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Gareth's Tips, Tools & Shop Tales - (May 3, 2019)

Welcome to the first issue of my new weekly tips and tools newsletter. If you enjoyed my old "Tips of
Gareth's Tips, Tools & Shop Tales - (May 3, 2019)
Welcome to the first issue of my new weekly tips and tools newsletter. If you enjoyed my old “Tips of the Week” column on Make:, or my current book, Tips and Tales from the Workshop, I hope will subscribe.
I am always on the look-out for great tips and tools content, so if you have anything to share, please send it along to garethbranwyn@mac.com.

Do You Have My Book?
Do you have my book, Tips and Tales from the Shop, yet? If not, check it out. It’s gotten some very positive reviews and is an Amazon best-seller!
Using Zip Ties as Lo-Tek Actuators
Alex and her robot owl familiar
Alex and her robot owl familiar
Alex Glow wanted to add actuated wings to Archimedes, her robot owl companion. But she knew that would require more servos, more control electronics, and more power. And more chances for failure. Her solution was simple. She attached the wings with plastic zip ties. Now, the wings bounce and move as Archimedes rides on Alex’s shoulders.
Sanding Block from Belt
New job for an old belt
New job for an old belt
If you have old sanding belts that still have some grit to them (or extra new ones), you can repurpose them as a sanding block by cutting a scrap piece of scrap stock so that the belt fits snugly inside. I captured the above image of Jimmy DiResta doing this on Instagram Stories.
Yet another use for the DiResta Ice Pick
Third Hand, Kampf/DiResta style
Third Hand, Kampf/DiResta style
The always-clever Laura Kampf showing yet another use for Jimmy DiResta’s hand-made ice pick. She’s stabbed it into the leg of the bench she’s building to hold a cross-brace in place while she sinks the screws. Genius!
Tips on Hitching a Trailer
On Facebook, maker Joel Crawford shared the following safety tips for hitching a trailer:
A. Make sure the bulk of load is forward of the trailer’s axle, resting between the tongue and rear wheels of your vehicle and the trailer’s wheels. (60%)
B. Make sure your tail lights work, your chains are secured, and your tires have correct air pressure. (Side note: Hubs need grease. Drive a mile or two, stop and feel the center hubs, if they are warm, there’s a problem).
C. Straps are life. Maybe not your own but someone else’s. String is not a strap. Properly secure your load.
***
(Here is a short video demonstration of proper and improper trailer weight distribution.)
No-Tip Shop Bottles
No more spilled shop liquids
No more spilled shop liquids
Want to ensure that the bottles of lubricants, glues, solvents, etc. in your shop can’t get easily knocked over? Glue them to a wide, sturdy base. For a truly knock-proof bottle, attach them to a scrap of metal sheet stock. [Via habu-official on Instagram]
Decommisioning a Hard Drive
Only one way to secure old data
Only one way to secure old data
As Dan Hienzsch reminds us with this Twitter post, there is only one way to effectively secure the data on an old hard drive that you are throwing out and it involves a power drill and a serious bit. Otherwise, your info could easily end up in the hands of some enterprising data thieves halfway around the world.
Must-See Maker TV
Testing the stength of Roman and modern concrete on Practical Engineering
Testing the stength of Roman and modern concrete on Practical Engineering
Watching educational programming as good as Grady Hillhouse’s Practical Engineering, it’s easy to underestimate just how hard it is to create something this watchable on subjects as technical and complex as the ones he so deftly tackles. In each (usually) 8-10 minute episode, Grady looks into some aspect of the world around us, from water towers and sink holes, to dams, and the wonders of Roman concrete. Besides the thumbnail education on each topic, Grady also performs clever and eye-opening lab experiments to clearly illustrate the principles being discussed. Really impressive stuff.
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Gareth's Tips, Tools, and Shop Tales

Gareth's Tips, Tools, and Shop Tales

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