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Aug 08, 2018

Five Ways to Use a Speed Square

speed square uses

If you're doing any kind of DIY or construction work, there are a handful of absolutely essential tools you need in your belt: hammer, tape measure, level, to name just a few. Batting cleanup in this list is the humble speed square. Easy to use, inexpensive, light and portable, made of one piece of metal so it won't become untrue if dropped. And most importantly: multifunctional.

How many functions, you ask?  Read on for ManMade's five top ways to use a speed square!

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04654

Jul 27, 2017

ManMade Recommended: You Need to Get Your Hands on these Sandflex Rust Erasers

Earlier this week, for the Fourth of July holiday, some friends and I decided to try our hands at roasting a whole pig. We were cooking for 60-80 people, and wanted to do something more special than hamburgers and hot dogs, and figured: well, if we're going to try it, now is as good of a time as any. 

We wanted to go with a Southern United States-style "pig picking," meaning lots of wood smoke, and cooking over low and slow temperatures. In order to get the whole animal ready to eat with such a gentle heat, we needed to start the night before. And that's where this story begins.   

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Jul 13, 2017

Check This Out: Rotating Benchtop Tool Stand

Color us impressed. This fits almost as many small hand tools as a half sheet of pegboard, but in an organized, compact footprint.    

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May 29, 2017

ManMade Essential Toolbox: How to Assemble the Perfect Set of Driver Bits

Here's our pick for the best impact driver bits. With this collection, you'll never be at a loss for the right bit for the job. 

Best impact driver bits

When is a drill not a drill? When it's a driver, used for securing hardware into material, rather than simply boring a hole into it. If you're anything like us, your cordless drill gets pressed into service much more often as a way to drive or remove fasteners than making holes with twist bits. And to get the most out of this versatile tool, you've gotta have the right bit for the job. Here's how to build a complete set of the best impact driver bits to allow you to take on any task.

 

Best impact driver bits

Quick-Change

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02388

Aug 30, 2016

How to: Make a DIY Rolling Work Bench with Storage

created at: 04/01/2013

I chat with lots of ManMakers who would love to get started with bigger, more in-depth projects, but lack a dedicated place to work on them and the storage space for all the tools they'd like to acquire. So, here's a perfect project for them: a small-footprint workbench that's sturdy enough to do real work, and includes lots of built-in storage and plenty of accessories. 

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02382

Apr 28, 2016

How to: Make a Portable Stereo from an Old Toolbox

created at: 03/25/2013

Chicago-based artist and designer Artpentry, maker of the "Gentleman's Boombox" - a stereo/speaker combo built inside a vintage suitcase - turns his outfitting skills to another type of popular case: the toolbox.   

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04113

Feb 10, 2016

DIY Essentials: How to Assemble the Ultimate Homeowner's Tool Kit

A little personal update: after a few years of saving, I finally bought my first home. It's an awesome Northwest Craftsman bungalow built in 1924 in a great inner southeast Portland neighborhood. We're totally in love with it.

And it needs a lot of work. Not a lot to make it livable, but to make it ours. To make it a space where we're going to live and work and welcome others for the next 30 years. Of course, as a DIY blogger, I want to do most of it myself, and thankfully, I built up a handy collection of tools from my woodworking and general tinkering efforts (and now I actually have a garage in which to put them!)

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03788

Jul 30, 2015

ManMade Essential Toolbox: Seriously, the Coping Saw is the Most Versatile Tool Under $20. Here's What to Know.

Each week in 2015, ManMade is sharing our picks for the essential tools we think every creative guy and DIYer needs. We've selected useful, long-lasting tools to help you accomplish a variety of projects, solve problems, and live a hands-on lifestyle that allows you to interact with and make the things you use every day. 

 created at: 07/30/2015

Often, in interviews or lectures or conversations with groups, I'll get asked, "What tool has the most best bang for your buck?" And my answer is always the same: the coping saw. While it's not as flashy as big standing power tool, or as commonly used as a drill or accurate measuring device, it most certainly provides serious versatility for such a small tool.

Oh...and they cost less than two adult movie theater tickets, without snacks.    

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Jul 24, 2015

ManMade Essential Toolbox: Must-Have Knives, Shears, and Cutting Blades for the Workshop

Each week in 2015, ManMade is sharing our picks for the essential tools we think every creative guy and DIYer needs. We've selected useful, long-lasting tools to help you accomplish a variety of projects, solve problems, and live a hands-on lifestyle that allows you to interact with and make the things you use every day. 

created at: 07/24/2015

When we think about tools that cut things in the workshop, we tend to focus on the big stuff: table saws, metal cut-off tools, or even a chainsaw. Or perhaps we think of tools designed for dedicated tasks: an angle grinder, or a jig saw. But, know what the two items I most regularly pull down off my pegboard, even more than a hammer? Whose little silhouettes remain most routinely bare and hooks unfilled?  

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03758

Jul 13, 2015

Every Item in Grandfather's Tool Shed

Illustrated tools

Illustrator and artist John Lee Phillips has set out to draw every single item in his late grandfather's tool shed. 

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May 01, 2015

ManMade Essential Toolbox: Get Yourself a Serious Pair of Cutting Pliers

created at: 05/01/2015 There are those tools that are exciting. The ones you look forward to using: table saws, routers, even hand planes. And then there are the tools that sit there on the peg board, unassuming, know they're perfect at the one task they were designed to do. And when you need them for that task, accept no substitutes.    

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Apr 15, 2015

A Complete Toolbox Set Hand Crafted Entirely from Paper

A stylished-yet-realistic set of tools, made by hand from paper? What's not to love?   

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03526

Mar 12, 2015

Before and After: From Truck Utility Box to Industrial Entertainment Center

created at: 03/12/2015

We love a good furniture makeover, but we're even more excited by repurposing totally unrelated objects into practical items you can use in the home. ManMade reader Braden sent us a picture on Instagram with a "Hey, I think you'll like this project." Well, we did, so we asked Braden to walk us through it. Here's what he had to say.    

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03457

Feb 12, 2015

The Coolbox: The World's Smartest Toolbox

CoolboxIn addition to offering your standard toolbox storage features, the Coolbox features an internal battery to charge or run small power tools, a 12ft extension cord with 3-way splitter, bluetooth speakers, a double-sided and removable whiteboard, a tablet stand, two USB charging ports, and a built-in clock. The Coolbox frame itself features handles on both sides as well as wheels to easily maneuver it on the go.   

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02073

Aug 09, 2012

How to: Make a DIY Portable Grill from a Recycled Toolbox

created at: 08/09/2012

Imagine this: a self-contained, portable grill, complete with a locking lid and handle, sized perfectly for throwing in the back seat or trunk and heading out for a day or weekend of outdoor-cooked, char roasted goodness. Now, imagine it cost less than $20, and you can make it yourself.

Dreams do come true.  

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00692

Dec 30, 2010

How To: Refinish an Old Metal Toolbox

created at: 12/30/2010

I'm with John. The selection of toolboxes at hardware stores is awful: flimsy black and yellow junk emblazoned with brands, or cheap synthetic fabrics with seams that are already beginning to come apart.

So, like John, I'm always on the lookout for old metal toolboxes and tackle boxes when at the thrift shop and other secondhand stores. And, over the years, I have a pretty heathly collection of perfectly usable, albeit rust cover and pretty shabby looking, old steel toolboxes.

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