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Saturday, February 12, 2005

Man's Essential Tools

Having just moved into my house, I have found that my current set of tools has been invaluable. I thought I would share what I thought were essential tools for any household. I own all the below listed tools myself, and have found that having them has made my life alot more easier and gives me a sense of comfort knowing that I will most likely always have the right tool for any job.

Good set of assorted tools
I have quite a large toolset, probably $250+ worth of just everyday tools. It is essential that you have tools around the house for everyday things. Let me suggest some stuff that I consider essential.

2 Hammers - You need 2 because a hammer is the most left around tool ever. It is best to have a 2nd hammer in case you left your other in the basement, or out by the grill. And get good high quality hammers.

Every size of wrench and ratchet - You can buy a whole set of wrenches and a whole ratchet set for $20-$30. You need both the metric and US measurements. Nothing is worse than having every size of wrench except the one you want. So keep them organized.

Electric Drill - Amy just bought me a Black and Decker 14.4 volt cordless drill for $49 on sale. It is normally $129, so it was a good deal. But MY HECK it is so nice to have. The possibilities are endless with such a tool. Also, spend about $20 and get a drill set. I bought a drill/screwdrive/ratchet set for the drill for $19 at walmart. Its a nice little foldup set. IT IS INVALUABLE!

Screwdriver Set - Get a good set of screwdrivers. DONT BUY THE 1 SCREWDRIVER THAT DOES EVERYTHING. They stink, you lose the bits, and the bits are generally made of a soft metal which breaks or chips. Just buy a good set of different sizes, shapes, grips, etc. You can get a screwdriver set again for like $20. And definitely buy those short ones know as dickies. They are fat short screwdrivers, but you would be surprised how often you need a shorter screwdriver. Also, spend $5 and buy one of those mini screwdriver sets. You know, the kind that you would use to tighten the screws on your eyeglasses. You will again be surprised how often you need them.

Tape Measure - Get a 30' tape measure. You can buy 20' ones for like $2. But get a good long one. You will curse yourself if you dont.

Black Electrical Tape - Holy Macrel, how many times have I needed this stuff to find out I used that last of it already. I try to have 2 on hand all the time. Guys are always running cables, rerouting power or speaker wire etc. This tape is essential.

Duct Tape - The house that doesnt have a big huge roll of duct tape - is a very sad house indeed. Thats all Im gonna say about that.

Plier Set - You need 2 or 3 pairs of pliers. You will always run into a job where you need 2 at a time. You should also have 2 pair of vice grips. Again, these are essential.

Wire Cutters - You just need 1 pair of these. They will last you an eternity. But they are must have for any toolbox.

Set of Wireties - Moving into a new house, I found a zillion places where I used wire ties. If you go to home depot, you can get a bag of all different sizes for like $8. And you get like 1000 of them. Essential.

Leatherman - This is perhaps the most handy tool ever created since the Fall of Adam. I cant put into words the beauty and usefulness of this tool. It doesnt matter what your carrer, what your gender, or what your current job. This tools will do anything. GIRLS, WANT TO BUY YOUR HUSBAND THE PERFECT VALENTINES DAY PRESENT? THIS IS IT! Plus they are extremely high quality and they will last most likely his entire life. The Leatherman Wave is the model you want.

Carpenters Knife - This knife will cut anything. Plus you can hide the blade and switch out the blade if it ever gets dull. There are a million times in your life when you need to cut something. Believe me, a kitchen knife is unnacceptable! The carpenters knife is the tool for cutting.

Needlenose Pliers - Perhaps this is covered in the plier set - but I just dont want you to overlook this. YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE NEEDLENOSE PLIERS! Get a pair.

Screws and Small Nails - This will most likely have to be purchased at Home Depot or Eagle or Lowes. I purchased a little box that had an assortment of screws in little containers and another little box that had a million sizes of nails in their own little boxes. I have had the same little sets for 4 years. I dont use them all the time, but they sure are handy to have around. Need to hang a picture? Need a little nail! Piece of wood breaking apart? Nail or screw. Lost a screw while putting up your blinds? Sure glad you have a backup. You need to have a little collection of tiny screws and nails. The big ones you can just buy when you get a job that needs one. But the little tiny ones you need to buy now and have on hand.

Alan Wrench Set - For around $8 you can buy a whole set of alan wrenches. Get them or youll be sorry.

Cigarette Lighter - I keep one of these in my tool box. They are perfect, and they are under $1 to buy anyway. Its better than keeping matches, and you can always get a flame when you need one.

Power Checker - I have this little tool that has a tiny light bulb in it and it has 2 little wires. You can touch these 2 wires to any outlet or light bulb etc and the small light will light up telling you wether you even have power or not. I use it all the time. It is soooo handy. Probably under $2 to buy as well. A must have for any toolbox.

Big Outside Tools - These can all be summed up into one category, and you only need 1 of each. Shovel, rake, square-mouth shovel, snow shovel, and a hoe. You can get them all for under $50. In order to do any outside work around the house, you need all of those. I promise.

Well, those are the only tools that I can think of, and I went through my amazing set of tools to make sure I didnt forget anything. Every once in a millenium I have a need for some weird or unusual tool that I dont have, but I always have a friend who has one or I always can go rent one. There is no need to buy these weird tools. The cost doesnt justify that fact that you will only use it once. Plus it takes up unnecessary room in your toolbox.

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