2013 Holiday Tool Gift Guide

By Robert Robillard on Tools PLUS!

holiday gift guide

Holiday Tool Gift Buying Guide

Every year at A Concord Carpenter we try to put together a list of tools we think most guys would appreciate.   We call it out 2013 Holiday Tool Gift Guide.  Check it out . . . and happy holidays!


RIDGID Economical HEPA Vac for ContractorsDSCN0102

As a carpenter who cares about the homes I work on, the need for a HEPA Vac is more than just about meeting new EPA requirements it’s about keeping your clients home’s clean and livable during a renovation.

From cutting through drywall or sanding with fine grit paper a HEPA vac is a MUST for controlling the spread of dust and debris throughout your client’s home and tops our 2013 Holiday Tool Gift Guide.

DEWALT I-Beam Levels

A year or two ago DEWALT decided to get into the hand tool arena. They did this with the intention of not reinvent the wheel with yellow paint and stickers but to look at each hand tool and to see if they could improve it.  So far so good DEWALT has been redesigning hand tools to provide job site solutions to frustrations.Dewalt I Beam Levels

This year DEWALT introduced a line of DEWALT I Beam Levels, in sizes ranging from 24 to 78 inches, whicvh will no doubt end up on a lot of holiday gift guides.

The new levels feature an I-beam engineered cross section that gives the level frame strength. Block vials were used in the design which allow these levels to be incredibly durable and provide accuracy of +/- .0005inch/inch. The end caps were engineered with over-molding for impact protection if the level is dropped.  The level faces are precision machined for flatness and accuracy.

Take it from a guy who’s on the level – these are plumb perfect!

Milwaukee Fast Back Knives

Milwaukee Fast Back Utility Knives open 3 times faster than a 2-handed opening knife.  The Fastback Utility Knife features a one handed blade opening for easy activation. It has a thin body design which allows the user to comfortably the knife in a pocket.  An integrated gut hook and wire stripper also increase functionality of this tool.

Milwaukee fastbackThe Fastback Flip Open Utility Knife has a button that locks the blade open or closed. This is a huge safety feature and allows the user to bear down when cutting as well as rest assured the blade will not open in your pocket. The one handed operation was not that easy but I soon got the hang of it.

Everyone I’ve shown this knife too has commented on the quality feel and cool features of the fastback utility knife. 

My personal opinion is that the FastBack  knives are wicked awesome and a favorite on our 2013 Holiday Tool Gift Guide surveys.

  • Read more about these Milwaukee Fast Back Utility Knives here: Milwaukee Fast Back Utility Knives
  • Purchase this item online for approx $ 20.00 here:

    Milwaukee M18 FUEL Sawzall 2720-21Milwaukee Cordless M18 FUEL SAWZALL

    The M18 battery and electronic deliver up to 2X more run time, 30% faster cutting and 5X longer tool life.  Milwaukee basically cut the cord but did not sacrifice power. 

    This tool kicks ass on the job site and EVERYONE wants one!  Be careful this tool is for real men only!

    At 0-3000 strokes per minute with a 1-1/8″ blade stroke this saw really cuts fast and well.  It has amazing power and run time.  The secret to this tools power is the relationship between their advanced brush-less motor, super secret electronics and their REDLITHIUM™ XC4.0 battery packs. This three-way combination packs a punch!

    • Read more about this reciprocating saw here:  Milwaukee M18 Reciprocating Saw
    • Purchase this item online for $ 449.99 here:

      DeWalt TSTAK Storage Solutions  DWST17805_1DEWALT Tstak Storage Organizer

      Here at A Concord Carpenter we LOVE organization. In fact, as the owner of a remodeling business, organization is key to my success and a necessity to ensure I stay profitable.

      Organization saves me time, and time is money in this business.  when I saw the three additional TSTAK storage units were going to be release this year, I wanted to marry the Product Manager… just kidding, but I did fall in love with the whole DEWALT TSTAK package.

      I’m a neat freak, what can I say!

      • Read more about the DEWALT TSTAK products here:  TSTAK
      • Purchase this item online here: DEWALT-Dwst17805-Tstak-Expansion-Organizer

        Milwaukee M12 LED Stick LightMilwaukee M12 LED Light Stick


        The M12 LED Stick Light is Milwaukee’s solution to lighting awesomeness! 

        At Concord Carpenter we LOVE lumen, power tools, sharp objects and the color red!


        This light has two of those criterion – it red and has three super bright LED lights packing 220 lumen of visibility to your job.  trust me that’s a lot of lumen.


        The Stick Light comes standard with a stainless steel, adjustable hook for hands free operation, and you can upgrade with a magnet attachment to make any under sink or basement job much easier to navigate.

        Poor lighting can be a hazard on your job site. It can degrade the quality of your work, slow you down, and not to mention it can put you and your crew at risk. The M12 LED Stick Light makes safe and effective lighting accessible to every worker on your crew, ensuring your work sites run efficiently and safely.

        The tool itself is under a foot in length and is thin enough to fit easily in your tool box or bag, so it’s easy and convenient for you to make a safe and productive workspace in just moments. With an ever expanding line of M12 products that are light, small, yet still powerful getting on board with this system and investing in the LED Stick Light is a no-brainer.

        Bosch 18V Lithium-Ion Impact Driver Bosch-18-volt-impact-driver

        The Bosch 18V Lithium-Ion Impact Driver, model number 25618-01, is Bosch’s fastening driver. This 2,800 RPM/3,200 BPM, 125 foot-pound of torque driving machine will have you cruising fasteners home all day long.

        This impact driver has even claimed the title of “Most Compact Impactor” Design.sounds like a new Arnold Schwarzenegger movie.


        It’s been given a gear box cover for added protection, a built in LED light, a ¼ inch hex drive with quick release, and my favorite part, the impact mechanism is spring loaded reducing user fatigue substantially.

        Want more, well here you go: Externally and easily accessible brushes, a variable speed trigger for those of you who want more control, and heavy duty belt clip. The Impactor also comes with two Bosch Lithium FatPack Batteries, a 30 minute charger, and a pretty decent carrying case.   It’s also up to 25% shorter than its competition as well as up to 25% lighter.    Gotta love German engineering!

        • Purchase this item online for $199.00


        SKIL 2356-01 360 Quick Select  Screwdriver

        SKIL 360 Quick SelectYears ago when you needed a screwdriver you pretty much could bet money you were going to need a slotted head screwdriver or maybe a Phillips head screwdriver.

        Nowadays we see slotted, Phillips, PoxiDriv, Torx, Square drive and many, many more.

        Manufacturers today use so many different fastener heads and sometimes even combine different fastener heads on their products.  It gets confusing and annoying when you intend to repair something and realize that you need to go back to the tool box or to the store and get a different driver.

        Well it seems that the folks at SKIL Tools have it figured out.   They recently sent me their SKIL 360 Quick Select Cordless Screwdriver to review and evaluate.

        This driver has twelve [12] of the most common fastener bits conveniently stowed on-board so no more running back and forth to the tool box for a different driver. 

        Be one of the first on your block to own one of these silly looking but extremely handy home DIY tools.


        • DEWALT 20V Oscillating Multi-Tool DCS355D1

          DEWALT Multi-Tool DWE315K

          The new DEWALT MultiTool DWE315K features a 3.0 Amp motor and a tool-free QUICK CHANGE system, which we like for rapidly changing a dull blade or switching cutting applications between jobs. Time is money, and the ability to stay on a ladder, and easily remove a blade, replace it, and get back to work without the use of an Allen wrench or key is a blessing.

        • The New DEWALT MultiTool has a super sexy new DUAL-GRIP variable speed trigger. These innovations allow the operator to use this multi-tool with a whole array of awkward grips you find yourself trying when making a complicated cut with these types of tools, hopefully more comfortable now. The variable speed trigger should also enhance control during cuts, even for you uncoordinated tool users.

          If didn’t have a reputation of being tough on the job-site, once you get your hand on this tool I guarantee you’ll be tough!


          Bosch 18V Multi-X Brushless Oscillating Tool Model MXH180Bosch 18V Multi-X Oscillating Tool

          Tall, dark and handsome is what I think about when I see the  Bosch 18V Multi-X Oscillating Tool. The Bosch MXH180 has an electric circuitry brush-less motor design.

          When you consider that Bosch added a 4.0 Ah fat pack battery [not politically correct I know]  to this tool and then combined that with their Constant Response™ Circuitry which allows the tool to maintain constant speed under a heavy load and protect it from overheating you have to be impressed with the power and run time.


          To put this in layman’s terms this tools 4.o Ah battery pack acts like the fuel tank and when combined with the the electronic circuitry or the “smart brain” you have the perfect recipe for corded power without the cord.


           Stiletto Hammers:    Stiletto 10 ounce finish hammer

          A Stiletto hammer is not cheap and most guys will not buy it for themselves but they should, and the smart ones do!

          Perfect Gift:  That’s why it makes such a great gift and probably our FAVORITE item in this list.

          When you look at the Stiletto hammer you immediately notice that it is a well crafted tool. It is one of the lightest hammers on the market and a real slick tool.  

          Stiletto’s line of Titanium hammers significantly decreases the incidence of carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive-motion, stress-related injuries. The lightness of Titanium creates a greater head velocity with less effort. Its strength assures there is no loss in driving power.

          All the guys on my crew swear by their and George actually does swear.  To quot George, ”  This Stiletto hammer kicks ass!”

          • Read more about the Stiletto hammer here: Stiletto hammer
          • Purchase this item online for $70.00  here: Stiletto-FH10-C-10-Ounce-Titanium-Finish

            DEWALT 8 Volt Gyroscopic Screwdriver DCF680

            This tool is right out of the Jetsons.   Gyroscopic Screwdriver technology in this 8 volt screw driver senses hand motion and turns the bit in the direction of the hand motion.  How cool is that!

            To operate, the user has to activate the Gyroscopic sensors by manually pressing an activation trigger switch. Once activated Gyroscopic sensors inside of the tool sense the user’s wrist motions—right to tighten screws, left to loosen screws.

            The slower you rotate your hand the slower the screwdrivers turns. Faster rotation operates the screwdriver at a higher speed. Once high speed is obtained you can slow down the screwdriver by simply rotating your hand in the opposite direction – Brilliant!!

            This is an awesome gift for HVAC, electricians and anyone who uses a screwdriver!!


            Other Cool Gift Guys To Consider:

            Still need more ideas?

            Well we happen to have the inside track to some of the industries best and brightest tool review editors and their 2013 holiday gift guide ideas!

            CopTool’s Gift Guide

            Home Fixated’s Gift GuideProToolReviews Guide

            Tool Rank’s Gift Guide

            Tool Skool’s Gift Guide



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About the author

Robert Robillard

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor / Writer / Video Talent

Robert Robillard is a general contractor, carpenter and operates a remodeling company located in Concord, MA. He is the editor of ConcordCarpenter.com and ToolBoxBuzz, and a has a weekly column in the Sunday Boston Globe. Rob is a recognized leader in tool and how-to information for building professionals, he hosts the Concord Carpenter Cable TV Show, offering advice on home repairs and maintenance. On his website, Rob uses his knowledge and experience to help and educate on best practices in the remodeling industry. His motto: “Well done is better than well said!”. Contact Rob at: info@aconcordcarpenter.com

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