To the uninitiated, the workshop can be an intimidating place, full of tools you may not know what to do with.
To help, here's a helpful explanation of common tools and their uses, followed by some DIY tips:
A definitely much needed tool. You'll always lose the one you want to use, but the nearest width one can always b utilised to chew-up the bolts.
A tall upright machine useful for suddenly snatching flat metal bar stock out of your hands so that it smacks you in the chest and flings your beer across the room, denting the freshly-painted vertical stabilizer which you had carefully set in the corner where nothing could get to it.
Highly losable. You can keep them on a key-ring, for you to sort through them to find the size out of the 60 you have isn't there, more easily.
Contain a handy assortment of sharp and dangerous tools. Best left in its leather sheath and worn on a homeowners belt to increase testosterone levels.
Cleans paint off bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light. Also removes fingerprints and hard-earned calluses from fingers in about the time it takes you to say, "Oh shit!"
A work-light that lights up your backyard with the incandescence of a football stadium, causing you to cast a heavy shadow over the area you're working on so that you need to use a flashlight anyway.
Electric Hand Drill
Normally used for spinning pop rivets in their holes until you die of old age.
A device that lessens your chance of electrocution 90% over a standard plug-in tool. Guaranteed to lose power when you need it.
A portable cutting tool used to make studs too short.
Used to round off bolt heads. Sometimes used in the creation of blood-blisters.
An electric sanding tool commonly used to convert minor touch-up jobs into major refinishing jobs.
One of a family of cutting tools built on the Ouija board principle. It transforms human energy into a crooked, unpredictable motion, and the more you attempt to influence its course, the more dismal your future becomes.
Generally used after pliers to completely round off bolt heads. If nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hands.
Heavy duty leather gloves used to prolong the conduction of intense welding heat to the palm of your hands.
Used almost entirely for lighting various flammable objects in your workshop on fire. Also handy for igniting the grease inside the wheel hub you want the bearing race out of.
A large stationary power tool commonly used to launch wood projectiles for testing wall integrity.
Hydraulic Floor Jack:
Used for lowering an automobile to the ground after you have installed your new brake shoes, trapping the jack handle firmly under the bumper.
Eight-foot long Yellow Pine 2x4:
Used for levering an automobile upward off of a trapped hydraulic jack handle.
Ease-it-out Bolt & Stud Extractor:
A tool ten times harder than any known drill bit that snaps neatly off in bolt holes thereby ending any possible future use.
A large stationary power saw primarily used by most shops to cut good aluminium sheet into smaller pieces that more easily fit into the trash can after you cut on the inside of the line instead of the outside edge.
Two-Ton Engine Hoist:
A tool for testing the maximum tensile strength of everything you forgot to disconnect.
Normally used to stab the vacuum seals under lids and for opening old-style paper-and-tin oil cans and splashing oil on your shirt; but can also be used, as the name implies, to mangle-up Phillips screw heads.
Plain-flat headed Screwdriver
A tool for opening paint cans. Sometimes used to convert common slotted screws into non-removable screws.
A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you needed to remove in order to replace a 50p part.
Also useful during burglaries and street riots.
A tool used to make hoses too short.
Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a kind of divining rod to locate the most expensive parts adjacent the object we are trying to hit with it.
Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door. Works particularly well on contents such as seats, vinyl records, liquids in plastic bottles, collector magazines, refund cheques, and rubber or plastic parts. Especially useful for slicing work clothes, but only while in use.
Swiss Army Knife:
Can always come in handy as a substitute for the tool you need, but cannot find.
Any handy tool that you grab and throw across the garage while yelling "Dammit" at the top of your lungs. It is also, most often, the next tool that you will need.
Advice for the Handy-Man:
If you can't find a screwdriver, use a knife. If you break off the tip, it's an improved screwdriver.
Try to work alone, an audience is rarely any help.
Despite what you may have been told by your mother, praying and cursing are both helpful in home repair... but only if you are working alone.
Work in the kitchen whenever you can... many fine tools are there. Its warm and dry, and you are close to the refrigerator.
If it's electronic, get a new one, or consult a twelve-year-old.
Stay simple minded, Plug it in, Get a new battery, Replace the bulb or fuse, See if the tank is empty, Try turning it to the "on" switch, or Just paint over it.
Always take credit for miracles. If you dropped the alarm clock while taking it apart, and it suddenly starts working, you have healed it.
Regardless what people say, kicking, pounding, throwing, and shaking sometimes Does help.
If something looks level, it is level.
If at first you don't succeed, redefine success.
Above all, if what you've done is stupid, but it works, don't toy with it anymore!