Dremel Moto Jig Saw

Thor Drill Press Model #580

I’ve been playing with some new lighting techniques (learned at Z2 Photo) and figure I’d give it a try while creating an inventory of some of the tools in the “2XL Makerspace” (also known as “my basement workshop.”)

These tools belonged to my dad, and they still work quite well. I find it interesting that many of the tools we use today (computers, phones, and even software) will not be used by our children when they are our age. By that I mean, the actual tools we use. If you’ve got a PowerBook now, you’ll probably replace it in a few years, and then replace that, and replace that, and on and on… in comparison, the jig saw and the drill press were the exact same ones my dad used over 25 years ago to make things.

Maybe the cycle is just sped up… I just gave my kids the old 20″ iMac because I replaced it with a MacPro. Of course in a few years that iMac will seem slow and outdated, or it will break, or die, or somehow become useless. The lifecycle of our tools for digital work seems so short… My youngest daughter asked if she can have my DSLR when I get a new one. Is it normal for her to think I will get a newer (better, faster) camera at some point? I’m sure I will… but I’m also sure that in 10 years she’ll be able to buy a newer (better, faster) camera for half of what I paid for mine.

Is this the price of progress, or is it just the difference between tools that create things in the physical world vs. tools that create things in the digital world?


The Tools You Need

I’ve always been a strong believer in providing people the tools they need to get their job done, but then again, I’ve always managed to somehow get the tools I needed to get the job done, even if that meant providing them myself in order to make sure the job gets done right.

So I’m not sure which I’m more disappointed in, an employer that doesn’t provide the tools that the employees need, or employees that don’t request or somehow try their darndest to get the tools they need.

Of course I also often find myself amazed that people don’t want to do the best possible work they can. Maybe I shouldn’t be surprised by this anymore…


My Kingdom for a Torx 8!

When repairing a PowerBook G3 (Wallstreet) you’ll need two Torx screwdrivers, a size 8 and a size 6. If you’re lucky, you’ll find these at your local hardware store. If you’re unlucky – or cheap – this might be more difficult.

I managed to get the Torx 6 at the local hardware store, no problem. They also had a Torx 8 bit, with the security hole in it, which makes it cost more, and allows you to remove Torx screws of the size 8 variety with a small pin in the hole on the top. Yeah, so anyway, I bought that one. The bit worked OK until I had to remove some screws that are way inside, that require you use a Torx 8 with long skinny shaft – which means the damn bit would not fit. This halted repairs a bit.

So I happen to be at Home Depot, they have a Torx set but it’s $20, which for someone who is cheap, is quite the deterrent. I ended up calling another hardware store, they had nothing, I then called Radio Shack, and they did have a tool with fold out Torx bits, but they said it was $16, and it sounded cheap and I wasn’t sure it would work, plus I figured if I was gonna spend that much I’d spend $20 for a nice set.

So at this point I continue to hope I’ll find a single Torx 8 screwdriver, and if I don’t I’ll end up spending $20 for the nice set, even though I’ve already spent $7 for the bit and the Torx 6.

This demonstrate the frustration of everyday life I must endure…

(I’ll leave it up to you to determine if that last statement was sarcasm or not…)