Looking for a gift for the dad in your life? We think tools are some of the best gifts you can give, because they're really like saying "here, can you please finally fix that thing you've been promising to fix for three weeks?" Wait. No. That's not what I meant to say.
Tools keep on giving! That's what I meant. 'Cause when you give a guy a tool he didn't know he wanted, you'll be amazed at the ingenious ways he'll find a use for it. That's why we rounded up twenty-two of our favorite tools we think your dad doesn't have yet.
I was at Home Depot headquarters last month for some tool demos, and this little thing really caught my eye. It's a little palm-sized ratchet with a bi-directional gimbal, so you can drive the ratchet from almost any hand position, and get into awkward spots without trouble. It's the tool MacGyver would carry with him, if he were a dad, and carried any tools.
This little impact driver is like a golden retriever puppy, cute and friendly-looking, but strong. I want one! It's perfect for getting into tight, hard-to-reach locations (think: tightening up those screws inside the kitchen drawers). Just apply pressure to engage the drive mechanism.
Y'know that big road trip he's planning this summer? Chances are you're going to want the AC blowing strong and cold after nine hours in the car. Turns out topping up your refrigerant is easy and affordable, and you'll never again have to swelter through miles of Badlands blacktop wondering if you and the family will make it out alive...
A great toolbox should be able to hold your power tools and large hand tools just as easily as it can organize all your small parts and specialty tools. This one does both, with an extra deep main compartment for things like drills, batteries, and hammers, and a 12-piece removable small-parts organizer on top, with a clear lid to give you an easy view of what's available.
Having the right bit for the job is, often, the only way to do the job right. This kit, with handy built-in storage, contains just about every drill and driver attachment he'll ever need to use. Masonry, metal, hex bits, star bits, even a counter-bore bit! He's gonna love it, and more that just a little bit ...
I have this theory that the principle, driving force of the universe is that if something can get tangled, it will get tangled. With this little gadget, that doesn't have to be true, at least for your hoses, ropes, and extension cords.
Second only to my theory of crap getting tangled, is my other theory of stuff getting disorganized. I don't know ... maybe it's just me. But things will never, ever stay in the cases they originally came in. That's where this handy organizer, with its many, adjustable compartments, comes in. If he can't have a place for everything, and everything in its place, at least he can have a little yellow box for all the random things that just have nowhere else to be.
Where's my tape measure? Where's my box-cutter? What happened to that little screw I took out of this vacuum cleaner, without which the whole appliance can't be put back together!?
These are not rhetorical questions. They're the questions asked by a man who doesn't have a tool pouch clipped to his belt. Sure, you could just throw those spare screws in your jean pocket, where they'll carve up your phone screen like a sick Brian Boitano figure skating routine. Or you could keep the random parts and essential tools snugly tucked into a tool-sturdy pouch, always at hand.
Your choice, Brian.
C.H. Hanson Pencil/Crayon Sharpener ($2)
They make giant pencil sharpeners, people!
As you know, carpenter's pencils are a little, um, huge-er than normal ones. This cheap gadget makes sharpening even the largest marking utensils a breeze (or, at least, a possibility).
Dude. Look at this picture. How can you not want to try this thing? It's a strong magnet on the end of an extendable, flexible shaft. Do you even know how much spare change you're going to find under the refrigerator? This tool's going to pay for itself, baby.
When you need to lay out a cut with real precision, this is the tool to reach for. I, myself, personally, am more of a "ehhhh that's pretty close" kind of guy. But if you're buying gifts for someone who likes to measure twice and cut once, this scriber should be on the list. It has a hardened carbide tip that will leave a fine, precise line on almost any material (metal, glass, wood, etc.). Perfect for laying out cuts when accuracy matters.
Husky Total Socket ($13)
Aaannndd ... you can just get rid of all your other wrenches. Yay! This tool replaces up to 44 standard of metric sockets. It's easily adjustable with one hand, and you'll never have to hunt around for the right socket wrench, ever again.
Do I have to explain what this thing is? It turns one extension cord into five outlets, magically. Through magic! And rubber, and a polycarbonate body, and a resettable circuit breaker, etc., etc. I think it's cool. I'm getting one for my basement.
DEWALT 4.5-inch Trigger Clamps ($6 each)
Awwww! They're so cute! Lookit how teeny and tiny they are! (Driver bits shown for scale). Seriously though, these are great to have around for clamping small piece of wood, securing random things to your workbench, or really anytime you need a quick extra pair of hands.
Tiny, tiny hands.
Are there, or are there not, 120 volts of electrical current flowing through this wire I'm about to touch? That is the question.
This non-contact voltage detector is the answer. Simple and accurate. And no scary "contact" needed.
I will admit that 'tick' is perhaps an unfortunate naming choice here, since most people I know don't even want to think about ticks, much less attach them to their tools. Still this Bluetooth-powered equipment track is kind of a great idea. It's weather, water, and impact resistant, so you can attach it to just about anything and get updates on its location, no matter where it ends up.
And yes, I am suggesting that I might attach one of these to my kids.
Good knee pads are something every guy should have in his shop. Unless you, like, don't have knees, or something. I'm constantly kneeling down to measure, cut, screw, inspect, and remove things when I'm working, so these would come in really handy. Plus, unlike a lot of knee pads, they're designed to have a flat kneeling surface, so you won't be rocking around too much when you're stooped over.
It's a compact, battery-powered screwdriver that turns when you twist your hand! I know! Cool, right!? We were playing with this one at the office and couldn't stop ... it's super fun.
This one's great for anyone who does a lot of woodworking. Or geometry worksheets, I guess. I did a project recently where I had to get my table saw blade to a precise angle, and this is the tool I required.
I believe you are not, however, allowed to bring this thing into your SAT testing session. Sorry.
Why can I not resist the urge to make jokes whenever the topic of stud detectors comes up? I'm going to resist now. No jokes.
Sometimes you just really need to know where a stud is (arghh! must .. not ...). A digital stud finder like this one means you won't have to put your ear to the wall and go tapping all over the place. Just slide the tool in place and wait for the LEDs to point out exactly where the stud starts and stops.
A ratcheting screwdriver set like this one can replace a whole mess of other tools. If you're looking for top performance and durability, this might not be the best choice. But, for an affordable, versatile tool you can have in several locations, this can't be beat. Get one for the car, the office, the shop, etc.
Chances are, your dad (or husband) isn't an electrician. That doesn't mean he couldn't benefit from this most-basic of electrician's tools. Sooner or later, he's going to get around to replacing a light fixture or rewiring a lamp, and stripping wires with a box-cutter isn't safe or effective.
This post is sponsored by The Home Depot, but all opinions are mine alone. We use affiliate links, which means if you buy a product via one of our links, Curbly will receive a small commission.