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Sarah's Personal Blog

Read my opinions on some interesting topics

How to save money by buying used tools

Buying and selling used power tools is very common. I don’t know anyone who hasn’t bought or sold used tools. It’s especially popular among frugal woodworkers and DIY, looking for a chance to get best product for their buck. For some, who have vast experience in finding good bargains, getting a good deal becomes a bit competitive and finding great tool for low price makes them very proud. Other than that, buying second hand tools, or pretty much anything second hand, is beneficial to the world at large. You make use of the tool, and seller gets some money, instead of throwing it away and adding to earth’s massive plastic trash reserves.

Before buying used tools though, i do recommend that you have some experience of using them for DIY and home improvement projects. It’s also good idea to visit local stores to try them out in person and ask questions. I think you should only consider buying used power tools when you have good knowledge of tools in general. Also pay attention to safety measures on the tools. You must make sure that manufacturers have implemented proper adjustments to protect you from the accidental harm. Retail stores usually don’t have used tools for sale, but you might find some good last-minute deals there. Whenever new models get released, retailers are eager to get rid off old inventory, so they tend to drop the prices significantly.

But the real gems for finding used tools are auction and listings websites – eBay and Craigslist.

If you have specific model in mind, it’s worth to search the model name on both sites. It will at least give you rough estimate of how much you should expect to pay. But also pay attention to the condition and appearance of the product – not all used tools are the same. Some might work, but won’t look good, and those are usually much cheaper than slightly used tools that barely have any signs of wear.

eBay and Craigslist are a bit tricky because you don’t have much feedback about the item. But what you do have, at least on eBay, is sellers rating, which is worth paying attention to because it reflects level of seller’s honesty. If they have a lot of ratings and are frequent sellers, they won’t risk damaging that by selling shoddy product.

 Just like when buying new, brands should be kept in mind when you’re buying used tools as well. I would recommend to buy tools from brands that are famous for their quality, for instance – DeWalt or Bosch. These tools are literally very hard to break, so even used ones are very much likely to work for a long time. I recently bought excellent splitting maul made by Fiskars. If you’re interested but don’t have experience, this splitting maul buying guide does pretty good job of explaining. I don’t recommend buying cheaper brands like Ryobi. Even though they’re legitimate brands with good tools, they are intended for casual use, and after few years of use, they won’t be as reliable as brands like DeWalt.

How to renovate furniture using simple tools

I am a frequent visitor on Pinterest, and mostly follow DIY and home improvement-related topics and users. Recently i’ve been especially impressed by those before-after photos, that show old piece of furniture before and after users renovated them by themselves. After months of looking at dozens of those, i decided that i could do it myself and set out to collect every supply necessary to pull it off. I didn’t need to buy old furniture from garage sales, since i had plenty of my own. With that, i’ll try to tell the story of my journey.

Course of action for refinishing furniture mostly depends on the furniture itself and what kind of condition it’s in. You have to also figure out the quality of the material. Older furniture, built before 60s, is usually made of solid wood and therefore it is way more sturdy than modern pieces. Solid wood also allows the woodworker more liberties when refinishing the product. Although i should mention that it’s not just about the material – structure and tools used are also important. The point is, that solidly built furniture with solid materials is much better to work on. Cheaply built pieces, on the other hand, might not be worth renovating in the first place.

If you’re planning to make furniture out of entirely new wood, decent log splitter is something you’ll need. This tutorial explains ins and outs of buying splitter pretty well.

 If the furniture you’re planning to refinish is still in good condition, you might not have to refinish it in the first place. Sometimes waxing and cleaning it might do the trick. But if the wood has dents and other visible damages, it’s probably better to refinish it. For which, you first have to remove the existing finish. There are special tools and products for doing that, but i like it to keep it simple by using power sander, which gets the job done just fine. After that, you should work on fixing everything wrong with it, before applying new finish.

 Deciding whether to refinish your furniture or keep it as it is and simply clean it, is fairly straightforward. If the furniture is visibly damaged, and signs of use are visible to the naked eye, it’s probably time to refinish and repair. If not, i think it’s better to wait until signs of use become apparent, but if you are perfectionist and don’t like even slightest signs of wear, you can go ahead and do it anyway. It will just cost time and some money, and if you think that’s worth it, then go right ahead.

These endevours might even be good source of cash, for those of you with entrepreneurial drives. Most of these cost very little to buy, and once refinished, can be easily sold for couple of hundred bucks. I haven’t sold any of these, so I don’t know much about economics of the process, but i my common sense is telling me there should be nice profit in this work.  Especially if you really love what you’re doing. I guess that’s closest to what people call dream job.

What tools should wannabe DIY-er buy?

Just like in anything else, getting started is the hardest part of becoming a DIYer. Especially for someone like me who tends to overthink everything. There are just too much questions and doubts that cause delays. But with this post, i’m going to try and answer all these questions that potential woodworkers and DIYers might have, and answer them in simple way.
First of all, there’s question of what kind of tool to buy. Honestly, answer to that depends on the woodworker itself. What kind of work does he or she prefer? Does the DIYer want to start applying their knowledge instantly, or is he/she okay with taking time to learn more advanced techniques first? If you want to get started quickly and dive in head-first into the world of home improvement, i would recommend getting a drill. It is useful for basically any task around the house, and it will serve as nice introduction into tools if it’s the first one you’re using. Other than that, you probably already have screwdrivers, hammer and nail in your home. But if you don’t – go out and get them.
The other option is to get circular saw. Those are very versatile tools that can be used in so many different ways. They’re relatively cheap, especially if you buy corded version, and assuming you have at least one sheet of wooden material, you can get started right away. You might not be able to make useful furniture right away, but with enough experience and couple of more tools, you should be able to complete simple projects in no time. Googling for ‘simple woodworking project’ should return lots of websites that offer step by step tutorial of completing these projects. As for advice about buying circular saws, check this one out.
And the last question i’m going to address is related to something i mentioned before. I said that corded versions would be a lot cheaper, but does that mean they’ll always be the right choice? Of course, no. Both – corded and battery powered tools have their pros and cons, and once you learn about those, it’s up to you to decide which type of tool will be better suited for your plans and interests. Cordless tools are generally more portable and flexible, so if you think that your work will require extra flexibility, cordless might be better. Corded tools, on the other hand, are more powerful and considered to be sturdier than their cordless counterparts. If flexibility is not an issue for you and you’re looking for safe and cheaper option, corded tools are a good option.

Few reasons why you should exercise swimming every day

Swimming offers the capacity to do high-impact practice without the unforgiving effect on your joints. The pool is the perfect work environment solid muscles and sore joints, particularly in case you’re overweight or experiencing joint inflammation. Swimming is additionally an awesome method to increment solid quality and muscle tone. Water is around 12 times denser than air, so every kick and stroke turns into an obstruction work out. Swimming likewise enhances adaptability as it pushes the body through a scope of movements which enables joints and tendons to remain free and adaptable.

Swimming is likewise an awesome method to enhance the most vital muscle in your body – the heart! We have just clarified that swimming is an oxygen consuming activity which will reinforce the heart which prompts better blood stream all through the body. An incredible method for keeping your heart sound!

On the off chance that you are attempting to either get more fit or even keep up your weight, swimming is an awesome method to consume calories and to help monitor your weight. Swimming doesn’t simply need to be tied in with furrowing here and there the pool, there is an incredible scope of water based classes and Swim Fit difficulties in the entirety of Brio’s pools that can help change up your exercise. This will enable you to make great wellness propensities which will have a positive advantage to your wellbeing in the more drawn out term.

In the wake of a monotonous day in the workplace or a hard days join there is in no way like slowing down and taking an unwinding swim to work off those worries of the day! Discharge the ‘vibe great’ synthetic substances which are known as endorphins by having a dip in one of Brio’s 6 swimming pools. Swimming inspires a sentiment of unwinding because of the extending and unwinding your muscles, joined with profound relaxing. In case you’re a brisk riser and would rather work out and fortify yourself before you even get the opportunity to work, at that point our pools all offer an early morning swim to set you up for the day!