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Every family has one. You know, that person that's always making things and fixing things. The one that people turn to when they want something repaired or a job done.
Maybe that person is you!
Well, it doesn't matter if it's you, or it's a friend, family member, or loved one, here's a compilation of the best gift ideas for people who like to make and fix things.
From basics like screwdrivers to advanced items such as 3D printers, this list is perfect for both those starting out on their repair journey, to those old hands who have been at it for years.
Let's dive in!
For the avid DIYer, below is a selection of the best gift ideas that I found for 2023.
Having a decent multimeter is a must, with safety and ease of use being at the top of the list.
A clamp meter offers a great deal of versatility -- you have probes for measuring voltages, continuity, and resistance, and a clamp with offers a no-contact way to measure the current going through cables.
Using screwdrivers to open devices? Stop! Get a proper pry tool, and pry tools don't get any better than the iSesamo Opening Tool. Thin enough to fit into the smallest gaps, tough enough to last for years, and yet supple enough to reduce the amount of damage made when opening a device.
There are a lot of clones of the iSesamo out there, and I've tried many of them, but none come close to the quality and durability of the iSesamo.
This kit is perfect for both those who want a starter toolkit that's specially designed for modern gadgets such as smartphones and laptops and professionals who need tools that can withstand daily use for years.
The iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit is one of the best tech toolkits available, and I've been using one for many years and it's still as good as new!
A 3D printer has become a must-have for the DIYer and fixer to fabricate parts and components. There's a whole universe out there of parts that have already been designed by others ready to print, and if it hasn't already been designed, then you can design and print your own parts.
It's modern-day magic!
But not all 3D printers are made equal! If you are going to be relying on your 3D printer, then you need to get one that's not only easy to use but is also reliable and outputs decent-quality prints. This is what you get from the Creality Ender 3 V2 Upgraded 3D printer.
I used to think that thermal cameras were a bit of a gimmick. One of those tools that you'd "ooooh" and "ahhh" over a few times and then forget about.
Nothing could be further from the truth! Being able to "see" the heat given off by things is a true superpower!
I turn to my thermal cameras all the time, for everything from finding faulty components, checking that HVAC systems are working properly, checking for overheating devices, and much more. And when buying the Flir you're sure you're getting one of the best thermal cameras available.
My eyes aren't what they used to be. Well, to be honest, my eyes were never that good, but I managed. Now I'm finding doing tasks that involve small things to be a bit problematic, it was time to do something about it.
This head-mounted magnifier features three lenses -- a fixed 1.9x stereo lens, a drop-down 1.9x stereo lens, and a 4.5x loupe -- and twin LEDs that put the light where you want it!
Break a screw or bolt and you can be in for a real headache. While there are many ways to remove a broken fastener, the easiest way is to use screw extracting pliers to grip whatever remains and twist it out.
These pliers are the best I've used for gripping. If anything can get a grip on a broken or worn fastener, then it's these Japanese-engineered pliers.
This is the perfect toolkit for people who work on things that are bigger than smartphones and laptops. Things like PCs or TVs or white goods such as washing machines.
This kit contains 112 bits designed to tackle pretty much every fastener you're likely to come across when fixing electronic devices in both 4mm and 1/4-inch bit sizes, along with with two premium anodized aluminum driver handles to hold these bits while in use.
Mouldable glue is like a cross between an adhesive and insulating tape, and it can be used for all sorts of repairs and small fabrication tasks.
The uses for Sugru are close to unlimited -- everything from fixing frayed cords to creating new on-skid feet for laptops to repairing broken cases.
This is a must-have in any toolkit!
All you need to create a workspace is a silicone mat! Not only do these mats protect the surface underneath from heat damage when soldering, but is also helps to keep the workspace organised and tidy.
And when done, the mat can be rolled away and put into a toolbag!
Put an end to trailing extension cables all over the place and take the power you need with you. The power station is the new gasoline generator, but comes with a lot of benefits -- power stations are quiet, can be used indoors, don't need gasoline, and don't need regular maintenance.
When you are buying a power station, one of the most important things to bear in mind is to make sure that it offers enough power for your needs -- and they don't come much more powerful than the Bluetti AC200MAX 2048Wh Power Station!
Fixers come across corrosion all the time. One of the most common being battery terminals after a battery has leaked.
A fiberglass scratch brush makes short work of cleaning corrosion, easily getting into nooks and crannies, and doesn't use any solvents or chamicals.
Below are five DIY and tool deals I found happening right now.
The phrase "buy cheap, buy twice" is never as true as when applied to tools. Good quality tools can make the difference between being able to repair a device, and breaking something even more.
When I recommend a tool, I'm recommending tools that I've used and found to do what the manufacturer claims they do. I look for quality, value for money, and durability.
I don't just review things, I actually use them. Some of the items have been used for a few months, and some for many years.
I also look at consumer reviews for anything that I might have missed -- there's nothing like being able to see what hundreds or even thousands of people think of a tool or gadget.
It depends -- on the iPhone you have and your skill level -- but a good start is the iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit. This has all the screwdrivers you need, and even a tool to help you separate the display from the body.
For a complete rundown of the tools you need for a job, I recommend taking a look at iFixit's repair guides. These will not only walk you through the job but also what tools and parts you need.
In short, no. People used to worry about the magnet damaging hard drives, but the magnets in screwdrivers are so weak as to not be a problem.
I find the convenience of having a magnetic screwdriver that can hold the fastener to be really useful -- especially when dealing with tiny fasteners that could vanish into the depths of a gadget if you were to drop it!
The biggest difference between resin and filament 3D printing is quality.
Resin printers output really smooth, really detailed prints that are great for highly detailed models and production-quality parts.
If you're OK with a print that looks a bit rougher, then go with a filament printer -- not only are the prints faster to output, but they are also cheaper. Also, if the power goes out, a filament printer can pick up where it left off -- which means you don't waste time and filament.
ZDNET experts rounded up the overall best tech gifts of 2023.
But gifts can come in all shapes and sizes, so we also rounded up the best gifts by category, price, and retailer -- plus, the hottest tech toys for kids in 2023.
Gifts by category
Gifts by price
Gifts by retailer
Gifts for kids