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My cold drinks always get hot in the shop.  Sometimes I carry a small lunchbox with a freezer pack out there, but I usually forget about it and end up leaving it out in the garage for a few days.  For Toolmongers who don’t keep a mini fridge, or the “old” fridge, out in the shop, Craftsman makes this Retro Design Cooler — it looks cool and it keeps your drinks cool, too!

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How often does this happen to you:  You’re lying in bed and the wife asks, “Honey, did you close the garage door when you came in?”  You can’t remember, so you get out of bed to check.  You can avoid this whole scenario if you install Xceltronix’s Autocloser.

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Eventually all Toolmongers will get weak in the knees and back — if it hasn’t happened to you yet, trust me, it will. Keeping yourself in a comfortable position in the shop becomes more and more important, especially when working on or near the ground.  The Racatac helps you move around the shop with ease.

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We don’t experience the blood-freezing temperatures here in the South that they do further north, but it does get cold enough that we start looking for heating options in the shop during the winter.  Talk of halogen heaters starts making the rounds as soon as the first frost hits — but are they effective in the shop?

You can bag a cheap electric halogen heater for less than a C-note, and they come in a dizzying array of sizes and shapes. The concept of no-flame heating seems appropriate for the shop, but how well do these things work?  How much area do they cover?   Will the person standing five feet from the unit be sweating while the guy on the other side of the garage is experiencing a modern Ice Age?

In short, are these good units to place in the shop, or is this technology only suited for the small heaters you find under old people’s desks?  Let us know in comments.

Airworks Garage Heater [Northern Tool and Equipment]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]


This is some sexy garage flooring — ok, the hunk of Ferrari may be influencing us a bit, but the ribbed polypropylene tile floors do look cool.  We wonder how practical they are in real life, though.

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Memorial Day is past, but I say there’s no time like the present to work on converting all you pegboard haters — and anyway, Fourth of July is almost here!  Alligator Board offers metal pegboards and accessories in many varieties, but this specialty item really caught my eye.  Whether your patriotism is flashy or not, this pegboard will set the record straight and put you back on the red-blooded-American list.

Alligator Board sells the flag pegboard for $200, plus $34 shipping.

American Flag Pegboard [Alligator Board]
Street Pricing [Google Products]


While the Dash-Surfer might look like the unholy union of an ironing board and a piece of exercise equipment, you’ll immediately appreciate the utility of the thing if you’ve ever spent any length of time working under a dashboard. Without any support, the kneeling and twisting can turn into a real pain in the neck, back, shoulders, etc. The Dash-Surfer provides a level and stable surface to lie down on while working under the dash, eliminating the stress and strain of the more conventional method.

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What does your shop floor look like? In the Toolmonger shop, we work on a concrete floor sealed with a water- and oil-proof coating. It gets a bit slick when there’s a spill, and it’s hard to stand on all day long. So when I saw this photo of a non-slip mat posted by photo pool member Looking Glass, it really got me thinking. I know there are a ton of anti-slip and anti-fatigue mats, floor coverings, and whatnot — but are they worth it?

Growing up, I always held with the dogma that a workshop should have a concrete floor. My reasoning: “What does it matter if it gets stained?” Since then I’ve worked on dirt floors, wood floors, lots of tile, and even carpet — and I’ve discovered there are benefits to each.

What do you do in your own workspace? What’s most important about your shop floor? Let us know in comments.

Toolmonger Photo Pool [Flickr]


Some deals come from unexpected place, like this 8′ x 24′ Gladiator Garageworks floor covering over at Abt Electronic for $471. The Gladiator Garageworks line of floor cover is available in 24′, 30′, and 36′ lengths, all feature diamond-plate-style grip and are made from a non-porous, chemical resistant and fire retardant material that’s UL Classified in accordance with ASTM E-648-03 (“The Standard method for Critical Radiant Flux of floor covering systems using a radiant heat source.”)

And installation of this flooring couldn’t be easier: just unroll it and it’s ready for use — no adhesive necessary.

GAFC0824PN [Gladiator Garageworks]
GAFC0824PN [Abt Electronics]
Street Pricing [Google Products]


At first glance, the cleaner called “Simple Green” just doesn’t inspire confidence; you’re trying to get rid of green crap, not add it. But the fact remains: it’s one of the most effective cleaner/degreasers out there that’s readily available, non-toxic, biodegradable, non-abrasive, non-flammable, and affordable.

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