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5 Tools Every Dad Must Have

By on December 27, 2012
5 tools every dad must have

All you super-handyman types can turn away right now, this article is geared to those more un-handy dads that want to at least be able to change a wall switch if it breaks. So when it comes down to the basics of properly maintaining a house, it can only be accomplished with the right tools. Here are the most ultra-basic 5 tools every dad must have:

1. A Hammer: It Does More Than Pound Nails

The hammer is probably the oldest tool known to man. The very first hammer was used during the Stone Age. It consisted of a rock tied to a stick with strings of sinew. The original purpose of the hammer was to smash things apart or to give shape to objects. Start off with a claw hammer for all-around use. Opt for steel or fiberglass for the handle. You’ll find it handy and indispensable:

  • For driving and pulling nails.
  • As a mini-crowbar for prying things open or apart.
  • As a lever to lift things.
  • As a sort of chisel for shaping wood.

Recommended: Stanley 51-621 16-Ounce Curve Claw Fiberglass Hammer

2. Screwdrivers: Born From The Need For Screws

Screwdrivers get frequent use in the home. There is evidence pointing to the existence of screwdrivers in the Middle Ages. Screws were used to secure parts of medieval body armor. They were later in demand for assembling guns and cabinetry.

You need screwdrivers that can accommodate both flat-heads and Phillips-heads. There are screwdrivers on the market that have switchable heads with an assortment of bits stored in the handle. Electric, pneumatic and battery-powered screwdrivers are available. Keep these tips in mind:

  • Quality is everything. Cheap screwdrivers are a waste of money; they don’t last long.
  • They have a very dedicated, specific purpose – to turn screws. Using them for any other purpose can injure the tip, the shaft or you.

Recommended: Stanley 60-100 10-Piece Standard Fluted Screwdriver Set

3. Locking Pliers: Vice-Grip Versatility

When it comes to repairing, building and manufacturing, there are times when two hands aren’t enough. After World War II, a blacksmith invented a plier that didn’t need any hands at all. The locking pliers were an instant hit with shipbuilders, defense plants and the aircraft industry. They were extensively promoted to the returning soldiers who wanted to build their own homes. It’s a multi-purpose tool that can tackle these duties:

* As pliers, they’re superb. They don’t slip.

* Remove screws, bolts and nuts by gripping and turning.

* Pull out nails that have even the slightest amount of head to grab onto.

* Lock bolt shafts in place so nuts can be removed.

* Clamp pieces together or to a work bench.

* Emergency valve lever.

* Squeeze, crimp or bend materials.

Recommended: Crescent 5-Piece Locking Plier Set

4. Needle-Nose Pliers: No Job Is Too Small

Also called long-nosed pliers, they make it possible to perform work in tight spaces and recesses. When the fingers can’t reach, these pliers do the job. They are excellent at gripping with the ends; they are great for snipping higher up near the joint. This versatility keeps them right alongside the hammer and the screwdrivers. This tiny tool performs in a big way.

  • Electrical work – bend, cut or position wire.
  • Reach into drilled holes to pull cable and wires through.
  • Cut, strip and twist small gauge wire.
  • Position and secure parts into places that are hard to reach.
  • Remove cotter pins.
  • First aid? Yes, they can take splinters out of you and pull porcupine quills out of your dog.

Recommended: EKTON 3504 Precision Needle Nose Pliers

5. Utility Knife: A Big Tool In A Small Package

The utility knife is often overlooked when considering the ‘must have’ tools that should be on hand. In fact, it’s one of the most important tools. It’s recommended to have more than one because they tend to disappear for a myriad uses.

Although they can be used to open packages, cut liner paper for the bird cage and make poster cut-outs for a school project, they have a much more serious side when needed to:

  • Cut drywall, paneling and asphalt shingles.
  • Cut fiberglass insulation.
  • Cut roofing felt, wallpaper and veneers.
  • Scribe a line to prepare for sawing a smooth edge.
  • Trim molding.

Recommended: Bessey D-BKWH Quick-Change Folding Utility Knife – Wood Grain Handle

For most men with a house and a workshop, the wish list for tools seems endless. Saws, routers, sanders and drills are useful, too. They can be added when it’s time to remodel or tackle a bigger project. These are the top 5 tools every dad must have are simple and basic tools that can adequately handle most household maintenance tasks.

About Simple Dad

Steve is the founding editor of The Simple Dad. He has 3 crazy kids: 12 and 9 year old daughters and a 14 year old son. Married to his beautiful wife of 17 years, Alexandra.