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We're trying to create a "wish list" for DIY holiday gifts for a blog entry, and we need your help. We're looking for gifts that are useful, interesting, and would appeal to DIYers. Since Christmas is just around the corner, all suggestions should be submitted by Monday, December 19, 2011 so the blog can be posted Tuesday, December 20, 2011.

Rules

  • Each item should be available for purchase online (since this is an international site).
  • The item should be less than $20.00 (USD) (this is a soft limit, just keep the items cheapish).
  • Each entry should contain
    • A single item.
    • A link to where the item can be purchased.
    • A short description of why you think the item would make an Awesome gift (optional).
  • Items will be listed in order by votes (so don't forget to upvote other great gift ideas).

Read it now Happy Hardware Holidays

  • "Vote early and vote often" – lqlarry Dec 7 '11 at 2:39
  • @SteveJackson maybe you should just write the blog entry. Just call it "Steve's Stocking Stuffers" ;) OR are you just afraid of the entry with an single image of a lump of coal? – Tester101 Dec 8 '11 at 0:07
  • @Tester101 Just hoping to spark some ideas :) I took a quick glance around my garage and identified the <$20 items that I use. Can't beat the alliteration though. – Steve Jackson Dec 8 '11 at 4:21

18 Answers 18

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Non-Contact Voltage Tester

Non-contact voltage tester

Every time an electrical question is asked and somebody mentions buying a tick tracer an angel gets their wings. Not only that but it could help you from getting your wings. Also Wikipedia says they come in handy finding that nasty Christmas light that went out and caused every light to quit.

Buy the kind that has an automatic shut off. Some designs make turning these off and staying off almost an impossibility. Buy a brand that you have heard of like Klein, Fluke, Ideal, Greenlee, GB or... Don't trust your life on something you saved a couple of bucks on.

Merry Christmas!!!

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Speed Square

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Before you think about purchasing a power saw, buy a speed square. It's a perfect straight edge, with a nice lip to grab your piece. Has any angle you might encounter in framing already marked on it. Doubles as a ruler in a pinch.

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Wonderbar

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Small, versatile, and handy carry-all tool. It'll rip, tear, and pry just about anything and it's virtually indestructible.

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Headlamp

Headlamp

Much easier than trying to hold the flashlight yourself.

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Magnetic Wristband

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It doesn't look like much and I felt very silly the first time I put one on, but it's quite convenient to have some place to put those fasteners you just removed or the next couple you're going to put up. It's probably healthier than my standby method too (screws in the mouth).

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Torpedo Level

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Not quite as useful as it's longer brothers, the torpedo level is a nice tool to throw in your toolbox for quick checks. I like the magnetic ones for sticking to doors and fridges, makes them very easy to find.

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F4 Tape

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If you're looking for something amazing that the DIYer may not have seen before, F4 tape is a great choice. This isn't tape, it's an emergency repair miracle. It has a tensile strength up to 950 PSI. Handles high temps, corrosion, and is pretty much weather proof. I've patched a pipe leak while the water was pouring out of it. It fuses to itself so it can wrap just about any shape.

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Mini Tubing Cutter

Mini Tubing Cutter

Great for cutting copper tubing or ???, especially in tight places.

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Bucket Organizer

A bucket organizer fits around a 5 gallon bucket and has pockets to hold tools

Put those empty joint compound buckets to good use. I don't really use a "toolbox" that I carry with me around the house to work on projects, instead I grab my bucket from the basement and throw in a few extra tools might need based on the project.

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Bench cookies

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For the woodworker, these "cookies" provide a nice way to raise a piece just off the workbench for routing, sanding, staining, painting etc.

  • 1
    I use old hockey pucks. works just as well, and probably cheaper. – Tester101 Dec 7 '11 at 23:59
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IR Thermometer

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Warning, everything in your home will need to have it's temperature taken after you own one of these.

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    If they have a laser pointer in them, they also double as a cat toy. – Tester101 Dec 9 '11 at 3:42
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Laser Level

Laser Level

This particular one is more than the suggested $20.00, around $30.00, but there are cheaper models (and lots more expensive models) These are great for hanging closet shelves, clothes rods, pictures and mirrors. I love mine!

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Kill A Watt

Kill A Watt

Now you can find out just how much those holiday lights are sucking.

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Plumb bob

Plumb bob

Everyone has a level, but for high accuracy, a plumb bob is better and covers a longer distance with ease. Great for hanging doors, better for building a deck.

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DIY Pencils

DIY Pencils

Better than any other pencil you've ever owned.

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MULTI-BIT SCREWDRIVER/NUT DRIVER

Multi-Bit Screwdrivers

Everybody needs plenty of screwdrivers, and having the correct size screwdriver can save you time, aggravation, the screw head and the skin on you knuckles. If you need something quick these are great. Keep one in the kitchen drawers for an easy find when you need a fast screwdriver;) There are several different types and each have their advantages. You can usually get one while your standing in line at the hardware store.

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Duct tape

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Sure, every DIYer has a roll of duct tape hanging around, but its versatility means that all the non-DIYers will "borrow" it too. I'd be more excited about a stocking full of duct tape than some lousy candy canes.

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Modular Plug Crimper

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Cuts, strips and crimps RJ-45, RJ-11 and RJ-12 modular plugs. If it could only untwist and align the wires, this thing would be perfect.

Great for chopping up those standard length cables, to make custom length cables. You'll never have to coil up excess Ethernet cable again.

This tool may be dated, as most people use wireless now. But I friggin' love my cables. I never have to wander around looking for a signal, I always know just where the internet is.

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