Great collection! Let me show you something I'll bet you don't have. Made by my previous employer (Weidmuller) it is an attachement that fits onto a screwdriver blade that allows you to snip a wire without putting the screwdriver down. It is called a "Swifty". Because it probably violates some DIN standard because it will nick wire strands, you are not supposed to use it to strip wire, but it is just as effective as using side-cutters. Just don't use it for inspected work.
To be honest I have found it a little less useful that its original promise, but it surely should appear as an addendum to your list.
I still have a 'Bib Wire Stripper & Cutter'. Made in England by Multicore Solder in probably about 1966 when I was just 10. It still cuts and strips wires and if I recall right, cost 3 shillings and sixpence (about a dime for you in the USA). You can't have enough tools IMHO!
This tool pulls and cuts cable ties. Dad also left me a coffee can full of them. I used a few the other day to ties an outsdie cable to a downspout. Not the cable doesn't band against the spout in the wind.
I used to have another very good screwdriver that boasted a spring-loaded grip that held the screw onto the blade, but alas that got lost during a move. I've yet to find one that works for Philips screws...
I find these are pretty common. I have two from Weidmuller. Just google "screwdriver with screw holder". Here is one with an explanation of how it works.
A correction - on page 4 between the first and second pictures please read knurled screw (not gnarled). Max and I are gnarled (def: knobbly, rough, and twisted, especially with age) - though Max may take issue with this - but that adjusting screw is knurled (def: having a rough surface that can be gripped). Apologies for the error.
@ David - a bit (NPI) hard to see in the photo, but it looks like at least a couple of those bits are Robertson (square)?
One aspect of tool acquisition that the novice must learn is suitability for the job at hand. Just 2 evenings ago my stepson asked if I had a 3/4" (~19mm) wrench so he could install a new temperature sensor into his vehicle motor - he has never attempted this sort of activity before, and the local auto parts emporium had just done a readout on his vehicle computer port that indicated a faulty sensor. He was under the impression all one had to do was grab a wrench and go to it.
I warned him that using the wrong tool such as an open end wrench or a 12 point socket could bug up the existing sensor hex portion so that to remove it would require removing the entire motor to get at it.
After we located the temperature sensor buried deep under the pipes and hoses we had to go out and purchase a deep 6 point hex socket of the right length to allow the ratchet to fit between 2 pipes using a 1/2" to 3/8" drive adapter. He learned that a tool collection can be built up over the years as each job asks for just the right tool.
@Zeeglen - I think there are a couple of square bits in the big set soemwhere. A couple of years ago I bought some packs of wood screws at a give-away price in a hardware store. When I got them home I found they were square drive and i did not (then) have any drivers for them. But imagine my joy when I found that each bag contained a driver bit. I only bought two bags - wish now I had bought more!
@David: Max and I are gnarled (def: knobbly, rough, and twisted, especially with age) - though Max may take issue with this - but that adjusting screw is knurled (def: having a rough surface that can be gripped).
In that case I qualify as being both gnarled and knurled! :-)
@Max..."Who cares about beading?" My wife does, she disappears into her sewing room for hours at a time and emerges with something fashionable and pretty. It stops her complaining when I disappear into my workshop for hours at a time and emerge cussing and swearing that some !@#$%^& thing won't work.....
Actually I did a beading course with her. It was easier than taking her there and collecting her a few hours later (she is disabled). I was a star at putting things together but when I tried to pick colours that went well together all the other students (all women) would shake their heads sadly and say 'No, Dave, don't go there....." So now I just help my wife put things together occsaionally (and she sometimes borrow some of my tools.....
Last year on The Connecting Edge, I posted a slideshow called My Father's Toolbox. I kept all of his tools when I cleaned out his house after his passing. Here's a photo from that. This is my favorite tool set.
@MB - thanks for all the pics and comments. I love the set of Xcelite nut drivers. (is that what you call them there??) Please post more, or better still repost the whole article - I am sure many EET readers did not see it.
This outfit was known for making "wire-wrap" tools, and the tool shown is indeed a wire stripper for use in that system. It's not immediately clear to me exactly why there's a 1/4" discrepancy in strip length but it has something to do with wrap length being longer than strip length (don't know why it seems like this tool indicates the opposite so maybe there's more than one way of using the tool to explain the further discrepancy). I still have and use some of these tools because sometimes there are few options for prototyping today's ultra-dense chips without first getting a complete PCB, except for using adapters to get back to the 0.1" grid and then plugging in to a wrappable socket. The standard gauge for computer use is 30 but the lower gauge numbers were typically used in telephone central offices since the system was originally developed for Western Electric. You coulld probably do a fairly long photo spread just about all the wire strippers ever developed for this system, and the original hand tools were more frequently air-powered than electric.
I especially recall how challenging it was at the beginning of my career to create and maintain wire-wrap net lists before spreadsheets with at most the assistance of simple editors on minicomputers, and how hard it was to track down and find VCC-GND shorts in a whole rackful of backplanes thrown together in an absurd hurry using the "big bang" theory of debugging, in order to satisfy some manager's premise of a schedule "drop-dead date". I suppose it's even harder to do essentially the same thing at chip level but at least the tools to help you with this are a bit more accommodating nowadays!
Maybe it's for "Modified Wire-Wrap". That's where the WW tool wraps insulated wire around the post one or two times before it starts wrapping bare wire. Besides looking cooler, modified wrap moves any nick in the wire where you stripped it away from where the wrap begins, making it less likely for the wire to break off.
@JeffL - Many thanks. Makes sense - I once put a bit of stripped Cat 6 wire in the 26 hole and could not get it out - had to pull it thru. So I can see that with thinner wire wrap wire, you would put it thru to the point you wanted on the scale, then pull it back to strip it. Is that how it worked? Very clever.
I occasionally need a really-long-handled screwdriver to reach a difficult screw. One way to make this is to use a 1/4" drill extender such as this one: Irwin 12-inch Drill Bit Extension. Just stick in your favorite 1/4" power screwdriver bit and "Bob's your uncle".
@ betajet I occasionally need a really-long-handled screwdriver to reach a difficult screw.
More than a few times a right-angled drill drive has got me out of a jam. This is a heavy-duty nylon casting with a pair of bevelled gears that transfer the drill torque around a corner. Just fit the bit into the 2nd chuck and drill the hole sideways.
@Zeeglen - you're getting aherad of me here.....as stated in the article, I'll be doing another one on making holes in things and this is one type of tool I was going to include. Watch this space......
@david OOps! Sorry.. But I think we might have found abother use for my 90 degree torque shift phaser.
Referring to an earlier post on this thread how we had to find just the right hex socket/adater/ratchet to get at my stepson's water temperature sensor, he managed to remove it easily. While attempting to insert the new replacement he dropped it - it disappeared into the bowels of the engine, steering gear, rods and struts. After a fruitless search and driving the vehicle back and forth with heavy braking hoping to shake it loose, it still was gone forever.
Just before we started, my overly enthusiastic stepson, always the optimist, had pronounced that this job would take only 5 minutes, then he could replace the spark plugs. I chuckled silently to myself - there is NO 5 minute job when it comes to repairing your vehicle. My optimistic stepson was about to become an optimist with experience - aka a pessimist.
He had to purchase another $25 teperature sensor, this time he managed to install it without dropping it. On to the spark plugs! ---
Sideways V6- (why his mother and older sister had ever chosen this big ugly SUV piece of crap I'll never comprehend) - the rear 3 plugs are arranged so that one cannot get at them from the top, only from undernreath. Up on a lift in a dealership not a problem for the mechanic ($150 to change your plugs), but with with the vehicle up on axlestands in a driveway one has to maintain a partial sit-up for the duration of plug removal and installation. A real back killer unless you place a lot of pillows for back support.
This is where my around the corner torque 90 degree phaser might work - if we can maoeuver the socket onto a rear plug from above and drive the 90 degree shifter with a ratchet we just might be able change the rear plugs ourselves and for much cheaper. Will let you know in a few days if this works; my mechanical 90 degree phaser is at work and will get it Monday.
@Zeeglen...been there...done very similar things. A great illustration of how the right tool can make a job much easier. And how car (and electronic equipment) manufacturers do their best to make life more difficult!
I suggest you teach your stepson the first rule of fixing stuff:
The first 90% of the job takes 90% of the time
The last 10% of the job takes the OTHER 90% of the time!
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