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Dictionary of common tools


> HAMMER: 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.

> MECHANIC'S KNIFE: Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on boxes containing new seats and soft tops (And Sails).

> ELECTRIC HAND DRILL: Normally used for spinning steel Pop rivets in their holes, but it also works great for drilling mounting holes in the body just above the wiring harness.

> PLIERS: Used to round off bolt heads.

> 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.

> VISE-GRIPS: Also used to round off bolt heads.  Also, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hand.

> OXYACETELENE TORCH: Used almost entirely for lighting 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.

> WHITWORTH SOCKETS: Once used for working on older British cars, they are now used mainly for impersonating that 9/16 or socket you've been
searching for the last 15 minutes.

> 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.

> WIRE WHEEL: Cleans rust off old bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light.  Also removes fingerprint whorls and hard-earned guitar calluses in about the time it takes you to say  "Ouc...."

> HYDRAULIC FLOOR JACK: Used for lowering a car to the ground trapping the jack handle firmly under the front wing.

> EIGHT-FOOT LONG DOUGLAS FIR 4X6: Used for levering a car upward off a hydraulic jack.

> SNAP-ON GASKET SCRAPER: Theoretically useful as a sandwich tool for spreading mayonnaise; used mainly for getting dog-doo off your boot.

> TIMING LIGHT: A stroboscopic instrument for illuminating grease buildup.

> TWO-TON HYDRAULIC ENGINE HOIST: A handy tool for testing the tensile strength of ground straps, fuel or vacuum lines or electrical connections you may have forgotten to disconnect.

> BATTERY ELECTROLYTE TESTER: A handy tool for transferring sulfuric acid  from a car battery to the inside of your toolbox

> 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.

> 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 a Chicago Pneumatic impact wrench that grips rusty bolts and snaps the heads off.

> HOSE CUTTER: A tool used to cut hoses inch too short.

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