8 Tools That'll Change The Way You DIY

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Let’s assume you have all the basics: hammer, drill, etc… But once you've DIY for awhile, there are certain tools and gadgets that make projects easier and, in some cases, more fun. Here are eight you might not know about, but after reading this, you will wish you had. In other words, check out what’s cool in tools...

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1. Kreg Pocket Hole Jig: For those of us who don’t know how (or don’t have the tools) to make a mortise and tenon joint, pocket holes are a great option. The Kreg pocket jig is in inexpensive and easy-to-use tool that drill holes at the correct angle and correct depth. You can get a basic mini kit, or go whole hog with the jig master.

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2. Critter Spray Siphon Gun: I found this guy from Jenny at Little Green Notebook, who loves her Critter paint spray gun. It needs a small air compressor to work, but is great for small to medium jobs. It uses 16 0z. Mason jars to hold the paint, which makes both switching out, and storing, paint easy. You can find one here on Amazon.

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3. Adhesive Measuring Tape: Here’s a low tech option: adhesive measure tape. Imagine using this to mark off a gallery wall, versus a traditional, heavy tape measure. You can also drill right through the tape.

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4. Nailhead Spacer: This nailhead spacer makes an otherwise hard and tedious task that much more bearable. While you could use the strips that come as a kit, individual nailheads look more professional and, when done well, take your piece up a notch. You can buy them at upholstery supply sites or stores, or order from Amazon.

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5. Camera Scope: Before you bust open a wall, take a little peek behind it instead with one of these Ryobi digital camera scopes. It’s $99 but I can see it paying for itself in the time it saves you each time you have a leak or busted pipe. (Or even the next time you have a raccoon in your attic.) Once again, you can get this on Amazon, or your local hardware store.

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6. Stud Finder: When mounting anything on the wall — light stuff like picture frames, or heavier cabinetry — stud finders save you a world of hurt. Instead of knocking along the wall, they take the guesswork out of finding a secure place for your anchors. This one uses strong magnets to identify hardware in your wall. Once it finds them, the attraction keeps it attached to the wall while you drill your pilot hole in the right spot. No need for pencil marks, or tester holes.
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7. Glass Cutter: Cut ALL the bottles with a Kinkajou, which was a project funded by Kickstarter back in 2012. This tool is a quick and easy way to turn wine bottles into vases, cups, or glass lamp shades. Such a step up from the other glass cutters that I've tried. Check it out here.
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8. Air Compressor: Air compressors open up an entire world of DIY. Yes, they are big, and don’t work for a small apartment, but if you have the space, consider getting one to make your projects faster and easier (albeit louder). Use it with paint sprayers, nail guns, and pneumatic staple guns. You should research your options depending on your needs, so I won't recommend a specific one here, but I think once you try one, you'll see their appeal.

What other tools have rocked your world?

(Image credits: Jacqueline Marque; Amazon; Little Green Notebook; Amazon; Van Dykes; Home Depot; Amazon; Amazon; Amazon)

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When Dabney's not writing around here, she's digging through other people's attics for fun and interesting stuff, or running around with her bloodhound Friday. Originally from the East Coast, she's still shocked to find herself living in Missouri.