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We’re not so stuck up here at Toolmonger that we don’t acknowledge when things are beyond us. When we first saw this video we couldn’t imagine not posting about it. The caption listed in the video from Mr. King kind of says it all.

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Even here in Texas now, there’s a snap to the air and leaves are falling. The holiday season begins for many folks at Halloween. Pumpkin carving and punkin’ chunkin’ are both traditions this time of year — of course, punkin’ chunkin’ being more of full-contact affair with lots of gratuitous ground-on-punkin’ action and punkin’ explosions, and pumpkin carving being a more “traditional” art with faces and such being carved into rinds.

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Yesterday a buddy and I caught this sweet vid of Kanye and Jay-Z tearing the crap out of a Maybach on Charles and Hudson. What interested both of us was what kind of tools they were grabbing to mod their ride.

Charles and Hudson caught the beauty shot of the Milwaukee Sawzall, but we also got a glimpse of the Tillman welding gloves, Metabo grinder and a portable chop saw.

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Customer service in the power tool industry is an interesting thing. I picture lawyers standing over beaten, hunchbacked representatives who are giving the company line and afraid to commit to any operation or function other than what’s listed in the manual. But recently Husqvarna has taken a unique stance on customer service and started the Answer Army site.

Answer Army is staffed by product experts who seem to actually try to answer the questions you have instead of the ones the company thinks you should have — things like basic maintenance and frequently asked questions are covered, but also things like “I pinched my chainsaw bar on the cut and ripped the chain in half. What do I do now?” or “The motor on my saw seized up; how do I tell what went wrong?”

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After changing the heater core on Chuck’s old F-150 we used to joke about the rest of the truck being built around it. On Sunday night, the History Channel’s excellent Modern Marvels episode on American trucking happened to show the Deerborn Michigan plant where F-150s are built — and it turns out that it’s almost completely true.

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The gap between airing on the BBC and BBCA has shrunk again this year for Top Gear. If you’re a fan, and many are, you don’t have the uber-long year- or six-month wait for your UK automotive fix. The first episode of the newest season is airing on this side of the pond Monday, August 22 @ 8 p.m. Central.

Say what you like, but the show has been nothing short of stellar since its reboot a few years ago. The on-air interplay between Clarkson, May, and Hammond is sparkling, and the show’s segments such as the secondhand car challenges are some of the best spots around.

I’m a fan of the U.S. version of Top Gear, but it was the Brit TG that revived the automotive section of my brain and got me back into car shows and cars in general. And that is more than worth the wait as far as I can tell.

Top Gear UK [Website]

 

Curmudgeon it up if you like, but the second season of Top Gear America has just launched Sunday night and it was, for lack of a better term, “gut busting.” I really do feel sorry for people who are in the either/or camp of Top Gear. Honestly you can have both the Brits’ and the Americans’ motoring show and not die of shame. No one is checking ID at the door, really folks; it’s cool.

So I sat down to watch the first episode of season 2 and I find that they have broken away from the British format and elected to go with something a little more fitting to their styles. No “Jessica” in the credits, the studio is outside, and the production value upgrade is noticeable. Plus, the three hosts’ personalities are already coming through on camera a load better this year.

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We’re a big fan of learning to work with tools while young, and so is Irwin. Normally when we get press releases about tool companies and cars, they tell us about this motocross rider or that well-known race team that they are now sponsoring. In truth it has nothing to do with tools and everything to do with branding. Branding doesn’t build anything other than bottom lines — but Skills USA is a different story.

In partnership with Irwin, Skills USA puts hundreds of thousands of kids looking to go into technical lines of work together with hands-on training with the tools of their future craft. It also teaches young people ethics in the work place — how to work hard and how to solve problems while doing so.

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This video, created by a student for extra credit in his shop class a while back, is the complete awesome. Sure, it’s Lego and kind of funny, but that’s the point. Not only did some shop teacher have it together enough not to show the same old 1960′s videos about shop safety, but now they are armed with something to show for the next few years that connects with students better than a guy with a brostashe and turtle-shell horn rims.

If it helps kids engage in shop activities and understand that they can do great harm to themselves with the tools out in the shop, we’d say its a win for everyone involved.

Extra credit for having the dude who gets chopped up in a wife beater and Oakley shades. Classic.

Power Tool Safety [YouTube]

 

As almost everyone knows, Festool is rather — we’ll call it “proud” — of their gear. So if you want to put Festool green on display in the shop, it’s going to cost you. However, our friends at HomeFixated are putting on a giveaway that promises to net one lucky-ass winner five assorted sizes of T-Loc Systainer containers for free.

For some, it may be the only Festool-branded items in the shop, but as far as we’re concerned, no matter how you feel about their pricing, free makes them a whole lot more interesting. Add to that the fact the boys in green actually make a quality product. and someone will wind up with a nice payout for commenting on a blog. Just sayin’.

Free Stuff From Festool [HomeFixated]