|My Grandfather's setsquare and edge gauge|
My woodwork tools are mostly manual, and I enjoy using some tools I have from my grandfather.
|Circular saw being used as table saw|
|B&D belt sander, nice and small, light, but belts are not easy to find|
|Dead mouse, live mouse|
|Dear angle grinders.|
|Professional angle grinder|
But most of my tools are electrical, and there is my gripe. For the boat I bought a small 1KW generator, a Kippur, which has given great service, because I do not have electricity where I work at the moment. In due course this generator should be installed in a cockpit locker.
I have an old circular saw, a 500 Watt Black and Decker. It has given great service over many years. The other day I dropped it, and its handle shattered. And I can get no replacement saw under 1200 Watt. Which would not work on the generator. And those are too heavy and clumsy. Bosch does make a smaller, 800W model, but it is not imported into South Africa. In the end Superglue did the job, and the old saw is working again. Manufacturers, can you please take note: Bigger is not always better!
Sanders are essential. I use a Black and Decker orbital sander, it is good and reasonably handy, but the emery cloth is held in place by two feeble springs. I wish for a better method. I also have an old B&D belt sander that had been consigned to a crate because I could not find belts. But with online shopping I can now get belts that fit with some struggle, and last longer than the original ones did. If it goes I will have the same problem: All the new machines are much biger and stronger, heavier and over my power limit.
I also have a new Black and Decker mouse. A small sander, it is handy and very strong. I used it to clean the rusty steel, clean up the undercoat, cut the filling epoxy, and many other jobs, far beyond that one should ask it to do. It got wet and blew an internal fuse on the curcuit board, which I shorted with some copper wire. But at last, one sad day, it went "phut" and died. I now have a new one.
Working with steel is impossible without an angle grinder. I used to have an AEG industrial one, and after years of (ab)use the gear system stripped. Now the parts do exist, but I cannot get them from the agent. I found them on an Australian website, but the dealer there refers me to the South African dealer, who does not answer my enquiries. I then bought a Bosh Professional grinder, a beautiful machine. And then Ryobi offered a promotional pack with a small angle grinder in it. This has done good work, it is useful to have two machines: one with a cutoff blade and one with a grinding blade. But just the other day it went "phut" and died. Sad. Maybe the gear unit can be transplanted to the AEG?
I used to have a DeWalt electric drill, which I bought after previous hobby drills either exploded or broke. The DeWalt gave good service but the gears stripped, and could not be replaced in South Africa. The repairman recommended a Sparky, said to be a German industrial machine. My son turned up his nose: An industrial machine, and all in plastic? But twenty years later it is still going strong.
|Sparky drill. A champion.|
|Small Ryobi drill doubling as lathe motor.|
On cordless tools: I have a Bosch cordless drill/screwdriver, passed on by Alexander. The battery pack has gone south, amd a new battery pack will cost what a replacement cordless drill would be. Since it is a 12 volt machine the drill goes into the boat; with a little rewiring it will run off the battery system.
|Ryobi router, but the collet cannot be replaced!|