Work Tools

Are we square here?

Stumbled upon something I hadn’t seen before when Christmas shopping, but having no real need filed the idea away.

That idea, is mini speed squares. The speed square is without a doubt a handyman or construction workers most used tool. Layout, measurements, angles, checking square, and a great crosscut circular saw guide.

But sometimes, all you need is a 90deg or 45deg marking guide for layout, and dont want to carry a full size square. A lot of guys tend to use a 4″ slip square for that. I have for years. But its still a 3″x4″ chunk in the pocket, and without the angle guide, or saw guide.

Now granted, I’ve never used the angle guide more than twice in my life, and a 3″ square is not going to be a good saw guide. But I was still intrigued by a small light pocket square.

Enter 3D printing (yes, again lol) and I stumbled upon a mini and micro speed square design on Printables. There are actually several there, even metric versions. But these looked promising, with all the measurement and angle hash marks. One at 3″, the other at 2″.

I printed the big one, in red PLA.

Now, I was absolutely amazed. The precision of my printer setup hadn’t been the best, and I knew I had it pretty damn good, but this was still cool. I’d avoided printing anything with exact measurements for this reason(yes, printing parts to fit other parts, but not to a measurement without tweaking the scale for print error.)

Anyway, the measurement scale on it was dead on for a long ways, only walking a 1/64″ or less after the 3″!! yes thats off, and off quite bit in 12″. But when you’re always printing under 8″ and usually under 2″, a few thousands off per 1/16″ isnt too bad!

And also for carpenters tools, in construction not cabinetry, its fine. This isn’t precision machine work.

Now, the angles were something else. The 90 came out at 89, but the 45 was dead on. Which isn’t horrific! But even for a marking tool for construction, I wanted as good as I could get, at least within the tool… some drift 10 feet away is fine lol.

Some could be shift in my printer, again, its not 100% tight, and this process has inherent movement, that (can)causes drift as you go… momentum and sheer force on molten plastic.

Or the guys model could be out of square. I also wondered how accurate the average metal square is anyway. I’m using a digital angle gauge to check with, assuming thats pretty accurate.

All other squares in the shop were within 0.4 to 0.5 degree of 90. A couple were dead on. Thats a full size 1960s era Swanson speed square, a Craftsman or Stanley 4″ slip square, and a 18″ framing square. Good sampling of styles and costs, and sizes, seems half a degree is it.

So, I modeled a simple square myself, and printed it.

Same 1 deg off! 89.0 So. Printer? Maybe.

I basically decided to ignore my OCD on it and accept 1deg out for what its used for. I remodeled, added the features I wanted, and beefed up the structure(test print was fast and light), and re printed it.

And you know what? Thag sucker is dead on 89.9, and 44.8!!

Printed a second one smaller, just the same.

Now, I’m not saying the other guys model is out of square. I will go back and re-slice it finer(although it was at the same resolution as I just printed mine) and see if it comes out any more accurate.

At any rate, I had fun modeling, and testing, and got the features and size I wanted, without things I don’t use. One for the shop, and one for my tool bag, will see how much I actually use them.

Now, my models turned out to be less speed square than where we started. They are 2″, or 2.5″on the thin 90deg leg, 1/4″ overhang on the edge on one side, 1/2″ on the other for marking gauges. No angle or length marks. A simple and fast layout tool. Plus one hole for a caribiner or similar, if I can find a way to use it that doesn’t get in the way, or be too fiddly to remove and replace all of the time.

Any interest in the comments, an I’ll make my model file available. 🙂 Otherwise, there are so many out there, including the other one I started with, I see no reason to release it.

The other guys square is here; https://www.printables.com/model/312095-pico-squares-small-speed-squares Also, PLEASE NOTE There is NOTHING wrong with his model! It is fully within normal parameters, especially for a printed part… 30 seconds with sandpaper on a flat surface would make it dead on square! Heck, you might even print it dead on to start with. Given how many variables there are in this game, 1 degree is a fantastic low variance. I was just being super picky about it, and wanted to see IF I could do better straight off the printer. Not that it really needed to be any better. Hell, the next one I print of my model could be off farther…. 😉

Categories: 3D Printing, Construction, Custom, custom-made-tools, EDC, Engineering & Design, Fabrication, key-chains, Modifications, Multitools, New Gear, Pocketable, Prototypes, tool mods, Work Tools | Leave a comment

Ryobi Jobsite Table Saw

In other news, we’re finally far enough into trim and finish work at work that the table saw he bought isn’t needed.

And since he has a big cabinet saw in his shop, he asked if I wanted the job saw, unless he gets another flip house, he won’t need it.

My cabinet saw is in my basement, and too hard to get sheet goods to, so I’ve thought of a jobsite saw in the garage before. I said yes fast! 

;)

 (ironically since I’ve given away 3 free found or scrounged jobsite or small bench saws in the last 15 years… all too big or too heavy for my uses. Last one this size was solid cast iron.. great tool but I couldn’t more it around. )

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This is the cheapest saw he could get 3 years ago. Ryobi tools are definitely low end entry level these days. But this sucker has been an amazingly precise saw, very little run out, and a surprisingly precise fence. I’m not sure I’d want to do fine cabinetry or exotic trim work with it, but it’s a great all around saw, especially for it’s class/price.

Categories: Construction, New Gear, New Work Tools, Remodeling, Reviews, Saws, Usage Reviews, Woodshop, Woodwork, Work Tools, Work/Job

Craftsman 4V power screwdriver

Picked this up last weekend on sale, I was curious,  and for $35, figured it was a small risk.

It’s the old concept of a power screwdriver,  remember those from the 90s? Even in the early 2000s when cordless tools were gaining ground and power those things were still basically useless.

Somewhere I have one thats about 9v, that came with my big 18v Dewalt drill, circa 2006. That drill was a power house, a monster at driving screws for construction… The screwdriver,  not so much. Not exactly useless… But then the tool itself was too big to really be handy.

Batteries and motors sure have come a long ways! 

This thing is only 4V, but it has a surprising amount of torque,  and so far great run time IMO for its size.

Built in battery,  an oddity these days,  came with a wall wart w/cord that charges it. 

My main idea was for automotive work,  where you can have lots of little screws, a slow pain by hand, but an impact driver is overkill, or won’t fit.

So far I’ve had great fun with it installing a bunch of door knobs and latch plates at work,  removing and installing cabinet hinges, and even driving some small 1.25″ construction screws(amazingly well even without pilot holes!) .

Finally a compact power screwdriver that works as needed! Its a keeper!

One nifty feature, is the onboard rotating bit storage.  Has a little door that covers it. Came with bits in it! Little magnet on top next to it to hold screws or bits is actually kinda handy too.

Wish my big 20v impact drivers had that bit storage magazine!  Thinking they could do it in brushless tools and still be pretty compact.

Categories: Automotive Work, Construction, Cordless Tools, Craftsman, New Work Tools, Remodeling, Reviews, Work Tools

Olight Swivel Work Light, first impression/mini review.

Just got this in on Saturday.

https://olightworld.com/olight-swivel

I ordered it from OlightDirect, here;

https://www.ebay.com/itm/165098614945

Unboxing;

Included a very nice, long USB-C cable. So many lights and things come with a 3″ cable anymore,  this was a nice surprise.  You can actually get it onto a table or the floor to charge it, instead of dangling it from the outlet.

Fresh from the box;

For scale;

First thoughts; heavy!

Second;  well, it should be durable…

I’d swear the thing is solid metal cased, but it says ABS. It’s built like a tank!  I’m sure it weighs twice what my Spirit does, heavier than any other light I have. Big 2600mAh battery has to be heavy too.

Its Big enough I’d bet its two 18650s in there.

Definitely Not a pocket carry light!

Flashlight modes are 200 and 50 lumens.

Flood light is 400, 160, 12.

The outputs all look right to me, except I’d swear the flood low is 30 or 40… but its a soft flood, wide area, guess it could look brighter than I’m used to 12 being.

The flashlight is one big smooth spot… no real discernible hotspot, bug I wouldn’t call it a flood beam… in between concepts. 

Its a rather easy interface, although I find the button a little hard to “read”. Easy to press, but its… odd. Its a soft click button under a hard rubber cover. Hard start to the press then the switch clicks fast… hard to describe.  Works fine just feels different than the average flashlight switch.

Single click on/off, click to cycle modes(only within 3sec of on, after that clicks off or swap between emitters) Long press to change between emitters.

Little odd that the flashlight starts in high then low. But on the work light/COB it goes medium, high, low.  No memory, always starts the same.

Does memory the emiter your on though…  so if you turn it off in flashlight mode it comes back on in that.

Charging is done by the verry handy built in USB plug, and thankfully in the new C standard,  matching my phone and another light; less cords to keep track of!

Came charged to 3/4 charge indictors. Took 20 mintues to go to 4/4.   Like the indicator, nice feature, always on with either emitter on.  Odd break down of percentages per the manual(4 lights actually means 95%+ not 100%), but honestly who cares that much, its a good rule of thumb for not running it dead,  better as you use a light more, learn how long you have left once it hits 1 or 2 indicators.

Magnets aren’t as strong as I expected.  Small and wide spread on the loop, its going to need a large area to stick to, to be stable.   I stuck it up to the door pilar in my truck and its rock solid, not going to move.

Stuck to flats on a 1″ steel bar with just two magnets in line, and it would shift depending on what angle you had it open; weight distribution. And I’m not 100% sure it’d stay there fully upside down..

Can see that being an issue in more creative spaces where you might not have a place to get the balance right for where you need light… time will tell I guess.

On the flip side, smaller and weaker they’re not going to collect near as much metal dust/debris in a tool bag.

The carabiner clip is… not bad, but different; the gate opens outwards.  Works fine, just not what you expect.

Nifty bonus, the halo ring around the COB is GITD.

Only thing I would really like to have seen is a rotating joint where the light body meets that hinge. So many more options for aiming it then.  Again, time will tell if its really an issue or not.

Overall,  so far, I’m very happy with it! Light function is fine, and the build seems great!

 For the $28 I paid shipped,  I think its a good value.  Wish it was a bit less, @ around $25 point I’d get a couple more of them.  $35 is the standard price online for this color, $40 for other colors. That much each is a bit much for multiples,  but that’s me being picky about $10 lol…  I think its definitely worth the ~$30.

They do a few colors, green, blue, orange, yellow,  and I think black. Looks like the green is the standard/basic, as I said it costs a little less everywhere, so thats what I got.

Categories: EDC, Flashlights, New Gear, Reviews, Usage Reviews, Work Tools

Bent?

Must have caught my knife clip on something…

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Less than a minute with the Spirit fixed it.

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Tough clip though, was putting a lot of twist on the Spirit jaws to do it! Light build of the knife, I was a little worried about bending the frame/liner. But it worked fine.

Categories: Construction, Damages, EDC, EDC/MT use, knives, MacGyver, Multitools, Remodeling, Repairs, Work Tools, Work/Job

New At Work Pocket Tools 2.0

Well, I’ll be damned!

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If youll remember my last pson thus topic, what i was really needing then was one of these that included an R2/S2 bit.

This one is as yoh can see 9 in 1, including an R2!
I honestly don’t count the socket sizes except maybe the 1/4″ so it 6 in 1 or 7 in 1 for me.

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Cool setup with short and long double bits.

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Same size as the Stanley, thankfully not any bigger. It is a touch heavier, but I had it on me, same pocket as the Stanley is usually in, all day yesterday and never knew the difference.

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The Stanley has been performing perfectly fine for over a month, almost two actually, so i really didn’t need this change. But on principal of being what id wanted before, I went ahead and snagged it.

Cant really lose, it was almost as cheap(low cost) @$10.

Categories: Construction, EDC, New Gear, New Work Tools, Remodeling, Work Tools, Work/Job

New At Work Pocket Tools.

New for the work carry this summer.

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I LOVE my slim compact Kobalt screwdrivers. Takes 1 bit, holds 3 in the handle. Slim and light.
But also deathly slow, and a bit fiddly with gloves on, to change bits.
Broke down and got a cheap 6 in 1. (4 drivers, 2 nut drivers… the later of which I will rarely if ever use) Cheapest, lightest one they had. Its bulky, but actually not too heavy. Stanley, like $3.
Dont like the special double ended bits, cant just use any old 1.5″ 1/4″ drive bit. And No R2 bit.
Will see how long it lasts. If I can do ok on the bits, I might take the handle to the bandsaw and slim it down.

;)

Anyone know where I can get the fancy double ended 5/16″ hex bit it takes, or the 1/4″, in a R2/P2, or R2/1/4″ flat even, let me know.
The cutters were the cheapest also, but are good and solid. Didn’t feel like paying $22 for Chanellock. This was $10.
The ones I have are great for my auto wiring/electronic projects, and are pretty heavy duty, even good for average home wiring. But for construction site use where you cut romex, and things other than wire, I needed a set with the shorter jaw/high torque pivot location. Thankfully not much bigger than the others, and about the same weight
The old and new

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I got gloves again too. Been wearing deerskin learher of the same brand last season, and so far this one… But we’re doing vapor barrier now, and black death is impossible to remove from leather gloves, worse than it is from your hands. And those leather suckers are $22 a pair. (Yes, I won’t buy side cutters that’ll last a decade for $22, but I will pay that for gloves that last about 7 months. Yes, I know I’m odd. ) these are almost as comfortable after a day or two, and probably almost as durable. I just cry less when theyre ruined.

(for those that don’t know, black death is the slang term for a non hardening, non setting, forever sticky acoustical and vapor barier sealant and adheasive. It never dries or sets, and is tacky like tar. Its impossible to get off you once you get it on you. Gasoline or paint thinner will eat it. In my experience even then its hard to get off. )

Also grabbed one of these little guys. Figured why not, @ $0.97

:D

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So, its interesting. The big yellow Stanley takes a 1/4″ bit on one end only, on the other it is 5/16″.

In this little Stanley, the bits are Smaller than 1/4″. BUT it looks like the tool is molded at the ends to take 1/4″ bits. Except it doesnt quote fit a [img] g4″ bit. The smaller bits are gripped further into the handle though. Strange.

Categories: Construction, EDC, New Gear, New Work Tools, Remodeling, Work Tools, Work/Job

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