banner Ad
banner forum link

Search Our Site


Tool Tips

Tool Maintenance
Little Shop Tricks
Measuring Tapes
Various Saws
Gift Ideas
Painting Tools
Sharp Hand Tools
Chuck Key
Caulking Guns

Tool Maintenance

Rusty Tools

Tools starting to get rusty from storing in damp basement or garage? To save your investment place several strips of ordinary chalk in your tool box, or container. The chalk will absorb the moisture and keep everything rust free.

Clean Tools

Dirty tools soon loose their edge and often rust. A quick wiping with an oiled rag is sufficient to clean them. NEVER use soap and water!!

Tool Cleanup In The Fall

Time to inspect our metal gardening tools before hanging up for the winter months. Brush off any soil on the blades and examine the wooden handles for splintering or cracking. Sand and revarnish the handles to prevent the wood from any further drying. To help metal parts from becoming rusty lightly spray with silicone or just oil them.

Little Shop Tricks

Extension Chork Knots

To prevent chords from separating as you work in the shop, simply tie a knot with the 2 chords being used and then plug the 2 chords together. Since the strain is on the knot, the two chords will not come apart.

Prevent Splitting Wood

When driving a nail into wood that is likely to split, turn the nail upside down and blunt its point with your hammer. The flattened nail tip is less likely to split the wood.

Soap Trick

Before trying to hammer in a nail or put a new screw into something, try this little trick. Push the nail or screw through an old bar of soap. The nail or screw will drive easier and it won’t split the wood!

Can't Loosen A Screw?

Try this easy trick that always works! Just heat up the tip of your screwdriver and try again. It will come loose everytime!

Household Little Repairs

  • Fluorescent lights that darken may only need the ends reversed to extend their life.
  • Before driving a nail into plaster, make an “X” of scotch tape and your nail has a better chance of not splitting the plaster.
  • Pour a little club soda on a rusted bolt to loosen it! Ammonia will also work.
  • Rule of thumb-to tighten screws, go to the right. Going to the left loosens them!
  • Vinegar will cut through and loosen old glue.
  • Kerosene or glycerin on the blade will make hand-sawing easier.


Templates are used for jobs such as working out pattern ideas of fascias or cabinet bases, and working with moldings. Save some notepad backs and/or cardboard from dress shirts to use as easy templates. They are easily cut with a utility knife or just scissors.

Untangle Power Chords

Do your power tool chords get tangled during projects in the shop? Install a few large, vinyl-covered, screw-in bicycle hooks overhead into your ceiling joists. Just loop the tool’s chord onto a hook and go to work without any mess.

Dry Tape

Reached for the masking, duct, or electrical tape to find it dried out again? Try storing tape in a covered metal coffee can. This should help remedy this problem.


A common mistake many beginning woodworkers make is to apply too much glue to wood boards they are trying to join. Using less glue will actually give you a much stronger glued joint.


To increase a nail’s holding power( the resistance to pullout), drive the nail in at an angle.

Cedar Shavings

Save any sawdust and shavings from cedar used in your workshop. Cedar is a natural insect repellent and is effective against fleas. Shavings and sawdust can be used for your dog’s pillow!


When taking apart objects with many small parts use old egg cartons or muffin tins as your organizers. Label contents with a grease pencil or felt-tip marker.

Dust Collection

To catch dust that is created when drilling or sawing into plaster or drywall, masking tape a paper bag to the wall directly beneath where you are going to be working. Just pull the bag from the wall when you are done. Easy cleanup!


Need some small but strong clamps for small scale woodworking projects, (or perhaps making models)? Try some wooden clothespins using either end, whichever works for your particular project.

Two Necessary Tools!

You only need two tools; WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn’t move and it should, use WD-40. If it moves and shouldn’t, then use the duct tape!

Propane Torch Holder

To prevent accidental tipping of your propane torch you can make a quick and simple holder. Get a piece of wood and bore a 3 inch hole through it. Add a ¼ in. plywood bottom to holder. You can also make a spot for the sparker ,( 1 3/8 in.hole, drilled 1 ½ in. deep).

Save Those Old Socks

Don't toss out those old socks quite yet! Instead, wash them and put them to use in the shop. When worn on your hand, an old sock is great for rubbing down or polishing a finish. You can also wipe any excess stain off your wood. Then when done with your project, throw them away.

Measuring Tapes

Using As A Notepad

Doing a lot of measurements all at once and don’t want to forget those numbers? Stick a piece of masking tape onto your tape measure and use it like a mini-notepad. You can even draw some sketches if necessary.

Measuring a Tall Wall

When needing to measure a very tall wall, butt your tape measure against the floor and extend it to the ceiling. Bend tape over at the ceiling and “eyeball” your measurement. You should get within 1/4 inch with this technique.

Substitute Measuring Tape

Who needs a measuring tape? Find yourself out and lacking one? Whip out any U.S. bill and use it for a rough measurement. It is about 6-1/8inch long.

Contact me to place your ad here

Purchasing a Good Tape

It pays to purchase a quality 25 or 30 ft. measuring tape with a 1 inch blade. The extra stiffness provided by the wide blade allows you to extend the tape farther before it buckles. This is especially helpful when working by yourself.

Tape Measures Stretch

Most tape measures have a little slack on the hook end that needs to be pulled away from the tape measure body. This is so a person can stretch a tape measure out. If you push it towards the tape measure, you will be off by about 1/16".

Various Saws


The hacksaw is most often used for cutting metals, with a fixed or adjustable frame. Blades are 8,10, or 12 inch in length. You can cut in four directions: up, down, right or left-depending on how the blade is mounted in the frame.

Chainsaw Safety

Just a few rules to remember when using the chainsaw this fall.

Hand Saw Used For Measuring

For a “rough” measurement place ruler increment marks on your hand saw’s flat edge. Just use a permanent felt-tip marker and this will help you eye-ball many future measurements.

Getting Table Saw Blades Clean

Removing gum and burn deposits on your table saw is just a spray away. Use a good oven cleaner, let stand a few minutes and wash off with soap and warm water!

Circular Saws

When choosing a circular saw consider the following factors: power, weight, blade-orientation and convenience features. Try to test out a saw before purchasing, it will give you a feel for the saw’s handling and you can see the saw’s cut.



A 24inch head broom is great for outside work in the garage, patio, sidewalk, and driveway. Go for nylon bristles which are not affected by water and chemicals. The inner bristles can move heavy gravel and dried on soil. The outer bristles are finer and catch any small particles missed by the inner ones.
Hang up your brooms to prevent then warping !

Gift Ideas

Basic Tools Used For Home Repairs

What can you purchase for the handyperson in your life for Christmas?
What are some basic tools to purchase for repairs and maintenance around the homestead?


How Screwdrivers Should Work

A screwdriver should fit the slot its going to be used for, in width, length and shape. If the tip is too wide it will markup the surrounding wood and if it’s too narrow, you will have inadequate leverage and could damage the screw head.

Screwdriver No-No's

Screwdriver Tips


Check Square For Accuracy

To check a combinations square for accuracy, position it on a board and make a mark. Then flip the square over and check to see that the blade matches the first mark.

Painting Tools

Clogged Spraycan Nozzles

Aerosol spray paint cans instruct you to turn the can upside down after using and spray until the stream of paint is clear, thereby preventing the nozzle from clogging. However, sometimes this doesn't stop all the clogging. You can try using the tip of a safety pin to unclog, or soak the nozzle in some paint thinner for a couple minutes.
If the tip fits on a can of WD-40, putting the tip on the WD-40 can and giving it a squirt will clean a spray nozzle fast.

Sharp Hand Tools

Overlooked Garden Tool

The machete is one of the most overlooked garden tools around! It can be very useful in outside work. It hacks through overgrown grass, then you can use the mower more effectively.


Whether old or new, remember to sharpen the blade on your ax before using it. File on both surfaces, rounding them to a convex profile. Use a fine grade of steel wool to apply rust inhibitor. When done with ax, store blade in a leather sheath.


Chiseling Safety Tips

Chisels need a sharp blade to work effectively, a dull blade actually requires more force to work and increases the potential for an accident. NEVER put your fingers in front of a chisel blade ! The chisel is being pushed forward with a force great enough to injure your fingers seriously, so beware.


How To Use Properly

The correct way to grip a nail hammer is with a firm handhold near the handle’s end. To start a nail, hold it between the thumb and index finger, tapping lightly once or twice. Then move your hand to steady your workpiece while you drive the nail home. WATCH THE NAIL, as you drive it to avoid a bashed thumb!
Try to swing the hammer precisely, so that the center of its face strikes the nail head squarely. When the head is not struck properly, the nail bends and can possibly dent the wood.

Chuck Key

Misplaced Chuck Key To Drill Press

You’ve misplaced your chuck key again? Try this little trick until you find or replace it! Insert the head of a Phillips screwdriver into a chuck hole, and the head of a slotted screwdriver into the closest notch. Now pry open the chuck carefully

Chuck Key For Electric Drill

It's helpful having the key chuck within easy reach when using an electric drill. You can attach the key chuck to the drill's power cord using the rubber "tie" that most manufactures provide. Often these ties don't fit tight enough, so the key slides around on the cord, often out of reach. To help keep the chuck within reach, try sandwiching the tie between a couple of tightly wrapped rubber bands.

Drill Chucks

To get the directions for your particular drill for removing the chuck, they come in the replacement Jacobs Chuck kits sold in some of the tool places. If the screw is already loose inside the chuck, you must chuck up the tool used to tighten the chuck & strike it carefully to break the bond between the drill motor shaft & the chuck. At least one 1/2 " Dewalt drill that I changed the chuck on was left hand thread but I don't think they all are if my memory serves me right.


Facts About Wrenches

Caulking Guns

Facts About Caulking Guns

Purchase a decent caulking gun,($6-7), with smooth ratcheting mechanisms, and large easy-to-squeeze handles. Also, look for a “dripless” gun , it will save you from getting caulk all over you or your project.


Which Direction To Plane?

When handplaning boards, it is hard to know which direction to choose to avoid a tearout. Checking the grain on the board's side helps, but doesn't always tell the whole story. This additional method works very well.

Look at the end grain of the board. You will have one of two patterns for flatsawn lumber: hills or valleys. Next look at the surface of the wood to see where the grain forms rounded points (called cathedrals). If the end grain is a hill, plane into the points. If the grain is a valley, plane away from the points.

If you have any tips you would like to share, please Email them to us and we'll post them!
Thank you for sharing!

Experts | Email Us | Disclaimer | HandymanWire home
Articles | We welcome your feedback. | Privacy
Handyman Wire
your resource for advice on home improvement and repairs.
Copyright ©1999-2019, Handyman USA LLC.
All rights reserved.