Category: Around The Home

Stanley 6 Piece Precision Screwdriver Set (66-052) Review

Stanley 6 Piece Precision Screwdriver Set (66-052) Amazon.co.uk or buy from Amazon.com

Stanley 6 Piece Precision Screwdriver Set (66-052)
Stanley 6 Piece Precision Screwdriver Set (66-052)

As a watch collector its always handy to have a selection of precision screwdrivers to perform general maintenance such as battery and strap replacements. I’ve had a few sets over the years – nothing fancy – definitely not any Swiss made jewellers tools. Its often said you get what you pay for, but with this Stanley set you really do get the best of both worlds. A quality tool for a low price.

Visually the 6 piece set is a bit garish. I mean, a bright yellow case and matching screwdrivers… really?! As an initial impression goes, and for something labelled “precision” its not that good – almost toy like. Upon closer inspection and in the hand they are anything but – and when your work area is covered in electronic “carnage” the screwdrivers instantly stand out (arhh… so that’s why they are yellow?!).

The bright yellow shafts certainly stand out!
The bright yellow shafts certainly stand out!

Sure, the shafts are plastic and not metal as is common with similar, more expensive screwdrivers, but they do have some well thought out features: the ergonomic comfort shape, black rubber ribbed grips and swivel head handles really do assist in the removal of stubborn screws.

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Fellowes P-48C Review

Fellowes P-48C Shredder

Fellowes P-48C Shredder
Fellowes P-48C Shredder

I’ve come to the conclusion that electrical products have an built in self destruct chip. A few weeks ago the iron packed in and now its the turn of our paper shredder. Is it a coincidence that both were purchased in 2006 and both expired in 2012? As conspiracies go its not exactly up there with the “grassy knoll” I know, but suspicious all the same.

I’m being a bit harsh on old shreddie. Six years of relentless use is not too bad. I guess not oiling the blades or stuffing plastic bubble wrap and equally non shredder type material down its mouth didn’t help! Nevertheless it chewed it all up and spat out strips with aplomb – albeit noisily – coupled by a few creaks and groans along the way.

There isn’t a huge selection of home shredders out there. So choosing a new one was based on looks (how shallow). Not how pretty it was nor how it would fit in with my study, no, it had to “look” durable for the job in hand. A lot of supermarkets sell non branded budget shredders and while the “under a tenner” models represent good value, I don’t see them lasting the course of time.

Our previous paper shredder was the Fellowes P70CM – a compact device with its own cool looking wire basket. In fact it was so cool, I almost kept the basket as a backup waste bin. Common sense prevailed and fearful of becoming one of those freaky hoarders you see on the TV it went to the tip.

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Russell Hobbs Steamglide Review

Russell Hobbs Steamglide 15081

Russell Hobss Steamglide 15081
Russell Hobss Steamglide 15081

Why is it that electrical products always seem to fail at the most inconvenient time? I fired up the venerable Philips iron and commenced, what I thought would be a two hour marathon. Five minutes in however the once reliable iron faded to a whimper. Were these wrinkles deceiving me? No steam was one thing, but no heat? Perhaps it was just a momentary glitch, a power cut? Nope. It WAS the iron. It had flattened its final shirt, died an honourable death and was destined for the electrical junkyard. RIP 2006-2012 not a bad innings I suppose.

My first port of call was Amazon. Gone are the days of heading into town traipsing around electrical retailers for hours upon end only to find no one stocks the model you are after. No, its all online elbow grease these days.

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Omron R7 Review

Omron R7 Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor

Omron R7
Omron R7

Having been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2011, it quickly became apparent that I would now be on some sort of lifelong roller coaster of medical appointments and never ending check ups. So it was only a matter of time before my blood pressure started getting looked at more closely. As the sort of bloke that never went to the doctors for anything, this new found medical condition really sucked, especially if like me you have a touch of white coat syndrome or “white coat hypertension” as its known in medical circles. Whereby the very thought of seeing the doc or nurse sends blood pressure soaring into the “above normal” range.

Anyway, to cut a long story short during my latest diabetes “review” my blood pressure was taken and as is normal for me, it was abnormal (or in the pre-hypertension range to be precise). I must confess its always been that way – whenever I visit the surgery or hospital – but it was decided that under the circumstances (ideally I need to be under 140/80) purchasing a blood pressure monitor would be a good idea to keep an eye on things before heading off down the pills route.

I’ve never been overly concerned about my blood pressure as I’m active and not overweight (I gave up smoking a long time ago, though I do use e-cigs!). I just get wound up when I visit medical establishments.

Browsing online it quickly became apparent there is a good selection of monitors out there. The docs used the Japanese brand Omron so I took a closer look at these. One that caught my eye was the Omron R7. This is a wrist style monitor and while “they” say they are not as accurate as upper arm monitors they are “probably” good enough to keep an eye on fluctuations. That was good enough for me!

Omron R7
Omron R7 up close

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