Nurture your dad's DIY side by giving him one of these nine ingenious gadgets.
Leatherman Hybrid, $60
Call it the multi-
multi-tool. At just under five inches long, this tiny stainless-steel gadget packs quite a wallop. In addition to all the standard attachments Dad would expect to see (screwdrivers, a bottle opener), this one boasts pruning shears, a bark lifter/grafting tool, wire cutters, a weed remover, and a sprinkler tool
that's designed to unclog irrigation heads
, making it equally adept on small repairs and more serious yard work.
Diamond Strike-a-Fire Matches, $2.75
No need for him to pack the lighter fluid for his next guys weekend (or to collect kindling once he's set up camp
). These clean-burning, odorless matches burn smoothly
-- without the aid of paper or tinder -- for an amazing 12 minutes with no flare-ups. Eight matches per package.
Dremel 8200 1/28 12VMax Lithium-ion Cordless Rotary Tool Kit
Now cordless and completely portable (it's powered by 12VMAX Lithium-ion battery), the newest Dremel rotary tool cuts two times faster than its adversaries,
boasts an even stronger motor than its corded predecessor, and weighs just one pound, making it a boon for smaller projects involving everything from furniture assembly to cutting, sanding, and polishing. Includes storage case and 28 attachments.
Craftsman C3 19.2-volt Cordless Inflator
Break out the pool floats and the snow tubes: With the help of Craftsman's portable pump
, Dad can inflate both in record time. In can also pump up two automobile tires on a single charge. A digital readout alerts him when he's reached desired pressure and shuts off automatically to prevent over-inflation.
Black & Decker MSW100 ReadyWrench
Photo: Black & Decker
No need for a cumbersome socket set -- which means no more lost sockets! This handy all-in-one accommodates a whopping 16 standard (and metric) socket sizes.
Both of the rotating heads lock in place once he's found the right one, and also detent at 45- and 90-degree angles so it can be used as a ratchet.
2x4basics AnySize Workbench Kit, Model# 90164, $60
For the dad who's always wanted a space to call his own: This kit enables him to construct his own (8-foot by 4-foot or smaller) workbench in one hour flat.
Once he's bought the 2 x 4s for the frames and the plywood for the tops (he can bring the necessary measurements to the lumberyard or cut them to size on his own), it's smooth sailing from there. Includes six shelf links, four resin legs, two work holders, four hooks, instructions, and hardware.
Garden Groom Pro Electric Hedge Trimmer, $150
Landscaping and trimming just got a whole lot easier for him. This brilliant tool collects clippings as you go along
, eliminating the need to go back and tidy up. A protective shield prevents injuries and unintentional cord-cutting, and draws cuttings into its waste container (holds up to 70 square feet of clippings) or detachable collector bag (700 square-foot capacity). Shreds leaves, needles, and branches that can later be used for mulch or composting
Cobb Grill, $169
At barely over a foot tall (and wide), this portable stainless-steel beauty
can be toted anywhere and set on nearly any outdoor surface. Ten briquettes are enough to grill, smoke, roast, or bake anything for up to three hours at 500°F, yet it remains-almost magically-cool to the touch. Includes roasting rack, grill, and soft carry case.
Rock Box Propane Tank Cover, $2,195
A clever solution for hiding that 800-pound gorilla on his front lawn, this splurge-worthy fiberglass-composite cover
provides a natural-looking enclosure for an unsightly above-the-ground propane tank while protecting it from extreme weather and temperatures. Available in five colors to best match landscaping and coloring of other rocks in the vicinity, it can be installed in less than 30 minutes. Fits a standard 250-gallon propane tank.