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My inbox has been filling up with gift guide requests, suggestions, and lists, and some of the mentioned products are indeed very good ideas. However, do you know what types of tools make for the best gifts? The products, gear, and tool upgrades I would want to buy or receive myself to use all the time.
There are quite a few tools that I very thoroughly enjoy working with, but I forced myself to narrow it down to just 5.
These aren’t exactly glamorous compared to some other gift ideas, but wouldn’t you prefer to give or get something that will be used, rather than an “oh, that’s… nice” product that goes right into a closet?
This is part 2 of a series. For part 1, check out: 5 Must-Have Tools for New Parents
Thank you to The Home Depot for being a ToolGuyd sponsor.
Husky Adjustable Height Work Table
In no uncertain terms, this Husky work table is a beauty of a work table, and I also think it’s a fantastic buy given its features and sturdiness.
The work table has an adjustable height mechanism, and it comes with both leveling feet and casters in case your usage needs change over time.
With a 300 lb weight capacity and sturdy framing, you can use this as a workbench, computer desk, or anything in between.
You have some decisions to make – choose your size (46”, 52” 62” lengths), color (white or black), and whether you want drawers or not.
Husky’s exceptionally well-padded packaging ensured mine (thank you Home Depot!) arrived in perfect condition. I would not hesitate to order another one online.
Milwaukee Tool Scissors
Office scissors are no match for plastic clamshell packaging, or pretty much anything you might need to cut in a workshop or around the home outside of printer paper.
Plastic clamshell packaging and anything else that you might want to cut with scissors, are no match for these Milwaukee scissors. (Although to be fair, sometimes I still need a knife for the most stubborn of plastic product vaults.)
I used to keep tin snips around for general purpose cutting tasks, but not anymore thanks to these Milwaukee scissors.
Growing up, my parents kept heavy duty all-metal scissors in the household junk drawer, and we used those scissors for everything. These Milwaukee scissors are the ones my kids will reminisce about in 20+ years.
There are two versions – straight and offset. If you don’t have a preference, I would gently steer you towards the offset scissors, although we have and use both. If you can’t decide, get one of each.
Husky 27oz Dead-Blow Hammer
Dead blow hammers are the answer to so many frustrations. Something’s stuck? Give it a whack. Installing wire or metal shelving? Give it a whack. Does a wood board need coercing? Give it a whack.
A dead blow hammer is specially designed with a shifting weight inside the head, and this serves to absorb shock and recoil with every strike. It’s an experience most tool users are immediately sold on once they try a dead blow hammer for themselves.
Why this hammer? I was sorting through the hammer selections at my local The Home Depot store and was amazed at this dead blow’s size. Most dead blows are a bit weighty, and even if they deaden the recoil quite a bit, they can be heavy and tiring to use. Instead, this one felt lighter and more compact. I bought one on the spot.
If you pick up different rubber or non-marring mallets, you’ll see what I like about this – it’s a comfortable size that’s easy to swing, but still substantial enough to pack a usefully punchful wallop.
This is like the 5″ petty knife you use when a paring knife is too small and a chef’s knife is too big.
On top of all its anti-recoil benefits, this Husky has a soft face to help prevent marring struck surfaces. Sure, you might think you don’t need a dead blow hammer – go ahead and use a steel-faced hammer if you want to put some dents in whatever you’re striking.
If you have your doubts, seek it out the next time you’re at a Home Depot store and give it a feel.
Ryobi 18V One+ HP Brushless Combo Kit
Ryobi’s new 18V One+ HP compact brushless drill and impact driver won’t win any competitive awards based on power, speed, or innovative features, but this combo kit nonetheless represents their best cordless power tool system entry point yet.
I am really excited about this new lineup. The drill and impact driver are both compact and reasonably powerful, and seem to be the most uncompromised Ryobi tools I’ve ever used. New and upgrading users will likely love the power to weight ratio of these offerings.
There are less expensive ways to get started with a drill and impact, or with Ryobi’s 18V cordless power tool system. But when filtering through all the options, I sought to answer one question – what would I have wanted to buy or receive when I was upgrading from a far less capable cordless drill 15 years ago, and which cordless system would I have wanted to enter at that time? This kit is the answer.
If you’re looking for something different, or would recommend something different, I’d love to hear about it in a comment below.
Husky Utility Pouch
All of Husky’s tool bags and accessories deserve a call-out, but I am particularly excited about this one. (I have a review in the works – please let me know if you have any questions!)
I picked one up on impulse last month, and this is just perfect as a compact tool tote. It measures 5″ in diameter and has a total of 10 tool pockets, plus a drawstring top.
It’s wide enough to stand upright without tipping over, and tall enough to ensure common hand tools don’t fall out unintentionally.
This isn’t a game-changer, but it’s definitely a frustration-solver.
A mallet? Scissors? A compact tool pouch? Yeah, I know – I told you these wouldn’t be very glamorous! But, I stick to these recommendations.
If I had a time machine, these are among the top tools and equipment I’d bring back to my younger self.
If you’re a DIYer, or you’re shopping for a DIYer, what other recommendations would you have for tool or workshop upgrades?