General Purpose Tools

Cool Tools Digital Book


Cheap PDF of possibilities

Nine years ago, I somehow condensed the best reviews from this website into a 470-page book called Cool Tools. I thought of this book as the Best of Cool Tools, at least as far as 2013, when it was published. But making the book was so much work to compile, edit, design, and print, that I could not convince myself to keep revising it. So now, 9 years later, it is out of print.

But I would say at least 90% of the information in it is still useful and valid, if you can find a copy. Cool Tools is a catalog of possibilities, of things you can do yourself, if you have the right tools. To be honest, a lot of this kind of information can now be found on YouTube, if you are lucky enough to find it. On the other hand, I have rounded a spectrum of possible tools into this one handy book between two covers.

As readers of this site understand, my definition of tools is very broad. Tools include hand tools, maps, how-to books, vehicles, software, specialized devices, gizmos, websites — anything useful. The book covers 1,500 different tools, explaining why each one is great, and what its benefits are. About 20% of the tools and materials in the book do NOT appear on this website; I created them specifically for the book.

A few years ago Amazon volunteered to create a Kindle version of this catalog. Sadly, it does not work very well (don’t buy it) and it discouraged me from making an ebook out of it. But in recent years most people have gotten used to reading PDFs so I am releasing a simple PDF version of the whole oversized 470-page book. You can download it for $3.99. I recommend you read it on a screen larger than a phone.

For those who live outside of Amazon’s prime zone, this digital version will make the book accessible. For those who already own the paper book, this gives you a rapid search version, which is what I use it for! It is not the same vibe as browsing through the huge pages of the original analog version, but it’s still useful as a tool.


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