Monthly Archives: July 2018

Online Tool Shopping Guide

In this article, I will talk about the best way to go about shopping for any type of power tool(this will probably even work for just about anything you would want to buy online). If you are shopping for a new power tool, then you probably are in need of said tool, and you should therefore have some idea of what type of tool you are looking for.

  1. The first thing you should do is get a piece of paper, so you can make a list.
  2. Now you want to come up with a budget. Once you have a maximum price set, you should write it down and stick with it. The last thing you want to do is go out looking for a $50 tool and come home to an angry wife after you spent $200.
  3. Write down what you expect out of the tool in order of importance. You might only be able to get half the features you want, to stay within your price range. This is where you will have to compromise on features, or you will have to increase your budget.
  4. Its time for research. You obviously have access to the Internet if you are reading this, so now is the time to visit all the manufactures websites. Find the tools you are looking for, make sure they have the features you need, then write down the model numbers. You might even find out a tool has other features you didn’t think you needed.
  5. Go to Amazon and check the model numbers to see if they are within your price range. Amazon might not be the lowest price, but they will give you a good idea on what the tool is going for. Adjust your list of tools.
  6. Here is where I come in. Read other peoples reviews. If its not on tool-rank , then do a search on the Internet, its not hard. In the search box type “manufacturer, model number, review” and hit enter. Ex. “Makita BHR240 review” Read as many reviews as possible. Now its up to you to make some judgement calls. Adjust your tool list again.
  7. Lets go shopping. Always remember, if something looks to good to be true, it probably is. If you find a tool online that is way under priced, go to and do a search on the website. There, you will find a review on the online store. A lot of times stores will lead you to believe that you are buying a complete tool package, but then try to sell you the accessories that should have already been included. I like to stick with well known online tool stores like Amazon, ToolBarn, Rockler , etc. They are not always the lowest, but they are reliable. STOP. Don’t buy anything yet.
  8. We need coupons. Head over to the deals forums , and see if we have any coupons or deals on the tools you are looking for. You might even find a rebate for a free tool with purchase. My local tool store has a 20% off sale twice a year, so I try to save all my tool purchases for then. If you don’t need the tool right away, wait and try to find a deal.
  9. Take you list of tools, find the best deal you can possibly find, then buy. Just don’t buy the whole list. 🙂
  10. Now that you own your new tool, be sure to test it out for a while, then submit your review. This is how you can make a better place.

Camera Shopping Guide

There is no shortage of compact cameras on the market, in fact the shelves are packed with endless choices at every price point. But how can you filter out what you actually need and not overpay for features that no one needs?

Well, this is a simple guide to clarify the various features on these little cameras.

If you are just looking for a point and shoot camera, just go through this simple list:

Focal length: This is basically the field of view of the lens. It’s usually specified in the 35mm equivalent focal lengths, such as the popular 35-105mm that a lot of compact cameras have. The smaller the number the wider the angle of view is.

Look for something with a real wide angle, this means ideally 28mm. Up to 35mm as the widest is still ok, but do not consider any models starting at 38mm and higher, they will be frustrating to use.

Image stabilisation: This is a useful feature that compensates for camera shake and reduces the likelihood of blurry photos. It is especially important if you take a lot of pictures in low light situations.

This is a good feature to have, if you can find it in your price range. If you are mostly shooting out in the sun, don’t worry about it. Many camera manufacturers also somewhat mislead consumers by claiming high ISO’s as a type of image stabilisation. Be sure to check that the camera you plan on buying has actual physical image stabilisation.

Image quality: It is almost impossible to predict the image quality of a camera based on the specifications these days. But there is one easy test you can do to check this:

I have found the following rough test to judge the quality works for a great many cameras: Take a picture, and display it on the screen. Zoom in until 1/16th of the picture is on the screen. This means the little box that shows you where your zoomed in part is should be 1/4 the height and width of the frame, roughly. Now, if the picture looks good at this zoom level, the camera is probably good enough. If it looks all smudgy, move on. While this is an utterly and completely un-scientific test, surprisingly, it works for a lot of cameras.

If you have narrowed your search down to only 2-3 cameras, simply try them out. If you already own an SD-card, this is much easier. When you are trying out the camera in the shop, simply stick your card in the card slot. Take a few pictures, take your card out and make your way to the photo printing machines. You know the ones, which develop and print the selected pictures in 2 minutes? Print out 3-4 pictures of the size you are likely to use, and have a good look. Most shops are not really well lit, so this is quite a good test for a compact camera. Chances are, if you like these pictures, you will be happy with the camera. This is quite a cheap way to test your choice before actually buying the camera.

Screen size and resolution: Most cameras now have decent sized screens, 2.5 inches and bigger. However, the size alone is not the only important thing, the resolution is important as well. A large, low resolution screen will look blocky, so don’t be fooled by the screen size alone. Also, some of the cheaper screens have quite poor brightness or viewing angles, so if the screen is important to you, make sure to actually play with the camera and don’t buy just based on the specifications.

Shopping Guide

Shopping for a crib for a new baby is a wonderful experience with all the cute styles these days the trip is bound to be a pleasure. However, it is important to put safety before anything else when shopping for a crib. New mothers never leave their babies alone except when it is bedtime and therefore safety is key feature to recognize when shopping for a crib.

The Consumer Products Safety Commission has a complete list of recommendations and standards to look for when crib shopping.

1. Baby Crib Date of Manufacturing: When shopping for a crib you will probably only be exposed to cribs that have been made and manufactured in the last year or two. However, it is important to know that the Safety Commission does not recommend purchasing cribs that were made before 1991. The Commission also suggests against buying or borrowing a previously used crib.

2. Crib Parts: Ensure that there are no broken or missing parts when shopping for or assembling your baby’s crib. All parts should be thoroughly checked before being shipped for cracks, splinters and breaks, however it is always a good idea to give the crib a once over yourself and be sure to take the time to return and replace any pieces that are not up standards.

3. Crib Slats: By regulation, crib slates are not to be wider than 2 3/8 inches apart. When shopping you can conduct a quick test by trying to pass a soda can between the slats – if it fits the slats are two wide for safety.

4. Crib Mattress: The crib’s mattress should fit snugly inside the crib with minimal space between the mattress and side of the crib so that a baby does not get wedged uncomfortably in any gaps.

5. Crib Corner Posts: Corner posts need to be less than 1/16″ above the edge of the crib. High posts create a dangerous situation if toddlers and babies get an article of clothing looped around the post.

6. Crib Headboards: Naturally you will want a crib that is nearly as adorable as your baby, however take a good look at the headboard design to be sure there are no dangers of your child getting their head, hand or foot stuck in decorative woodcarvings or metalwork.

These are some basic things to look for when shopping for a baby crib. Once you have found the perfect crib take time and care in assembling it and ensure it is placed it in a safe part of your baby’s room away from dangling drapes, curtain pulls or pictures your baby may be able to reach one day soon. Many manufacturers today sell beautiful and stylish cribs that are 100% safe and therefore be sure to find the perfect style to fit your nursery and enjoy the years of use you will get from your crib.