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It’s been a busy week here at Toolmonger.  We’ve been testing tools like madmen preparing for Hands-On Week.  Don’t miss our daily hands-on posts covering all sorts of stuff you’ll want to see for yourself.

If you’ve been spending time in the shop, too, and you haven’t had a chance to keep up with Toolmonger this week, we suggest you start with these posts, which our readers helped to select:

Empire’s 1240 “Fat Boy” Framing Square: Double Think for Durability
This aluminum framing square is 3/16″ thick — about twice as thick as standard squares — to help survive drops from the roof and other mishandling.  While some craftsmen prefer plastic or lexan for lightness or steel for strength, an thick aluminum square provides a little bit of both.

Tie-Rod Coupler: Mechanic, Un-Strand Thyself
Ever tried to tried to push a car with a broken tie rod onto a trailer — or even out of the road?  The broken wheel always turns sideways, stopping the car and sometimes damaging bodywork.  This coupler holds the rod together temporarily to help you out.  Don’t try to drive it, though.

The Rock-It Drum Dolly: All Gain, No Pain
Readers loved this four-wheel dolly with a rounded side to help you roll 50-gallon drums from vertical to horizontal, especially at under $60.

Hot or Not? Fast Orange Hand Cleaner
The overall take on this common shop hand cleaner is “hot,” though some readers recommended Lava Pro, Goop, and others.  Be sure to check out the comments for some great suggestions on how to get the dirt out after a day of hard work.

Double-Claw Chain Shortener: Rope Flexibility, Chain Strength
This little device gives you some of the flexibility of rope when using chain as a tie-down by connecting two links together, shortening the chain.  Readers agreed on two things: 1) Get a good one (like this) and not a cheapie from HF or elsewhere, and 2) be careful when using these.  Look in comments for a link to a great safety site with more information.

Help us choose next week’s Top 5!

We’d appreciate your help in choosing next week’s Top 5, which’ll be featured here, elsewhere, and in the podcast as well.  While you’re reading TM this week, look out for the “Interesting Post” button at the bottom of the article:


When you see an article that piques your interest, click the button once.  You’ll return to the same page, but TM’s software’ll score your click for future reference.  We’ll check in on the totals before selecting next week’s Top 5.


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