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November 2006

November 13, 2006

Is DIY dying?

Blood_blister People are telling me that the world is changing.  It started in England.  (Everything starts in England.  Why is that?)  DIY enthusiasts are chucking their spanners at the wall and calling in professionals to fix up their dwellings.  This new breed of DIY-eschewers are known as DIFMers (Do-It-For-Me). 

But who wouldn't want to perform their own repairs?  Who wouldn't want the pong of sewer gas in their clothes?  Who wouldn't want to be admired for a big honkin' blood blister?

"A recent survey done in the U.K. seems to add weight to the theory that DIY skills are on the decline.

It found that in people aged over 50 years, 94 per cent were confident of rewiring a plug without blowing the electrics. And almost half the under-30s flunked the test. They also failed other tests like putting up wallpaper, screwdriver skills, needlework, assembling furniture and unblocking drains.

This trend is also reflected in the declining sales at home improvement stores and reduction in the number of programmes on TV devoted to top home makeovers."

- From The Hindu, India's national newspaper

November 08, 2006

Decor for the Garage

Oh You Lucky  Americans

Vault_brand_garage_organization If you live in the U.S. you have access to the hottest looking garage organization system I've ever seen.  A company named VAULT is doing highend hand-crafted storage systems that rock.  They carry a diverse line of 29 different styles of stainless steel cabinets, workbenches and tool chests, all of which are completely customizable.  Solid, solid, solid.  Lifetimes of use.  It's pricey, but it's the champagne of garage cabinetry.  And you might want to get your order in early:

Like a fine piece of artwork, our customers have to wait for their Vault cabinet to be constructed by our artisans before becoming the contented owner of one.  Mass production is simply not capable of making a product of this quality and stature.  Each Vault cabinet is assembled completely by hand from start to finish by craftsmen who take great pride in building this elite product.  As a result of this extravagant manufacturing, only a limited number of cabinets can be built everyday. 

Manufacturing and shipping time varies dependent upon the customization of your order; however, typically speaking at least 12 to14 weeks are required to produce a single cabinet and every fine detail.  What counts is quality, not speed.  Other companies may cut corners to pump out an inferior product faster, but at Vault we will not sacrifice quality. 

- Vault Brands, 2006

November 04, 2006

Air Style

The joys of becoming an Air-ess.

I have respect for air.  I once drove through a tornado-ravaged section of highway.  Mere air had ripped the roofs off factories, hurled cars around fields, stripped trees of every branch, and all of this had happened in less time than it takes a peri-menopausal woman to get a turtleneck off.

149_dscn3908_2 Air and tornadoes have both been around since our planet was spawned 4 billion years ago, so it was inevitable that humans would get the idea of using air as a tool. It happened in 1959 when engineers at Paslode introduced the very first pneumatic tool, an upholstery tacker that shot staples driven by compressed air.  Those Paslode engineers were so excited that they stayed late at work and missed watching the inaugural episode of The Twilight Zone.  But their efforts yielded the first commercially accepted framing nailer, and that’s why today’s houses appear out of thin air.

Today you can buy an air compressor bundled with a brad nailer for as little as $200.  That compressor will inflate bike and car tires so you don’t have to go to the gas station, it’ll run nail guns, air sanders, impact wrenches, paint spray-guns, caulking guns, metal-cutting tools and my favourite girlish accessory - the sandblaster.

Continue reading "Air Style" »


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Mag's Books

  • : We're All In This Together

    We're All In This Together
    Based on four years of interviews with Steve Smith, Mag's unconventional biography reveals the personal stories, sorrows and joys that continue to inspire the man behind the Red Green legacy.

  • : How Hard Can It Be?

    How Hard Can It Be?
    Mag's quirky and entertaining book of home improvement projects for beginners.

Nota Bene

  • It’s never too late to be who you might have been. - George Eliot (1819-1880)
  • Simplicity of character is the natural result of profound thought. - My fortune cookie