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#120891 - 01/20/08 07:44 PM 'da plane!, 'da plane!
Andy Offline

Registered: 09/13/07
Posts: 378
Loc: SE PA
Pardon the pun, but I'm really thinking of a good wood plane. Why, you ask? Because, after reading these forums for a while, I'm convinced that most of us would prefer to bug in rather than out. Based on that assumption and the one that the most probable reason for bugging in would be in response to a natural 'disaster' I think it would be smart to have a collection of tools to make repairs without electricity.

I have my own collection of cordless tools, pnuematic nail guns and the like. But if a bad ice storm or hurricane took down the grid for an extended period (that's happened here in the past) those tools wouldn't be much help beyond any existing charge in the batteries. I suppose could add a generator but that's costly and requires regular maintenance, not something I'm good at. But I do keep a good set of hand tools that would allow me to make necessary damage repairs, or board up the place if necessary.

Here's my suggested list of tools to have in the house, comments and suggestions welcome.

claw hammer
rubber mallet
flat pry bar
medium crow bar
set of screw drivers, straight and philips, small and large
locking pliers
Crescent wench
pipe wenches (s.m.l)
crosscut handsaw
back saw
hand drill and bits
auger and bits
assorted nails and screws
assorted lag bolts
heavy duty stapler
duct tape
wood glue
# 4 or #5 jack plane
small block plane
metal file
wood rasp
assorted clamps (wood, 'c', spring, etc.)
speed square
folding rule and/or tape measure

I'm sure there are things I'm missing but with this lot I can fix most things about my house. I've never lived in house that was less than 100 years old and because of that I've managed over the past 5-plus decades to amass a pretty good collection of tools based on need and my never ending quest to have the absolute perfect tool for every job (need a putting chaser or a tool for setting glazing points?).

Most of the members here will have some or most iems on this list already. Some things like quality planes or hand drills can be hard to find these days but estate auctions and garage sales are good places to start looking to round out your collection. If you really want to drool check out the Garrett Wade website and order up one of their catalogs. Like a Victoria Secrets catalog for us old married guys.

Ain't giving up my Dewalt's anytime soon but sometimes the sweet sound of plane gliding thru hardwood just makes my day.

Take care, Andy
In a crisis one does not rise to one's level of expectations but rather falls to one's level of training.

#120896 - 01/20/08 09:51 PM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Andy]
Art_in_FL Offline

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
A bit over sixty years ago the basic assumption was that if you lived in Florida when a hurricane hit help was not 'on the way'. Everyone knew that you had to patch and prevent further damage on your own.

It was common for people to store a goodly amount of lumber, canvas, nails in mason jars with turpentine to keep them from rusting, and a small collection of basic hand tools wrapped in oil cloth and/or in a small tool box. Usually these were stored under the house. The masonry foundation was often the strongest part of the house.

It is still a good idea.

I don't know about hand planes and tools more suitable for fine work. IMO the priority would be to patch holes in the roof and covering blown out windows. This sort of thing has to be done quickly.

Hurricanes bring bands of rain that can keep coming for over a week. A small hole in a roof can flood the home, drop the ceiling and can easily lead to a total destruction of the house through rot and mould. After Katrina it was found that many homes that suffered only minor damage ended up being total losses because easy repair were not even attempted.

Materials needed would be a short stack of framing lumber, plywood with a good number of tarps and lath to make it all quickly rainproof. Fasteners would be 16d nails for framing, 8d for plywood and roofing nails and/or cap nails for holding down tarps.

The minimum standard for work would probably be a quick and dirty +/- half an inch. Just accurate enough to keep the wind and rain out while you get the tree out of your living room and find out who made it through alive.

For tools a good claw hammer, a hand saw with a combination blade, a crowbar, tape measure, and box cutter would do it. A half-hatchet is good for laying down lath over tarps.

Once you have everything dried in and everyone fed, watered and safe you can come back at it and do a real repair.

Now long-term the finer tools, and the skills to use them well, would be nice to have. The ability to make furniture, and spruce up the homestead would be valuable.

#120898 - 01/20/08 10:18 PM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Andy]
Blast Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3561
Loc: Spring, Texas
A good, heavy duty staple gun.
A gas shut-off tool.
A toilet auger/snake.
Assorted pipe wrenchs.
A hand saw.
A coping saw.
A drywall saw.

Blogging the Borderlands
Wild Edibles Blog
I miss OBG.

#120900 - 01/20/08 10:33 PM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Art_in_FL]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
A hand plane is useful for non fine work at times. When I put in my new front door I would have had to hang it off square and non plumb to match the house or shave a little off the back side of the frame at the narrow corners and shim the wide corners to make it hang true. The little hand plane I bought one time for another long forgotten project was handy that day.

#120915 - 01/21/08 12:21 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Andy]
OldBaldGuy Offline

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
A lot of the screws used in wood today are square drives, so how 'bout a set of misc bits, square, torx, etc.

Something to sharpen those planes with. If you have never done it, it can be a little tricky, you have to get an edge, then "hook" it a little bit. Once a plane gets dull, it really makes a mess of things.

Re the crescent wrench, how 'bout a six inch for small stuff, and at least a ten inch for larger.

A pair of "waterpump" or channel lock pliers, or maybe some of those new tricky adjustable pliers that Craftsman has.

In addition to the sandpaper, maybe some emerycloth, and some wet-dry sandpaper...

#120920 - 01/21/08 01:36 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: OldBaldGuy]
Art_in_FL Offline

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Granted planes are wonderful tools and a joy to use if well made and maintained. They are enormously useful for trim work, furniture making and, as pointed out, hanging a door.

More generally hand tools are grand additions to a kit. Particularly if you 'bugging in', where weight and bulk are not an issue. I love tools and have quite a collection of wood working, plumbing, electrical, and general mechanical sets. I wouldn't want to tote them very far on my back. But given tools and a few skills a person can do a lot.

That said the original post seemed to be directed toward a fairly specific job set:

... "response to a natural 'disaster'" [And] ... "to have a collection of tools to make repairs without electricity."

IMO it seems to point toward rough damage control and quick but well put together jury rigs. But perhaps I misunderstood the intent of the question.

#120939 - 01/21/08 06:56 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Art_in_FL]
Raspy Offline

Registered: 01/08/04
Posts: 351
Loc: Centre Hall Pa
A set of vice grips.
They can be used to unbolt those nuts you rounded off with the cresent wrench. A cresent wrench is great if you are limited in the tools you can carry. But using the right wrench is a much better choice.


A full set of wrenches both metric and inch. Because of the expense get the type you will probably use the most first.

The same sets of socket wrenches.

A couple of cans of penetrating oil. Nuts and bolts rust and or get stuck.

You might want to pre-make sets of plywood window covers. Then if a window is broken or something like a hurricane is coming it only takes a few minutes to put up. Instead of hours to make.
When in danger or in doubt
run in circles scream and shout

And always remember TANSTAAFL

#120941 - 01/21/08 11:54 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Art_in_FL]
Andy Offline

Registered: 09/13/07
Posts: 378
Loc: SE PA
Art, et al,

Any emphasis on hand planes that came thru in the original post was simply the result of my subconcious love for the tool and the inspiration for a bad pun. Most repairs are likely to be initially rough in nature, as someone said to restore warmth and dryness. So the hammer and saw are likely the principal tools. I'd put a hand drill or brace and bit up high on the list as well because driving a screw into plywood or 2x4's without predrilling is hard work.

I will say that having a good block plane is useful when doing any work with wood. Makes it a lot easier to fit that piece of wood that you cut a little too wide into an opening . Besides the shavings probably would make good tinder. lol.

Socket, wench and driver bit sets are always good suggestions for the spouse's gift lists.
In a crisis one does not rise to one's level of expectations but rather falls to one's level of training.

#121009 - 01/22/08 01:46 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Andy]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078
Hi Andy,

Some possible additions for the household toolkit,

A decent set of chisels (Bacho or Stanley),
Lump Hammer,
Wood Axe,
Some copper pipe to make repairs for plumbing (various diameters according to needs) including pipe bending tool and pipe joints.
Copper Pipe Soldering/Brazing kit (blow torch including flux, rods and PTFE tape and pipe cutter etc).
Adjustable Plumbing Wrench.
Adjustable Basin Wrench.
Metal Hacksaw.
Sealant Gun with various sealant tubes. (i.e bathroom sealants, adhesives, glass putty etc).
Houshold electrical repair toolkit for household wiring repairs and adjustments. (Additional spools of cable for mains wiring, terminal strip and boxes, fuses, multimeter, wire stripper, electrical safety screwdrivers etc, wall power point safety tester etc).
Small portable folding workbench i.e. Black and Decker Workmate.
Folding aluminium ladders for both outdoors and indoors.

#121018 - 01/22/08 02:35 AM Re: 'da plane!, 'da plane! [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
sodak Offline

Registered: 03/20/05
Posts: 410
Did someone mention wanting a sharp wood plane? wink


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