Come the Apocalypse, this hand held auger bit drill (aka “brace”) will do the
same work for humanity all hand powered tools have done for centuries.

This one, of course, is not exactly your grandfathers brace and bit since
the bit is the innovative modern adjustable version introduced sometime
in the second half of the 20th Century.

Any size hole up to 3 inches with just a turn of the adjustment screw! Prior
to that most carpenters carried an entire cloth tool roll filled with every size
needed on the job to make holes from 1/4 inch up to a gargantuan 1 1/4 inch diameter.

For larger holes an additional tool roll of large hole augers would need to find
space in the toolbox as well.

I used this particular combination brace and bit all through the late 1970’s through
the middle 1990’s- mostly to bore knob and lock holes in the solid fir doors commonly
available at the time.

Before battery operated drills with individually sized hole saws the trusty brace and bit
was the go-to hole making tool of the day.

Of course, in the 21st century most doors come from the factory with knob and lock holes
pre-drilled so even the need to cut holes onsite is uncommon.

Nevertheless, as recently as a few weeks ago I needed to make a special retro sized hole
and none of the many hole saws or spade bits in my tool box could quite do the job.

So maybe the day of the classic brace and bit is not yet gone. They are still for sale
(new!) online. Go figure.


So to install a tipout sponge tray is not a difficult job with a new kitchen cabinet.

Plenty of space to swing tools around and attach screws without counter tops and sinks
in place to block access to screws and hardware.

Howsomeever, retrofit a tipout sponge tray in an existing cabinet and there is a
completely different job with completely different access and space requirements.

In spite of all the modern new ratchet gizmos and power drill attachments only one tool
still really works in that cramped crowded workspace- the good ole fashioned handheld
offset screwdriver.

Yes, I bought a set back in the good ole days and every so often, they still come in handy!

A thing of beauty and a joy for ever, get yours today! You never know when you will need one!

Walmart still sells them! CLICK LINK

The desktop utility Hole Punch O’Matic continues to stir curiosity and amazement
across the continent. This week a report from some far flung corner of the
empire 700 miles from Home Base Raleigh. After a lengthy journey through
US Postal package service plucky prototype #6 functions flawlessly for the camera
in an ad hoc field trial. See for yourself:

For those who wish to study Hole Punch O’ Matic history some previous footage
from previous models:

Gatorade Canisters

Gatorade Canisters


People want to know about my snap top plastic parts canisters!

Yes, there is no off position on the Genius switch in the Research Department!

The Skunkwerks research team here at the International Headquarters came up with
these things a while back mostly because of all the available Gatorade bottles
piled up around the recycle bin. Over time many small parts and supplies have
made their way into one of these versatile, cheap, clear plastic containers.

As far as I can tell this design variation is original to the masterminds here at
the International Handyman Headquarters.

A mystery why more people do not use this simple snap
top canister made from two plastic sport drink bottles.

To date the idea has not exactly gone viral! (?)

If you or your neighbor consume sport drinks like Gatorade
you will have an endless supply of uniform clear plastic
parts containers for all the nails, screws and miscellaneous
stuff that accumulates around the house and shop.

Any bottle with a tapered waist should work.

The 28 ounce Gatorade bottles with symmetrical ribs
are excellent for conversion to an interlock cap.

Cut and trim one bottle at the fifth rib for the bottom half.

Cut and trim a second bottle at the third rib for the interlock
snap top.

Enjoy the video if you need some place to store your stuff.



Orphan Stools! They are everywhere!

Once proud members of a two or four piece collection they wait alone in their
dotage by the side of the road for a garbage truck to carry them to a
ignominious burial in the landfill.

Battered as they may be, most of these stools need little or no repair to
continue a useful life as a sturdy piece of furniture in a shop or other
rough and tumble environment.

Or… they can even be converted to new life as a base for an inexpensive
roller stand.

Read More



Cartridge Fuse Boxes are creepy to work around even with really heavy duty
rubber gloves to protect living tissue (my hands!!) from damage of the electrical kind.

It takes a hearty, robust, all purpose tool to work with the unwieldy cartridge fuse
around high voltage, not some flimsy $12.00 pair of plastic pliers sold at tool supply
stores everywhere.

Fortunately, such a tool is easily made from scrap PVC 1×2.

Cut a hole the diameter of the fuse, cut a slot on the table saw, run a screw and
wing nut through the two halves to clamp the tool tight around the fuse body and
boom! you can safely remove and replace one of those big 100 watt cartridges with
no fuss, no muss, no bother!