Here are some Christmas-gift ideas that will help the DIY'er in your family tackle those small and odd jobs around the house.
Here are some Christmas-gift ideas that will help the DIY'er in your family tackle those small and odd jobs around the house:
-- Dremel has introduced Saw-Max, a powerful small-blade cutting tool that's tough enough to cut through virtually any material, and you only have to use one hand. The compact size makes it easy to handle, easy to follow the cut line and easy to store. The Saw-Max lets you cut with confidence, because you know it will get the job done quickly and get it done right.
The powerful 6-amp motor with worm drive gearing and versatile cutting system cuts through wood, plastics, metal, tile and masonry. It is available at major home and hardware stores and retails for $129.99. Visit http://www.dremel.com for more information.
-- Skil Tool's 2.0 Amp Oscillating Multi-Tasker allows the handyman to cut inside narrow corners near walls, under door casings for floor installations and much more. It also has a sanding attachment for reaching in tight areas such as between balusters on the inside corner of a project. The tool's 2-amp variable speed motor and no-mar heat allow the user complete control, so there is no marring of adjoining surfaces. The tool comes with three cutting blades, sanding attachment and sandpaper all in a convenient carrying bag. It is available at major home and hardware stores and retails for $79.99. Visit http://www.skiltools.com/en for more information.
-- Battery-operated tools have one shortcoming -- battery life. Over the years I have encouraged the purchase and use of battery-powered tools, but sooner or later the battery will fail to charge. Whether your handyman uses lithium-ion or nickel-cadmium batteries, a pair of extra batteries will be a welcome gift.
Make sure the battery is compatible with the tools used. Spare batteries for Skil, Ryobi, Dremel, Milwaukee, Bosch and other major brands are available at home and hardware stores and Sears department stores. A twin pack of nickel-based batteries retails for around $50, whereas a twin pack of lithium batteries will retail for around $159. To get a list of various manufacturer's batteries and pricing, go to http://www.grainger.com.
Energizer has two helpful lighting devices available for the handyman, and either would be a great stocking stuffer. The Hard Case Professional Area Light is a magnetically attached fixture that can be attached to metal cabinets, car hoods, grills, sheds, campers and more. The bright LED lamps require three AA batteries and come in handy when working in hard-to-reach places. The Area Light retails for $13.99, but can be found online for less than $11 at http://www.amazon.com or http://www.opticsplanet.net.
The Energizer Triple Beam LED Headlight retails for $36.99 and is useful when working in dark areas where you need both hands for the project. Strap on the headlight to illuminate the work area wherever you turn your head. The light also has a red light for low-light conditions and a green light for accentuating minor details. The light uses three AAA batteries and is available online for less than $22 at http://www.amazon.com or http://www.opticsplanet.net.
Dwight Barnett is a certified master inspector with the American Society of Home Inspectors. Write to him with home improvement questions at C. Dwight Barnett, Evansville Courier & Press, P.O. Box 268, Evansville, IN 47702 or email him at d.Barnett@insightbb.com.