Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Do you know how to use these tools?

1. DRILL PRESS: 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, splattering it against that freshly painted part you were drying.

2. WIRE WHEEL: Cleans rust off old bolts and then throws them somewhere under the work bench at the speed of light. Also removes fingerprint whorls and hard-earned guitar calluses in about the time it takes you to say, "Ouch..."

3. ELECTRIC HAND DRILL: Normally used for spinning steel pop rivets in their holes until you die of old age.

4. PLIERS: Used to round off bolt heads.

5. HACKSAW: 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.

6. VICE-GRIPS: Used to round off bolt heads. If nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hand.

7. OXYACETYLENE TORCH: Used almost entirely for setting various flammable objects in your garage on fire. Also handy for igniting the grease inside a brake drum you're trying to get the bearing race out of.

8. HYDRAULIC FLOOR JACK: Used for lowering a Morgan to the ground after you have installed your new front brake setup, trapping the jack handle firmly under the front bumper.

9. EIGHT-FOOT LONG DOUGLAS FIR 2X4: Used for levering a Morgan upward off a hydraulic jack.

10. PHONE: Tool for calling your neighbor to see if he has another hydraulic floor jack.

11. GASKET SCRAPER: Theoretically useful as a sandwich tool for spreading mayonnaise; used mainly for getting dog-do off your boot.

12. STUD EXTRACTOR: A tool that snaps off in bolt holes and is ten times harder than any known drill bit.

13. TWO-TON HYDRAULIC ENGINE HOIST: A handy tool for testing the tensile strength of ground straps and brake lines you may have forgotten to disconnect.

14. ½ " x 16" SCREWDRIVER: A large motor mount prying tool that inexplicably has an accurately machined screwdriver tip on the end without the handle.

15. ELECTROLYTE TESTER: A handy tool for transferring sulfuric acid from a car battery to the inside of your toolbox after determining that your battery is dead as a doornail, just as you thought.

16. PHILLIPS SCREWDRIVER: Normally used to stab the lids of old-style paper-and-tin oil cans and splash oil on your shirt; can also be used, as the name implies, to round off Phillips screw heads.

17. AIR COMPRESSOR: A machine that takes energy produced in a coal-burning power plant 200 miles away and transforms it into compressed air that travels by hose to an impact wrench that grips rusty bolts last tightened 40 years ago by someone in Malvern, and snaps them off.

18. PRY BAR: A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you needed to remove in order to replace a 50 pence part.

19. HOSE CUTTER: A tool used to cut hoses 1/2 inch too short.

20. HAMMER:OR "IRISH MICROMETER": Use as an alternative to buying dark nail varnishes. Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a kind of divining rod to locate expensive parts not far from the object we are trying to hit.

21. STANLEY KNIFE: Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on boxes containing seats and flying jackets.

22. WIRE STRIPPER: A tool designed to cut through the wire core, leaving it 1/2 inch too short (see hose cutter)!


Twas the night before Christmas, with the cat....