Top quality wrenches are forged from fine-grade tool steel, machined to close tolerances, hardened and tempered for long service life. Types include open-end, box- end, combination box/open end, adjustable, socket and locking grip styles. Because most imported products are made to metric specifications a set of metric wrenches has become a must in many home […]READ MORE
Since quality is important, many manufacturers are putting an increased focus on professional tool grades. There are many factors that separate high-quality hand tools from their inexpensive counterparts. The materials used to construct a tool, the manufacturing process, the engineering of the tool and the tool’s comfort and ease of use all play a big part in the quality of the final product.
Product quality goes hand in hand with safety. Many tools, when used improperly, can pose a serious risk of injury to the user or others in close proximity. Videos, booklets and charts that teach hand tool safety are available through the Hand Tools Institute, (914) 332-0040.Tool advancements continue to focus on ergonomics. Some manufacturers have developed hand tools specifically designed to meet the needs of seniors and female DIYers.
Steel sawhorse bracket kits convert five pieces of square-cut lumber into a sturdy sawhorse; the assembly is secured with nails or wing-nuts. Those that require wing-nuts allow disassembly with no damage to the wood. The other type provides flanged nail holes for easy nail removal with a claw hammer. Benefits include ease of assembly, since miter […]READ MORE
TOOLBOXES Steel toolboxes are most popular. Their prices vary according to gauge of steel used, number of trays and whether the box is reinforced in the corners. Some precision tool users use hardwood chests because the wood absorbs rust-producing condensation. Carpenters’ toolboxes are specially designed so carpenters can carry hand saws and framing squares in […]READ MORE
Quality screwdrivers are judged by the kind of metal in the blade, finish and amount of grinding on the tip. Material used in the handle and bar attachment to the handle are other quality indicators. If blade metal is poor quality, it will chip and crumble under pressure. If the tip is improperly ground and […]READ MORE
STANDARD HANDSAWS Handsaws have 14″ to 26″ blades. Fineness of cut depends on the number of cutting teeth per inch and tooth shape. A coarse crosscut saw with seven or eight teeth per inch is best for fast, rough work or for use on green wood. A fine-tooth crosscut saw with 10 or 11 teeth per […]READ MORE
Top quality pliers are forged from fine-grain tool steel, machined to close tolerances with hand-honed cutting edges properly hardened. They are polished, adjusted and inspected. Pliers fall into two broad categories-solid joint and slip joint, either of which may have cutters. Pliers vary in length from 4″ to 20″. Slip-joint pliers are of two designs-multiple hole […]READ MORE
Planes are used for trimming, beveling, fitting and shaping wood, and smoothing rough spots left by sawing and drilling. Quality is determined by the steel used in the cutter, cap iron, sole and body of the plane. The cap iron should be of hard steel so adjustment screws will not strip. Hard steel cutters hold […]READ MORE
CLAMPS “C” clamps consist of a “C” shaped frame into which an adjustable screw is assembled. The size of a “C” clamp is measured by its capacity-the dimension of the largest object the frame can accommodate with the screw fully extended. Also important is depth of throat, the distance from the center-line of the screw to […]READ MORE
SQUARES Used to check and mark right angles, squares are defined as steel, try and combination. Combination squares will also measure 45 degree angles. If it has a degree scale, it can determine any angle. A steel square is made from one piece of steel, with the long end (body) usually 24″ and the short end (tongue) […]READ MORE
Levels measure true horizontal (level) and true vertical (plumb) either with vials (spirit levels) or sensors (electronic levels). These mechanisms are incorporated into rails of wood, plastic, aluminum or magnesium. The rail or body of the level may be solid, I-beam or box-beam. Better grades of levels are determined by the strength and rigidity of the […]READ MORE