Win a copy of A Food Forest in Your Garden this week in the Forest Garden forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • jordan barton
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Steve Thorn
  • Leigh Tate
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Greg Martin
  • Mike Haasl
master gardeners:
  • John F Dean
gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • Jay Angler
  • Nancy Reading

Anybody else have tools that get “borrowed”, “grow legs”, “don’t stay put” etc?

 
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I love my tools.  I am one of those persons that likes to hang out in the tool section of a hardware store.  I like tools as birthday/Christmas presents.  And I certainly love the opportunity to use my tools.

But sometimes I find that my tools seem to wander off if I am not using them.  I think that someone else in the house (But really, I am not blaming here) uses them and does not put them away.  Right now I am looking for a crowbar but for the life of me I can’t find it.  I do have a somewhat esoteric organization system (not all my tools are stored in the same place—some get stored near where they get used the most).

At any rate I either need to turn my house upside down to find this crowbar or go buy a new one.

So anyone else have similar experiences?
 
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 8385
Location: SW Missouri
4156
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 7
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Due to losing tools in deep grass around here, I spray paint all of my tools hot pink. Not my favorite color, but it's pretty obvious if someone picks up one of my tools who it belongs to.

As for just growing feet, I attempt to keep them where they go, or within a range of where they go, but if you see my nail puller, tell it I needed it the other day... You'll know it's mine, it's hot pink!

:D
 
gardener
Posts: 2262
Location: South of Capricorn
944
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
This is literally the story of my life.
My ratchet set, glue gun, needlenose pliers, tin snips, sledgehammer, and a bunch of other things are always wandering off. So I respond with the most mature solution: HIDE EVERYTHING. Then I forget where I put it and I'm essentially a squirrel with acorns. Someone is going to clean this house out when I'm gone and wonder why I have tin snips in my fabric stash box (because, of course, my spouse would not think of looking in there for them).
 
master gardener
Posts: 3529
Location: southern Illinois.
1017
goat cat dog chicken composting toilet food preservation pig bee solar wood heat homestead
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
At a minimum, I am presently missing: hammer, t-square, splitting wedge, magnet, etc.
 
master steward
Posts: 6044
Location: USDA Zone 8a
1801
dog hunting food preservation cooking bee greening the desert
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I believe in the saying "a place for everything and everything in its place".

Before we moved to our homestead we had a house with an attached garage and that garage had a very nice workbench with cabinets above.  We always knew where tools were.

When we moved to our homestead the tools were in a box in my dining room. They just rubbed me the wrong way.

Where we live now there are tools by the refrigerator where they were left after fixing a gas leak several years ago.

There are tools in an orange home depot bucker, some in a tool pouch on a tool belt.

All the garden tools are in a nice pile where I walk the dog.

Nobody uses tools.

I have one tool it is a spade and it is outside by the backdoor.

My suggestion for lost tools ... put up a pegboard and hang the tools up and draw around them so when a spot has something missing it is apparent what it is. Or like Pearl, paint them a bright color.
 
Eric Hanson
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It’s good to know that I am not the only one who’s tools go wandering.
 
pollinator
Posts: 750
Location: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
281
kids dog home care duck rabbit urban books building writing ungarbage
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Grrrrr! YES! I just built an 18 foot long, 2 foot deep bench on the deck; custom designed to perfectly slide totes beneath it.  Each one will be LABELLED and filled with various 'detritus' with at least 4 designated for tools, and another for "tool adjacent' crap (hinges, screws, nails, washers etc.).

I have learned to buy the ugliest, brightly colored tape measures as they are MOST likely to be MIA!
 
pollinator
Posts: 2062
Location: Denmark 57N
510
fungi foraging trees cooking food preservation
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
AH yes, we don't have anywhere to put everything, so some are out on the side of the milking barn, the electric ones are in the utility room in the house, the bigger things are scattered around the barn, hammers/pliers etc should be in a bucket but rarely are, they are more commonly found on window-ledges or wherever they were used last.  Occasionally I have moments of pure genius, the pin holding the trailers little front wheel on broke and I managed to lay my hand on a bolt of the correct size to replace it in under 40 seconds.. but normally it's days before the right tool is found. the thing that escapes me most is the battery, we only have one battery for several tools and it is always left in the one that was used last, so when needing to use the torch you find the drill, the hedgetrimmer, angle grinder, the drill again, the charger, the other charger (oh yes we have 2 because we lost one) the drill for the third time you finally spot the torch sitting on your desk where you started the hunt with guess what.. the battery already in it.
 
Posts: 230
Location: Tip of the Mitt, Michigan
24
monies cooking building
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi, Yes, I learned to never Never NEVER put my tools in a special place because I will be using it.  Where is that special place now?  better to throw it all in a pile and dig.  

Side note,  Like you, at the big box store my wife goes there to smell the flowers and I go there to smell the tools.
 
gardener
Posts: 787
Location: Eilean a' Cheo
263
transportation dog forest garden foraging trees books food preservation woodworking wood heat rocket stoves ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I expect the best place to leave a single battery pack is in the charger! We have several, so there is usually one with an adequate charge. If there was only one sod`s law says it would be flat as a pancake.

I`m always annoyed that garden tools have to be either green or brown if they`re not shocking pink for girls.  The number of times I`ve put my secateurs down outside and had to search to find them. The dogs got pretty good at finding `mommy`s gloves`, but they have struggled with tools...
 
Eric Hanson
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Lorinne, everyone,

TAPE MEASURES!  Holy cow do my tape measures ever wander off!  I have at least 3-4 good 25’-30’ ones around the house but rarely can I ever find one.  They are probably the tool most likely to just wander off.
 
Eric Hanson
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
FOUND IT!!

So it was right next to the project!

My daughter has a rather large bed contraption with all sorts of storage built into it.  It’s big and blocks an outlet so can’t be pushed up again the wall completely.  Occasionally things fall behind but the gap is too narrow to reach behind—we have to pull the whole frame out but as it is heavy, has no wheels, and likes to dig into carpet when moved, moving even a corner is a real chore.

The solution was to run a crowbar under one of the heaviest sections, pry up and let the whole frame slide on the carpet over the crowbar.  Simple Right?

But without the crowbar it’s a real backbreaking chore.  At any rate, the crowbar was behind the bed frame, underneath pieces of hay for the pet rabbit.  This is probably from the last time something had to be excavated from behind the bed.

At any rate, I have my crowbar back and ready for action again!

 
John F Dean
master gardener
Posts: 3529
Location: southern Illinois.
1017
goat cat dog chicken composting toilet food preservation pig bee solar wood heat homestead
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I had some people here about a month ago to help with a machine shelter.   I just found their leaf blower in the weeds. Yes, I called them.
 
Posts: 110
Location: southern oregon
22
foraging woodworking homestead
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
howdy,

I just have to say(or think) "I've been Ripped Off" and then I find them and have to appease the "Gods" or "others" I may have offended.
 
Skandi Rogers
pollinator
Posts: 2062
Location: Denmark 57N
510
fungi foraging trees cooking food preservation
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Nancy Reading wrote:I expect the best place to leave a single battery pack is in the charger! We have several, so there is usually one with an adequate charge. If there was only one sod`s law says it would be flat as a pancake.

I`m always annoyed that garden tools have to be either green or brown if they`re not shocking pink for girls.  The number of times I`ve put my secateurs down outside and had to search to find them. The dogs got pretty good at finding `mommy`s gloves`, but they have struggled with tools...



My garden tools all have wooden handles, perfect camouflage! The chargers do not have a specific place to live, they tend to be plunged in in the living room as there's both sockets and tables, but oddly enough they get evicted when we have guests. I don't find the battery is ever flat though it's a 5amphr battery and only the hedge trimmer really eats it.
When my father in law was turning the compost (huge piles 20acres of vegetables worth) with his tractor he found one of his electricians drills, not working unsurprisingly.
 
pollinator
Posts: 3105
Location: Kent, UK - Zone 8
432
books composting toilet bee rocket stoves wood heat homestead
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My wife tidies. Which to her means "put things away so the surfaces don't look cluttered". To achieve this she will just put anything in the nearest drawer or cupboard. At which point it may as well cease to exist for the use it serves when you actually need it. I found my tape measure in the gloves and hats drawer, by the front door this week. A hammer in my office desk drawer. A chisel in my seed tray...

My mum is worse though. She tries to "get things ORGANISED". Which to her means put similar things together. So the specialise tools that go with stuff - chainsaws, routers etc... get shoved in boxes with stuff that looks vaguely similar, rather than living with the item they get used with.
 
pollinator
Posts: 598
Location: Western Canadian mtn valley, zone 6b, 750mm (30") precip
75
fungi gear trees chicken bike building woodworking wood heat homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Borrowed with permission (and not returned). "Borrowed" without permission... not soon, or ever, retrieved. Not to mention a few things simply swiped. Our practice has come to be very similar to what Pearl described, but not just for spotting tools in the grass.

One story:  We had a young lady helping us with some tasks when there was too much for my wife & I to do. She also knew the people who own the homestead down the hill from us. Our wheelbarrow went missing one time, and a shovel & rake at another, and it turned the young lady had "borrowed" these without permission (I guess when we were briefly away from our place). And left them at the neighbors'... maybe she figured we were friends with those folks, so no request would be necessary to put to us. I think the non-return was maybe just absent-mindedness, or perhaps she was stoned while working at the neighbors.

We'd have recognized our wheelbarrow, no doubt about it.  Thank goodness we'd been painting a red stripe (in most cases, about 5" wide) around tool handles. Because it would have been harder, with certainty, to identify & claim the old shovel & rake without that bright-red stripe. So retrieving the tools, and not raising the hackles of the neighbors, was actually a simple matter.
 
pollinator
Posts: 2066
Location: Meppel (Drenthe, the Netherlands)
640
hugelkultur dog forest garden urban cooking bike
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It may seem strange, because I am living on my own, no-one else here to blame, and still I find tools at places where they do not belong. And sometimes it takes a long time before I find them, because they are not where they belong! No, it isn't strange, it's just me being a chaotic person
 
Inge Leonora-den Ouden
pollinator
Posts: 2066
Location: Meppel (Drenthe, the Netherlands)
640
hugelkultur dog forest garden urban cooking bike
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Tape measures? I've got at least three, so probably I'll find one if I need one
 
Eric Hanson
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In my bachelor days, all my tools fit into a toolbox, 2 tool cases plus a corded drill that had no case.  I knew where all my tools were and I kept them in a utility room on my first (and only) floor of my home.  I did not keep them outside in a shed or garage.  And as money was very tight then, my tool supply covered the basics nicely but not a lot more.

Towards the end of my bachelor years I did get a larger tool box for a modestly growing supply of tools, but all the hand tools stayed in one container.

Then I got married.

Don’t get me wrong, it was one of the best decisions of my life, right up with having kids—really all a part of the same package.  But my wife’s idea of tool storage and mine were two different ideas.  Her father always kept his tools outside in the garage and I always thought it best to keep them inside where the air was drier (humid place here).  Also, my tool collection grew—we had a much larger budget, a brand new house and I love getting tools as gifts.  Life was pretty good.  We eventually moved to our forever home, had 2 kids and my tools for the most part got pushed to the basement.  But the tool supply kept growing.

As the kids got older, *they* found uses for my tools, which is great, I am glad they are learning some tool basics.  But putting them away was not a skill they learned well, probably inherited from me.  I have a basement shop, but really it is a disorganized tool-and-construction-scrap-item closet.  Tools are theoretically located there, but once removed, they don’t necessarily always go back.  Our oldest child moved off to college and while cleaning through a *LOT* of assorted stuff (she really likes to assemble computers from the parts of old computers—we call them frankencomputers) we found a bunch of tools, especially screwdrivers, that had gone missing.

I am finally starting to get some organization to my tool system.  It certainly is not as simple as it was in my bachelor years, but things are slowly coming together.  Tools do wander off, but it seems like the fewer people who “borrow” tools, the easier they are to find.  My crowbar being a great example.

At any rate it is good to know that I am not the only person who has wandering tools out there.

Eric
 
Posts: 2
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Since I usually am earning money with tools I often include 10% of tools used in estimate. 1 time in a year equals depreciated value. 10 times and I’ve covered the loss. If I can keep/use for 10 years I can replace 10 times or pocket for a new purchase. Crowbar loss is expensive loss since it has a long shelf life potential for income. Probably why they go away. Best Buy would/is garage sales and pawn shops. Look lower it’s heavy and usually is lowered by gravity(laying down so store upright). Think about a sign out sheet to friends and coworkers. Pay employees well and lose less tools.
 
Eric Hanson
gardener
Posts: 3857
Location: Southern Illinois
735
transportation cat dog fungi trees building writing rocket stoves woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Scott,

I don’t really earn money with my tools.  Aside from work around the home, the only “income” I make is money not spent hiring out a project—I bought my 1st 18 volt tool set for building a deck (and I still have most of that set, though the batteries have long since died).

I imagine that if I were making money with my tools I would have a much better organization system than at present.  A further issue I have is that my tools are organized—such as they are—in my basement away from projects.  It’s just so easy to not put tools away, but that’s my fault.
 
A berm makes a great wind break. And we all like to break wind once in a while. Like this tiny ad:
Pre-order for "Tour of Wheaton Labs, the Movie!"
https://permies.com/w/tour
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic