The Cross House

Magical Tools!


They make all the difference in restoring a house.

And one would think that at my age, and with all my decades of restoring houses, I would know about every tool there is, right?


Justin recently pulled a tool out of his mighty arsenal and I was gobsmacked at its…potential. It is a tool I have wished existed many times for specific situations.


The Magic Tool! The blade CUTS into wood or metal by just pushing it straight in.


I like my name better. Even Justin now calls it the Magic Tool.


In 2014 I finished painting the exterior above the west porch. See the bottom line of shingles? See the wild irregularity? Oh, the horror! The horror! But, I had no idea of how to make the bottom line look nice and neat. But then I learned about the Magic Tool!


And presto! The shingles no longer appeared as if installed by a drunk. Now I need to paint the flashing brown. I have already primed the bottom of the shingles.


For a long time the trim above the southern-most triple arched window bothered me. This had shifted when we jacked up the wall below it in 2014.


The Magic Tool in an instant straightened up the bottom, and the grinder (another MUST) aligned the surfaces. Nails were then sunk, depressions filled, and…


…all painted. Better!!!!!!!!





11 Responses to Magical Tools!

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  1. That tool is indeed awesome, whatever it’s called. We used one on door frames when we were redoing floors and had to get tile under the frame.

  2. I had never seen the utility of oscillating tools until I recently bought one on sale. I don’t use it often, but there are a few things I couldn’t imagine doing without one now! Patching wood floors is one (making plunge cuts to stagger new boards in).

  3. As a mechanic, I am constantly made aware of the latest and greatest tools that “will make the job easier”! Snap-On, Matco, and Mac show up every Wednesday to tease and tempt.
    Tools are wonderful things. Power tools are very wonderful things.

  4. In France they’re commonly called FEIN after the brand that made them first. Now Bosch makes them too (this is the one we have), it’s a multi-functions tool that has several blades, round ones and also has a triangle sanding head. . My bf loves it so much!

  5. I am checking eBay every day for a “Silent Paint Remover”, LOL. They are around $500 new, but Momma wants new kitchen counters, so I need to economize. Grandpa always told me “If you’re going to do a job right, you gotta have the wright tools!” Now, if I could just rent a Justin for a few days…

  6. Yep, these little beauties can be life-savers! I also own a Bosch (much cheaper than the original Fein Multimaster) and an even cheaper Aldi store brand model. The latter has a flaky switch or something so it doesn’t always work. Those tools are especially nice for cutting door casings at just the right height for a new floor!

    By far the craziest thing I’ve done with a multi-tool was carefully cutting apart a 1906 elevator car for a museum. Unlike any other car the museum staff had ever encountered, this one wasn’t held together with dowels and screws or looooooong threaded rods but glued, nailed AND screwed and then the joints veneered over for good measure.

    The sanding head is nifty but velcro-backed sandpaper is expensive and usually the velcro fails long before the sandpaper does so I’m not too fond of using it. On the other hand it’s fast and combined with a shop vac nearly dust-free, which is an ENORMOUS bonus!

    BTW, I’ve noticed some people talking about your grinder. You aren’t talking about an angle grinder, are you?

    They can be fitted with sandpaper discs but it’s not what I’d expect someone to use on wood.

  7. i have three oscillating tools; two feins and a festool. i love them because they solve so many problems, but holy dinah, the blades cost a fortune. i have to tell my customers that they have to pay for blades that burn out or break.

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