Dads are heroes. They work all week, tend to their children, and always manage to squeeze in a round of golf or trip to the pub to drown their sorrows as their football team slip up to that underrated, mid-table side at the weekend.
But every modern dad is also expected to be the handyman around house, fixing shelves, building flat-pack furniture, and mending the guttering. He is expected to know why the digibox wont pick up Channel 5 when it’s raining outside, and instantly be able to tell what’s wrong with the hoover.
There is no problem too big that cannot be fixed with simple brute force. The fabled “Birmingham screwdriver” approach even negates, in some cases, the need for nails.
That flat-pack desk the DIY dad has spent half of Sunday afternoon attempting to build, whilst disregarding entirely the instructions, can in many cases be stuck together with a bit of hammering around the edges.
And if it does collapse because you only had the patience to properly screw in a handful of the correct nuts and bolts, you can always blame whoever was sat there for putting too much stuff on it.
2. Chicken Wire
Granted, a toolbox that can fit a roll of chicken wire inside is going to be more of a tool annex, but chicken wire offers a quick fix for many solutions.
When the nextdoor neighbours dog discovers a gap in between the mud and dog fencing at the bottom of your garden, chicken wire is a great way to stop any future soiling of your perfect lawn.
Another problem any DIY dad will face is the kids unrelenting desire for pets. If you reach a compromise and agree to a small mammal, namely a rabbit or guinea pig, that chicken wire will make a perfect (make-do) run for them.
You could even get technical and order some stainless steel screws online to avoid any rust, but more than likely you will find a hammer and a handful of nails, often found in the man draw, will suffice.
Aside from being another item of hardware that will have to sit beside the chicken wire in your new tool annex, every DIY dad will require a shovel at some point in his part-time building career.
The main advantage of a shovel is that it acts as an all-in-one tool for gardening, which every DIY dad will be expected to turn their hand to in the summer months.
Weeding, shaping the flower beds and digging that small pond can all be achieved with one handy shovel, with minimum effort and cost.
And lastly (and slightly creepily), if you did end up using that chicken wire to build a run for some small mammals, at some point those pets will reach the end of their days.
The DIY dad is expected to create the perfect send-off for fluffy et al, which usually involves shovelling a small grave at the end of the garden whilst the kids make a small cross out of twigs to mark the spot.
4. Masking Tape
Masking tape (or duct tape for our American friends) can be used for everything – and I mean everything.
That animal run wont even needs nails if you use enough masking tape. The favourite sofa that oozes its innards can be patched up with masking tape – and for packing up boxes of old rubbish that cant be thrown away for “sentimental reasons”, masking tape comes in handy when putting some old Walkers crisps boxes back together before being tossed into the shed (or tool annex, whichever you prefer).
And if you run out of sellotape at Christmas, who says you cant use masking tape to wrap the presents up?!
5. Spirit Level
The no.1 game for all DIY dads – the spirit level.
As well as proving to the family that the wobbly shelves you put up are fine because they are at least straight, the spirit level is a brilliant boredom saving appliance.
How level is this mug with my tea in? And how level is my pool table? They even have spirit levels on smartphones now. It wouldn’t surprise me if they are listed under “games” in the app store.
- License: Royalty Free or iStock source: http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-photo-18587626-carpenter-santa-claus.php
Arthur Wilson is a writer from Manchester, talking all things technology, sport, lifestyle and DIY.