Top innovative new hand and power tools on the market

By James Pollard

It’s time for our annual collection of the most innovative new hand and power tools on the market to help you get the job done faster and safer.

Power tools

Skil Multivolt four-in. clamp fan

MODEL: FN0400D-00
We all know that the snow will eventually go away, and when the heat returns, you’ll be glad you added this portable, clamping fan to your collection. Powered by Skil’s 12- or 20-volt batteries, it puts out 200 CFM, shoots out breezes of 11 mph (18 kph) and runs up to 14 hours on one charge. At less than $60, it’s easy to add comfort to your day.

Makita 80-volt concrete saw

Makita now has a line of 80-volt cordless tools that are powered by two of its 40-volt batteries. One is this 15-in. wet/dry power cutter. It’s packed with a number of tech features to protect the tool and its user, including a current limiter to accidental overloads from damaging the motor and a kickback sensor that automatically shuts it down. The kit comes with four batteries and a charger, or it’s available as a bare tool.

DeWalt 60-volt single stage snowblower

‘Tis the season to have to deal with last night’s snowfall before you can start the day’s job. Make light work of the task with DeWalt’s new 60-volt snowblower. With a seven-in. steel auger to break down wet or compact snow, the unit can clear 16 parking spots on one charge and throw the snow up to 40 ft. away. There’s an LED dashboard where you can select Eco Mode for longer battery life and a Max Power Mode for moving wet, heavy snow.

Milwaukee 18-volt half-in. hammer drill/driver

MODEL: 2704-22
Milwaukee’s latest half-in. hammer drill has landed on many “best of” lists, and the manufacturer itself pulls no punches claiming it to be “the most powerful 18-volt cordless drill on the market… and the most compact drill in its class.” The company backs that up with stats such as delivering up to 1,200 in. – pounds of torque and up to 2,000 RPM, making fast work of your drilling or driving jobs. The kit comes with a battery and charger, or it’s available as a bare tool.

Festool 36-volt cordless table saw

Festool claims that with its 36-volt cordless table saw, you’ll be
able to “produce shop-quality cuts on the jobsite.” This is achieved via digital adjustments that are accurate to within 1/256th of an inch. Make crosscuts up to 17-3/4 in. wide, 11-in.-wide rip cuts in stock up to 1 7/8 in. high, and bevels from -2 degrees to 47. It also connects to the company’s Systainer storage system.

DeWalt 60-volt cordless HEX breaker hammer

Breaking concrete doesn’t have to be backbreaking work, if you have the right tool for the job. DeWalt’s 41-pound breaker delivers up to 41 joules of impact energy, for fast and efficient concrete chipping, channel cutting, and slab demolition. It can connect wirelessly to DeWalt’s lineup of vacuums and dust collectors, and has built-in anti-vibration for user safety and comfort.

Ryobi 1,800-watt power station

Our jobsites are increasingly becoming portable, high-tech offices and we have an ever-growing need to charge batteries, phones and laptops. This award-winning 1,800-watt charging station is powered by up to eight 18-volt batteries. With that much charge in place, it can power a full-size fridge for up to 28 hours – or all your daily jobsite needs. There’s an LED screen and Bluetooth connectivity to monitor charge levels. It can also connect to a portable solar panel for charging, and can be used indoors or outdoors.

Hand tools

Wera nine-piece L-key set

MODEL: 3950/9
While you probably refer to these tools as “Allen” keys, that’s a now-ubiquitous brand name (such as Kleenex for tissue or Band-Aid for a bandage). Wera, wisely, uses the generic term L-key for its stainless steel and corrosion-resistant BlackLaser sets. These durable tools are colour-coded to help you easily spot the one you’re looking for. The coloured sleeves also improve grip, particularly with the smaller keys. Available in metric and imperial in varying sizes, all sets come in a carrying case.

Bessey rotating trigger clamp

Have you ever found yourself in the frustrating situation of trying to unsuccessfully get a clamp in place in tight quarters? Bessy’s
patent-pending clamp will help you get past that hurdle with a handle that rotates 360 degrees around the rail. You can also rotate the handle out of the way for scenarios where you’re need multiple clamps in sequence. Available in five sizes ranging from six to 36 in.

Customer service 101

Leave your jobsite clean and your customers happy by packing this cleaning kit.
• Ditch the dusty, oil-stained drop sheets for some rubberized mats that roll up for easy storage.
• At the end of the day sweep up nails, screws and other bits of metal debris with a magnetic broom.
• You can never have too many clean rags to wipe
up spills and catch drips. Watch for them to
go on sale and stock up.