10 power tool ideas

  • Hold-down

    Push narrow pieces on the table saw safely with a hand-applied hold-down. Wayne Miller from Rushsylvania, Ohio, made his out of a 9-inch-long piece of .25-inch plywood, but he says that hardwood or paneling would work, too. The narrow width fits between the fence and the blade, and its 6 3/8-inch height keeps the operator’s fingers above the saw blade. 

  • Step saver

    Step saver
    Since he has two portable air storage tanks, Bill Daniels in Auburn, Washington, puts the back-to-back male connectors together to fill one tank without holding the fitting on the tank’s fill valve. Then he puts together the manifold so he can fill them both at the same time. He says he’s now able to add the portable tanks to the compressor when using high-demand tools. 

  • Tee up

    Tee up
    William Davis has mud daubers on his farm in Platte City, Missouri. He says they were filling all the air tools and hoses in his shop with mud. Then he discovered that golf tees work very well to keep them out. Just push them into the openings, and the taper will hold them in.

  • Splitter

    Tired of bending to pick up the other half of the big logs, Chris Kornkven built a table to catch them; now they just fall onto the table, he says. The table is installed with pins so it can be removed from his splitter entirely by pulling the pins out. It will also fold up for transport around his farm in Helenville, Wisconsin. 

  • Refills

    Chain saws and string trimmers often have gas tanks that are awkward to refuel, which leads to wasteful spills. Dennis Divine, Joplin, Missouri, says that he finds the compact plastic funnels intended for use with liquid-filled lanterns and camp stoves ideal for two-cycle engines. They cost less than $2 and are available in the camping sections of sporting goods stores. 

  • Metal bender

    Metal bender
    Clair Wilson of Winchester, Illinois, made his own metal bender. A hydraulic motor chain-drives the differential from a pickup. Positioned over that is the final drive from a combine. It has a 2-inch-thick steel plate turntable fitted with a large steel pin at its center. The drive components are all housed in a 41-inch-high, 45-inch-long, 36-inch-wide steel cabinet. Wilson’s bender cost him $75, the amount he paid for the final drive. 

  • Hand grip

    Hand grip
    As an added safety measure for using his cord saw, Tom Crittenden bolted this inexpensive holder to a simple mount. A used spring on the bottom helps pull it back away from the wood. The Mansfield, Pennsylvanian says that with his right hand on the handle, he feels a lot more secure when using his saw.

  • Support arms

    Support arms

    To create a more stable, safer work area, Bill Rosener of Tahlequah, Oklahoma, created support arms to integrate into his drill press. Holes in the vertical support arm are spaced 1 inch apart. The larger piece of square tubing that the vertical arm slides into has holes every 1.25 inches. This allows the arm to be locked with a pin in .25-inch increments. 

  • Power up

    Power up
    On the 4x2-foot charging table he built in his Fairmount, North Dakota, shop, Gary Osborn wired all the plug-in plates through a one-hour timer (the normal charging time for most tools). When he wants to charge a battery, he sets the timer for an hour and flicks on the proper switch. The bottom shelf of the table holds his portable tools. He says he spent about $100. 

  • Plasma cutter cart

    Plasma cutter cart
    The back of this cart is lower than the front so the control knobs are easier to see. Roger Johnson added uprights to hold the leads and a cup to hold the cutting end. “There are places to wind the air hose and power cord, and there’s room below to store things,” says the Chandler, Minnesotan.

  • Send us your ideas

    Send us your ideas 
    Be precise. Include a sketch or photograph when needed. The Idea of the Month receives a $2,500 Firestone in-store credit offer. We pay $200 for ideas that appear with drawings and $100 for unillustrated ideas. Send idea, a daytime phone number, and email address to paula.barbour@meredith.com or to: Successful Farming Magazine All Around The Farm 1716 Locust Street/LS257 Des Moines, IA 50309-3023

Here are 10 Power Tool Ideas from All Around the Farm.

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