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Posts by: Paul Lapczynski

So many devices nowadays have those big transformer-type plugs — power tools, computer equipment, cell phones, you name it — and you can’t plug ’em into an outlet without blocking another outlet.  This happens to me all the time at home and work, and usually I just run a surge strip or a short extension cord, but the Rotator might be a better solution.

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What do you do if you need to sand a curved project that’s too big to get to your oscillating spindle sander — an assembled piece of furniture, for instance?  Most of us aren’t big fans of hand sanding, so this Grizzly Handheld Pneumatic Sander looks pretty appealing.

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Most belt-powered shop tools ship out with the cheapest belt that’ll keep the tool running — and thanks to lower manufacturing standards, these belts can cause excess vibration and noise.  Fenner offers a replacement V-belt option that’ll work not only with your shop tools but with any belt-driven device, to keep ’em running smooth and quiet.

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Sharp tools make the job go easier;  you’re less likely to injure yourself and also less likely to damage the tool and whatever you’re working on. My last system was a good set of water stones, but keeping the stones flat was a hassle.  This Trend Diamond Sharpening Kit looks like a complete set that might be easier to maintain.

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If you can’t get enough reach with your ratchet you can just add an extension, but what’re you supposed to do with drivers?  A standard-sized blade, about 6″ or so, gets me through most jobs, but recently I was adjusting my headlights, and I needed a longer, thinner blade — GearWrench created their Long-Reach Torx Drivers for jobs just like this.

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I don’t know how woodworkers do it. A good quality clamp will run you $30 to $60 per clamp — yet most committed woodworkers have a wall of 20 to 50+ clamps. That money would buy me the cabinet saw I’ve been looking at, and I feel lucky to own the half-dozen bar clamps that I do have. This R&R Stackable Clamp System at my local Woodworks caught my eye, and it looks like a good deal — but unfortunately it’s still out of my budget.

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Now that I don’t have a basement, I miss the storage space — but I don’t miss the issues with water. Water can destroy appliances, furniture, carpet, drywall, and anything else in its path, and most repairs that require a contractor will run into the thousands of dollars. I found this Basement Waterproofing Kit in the back of a magazine and was wondering if it’s worth its salt.

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Computers seem to be infesting new vehicles so fast, I can’t keep up with ’em all — computers for emissions, engine management, braking, climate controls, and probably for the poser seats.  When it comes to maintaining all these systems, I can pull codes out of most vehicles, but then I usually end up researching the fault codes on my computer;  so why not use my PC as the scanner, with the AutoEnginuity Scan Tool?

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When someone says, “Let’s take the car for a spin,” you might not want to hop into the passenger seat so fast. The Roller Hoop auto body rotisserie allows professional and DIY restorers to more easily work on the underside of a stripped body.

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Recently I bought an older Craftsman radial arm saw and put it right to work rebuilding some decking — afterwards the carbide edges on the old blade were rounded over, and it was well past its useful life. Some fellow woodworkers informed me that since this saw will only be used for 90-degree crosscutting, I want a blade in the 80-tooth range, and since Forrest blades are too pricey I decided on the Freud TK806.

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