65 Cool Tool Hacks That are Super Useful for DIYers
Tool hacks usually happen on the fly, when you’re in a situation that calls for a tool to be modified slightly or used in a way that’s different than its intended purpose. Many of the following tool hacks were created for those reasons—and some were just stumbled upon while tinkering in the shop.
Quick Woodworking File
This woodworking file comes in handy for sanding in tight spaces. Cut a piece of sandpaper to fit around a paint stir stick. Then use spray adhesive or an all-purpose glue to adhere it to the stick. Write the sandpaper grit on the handle of the stir stick, if you plan to store it for later use.
Custom Pads for a Mechanic’s Vise
Make custom pads for a mechanic’s vise by cutting wood blocks to fit across the vise shaft. Use a jigsaw to cut out the notches in the wood blocks, and add a bead of hot glue (optional) to hold them in place on the vise.
More Planing, Less Exercise
Planing boards with a portable planer can provide you with a lot of exercise. But rather than running from the infeed side to the outfeed side before the board flips your portable planer, try this instead: Attach your portable planer to a board; then fasten the board to a miter saw stand. Then planing boards won’t wear you out so quickly!
Paint Can Opener on Hand
Always have a paint can opener on hand when you’re ready to start a painting project. Use pliers or a multitool to slightly bend open the loop of the opener. Then hook it onto the handle of the paint can you just purchased.
Use a Sneaker to Clean Sandpaper
Make sandpaper nearly new again with a lowly old sneaker. Start up your power sander and dust collection system (remember to wear hearing and eye protection). Then slowly press the rubber sole of an old sneaker along the sandpaper—you’ll see a difference instantly!
How to Magnetize a Screwdriver
Magnetize the end of a screwdriver to drive screws with just one hand. This hint is especially useful for working in tight spaces where there isn’t room for you to hold a screw with one hand while you turn the screwdriver with the other.
Hands-Free Light Hack
Make a hands-free light in a snap with a flashlight, a pair of pliers and a rubber band. Place the flashlight in the jaws of the pliers; then wrap a rubber band around the handles of the pliers. That’s it! Point the light wherever you need it.
Brush with a Drill
Got a big scrubbing job on your list? Chuck a brush into your drill and save the elbow grease. You’ll find drill-ready brushes for all kinds of scrubbing from Drillbrush.
Kitty Litter Pouch for Tool Protection
Make a rust-preventing pouch for your toolbox with a scoop of silica crystal kitty litter, a piece of breathable fabric and a zip tie. Toss it in your toolbox to keep out excess moisture and protect your prized possessions.