Eight Great Gadgets from FastCap.

Haven’t heard of FastCap?  Here’s the short version: A cabinet maker invented a product to make his life easier and his work better.  That snowballed into a multimillion dollar company that makes and sells high-quality, innovative tools to make a carpenter’s work faster, easier, and better.  Paul Akers, the founder, is an awesome dude and author of 2-Second Lean, a book about improving workflow and how to think about work to increase productivity.  I’m about to read it again.

So Why Did I Say Gadgets instead of Tools?

It was alliterative. Also, FastCap really does make Gadgets that are unique but effective.

1) The Glu-Bot ($7.89)

 

I’m in love with my glue bottle and I don’t care who knows it!  You never have to shake these to get the glue out.  When you squeeze, glue is forced from the bottom of the bottle through a secondary valve.  There’s a fancy name for this, I know there is, but I’m not in the mood to look it up.  The design allows you to apply glue with more control and in odd angles that regular glue bottles can’t.  Buy it Now on Amazon

 

 

2) The Fast Shim ($21.94)

This tool was designed by a Youtuber and he presented his Idea to FastCap and they thought, “Hey, this is awesome, let’s mass produce this.” Shims are absolutely necessary for finish carpenters, door hangers, window installers, cabinet installers, etc. Buying a pack of shims at the store runs you about $2.00. Not bad, but for a $20.00 investment, you’ll never have to buy another shim again.  This tool has saved me a lot of wasted time running to the store for another pack of shims.  I always have a 2×4 with me so making 2 or 20 high quality shims real quick is awesome. Buy it Now on Amazon

 

3) The 10 Million Dollar Stick ($14.95)

How much is one of your fingers worth?  The guys at FastCap have decided that each of your fingers is worth at least 1 million dollars.  Cutting a finger off with the table saw or mitersaw can run you about $10,000 in medical bills.  Not to mention, you know, losing a finger! Small parts and trim can be especially dangerous on the miter saw.  The low mass means the blade can easily torque the peice out of your hand.  While, at the same time, your hand is dangerously close to the blade spinning at 4000rpm. I’ve had more close calls in this exact situation than I have had close calls on the table saw (which is said to be more dangerous).  There really is no reason NOT to have this guy at your miter saw. Buy it Now on Amazon.

4) POWERMAGSCREW Convenient Workplace Power Magnet for Screw Gun ($17.99) 

Ok the naming department didn’t do so great on this one.  It’s a magnet you stick on your drill/driver/impact and it holds bits and screws.  and IT. IS. AWESOME. Where has this been all my life? How did I ever live without this? Why doesn’t every tool manufacturer include this? It’s a little pricey for what it is but just do yourself a favor and buy one.  You will not regret it.  Buy it Now on Amazon.

Seriously.  It’s a powerful magnet that holds things on the drill for you.  Why are you still thinking about this?

 

5) Third Hand Support System (75.44)

I got these last year for Christmas.  They have so many uses.  I work alone the vast majority of the time, so having something that can wedge, brace, and hold while I’m getting ready to drive a nail, make final adjustments, etc is very helpful.  They also make a lot of accessories for this such as a Camera Mount (this is what I use to shoot my video), a Laser Mount, a light hook, tri-pod base, door rotisserie (for spraying doors), and they make it in many sizes.  Buy it Now on Amazon

 

 

6) FastCap Crown Molding Clip ($8.88)

These little guys are simple yet effective.  You screw them loosely in place and them to hold your crown in place while you nail it up.  The design allows you to remove them as you get close and the screw is hidden in the gap created by the spring angle of your crown.  Another tool that allows me to efficiently work alone.  Buy it Now on Amazon

7) 2-P10 Adhesive Kit ($30.00)

2-P10 Stands for two part, ten second adhesive.  It’s super superglue.  I always glue my outside miters and returns.  This allows me to put the glue on one side spray the activator on the other, go eat lunch…I mean climb a ladder.  Stick them together and hold it for 10 seconds while the glue sets up.  Just don’t get your finger in there; it glues skin too.  This is a very helpful product on small delicate pieces where a nail would most likely destroy the piece.  Buy it Now on Amazon

 

 

8) Kaizen Foam ($14.99)

I’ll admit that I haven’t started using this yet, but if you followed my trailer build you know have the goal of being hyper organized.  Everytime I see a new use for this, I just want to spend hundreds of dollars on this, take a week off, and enter organizational nirvana.  Buy it Now on Amazon.

 

 

There is so much more!

I highly encourage you to check out the FastCap website which has 100s of products designed by carpenters for carpenters. And check out Paul Akers CEO and Founder.

What’s your favorite tool from fastcap? Tell us in the comments.


Many of the links above are affiliate links.  Purchases made using these links provides a small commission to me based on the sale at no additional cost to you.  Thank you for your support. 

Hitachi C10RJ Table Saw Features and Overview – The Ultimate Review Part 2 of 3

I’ve been running this saw for two weeks now so I know enough about it to offer educated opinions. Be sure to subscribe to this blog and my YouTube channel because I will give you long term updates.

I’m a mobile carpenter, cabinet maker, and woodworker. My shop is and must be completely portable (The Dailey Portable Shop). Therefore a full-size cabinet saw just isn’t an option. Jobsite saws have come a long way. They are powerful, accurate, and have cleverly designed rip fences that allow a much larger rip capacity than their size would suggest. I’ve only ever had a jobsite saw and consistently produce high quality cabinetry on site.


Now the best saw for me may not be the best for you. Some of you may only need a small bench top saw that’s easy to move and store. Me, I want the absolute biggest saw I can get.  The great thing is that there are a plethora of high quality jobsite saws to choose from.  I’d recommend sticking to the professional grade jobsite saws even if you’re a DIY’er.  These are Dewalt, Ridgid, Bosch, and Hitachi.

As I said in part one, I narrowed my search down to the Dewalt DWE7491RS, Ridgid R4513, and the Hitachi C10RJ.

I went with the Hitachi Table Saw for several reasons

  • 35 inch rip capacity – this is the largest in it’s class
  • Rotating Fence for large rip cuts – I really like the fence design. It rotates to serve as material support when extended and has easy to use latches to lock it down.
  • Rack and Pinion fence adjustment – The fence is locked into one of two positions and your cut is adjusted by parallel bars driven by gears.  This keeps the fence parallel to the blade at all times, and allows for quick one and adjustment.  With other style fences you have to make sure its pressed against the track as you lock it down or it may be out of square.  This often requires two hands.
  • 13/16 Dado Capacity – My old saw only had a 1/4 capacity.  It was never worth it to by the dado stack.  Having the ability to run a full size dado stack opens up a lot of possibilities.
  • Integrated Stand – My old saw didn’t come with a stand.  I eventually bought one and was very happy with it. The Hitachi Fold and Roll Stand is made just for this saw and it works well with the saw.  Another plus of the stand is that it is rock solid.  You can push large sheet goods through the saw without it tipping over.  With lesser stands this is a huge safety hazard.  The saw with the stand sits right at 36″ working height.
  • Value – This saw shares a lot in common in both looks and design with the more expensive Dewalt Saw.  With the all the 2017 Christmas sales going on right now I was able to get the Hitachi for $200 less than the Dewalt.  You really do get a lot in both features and quality with this saw.

Full Video Review

In the video I go over all the adjustments and features of the saw.  If you have any questions please leave a comment below.  I do my best to answer all the comments.


Thanks for reading.  Be sure to check out my article on recommended saw blades for all your saws.

 

Wooden Dog Kennel Furniture Built By You

Easy to follow plans to to build your own wooden Dog Crate.

The first time I was asked to build a dog kennel, I almost said no.  We were getting ready to move and finalizing the adoption of our Son.  It was a busy time.  It sounded like a fun project so I took it on and did a video for my youtube channel.  It has snowballed into one of my most popular videos and launched a whole new area of my business.

Today, I build custom dog crate furniture built-to-order and I also sell plans so you can make your own.

Maker: mbdefrieze

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To Purchase Plans for How to Build Your Own Dog Kennel Click Here!

The added work I get from these Doggie Dens really helps the family.  We now have three kids 3 and under.  Being able to work in my shop and have the flexibility to run inside to help my wife, have the three year old with me in the shop while I’m working, etc. has been a blessing, and I owe it to your constant pestering!

You see, when I built that first kennel I never planned on making another one.  Then came the requests for me to build one, then for plans.  Then I made promises to make plans and y’all held me to my promises.  These Dog Crates can be easily tailored and customized to match your furniture.

I’m planning on really ramping up the products and plans I offer in 2018.  I’m currently designing a Tack Trunk/Hope Chest for my Son and Daughters for Christmas.  I’m working on making a set of plans and Youtube video to go with it.  I recently did a video on how to make your own Barn Doors. I’m not sure about making plans for those. They are so easy the video may be enough.  I was also contracted to build a fold down workbench in a garage in the near future.  Is that something you might want plans for?

Don’t Want to Build Your own Dog Crate? Click Here to place your order.

Maker: Charli

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Maker: Alex

I would love to see your finished DIY Dog Kennel too.  Please send me a few pictures that I can share. Do you use your Dog Kennel as a entry table, a sofa table, an end table, or entertainment center?

What would you like to see plans for the most?  I can make plans for a Single Wooden Dog Kennel.  I can design plans for the Large Wooden Double Dog Kennel.  Down the road, I want to do a full bedroom suite.  I’m also going to be making new cabinets for my kitchen. I could make plans for a few of the basic cabinets so you could build your own cabinet for a remodel?  Let me know your ideas; that’s how this all got started in the first place. Dog Crate end tables and sofa tables…who knew.

Thank you for all your support; without it, Dailey Woodworks would not be where it is today.

To Purchase Plans for How to Build Your Own Dog Kennel Click Here!

Farmhouse Style Bunk Beds – Times Two

Last year I built a set of Double Bunk Beds and I recently completed my second set.  These were for a family’s guest room and we designed them to fit their beautiful farmhouse home.

I love these projects and most importantly the awesome people I built them for loved the finished result.

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My Favorite Saw Blades

The right saw blade can make a cheap tool work great; the wrong saw blade can make a great tool run poorly.

This was illustrated to me when I was setting up my new table saw (more about it in next week’s post).  I thought, “I’ll use the stock blade that comes with the saw. It’ll be fine for awhile.” Nope. My new saw, that I had done tons of research on, saved up money for, and finally purchased, cut like crap.  There was a lot of vibration, chatter, and the cut was very rough.  Luckily, I also had a brand new blade of my preferred brand.  Once I dropped it in, the saw ran quieter, had less vibration, and my cuts were superior.  All from a single high quality saw blade.

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Kreg Tools and Jigs are Invaluable to Me

This is part of the New Tool Tuesday series.  On Tuesdays, I post an article reviewing the tools I use on the jobsite. 

The Kreg Pocket Hole jig is owned by almost every woodworker I know, and every woodworker should have one.  But Kreg also makes a lot of other useful tools and jigs.  Over time, I have found that I really like most of their tools.  Their prices are very reasonable as well.  These are tools I actually own and use professionally on most of my work.

The Kreg K4 Master System

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California Closet With a Rustic Twist

I recently completed a huge all-summer-long remodel of a great barn style house.  The house is a two story red barn with full-length porches on the front and back hidden on 18 acres in a rural area.  This house was just on the border of how far I am willing to travel for a project.

I’ll have several posts under the “BarnHouse Renovation” Tag so check it out.

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Custom Murphy Bed Build

If you live in the Brazos Valley, and would like me to build a custom Murphy Bed for your home contact me for an estimate.

Shortly before Christmas I was commissioned to build a Murphy Bed.  Building a custom Murphy Bed is a project I have been wanting to do for a long time.  My wife and I had talked about building one for our guest/craft room, but it just never seemed to happen.  So when I got the chance to build one I jumped at the opportunity.

After some research we chose to use a professionally made hardware kit from Create-a-Bed.  There are several less expensive ways of putting a bed together but with something like this hacking together a cheap mechanism just creates problems.  By using a high quality hardware kit it saved time and therefore the client money in the end.  Also, the hardware comes with a Lifetime Warranty, which is reassuring.

This is what you get in the kit:
On each side of the Murphy Bed I built a bookcase.  Following the “Rule of thirds” each bookcase is a third of the width of the Murphy bed.  I also set the book shelves back from the face of the Murphy bed for some visual appeal.

(The “Rule of Thirds” refers to the idea that the human eye finds a 1:3 and 2:3 ratio visually appealing.  Take a look at your doors, cabinets, and dressers and you’ll see this in practice). 

We debated painting the bed white, but I’m very happy that we decided to stain it.  To add detail I made a faux door frame once again using the “rule of thirds.” to finish it up I added baseboard and crown molding.  A Murphy Bed can be taken from a ultra modern look to Victorian depending on the details you choose to add, or not add.

The Murphy Bed itself (for the full size, vertical mount) comes out from the wall 16inches, is 82inches tall, and has a width of 60inches (5ft).  Each book case is 82h x 20w x 12d.

The gas struts make raising and lowering the bed easy.  A firm tug lowers the bed and it can be closed with one finger.  My client is a very small person and had no issues raising and lowering the mechanism.

It is necessary to anchor the bed to at least 3 wall studs.  And while it is a semi-permanent addition to your home it can be partially disassembled and moved if the need ever arises.

Murphy Beds can be made to be either vertical or horizontal and are available. in Twin, Full, or Queen sizes.

Double Bunk Beds

I love building custom furniture.  However, it’s rare that I get orders for custom builds.  These bunk beds were built for Peach Creek Ranch, a wedding an event venue serving the area.

It’s no secret that I post videos to Youtube, but Youtube is also where I go to learn new skills and gather inspiration.  Jay Bates is one of the Youtube Woodworkers I really enjoy following.  His projects are well thought out, not overly complicated, and he uses materials that everyone reasonably has access to.  I used his plans for my bunkbeds.

I modified his EXCELLENT plans to squeeze a double “L” shaped bunk bed into the space available.  I was downright scarred about halfway through thinking that it wasn’t going to fit.  (I forgot to allow for the posts, and the thickness of the baseboards, but with a few modifications it all fit).

Dimensional lumber is cheap and easy to get.  I spent an hour at Home Depot digging through the pile to find the best boards.  Furniture built with 2x lumber seems “blocky” to me so I planed it all down to 1 1/4″ thick and ripped it a little narrower.  2×4’s and 2×6’s can be quite beautiful after 3 passes through a thickness planner. This made six bags full of shavings.

I tried to use my shop vac but ended up rigging a box and drop cloth up to catch all the shavings.

The ladder was very easy to make.  I used my miter saw to cut some dados and then glued and screwed the rungs to the rails.  It’s very strong.

This project was a lot of fun.  And the couple I worked for are some great people.  If you live in the Brazos Valley and would like custom furniture or built-ins made contact me.

 

 

 

The Dailey Portable Shop – Version 2.0

After almost a year I’ve made 10 big modifications to my trailer design and layout.  Mostly these have been gradual improvements as I’ve had both time and money.  Some were bad ideas, but even our mistakes can lead us to drastic improvements.  If, of course, we learn from them.  Enter Trailer 2.0

You can catch up on everything trailer related by checking out my YouTube playlist by clicking here.

If you don’t feel like watching ten 10-minute videos here’s the gist:

  • Trailer: Cargo Mate 6ft x 12xft V-nose, ramp rear door, side door, tandem axles.  I bought this trailer used in early 2016 after cleaning out my savings.
  • My only shop:  This trailer is my only shop.  I don’t have a garage, I don’t have a carport, My entire shop (save some specialty tools) fits in this trailer.
  • Set up to build bunk beds
    Set up to build bunk beds

    It’s a PORTABLE shop, not a mobile shop:  Meaning, the trailer acts as a tool room.  All my tools, workbenches, require set up on location.  They aren’t set up in the trailer.  The advantage is I’m able to set up the “shop” where and as the specific job allows for the best workflow.  Instead of walking all the way from the work to the trailer for every cut.

  • Efficiency is the goal:  The popular term right now is LEAN. Which can be summed up by: Eliminate Waste!  Eliminate wasted space, wasted movement, wasted weight, waste materials… all with the goal of eliminating wasted time.  I’ll also note that safety is naturally built into this mindset.
    • img_1974I try to strike a balance between ease of access and space savings.  I lean towards ease of access.  I work by the job, so the more streamlined I can make getting the right tool without moving unneeded tools the better.
    • Everything in it’s place and a place for everything.  This is the ultimate goal.  I’ve gone so far as to label drawer, bins, shelves.  I’m not there yet but I’m getting closer.
    • Make it easy.  When it comes to organization if it’s not easy to put back it probably wont be.  I’m learning this with my safety items.  They’re hard to get to so I don’t use them as I should.  Other things, however, are easier to put back in their correct place than they are to misplace.  <[That’s the goal]
    • img_1973I use passive restraints as much as possible.  Bungees and latches slow me down.  They also are forgotten, greeting you with a mess at the beginning of the day.  I’m trying to remove these from my trailer, and rely on ledges, gravity, and friction to hold things in place.  My table saw hold down is a perfect example of this.
  • I love it!:  Yes I wish I had a large climate controlled building to work out of.  However, I get twice as much done out of my trailer than I ever did in my set up shop.  I just want the large building to back the trailer up to.  I now laugh at people who complain about their two-car garage shops being to small.  It’s not you just need to get organized.

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