General Purpose Tools

Cool Tools 2016 Holiday Gift Guide: $10 or less


Favorite gift ideas for under $10

This month and next month, we are presenting a series of gift suggestions selected from the pages of Cool Tools: A Catalog of Possibilities (which itself makes a great gift), and from the website. This week: gifts for $10 or less

Thermos Stainless Steel Can Insulators ($10) are double-wall, stainless steel, vacuum-insulated coozies for 12-ounce beer or soda cans. They work on the same principle as regular Thermos bottles. I have been using them for years. — Karl Chwe

The Nitecore Tube ($10) is my go-to keychain flashlight after using many giveaway promotional products or $1 LED lights sold next to convenience store cash registers. The extremely light-weight rechargeable lithium-ion battery is quite a change from the expensive coin cells that made me unwilling to use other small lights. — Trace Gilton

The Stanley 12-Foot PowerLock Tape Rule ($10) fits comfortably in my left front pocket along with my loose change. I am never without it. Never. Unless I’m not wearing pants. — Bob Raiselis

The binding on Engineers Field Book ($6) holds up incredibly well to abuse, this is the point of failure I have found in most other small format notebooks. The covers are thick and hardy, and a lovely shade of orange — easy to spot when you’re hunting around a messy desk or studio. — Michael Lorsung

I’ve been using these Felt Picks (2 for $10) for more than 20 years as a semi-professional bass player. They are great for ukulele players, but using them for bass allows me to play with a pick (which is easier than using my fingers) but the sound created is “smooth” like finger plucking. — Andre

Want more? Check out our other 2016 gift picks as well as our 2015 Gift Guide, 2014 Gift Guide and our 2103 Gift Guide

-- Mark Frauenfelder 11/25/16

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