height for my grandson to use a handsaw and miter box.
------
One other VERY handy tool, not yet mentioned:
I have a wire wheel on an arbor turned by an old refrigerator motor. I use it a lot. Just the time saved in rust removal makes it a real time/effort saver. NOT that I ever let my tools get rusty, oh no, but I seem to need to remove rust I a regular basis. Cleans threads really good, too. The other end of the arbor has a beat-up grinding stone for crude grinding. Lets me preserve the "good grinder" for sharpening.
Bill Leonhardt
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Oxymoron.
What's a scrap pile? That stuff's wood brotha.
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-Mike-
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Andy wrote: [snip]

My 6" stainless vernier caliper. It's my depth gauge, thickness gauge and inside dimension gauge...all in my pocket. Maybe not $ 20,00....but not much more than $ 30.00 for a decent piece. Don't bother with the dial-equipped ones...learn how to read a normal one. It will give 1/128" accuracy...plenty accurate for woodwork. Also.. a 12" stainless rule... about $ 12.00 A 2-pound plastic deadblow hammer, lead-shot filled. From the Snap-On truck...about 20 bucks.Great for that definitive tap...non-marring persuasion... when you want to move that biscuit-joined glue-up just that 'c-hair'.
Those three tools are always where I know they are.... and of course, my FatMax tapemeasure.
r
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Me too, me too.
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I've got one and know how to read it. I hate it because its so hard to read. I got a digital dial caliper on sale at Rockler for $20. I love the 1/2" tall letters.
Bob
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I have often considered getting a digital one but for me it is easier to picture 5/32" as opposed to trying to picture .15625" ;~)

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LOL, I actually prefer using the dial stile. I can actually see that there is space between the 64th" markings on the larger dial.
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Bah! These are all junk. Not a single manufacturer of these makes nice clear graduations on the scale. I've looked at them all and they all use some sort of fuzzy ink.
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-Mike-
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Leon wrote:

Inexpensive dial calipers are always in my apron for everyday use - much easier to read, especially since we're all stuck on fractional measurements. (Quick what's 5/8 + 7/32 in digital format...) The digital ones mostly live in their case, used only on special occasions like measuring shims or aligning tools.
--
JeffB
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The Robatoy entity posted thusly:

And with my eyes the way they are, I might as well measure it with a piece of string and guesswork. I picked up a digital unit for about 25 bucks, on sale, and I can actually see the measured value.
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Since you mentioned that it reminded me that I always keep several pairs of $5.00 reading glasses around, from 1.5 to 2.5 diopter strength depending on what I'm looking at. 10 years ago they were "handy"; Now they're essential!
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Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
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*snip*

I bought a coping saw last Christmas and have been using it on quite a few small projects. Not only does it cut corners (pun intended) but it cuts straight across boards too.
Puckdropper
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Wise is the man who attempts to answer his question before asking it.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
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