From hand tools to power tools to specialty gizmos, here's the best, most interesting or just strangest of what we saw in the tool world this year.
British engineers redesigned an antique German ratcheting screwdriver to create the MetMo Driver, which landed $1 million-plus on Kickstarter.
French manufacturer Arno produces this modern update to the timber framing chisel. It's a single piece of steel, dipped in PVC for the handle.
Japan's Tajima makes this Plumb-Rite, an auto-retracting, line-tensioned plumb bob with convenient mounting features.
German manufacturer Wabeco makes this portable drill stand, which lets you convert your handheld drill to drill press duty, in four different sizes.
From Sweden comes the Runlock, a rope that's pre-looped along its length to greatly increase its utility.
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From Korea comes this crazy-looking tape dispenser that delivers multiple pre-cut tape strips. I had to watch the video to figure out how it worked.
Arborists and roofers use this giant slingshot for line setting.
Despite being generatively designed for strength, this handtruck and S-hook actually look quite good.
Gimmicky-looking as it is, this T1 Tomahawk digital tape measure is actually packed with useful features.
Here's an unusual vintage tool: An "Architect's Typewriter" that can type directly on blueprints.
Like magic, this Shaker Siphon works like a pump, without containing a pump.
Bridge City Toolworks designed this over-the-top MT Series multitool for woodworkers. (Click the link for an explanation of its multiple functions.)
The RazorScribe is an adjustable, precision offset scribe tool invented by a general contractor.
This innovative Hawk Crawler Multi-Use Cart is designed with "dual rotating axles" that can flip over obstacles.
This Ammo-Up tool is designed to pick up shell casings and shotgun shells at gun ranges.
Another tool you've likely not seen before, unless you're a hotel maid, is this BedMade EZ Bed Maker.
This Nebo Slyde King 2K flashlight telescopes to reveal a second work light hidden inside.
Did you know those nutjobs over in Europe invented lawnmowers that can cut wet grass without clogging the chute?
Or that they've got weird-looking lawnmowers like these?
One thing we couldn't miss this year, is that power tools are continuing to get friendlier-looking (some might say toylike). Here's Black & Decker's designey Reviva line, aimed at DIY'ers.
And check out these drills and drivers by Chinese manufacturer Hoto:
And where would you store those pretty tools? In one of these $185 designey toolboxes by Character, of course.
Lastly this invention, which can draw straight lines on any surface—curved, uneven, rough, etc.—became a 12-year-old's coolest industrial designer origin story ever.
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