Man Made DIY



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Dec 03, 2012

ManMade Giveaway: Win a $200 Gift Card to True Value Hardware

They say, "It don't matter if you've got a lot, you can't be happy till you're happy with what you've got." And that's true. But getting free stuff never hurt, either, so why not enter this week's True Value giveaway! Read on to see how to enter!   THE PRIZE:

- Two, yes ¡TWO! $100 gift cards to True Value.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. Thanks for entering.

 

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Nov 30, 2012

How to: Flip an Interior Door (Hinges and All!)

created at: 11/30/2012

As part of our ongoing house remodel (read more at our sister site, Curbly.com), we ended up with a bathroom door that swung in the wrong direction (well, not 'wrong' precisely, but just not the way we wanted it to). It opened into the bathroom, which was fine, but it swung from left to right, and we wanted it to swing the opposite way. So, with a few trusty hand tools I picked up at the local hardware store, I managed to get it flipped around. Read on to see how I did… read more

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Nov 15, 2012

A Weekend Well Spent: Building a $60 Versatile Workbench

Workbench refresh ... before.
This summer was a busy one for my family; we had a new baby (our second, a boy), and moved into a new house that we gutted and remodeled. At the same time. Needless to say, it was a bit crazy, and one side-effect of that was that all my tools got completely disorganized. Plus the new basement had no good storage for tools, save an ancient, ramshackle work bench that was barely standing upright. Enough of that, I thought, and made a plan to fix it. Read on to watch my video and see how easy it is to improve your own workbench situation.

read more
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Nov 08, 2012

Quick Tip: How to Install a Shower Shelf Over Glass or Ceramic Tiles

Installing a shower shelfI was really bummed when my wife, Alicia, suggested we install a shower shelf. I mean, figuring out how to arrange and balance all those shampoo bottles and soap bars on the two-inch-wide edge or the tub is what kept me occupied during those boring morning showers. But after the four-thousandth time I knocked a domino-ish chain of plastic containers into the tub, I began to see her reasoning. Fortunately, installing a shelf in your shower is really easy. Read on to see how I did it, with a few supplies and some help from my local TrueValue hardware store...

read more
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Oct 08, 2012

Review: Master Mechanic Swift Driver Ratcheting Screwdriver

Master Mechanic Swift Driver Review
As part of our membership in this year's True Value Blog squad, I was asked to try out the Master Mechanic Swift Driver, a dual drive ratcheting screw driver. Now, I've had my share of gadgety, gimmicky screwdrivers, and ratcheting ones almost always fall into the category of 'cheap'. Usually they're shoddy affairs, not fit for a real toolbox.… read more

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Mar 08, 2012

The Dollar Shave Club - Get Monthly, Inexpensive Razors in the Mail

I haven't tried this out for myself, but the video alone is worth a watch. It's a pretty simple deal, actually, but it seems to make sense. Get quality, generic-branded razors in the mail every month with a low subscription fee. At $9 a month for the fanciest blade, it's still cheaper than buying a pack at the store.

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Nov 09, 2011

Bruno and Chris on "Ask the Blog Squad" This Week

This week, Chris and I will be hosting True Value's "Ask the Blog Squad" sessions on Facebook. We'll be taking questions from readers about anything you can think of (well, anything DIY-related you can think of; don't start getting too personal on me, buddy). 

You can find the page on Facebook (make sure to click on the 'Ask the Blog Squad' tab). Head over there now and get your question in before it's too late!

True Value ask the blog squad on Facebook

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Nov 04, 2011

Family Room Makeover: A New Face for a Funny Fireplace

For our latest True Value blog squad project, we decided to tackle our fireplace. In our 1960s-ish family room addition, the fireplace takes up a lot of visual attention, and its size and placement make it clear the previous owners built it as a focal point. Here's what we were dealing with:

Our old fireplace, yuck!

(Note: this picture is about four years old)

Last year we decided to paint the fireplace white, but it still lacked some appeal.So, it's not surprising we often chose to 'hide' the fireplace by stacking our daughters various toys in front of it:

What? There's no fireplace here...

The list of things we didn't like about this thing would go on and on. Here are a… read more

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Oct 03, 2011

ManMade Giveaway: Win a 10" Compound Miter Saw from Craftsman ($199 value)

Whether you're framing a house or just framing a picture, a miter saw is a pretty essential power tool to own. And this week, we'd like to help you get your hands on one! We're giving away a Craftsman MiterMate 10" miter saw ($199 value), a really cool, innovative product that reduces setup time, and achieves results with fewer miss-cuts.

The Craftsman MiterMate 10" miter saw

Read on to see how to enter, but first, here's some info… read more

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Sep 22, 2011

The Inconstant Gardener: Misadventures in Landscaping

A part of me retches at the very word 'landscaping', as if the 1/4-acre parcel I inhabit on the vast surface of our billions-of-years-old planet somehow requires a few hours per weekend of my inexpert, indifferent care. Come on; any scaping we do to the land will be obliterated by the pitiless passing of time. We might as well lie under our beds 'scaping' dust into piles.

Still, that's a tough argument to make to your neighbors when they walk past your overgrown garden, over the shin-high weeds in the sidewalk cracks, and through the 'native habitat restoration' area you call your front lawn. They don't have to say much, but even at a distance you can see the raising of eyebrows.

Our unlanscaped landscape 

Not that I care that much what they think; horticultural conformism be damned. But seriously, this summer the front of our house was getting to a point that would make even the most hardened iconoclast a little embarassed. 

So, with a shrug of my shoulders and a roll of the eyes, we decided to finally do a little landscaping. It's been at least five years since we've done so much as weeding in the front, so things were a little, um, hairy. Read on to see how we improved it, and watch a video of… read more

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