Soft ToolBag toolbox choices

Top 10 Essential Tools For DIY And Duct Tape Uses

In this show The Handyguys discuss their top 10 starter tools and announce a contest to win this toolkit!

Win this tool kit!
Win this tool kit!

What is included in a first time home buyers tool kit? Screwdrivers of course!  But what else? The Handyguys went shopping at True Value to assemble a quality starter set of essential tools for the typical home owner.

Our Kit Includes:

The Handyguys will take your questions via the phone at (615) 676-0877. Leave an email address if you want an immidate and direct response.
The Handyguys will take your questions via the phone at (818) 804-TOOL. Leave an email address if you want an immediate and direct response.
  • Tool Bag
  • Carpenter’s Pencil
  • Speed Square, Orange
  • Pliers Set
  • Screwdriver Set
  • Pry Bar
  • 16-Ounce Claw Hammer
  • Tape Measure
  • Safety Glasses
  • Hearing Protection
  • Utility Knife

In the podcast, we discuss our rationale for each of the tools and why we picked them. There are certainly other tools that could be added to this list, but this would make a great starter kit.

How to win this toolkit!

To win this toolkit, you must listen to the podcast for details. Essentially all you need to do is help us come up with a LEGITIMATE use for duct tape. Give us your duct tape idea by commenting on this show post. In this podcast, we discuss some not so legitimate uses of this ubiquitous tape. We want our listeners to provide us with some valid users of duct tape and we will award the tool kit to the author of our favorite suggestion.

The winner will be announced December 3rd, 2009. Suggestions after December 3rd are still welcome of course but you will not be in the running for the toolkit. So leave a comment below and be sure to provide an email address so we can contact you if your duct tape suggestion is our winner.

Illegitimate use of duct tape
An illegitimate use of duct tape!

Photo Submitted by DJ Goodfellow

Handyguys Podcast discuss tools

We were one of five bloggers selected by True Value to work on the DIY Squad. We have been compensated for our time commitment to the program and our DIY projects as well as our posts about our experience. We have also been compensated for the materials needed for our DIY project and this giveaway. However, our opinions are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive comments.

40 thoughts on “Top 10 Essential Tools For DIY And Duct Tape Uses

  1. I used duct tape to line the inside of my metal shop drawers so they wouldn’t make so much noise and dull so many edges when I absentmindedly chucked tools into them. It looks nice (in a kind of post-apocalyptic punk way) and actually holds up a good bit better to abuse than the enamel the drawers came with.

    The rubbery surface of duct tape is good in other cases where stock materials are too hard or subject to unusual impacts, such as the part of the moulding of a window where I often hit my head when gaining access to a roof. Several layers of duct tape have really taken the sting out of retrieving errant frisbees.

  2. I would carefully unwrap the roll of duct tape, find the beginning and peel off precisely 2″ of the tape and carefully apply one-half of the tape to a piece of paper and the other half to the refrigerator to hold up a note to purchase a better brand of tape! Duct tape is horrible as it breaks down in UV rays, leaves goo residue, and has a chalky, crumbly feel after awhile.

    Your mileage may vary.

  3. I hear you MB when it comes to duct tape out in nature — it’s basically useless unless you cover it with multiple layers of paint to block the UV light. I tried using it to secure some plastic over the frame of a temporary greenhouse and it turned into a mixture of powder and goo in only three months.

  4. Frequently,I would spend days operating a automatic wood copy lathe at work and turning hundreds of stair ballisters and newel posts , and sanding them by hand with flexible sand paper.
    It did not take long to have layers of skin removed from my fingers.

    My favorite use of duct tape was making duct tape band-aids for each finger. They were long lasting and saved the skin on my fingers.

  5. I think a legitimate use for duct tape would be to make a tool bag out of it and some heavy gauge wire if I don’t win the tool bag. 😉

    The last time I used duct tape; I used it secure some plastic around my expensive ($10 each) 16 foot 2×8’s I will be putting in my kitchen ceiling to replace the old 2×4’s so the new 2×8’s wouldn’t get wet in all the rain we’ve had recently.

    Being so long It was too hard to store them inside the house (and I don’t have a garage (and my good shed is too small, the big one has holes in the roof).

    I stored them under my neighbor’s car port. It has a roof but rain can blow under he roof and so I wrapped a clear plastic drop cloth around them and wrapped the duct tape around the plastic to secure the plastic so it wouldn’t blow away.

    1. other uses for duct tape have included closing contractor bags and to tape some romex out of the way while I put some screws into a rafter board I was installing.

  6. I was just reminded of why it is that I stock duct tape, that most-useless of seemingly useful inventions. Halloween! Duct tape is the difference between a pile of useless junk and a fabulous makeshift costume! Having trouble sticking that circuit board to your forehead or that stove pipe to that toilet seat? Duct tape, baby! It only has to stay stuck for the night, plenty of time for you to win that best costume award (particularly if you are dressing as a tin man, a robot, or an H1N1 virus).

  7. Wow, I am not as skilled as the handy guys but I do enjoy the show and this was right up my alley as far as an idea for duct tape. I had to put in some child safety locks for my 1 1/2 year old. Working on my back, drilling over my head with wood screws. Not the easiest thing to do. I used a piece of duct tape to assist in holding the screw in place to get it started. Got it started AND then could tear it out.
    Another similar time was when I had to get into the attic to nail something in…taped the nails to the side of the hammer and could use both hands to get into the attic. No damage to the handle and no damage to the nails. Duct tape definitely should be in the tool kit.

  8. The PO at This D*mn House thought a legitimate use of duct tape was to hold the ball and cock in the toilet tank in place. Um, NOT a legitimate use! They also used it to hold registers in the wall, fill cracks along windows (instead of caulk) and even keep a door handle from falling off. Yep. These were some creative folks.

    Me? I reserve my use of duct tape for packaging items for storage, to reinforce trash bags stressed by debris, and as an extra level of comfort grip on wooden-handled tools. Oh, one of my favorite uses is to wrap it around things that can be rolled for disposal like old carpeting and padding, foam, etc.

  9. When I was finishing my basement my wife would routinely complain to me about the dust that was accumulating upstairs on everything. So, I went out and bought a 20″ box fan and an air filter that people usually put in their furnace.

    I put the air filter on the backside of the fan so that as air was being pulled through the fan it would capture dust and then reduced the amount of dust that was circulating in the room, and getting upstairs. The air filter was held on the fan with duct tape, of course.

    Also, to help keep the amount of dust getting into HVAC room down, I stapled and duct taped an 8-mil poly around the “room” which also helped.


  10. I just used duct tape to fix my boots! I hadn’t done that since I was a gutterpunk drinking Mad Dog on the side of the railroad tracks. Back in those days, there wasn’t anything that couldn’t be fixed with a roll of duct tape and a Swiss Army knife. I remember one kid did something stupid after snorting some glue and he started gushing blood from his arm. How did we stop the bleeding? A tee shirt and some duct tape! None of us had health insurance back then, and few of us have health insurance now (is Mad Dog a preexisting condition?). Duct tape is an essential part of any third world medical toolkit.

  11. Don’t laugh . . . but, my favorite use of duct tape is to get rid of warts!! My kids are plagued with them and after trying to freeze them with the over-the-counter methods as well as at the doctor’s office, it was duct tape that finally rid us of the problem! (true story!)

  12. One of the things I use duct tape for is when I am putting something together to hold it in place temporarily. What I will do is since I might assemble something every now and then, and I do it alone, it is kind of a hassle to try and hold one piece of something while holding another piece and trying to screw something in at the same time. I don’t use this for big projects, and something else you can do is to use the same tape to hold another spot once you are done with it.

    What I am trying to say is that I use duct tape to hold something in place for a short amount of until until I am done screwing it in or whatever I am doing. Think of it as like a temporary nail.

    Thanks a lot!

  13. Another use of duct tape, was to put some on my heels when breaking in a new set of boots while hiking. The socks moved over the tape and I didn’t get a blister. Really!

  14. It probably isn’t in the spirit of things, but I submit that the entire contest is premised on a trick question. That is because there is no such thing as a legitimate use of duct tape. There simply is not a job it can do that can’t be done better by some other type of tape/tool. The adhesive sticks when you peel the tape, it dries up and flakes over time, and it’s combustible too.

    Now if you are the Rambo type who has a “bug out” bag then it might be something useful to pack. But, if you aren’t in the middle of the woods after the apocalypse and you have access to a normal set of tape/tools, there is never a reason to reach for duct tape.

  15. I’ve used duct tape to fix a telephone extension cable (flat ribbon style)to the floor before laying carpet.

    By the way I believe that the name is a corruption of its other name Duck tape – it is made from a cotton material called duck cotton.

  16. Hi guys! I have three uses of duct tape for you. Two are more serious, one is fun, but still true!

    1. Duct tape makes an excellent *temporary* barrier. Have you ever tried to pour concrete or (in my case) floor levelling compound, and used 2×4’s to frame your area, just to find the mixture leaking under the 2×4’s? Duct tape to the rescue! Knowing it’s for a temporary purpose, Duct tape is an excellent flexible liquid resistant tool that can be used to form a temporary membrane between the floor and the hard barrier (the 2×4). Since it’s only there to hold the mix until it hardens, the degredation over time of the tape isn’t an issue.

    2. Duct tape makes an excellent flexible cone. Have you ever been in a situation (car engines do this to a lot of people) where you can’t quite get your funnel in there, and paper is too flimsy? Backing duct tape onto itself to make a cone that will bend and flex but not break is an easy solution. It works in the opposite too. You can make a cone that you put on the end of a vacuum to provide gentle suction on a surface that isn’t round. This is my little trick on fixing dents in speaker cones! You don’t want a tight fit, but if you make a cone with duct tape that is larger than the speaker cone with the dent (or at least the dent), you can flex the sides of the duct tape cone with your hand at the speaker cone to get enough suction to pop that dent out without damaging the rest of the speaker.

    3. This is the funny one. A friend of mine was in a situation once where he was underdressed for the occasion. He had a button down shirt with him and a sweater, but no tie (and the tie was what he was missing). Thinking quickly, he fashioned together what amounted to a duct tape clip on tie! It would have been pretty obvious if he took the sweater off, but if all you saw was the knot, it looked pretty good, like a silver tie. (I WISH I had a picture)

  17. Hello Guys!

    I think there are three “tools” that every garge or workshop needs. They are in the order of value:
    1.) Duct Tape
    2.) Windex
    3.) Bounty Paper Towels

    My first tool is Duct Tape because it has been used to keep the fenders (rear qtr panels) of my 93 Blazer connected to the rear tailgate and parts of the Frame and “paintable” so that I could pass the vehicle inspection of the state I lived in before.

    The second tool is Windex for its ever presence in my garage for the spills and such.

    The Third is “Bounty” brand paper towels for their strength when used as a fuel filter for my emergency generator/ lawn mower and chainsaw.

    These are my favorite tools that every shop should have!


  18. Used as a temporary patch for holes in domed skylights from hail storm. Worked great to seal the holes for the short time between the storm itself and the installation of replacement skylights.

  19. A simple use for Duct Tape for me is securing batteries on a remote control. You would think that this problem would be fixed by now!

  20. In our family, we use DUCT TAPE, in it’s day-glo and brighter colors, to temporarily mark our luggage when about to fly. It makes it much easier to spot our luggage, and takes alot of the tension out of the wait at the pick-up carousel. love your podcast. Zev

  21. I think duct tape uses over the years has dwindled as people realized that there are more appropriate accessories for the job that it filled in the past.

    I believe duct tape is still good for organization. When I put away things for the winter, I tend to keep them safe in big garbage bags. Well, one bag looks the same as the next. So I take a strip of duct tape, tape it to the bag, and use a black marker to write on it what it is (tent, sleeping bag, etc). It also works great on shoe boxes that store Christmas ornaments, etc.

  22. I use duct tape to reinforce the cheap blue tarp covering our travel trailer. I simply put a strip of tape on both sides of the tarp where it makes contact with the sharp edges of the RV.
    Thanks for the show! – Robert

  23. I’ve used duct tape when putting the bikes on the bike carrier – to prevent scratches and to hold the pipe foam in place where the bikes hit together. Another hopefully only one time use was to pull the tiny cactus splinters / thorns out of my son’s leg. These things were so small you couldn’t hardly see them, or grasp them with a tweezers!

  24. I’d say one legitimate use of duct tape is to connect two pieces of plastic sheet together. It’s done extensively in the asbestos removal industry to isolate an area. I’d guess it’s done a lot for lead paint removal, mold removal, termite fumigation, etc.

  25. I had a large bee nest 30′ up in a pine tree that the bee killer would not reach. I grabbed my extension tree lopper and used duct tape to attach the can. The can was set at angle with the cutting blade able to depress the button when pulling the rope. The set up worked great, killed the nest and the bees haven’t been back since. Thanks to good old duct tape I didn’t have to endure the swarm any longer.

  26. Thanks everyone for your entries – We have picked the winner and will be announcing it at 5PM on December 3rd in Episode 91.
    Feel free to continue to add suggestions. We plan to dedicate an entire show to discussing these ideas in the next month or two.

  27. Thanks, Handyguys, for stopping by our blog! We completely forgot to mention a tape measure in our list – sheesh!!

    But anyway, we’ll be “upgrading” to more cool tools the next list that we write up (things that are cool and if you’re a more ambitious DIY-er, you’ll definitely want to check it out!).

    Love your site!
    Tell’er All About It

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