71 votes
Accepted

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

You can use a piece of cardboard to hold the nail. There are some variation in this method: make a hole and put the nail inside, you can tear the cardboard when the nail is embedded enough make a cut ...
  • 5,643
40 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

To make sure you don't hurt your fingers, you can use a clothespin to hold the nail in place. Image from Pinterest This is very safe and probably more effective than using your fingers.
  • 11.2k
35 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

There's clothespin trick, but that one is almost a meme at this point. So, how about the traditional approach: Set the nail. Place the tip of the nail where you want to drive your nail and just ...
  • 4,466
33 votes
Accepted

What hack can I use to find a small screw that falls in the floor?

Ah. This is why you should always have spare screws on hand. Fortunately, there is a way... Light Method Most screws are silver. Shine a flashlight into the carpet and look for little silvery glints. ...
  • 2,101
30 votes

How to remove screws with stripped heads?

Try placing a rubber band between the head of the screw and the screwdriver. This usually helps increase friction.
  • 1,311
26 votes
Accepted

How to cover nail holes effectively and inexpensively?

Toothpaste Advantages: You probably already have it. A nail hole filled with toothpaste looks less obvious than a nail hole from a distance Very life-hacky, in that special "I remember being a ...
24 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

The trick is not to hold the nail when you are swinging your hammer hard. Hold the nail and gently tap with the hammer just enough so the nail will stick in the wood without having to hold it. After ...
22 votes

What hack can I use to find a small screw that falls in the floor?

I have done this. Lie down on the floor and get your eye as close to the level of the carpet, then look around. You'll have an easier time spotting the lost screw this way because it'll rise up along ...
  • 320
19 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

I don't carry clothespins in my toolbox, but I DO have needlenose pliers. Just hold the nail with them until you get it started. Really good with small brads!
  • 191
19 votes
Accepted

How to get home after losing lugnuts?

You definitely don't want to hack a replacement for lugnuts, since it's a major safety issue. What you really need is more lugnuts. Luckily, you have some! Take some off the other wheels, and evenly ...
  • 1,172
15 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

Don't hold the nail with thumb and forefinger! Instead hold it between forefinger and middlefinger, fingernails resting on the wood. Now when you hit your fingers it won't hurt nearly as much. And ...
  • 878
15 votes
Accepted

Removing rust from tools

There are a few good options for this White Vinegar This is slower, but works really well. Soak the tools in white vinegar for about 24 hours. Most of the rust will come off, and the rest will easily ...
  • 11.2k
14 votes

What hack can I use to find a small screw that falls in the floor?

The best "hack" is the way you look for the screw. Do what pilots do. Move the eyes one section at a time, pausing for a moment, looking at that little bit of the sky. Instead of sweeping the eyes so ...
  • 3,485
14 votes

Demagnetize a tool

There are a few ways to destroy a magnet. By impact Rough handling (dropping, hitting, etc.) a magnetized item can weaken it as well as creating one from iron bearing metal. That's how tools become ...
  • 13.7k
12 votes

What can I use in place of an allen wrench?

A few sites recommend using a flat head screw driver. Find one that fits tightly across the inside of the hex head going from corner to corner and turn it gently. Personally I would go with a Torx ...
  • 4,466
12 votes

Removing rust from tools

I think the absolute definitive way to do it is with electrolysis. This is where you place the rusty component in an electrolytic solution (can be water with a salt dissolved in it) and run a current ...
  • 217
12 votes
Accepted

How to tell if surface is level

I'll give you two options for making a level of your own. Both are based on the simple fact that water is level, and will keep being level even going through a hose. Level based on glass of water ...
  • 6,974
11 votes

Make a hacksaw blade suitable for use with food

No, the hacksaw you pick up at your local hardware store is not food grade no matter how much you clean or scrape. If you are concerned about food safety, you don't know what materials are used in ...
10 votes

How to remove screws with stripped heads?

If the head is not counter sunk, a pair of lock grip pliers (vice grips) can be used to grasp the head of the screw and turn it.
10 votes
Accepted

How to remove screws with stripped heads?

You can use a good knife or other very sharp and very hard tool and make small parallel scratches on the screw (whatever is left of it), alternatively one deeper scratch in the middle. Then use the ...
  • 1,738
10 votes

Putting lawn mower into car trunk

Use a ramp to push it into your trunk. You can take the ramp with you to unload at your grammy's home...
10 votes

Remove string from vintage caster wheels

Similar to Stan's answer, I would cut through it - but with a box cutter or razor blade. Just press the blade into any part of the tangle and slice across it. Then move to another spot and repeat. ...
  • 11.5k
9 votes
Accepted

How to open a privacy lock doorknob without the key?

As you mentioned, a small flat screwdriver works best. However, you can use basically anything that's thin, stiff, and non-round. I used to do this all the time to my brother to piss him off (ah, ...
  • 1,172
9 votes
Accepted

Putting lawn mower into car trunk

When moving a cement mixer recently I used a small trailer, and self built ramp. The ramp consisted of two lengths of wood, 2"x4" (48 mm x 198 mm) and 5 ft (150 cm) length. Here is an image of how you ...
  • 6,974
9 votes

Remove string from vintage caster wheels

A seam-ripper can be used to penetrate the tight wrap and cut several layers of it at once. Push the point through the knot to cut through it. After this, there will be loose threads (and hair) to ...
  • 13.7k
8 votes

What hack can I use to find a small screw that falls in the floor?

1. Listen to where it went. This might be weird but it is my first resort. When you drop a screw, focus on the sound of the screw hitting the floor while keeping your head still. Keep focusing on the ...
  • 181
8 votes

How to remove the broken part of the tip inside of the stylus of Sony Digital Paper DPT-RP1?

Maybe it would work if you heat a thin needle to the point where it melts the plastic the tip is made of, stick it into the stuck part, wait till it cools and solidifies, then pull the needle? Could ...
  • 302
8 votes

How can I make a motor with a belt change directions?

Frequently, there is. Simply loosen the strap, take it off the motor, give the strap one twist, reconnect it to the motor, and tighten the belt. The belt now makes a figure-of-eight instead of a ...
8 votes

Could I remove the back-light from an LCD screen and let sunlight illuminate it from behind?

You could do that; but, it's much simpler to make a laptop sun shade from a cardboard box. Open the flaps and put the box on its side. Put the laptop inside the box and the shadow will allow you to ...
  • 13.7k
7 votes

How can I avoid hurting my fingers when using a hammer

Start the nail first, ie a light tap on the nail, enough to at least have the nail support it self in the wood or what ever you are nailing into first. Then move your hand and swing away. If your ...

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible