May-June 2008 Table of Contents

Featured
2008 Editors' Choice Awards 2008 Editors' Choice Awards

Time and trouble–if only contractors and crews could find good ways to deal with these make-or-break culprits on every jobsite. When you think about it, the best jobsite solutions save us time and keep us out of trouble every day. The worst ones just make things worse. Read more

Cordless Impact Drivers Cordless Impact Drivers

We set out to test the latest 18-volt lithium-ion impact drivers, but we made a few exceptions to round out the field. All but the Bosch are LI-powered, but a few different voltages and tool configurations are in the mix. Read more

Roy Underhill, Williamsburg, Va. Roy Underhill, Williamsburg, Va.

Roy Underhill is the one and only Woodwright, a term he coined to help sell his show idea to public television in the late 1970s. Now in its 28th season of filming, the original how-to show, 'The Woodwright's Shop,' is still going strong. In fact, Underhill is one of the longest-running program hosts in the history of American television. Read more

Time and Trouble Time and Trouble

It's time once again for our annual Editors' Choice Awards for the year's best tools, accessories, and jobsite solutions. This year, we spotlight 13 great products that will help you save time and avoid trouble–two of my biggest pet peeves as a builder and employer. Read more

Delta 17-959L and Powermatic 2800 Drill Presses Delta 17-959L and Powermatic 2800 Drill Presses

The first drill press I ever used was 40 years ago in my grandfather's workshop, and the ones I've used since, during my 22 years as a woodworker, haven't changed much. Woodworkers have always struggled with basic machines designed for metalworking. Read more

Stretch Pickups Stretch Pickups

Since the dawn of crew cab pickups, manufacturers have created ever larger, more luxurious passenger compartments. Now an aftermarket upfitter has topped them all with its own 6-door, 9-passenger custom stretch pickup trucks. Read more

Transit Connect from Ford Transit Connect from Ford

The Ford Motor Co. finally has taken the wraps off the Transit Connect, its much-anticipated import tradesman/delivery van. The carlike van, built in Turkey and sold throughout Europe as a commercial vehicle, will be marketed here as a more compact, economical alternative to the manufacturer's E-Series vans. Read more

Import Scaffold Planks Fail Tests Import Scaffold Planks Fail Tests

A product advisory has been issued, warning that non-APA-certified laminated veneer lumber scaffold planks imported from China failed to meet design specifications embossed on the products. Read more

May/June Hot Finds May/June Hot Finds

The FLIR 15 professional-grade thermal imaging camera uses an advanced infrared detector to quickly scan large areas to reveal energy leakage, missing insulation, radiant tubing embedded in floors, and anywhere heat is present. The tool is lightweight, compact, and easy to operate, and its 2.8-inch LCD screen is large enough to provide detailed views of scanned areas and objects. Read more

Finally–Tool Test Standards!

After years of repeated pleas by industry experts–including the editors of this magazine–major tool manufacturers have approved voluntary test standards for measuring torque and horsepower. Read more

Lightweight Air Compressors Lightweight Air Compressors

My life changed 30 years ago when my boss showed up on our jobsite with a used 2-gallon, 1-horse air, belt-driven compressor and a couple of roofing staplers. That old compressor chugged day in and day out, just barely keeping pace with our tools but driving our production to a new level. Read more

Makita TD090DW Impact Driver Makita TD090DW Impact Driver

New from Makita, the TD090DW 10.8-volt lithium-ion impact driver outputs 800 inch-pounds of torque, 3,000 impacts per minute, and a no-load speed of 2,400 rpm, but weighs only 2 pounds and measures 6-1/8 inches long. Read more

Hitachi Cordless Drill/Driver Hitachi Cordless Drill/Driver

At 1.8 pounds and less than 6 inches long, Hitachi's DB10DL 10.8-volt, lithium-ion micro drill/driver fits into compact spaces. Read more

Milwaukee V28 Cordless Grinder Milwaukee V28 Cordless Grinder

New to Milwaukee's V28 line of lithium-ion cordless tools, the 0725-20 4-1/2-inch grinder features a 3.0-amp-hour, 28-volt lithium-ion battery and outputs 8,000 rpm for cutting bolt, pipe, and angle iron and grinding weld beam. Read more

Hilti 18-Volt Hammer Drill/Driver Hilti 18-Volt Hammer Drill/Driver

The SFH 144-A CPC 14-volt lithium-ion hammer drill/driver from Hilti offers the power of an 18-volt tool with the weight of a 12 volter, the company says. Read more

Bosch Line of Cordless Hammer Drills And Drill/Drivers Bosch Line of Cordless Hammer Drills And Drill/Drivers

Bosch has released the second generation of its Brute Tough nicad-powered cordless hammer drills and drill/drivers, which have a range of features designed to provide the durability to stand up to rigorous conditions. Read more

Metabo PowerGrip II Cordless Screwdriver Metabo PowerGrip II Cordless Screwdriver

Metabo's PowerGrip II 7.6-volt lithium-ion cordless screwdriver offers nearly twice as much power and drives twice as many screws per charge as the company's nicad-powered PowerMaxx Plus. Read more

DeWalt 28-Volt Line Of Cordless Tools DeWalt 28-Volt Line Of Cordless Tools

DeWalt's 28-volt lithium-ion tools with Nano Technology offer lighter weight, greater performance, and increased cycle life, the company says. Read more

Panasonic 28.8-Volt Rotary Hammer Panasonic 28.8-Volt Rotary Hammer

New from Panasonic, the 28.8-volt lithium-ion rotary hammer, model EY7880LN2S, delivers 0 to 4,500 bpm in a compact size of 12-9/16 inches long and a light weight of 8.4 pounds. Read more

Ridgid R86111 Hammer Drill Ridgid R86111 Hammer Drill

The Ridgid R86111 18-volt lithium-ion hammer drill delivers 610 inch-pounds of torque and no-load speeds of 0 to 450 and 0 to 1,600 rpm, and 0 to 7,200 and 0 to 25,600 bpm. Read more

Arrow Fastener CT50 Cordless Staple Gun Arrow Fastener CT50 Cordless Staple Gun

Featuring a 10.8-volt lithium-ion battery, the CT50 cordless staple gun drives up to 1,500 staples on a single charge, says the maker, Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Makita Compact Hammer Drill/Driver 2009 Editors' Choice: Makita Compact Hammer Drill/Driver

Cordless drill/drivers seem to be shrinking; everywhere you look, brands are coming out with smaller and lighter versions Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: 10C Technologies Universal Battery Charger 2009 Editors' Choice: 10C Technologies Universal Battery Charger

We're thrilled to award 10C Technologies' Crew Charge universal battery charger system, which can recharge different brands, voltages, and types of batteries simultaneously, including NiMH, nicad, and lithium-ion. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Muck-Truck Mini Dumper 2009 Editors' Choice: Muck-Truck Mini Dumper

Packing the utility of a dump truck into a compact size suitable for the jobsite, the Muck-truck is a pink slip for your wobbly wheelbarrow. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Worksharp Wood Tool Sharpener 2009 Editors' Choice: Worksharp Wood Tool Sharpener

Anything that takes the drudgery out of sharpening is a winner in our eyes, so we look to the Worksharp 3000 to save time and effort. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Steel City Granite-Topped Cabinet Saw 2009 Editors' Choice: Steel City Granite-Topped Cabinet Saw

No longer just a sophisticated addition to your customers' high-end kitchens, granite tops are now available on Steel City's 10-inch riving knife cabinet saw, providing a perfectly flat surface that will not warp or rust. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: DeWalt/Ford Tool Link RFID 2009 Editors' Choice: DeWalt/Ford Tool Link RFID

Communication and computer technologies have clearly made their way onto our jobsites. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Base Mate Ladder Stabilizer 2009 Editors' Choice: Base Mate Ladder Stabilizer

Say goodbye to unstable ladders teetering on uneven terrain. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Ridgid 12-Volt Subcompact Drill With Chuck 2009 Editors' Choice: Ridgid 12-Volt Subcompact Drill With Chuck

Following in the lithium-ion subcompact trend is the new Ridgid Micros, but it has an important difference: a 3/8-inch drill chuck. Read more

2008 Editors' Choice: 3rd Hand Saw Guard 2008 Editors' Choice: 3rd Hand Saw Guard

We keep an eye out for tools and accessories that we think can improve jobsite safety. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Max Superframer 2009 Editors' Choice: Max Superframer

The best of the best in our recent test of full round-head framing nailers—we ran out of pages just extolling its virtues. Read more

2009 Editors' Choice: Ridge Runner Truss Platform 2009 Editors' Choice: Ridge Runner Truss Platform

Being a ridge man on a truss crew is the framer's equivalent of a spacewalk. Read more

2008 Editors' Choice: SawStop Contractor Saw 2008 Editors' Choice: SawStop Contractor Saw

SawStop's revolutionary blade brake won an Editors' Choice Award in 2001 when it first came out. Read more

2008 Editors' Choice: Hain Co. Digital Cutting Station 2008 Editors' Choice: Hain Co. Digital Cutting Station

As much as we like many of the miter saw stations available today, this cutting station is one of a kind. Read more

Tool Tests

Milwaukee Cordless Sawzall With OneKey

A group of framers put Milwaukee's latest Sawzall to the test, exploring its power...

Festool 36-Volt Track Saw

Contributing editor Bruce Greenlaw gauges the power, battery runtime, dust...

Metabo ASR35ACP (HEPA)

This vac from Metabo has some nice features that put it in close second with other...

View All Tool Tests >
Close X