The Most Important Types of Power Tools

Tough and rugged, power tools are widely beloved contraptions that are the typical weapon of choice across the professions when you absolutely positively have to get a job done. By definition, it’s a tool that’s powered by an additional source, like gas, electricity, or compressed air. Some unconventional power sources utilized to make power tools come alive would also include steam engines and even wind power! (the tools powered by human strength are, therefore, called hand tools)

When it comes to the use of power tools, you can see them on work in many different environments, mostly those pertaining to industry and housework. In industry, you may encounter elaborate heavy-duty appliances doing their share of work in drilling, cutting, mixing and many other tasks. As for their housework use, perhaps the best examples would be leaf blowers and lawnmowers.

Generally speaking, the most important distinction with power tools is that between stationary and portable, meaning- handheld. The stationary ones are typically heavy and not easily carried about, but they deliver in the department of precision and speed of work. The portable ones, on the other hand, are significantly more convenient as you can carry them around with you everywhere, even though they are not as powerful as the stationary ones.

That being said, there are as many power tools as there are jobs that require an extra helping hand of a powered-up machine, so  in order to pay homage to these exquisite contraptions of hard work and toughness, we’ve assembled a list of the most important ones! In our opinion, that is.

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Chainsaw

Whether it’s for purposes of cutting through a ton of logs fresh off a truck or filming a horror film with some teenagers, having a chainsaw lying around can really be a lifesaver. (not necessarily in the latter case, though) It’s rather simple design and a powerful cutting force delivered by its chain make it a perfect tool for any cutting job that’s got to do with trees. Typically, it’s used for felling, limbing, pruning or simply gathering some firewood, but you can also see it in action in some of the less conventional uses- like in art! Experienced loggers have developed an art for where they use their chainsaws to carve into stumps and create stunning pieces of the woodwork on the spot.

Lathe

Used in many different trades including heavy metalworking, wood-processing, and even pottery-making, a Lathe is a power tool with a simple enough design. It features a sturdy axis on which you mount a piece of material you’d like to shape. Generally, the end result of using a lathe should be a perfectly-rounded symmetrical product. Therefore, these power tools come in all shapes and sizes as they need to accommodate for the necessities of many different materials such as metal, wood, or glass. The long line of parts you can make using one of these appliances includes gun barrels, cue sticks, table legs, bowls, crankshafts and even some musical instruments. Everything that’s rounded pretty much.

Lawn Mower

Featuring a widely recognizable design with a motor, four wheels and an upwards pointed steering stick, a lawn mower is a simple piece of gardening machinery you just can’t go without. It works in quite a simple fashion as well. You choose the desired height of the grass you’d like to cut by adjusting the wheels accordingly, start the engine, and Bob’s your uncle! Usually, the power source is a small single cylinder engine, but electric ones are also commonly found. You can stumble across some battery-powered robotic lawn mowers, but they are not used that often. When it comes to blade configuration, you can find models with a single or a cutting bar/multiple blades.

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Leaf Blower

Another gardening-related entry on this list comes in the shape of a ghost-entrapping gun from Ghostbusters. A leaf blower is a simple enough appliance which does pretty much exclusively what its name suggests- blows leaves. It functions on a principle of pushing out pressurized air. This effect is produced by an electrically- or gasoline-powered motor  powering up the inbuilt fan. So, the opposite of a vacuum cleaner. Usually, the entire contraption is fashioned to be easily carried on your back in the shape of a backpack, but some more elaborate constructions exist, too, like the one that is mounted on a mini shaft with wheels.

Hedge Trimmer

To complete the arsenal of gardening power tools, we’ve included the hedge trimmer as well. Also going by the names such as the bush trimmer, or shrub trimmer, this gardening utensil is a gharial-looking tool that is used for trimming excess from hedges and bushes. They usually come in two versions- electric- and gasoline-powered. For the most part, electric ones are preferred over the gas ones due for personal use, because they are lighter and easier to move around. For professional gardening, however, gasoline-powered versions are often used because they are more  powerful. Also, there are models with inbuilt batteries, but they are probably the least powerful solution, so they’re best used for fine trimmings.

Food Processor

Swinging over to some kitchen matters, we have a utensil that makes preparing food significantly easier for people around the world. A food processor is a simple electric device that allows you to skip the annoying tasks of cutting onions and carrots. And cauliflower for good measure. Its functions include repetitive processes such as cutting, shredding, slicing and chopping, and the list of fruits and vegetables you can chuck in it and shred to smithereens is virtually endless. Also, you can use it to mix or knead dough if you can’t be bothered to do it yourself! A nifty little contraption to have around.

Drill

A drill is a power tool that works as simply as it is called. The drill itself usually features an electric motor which makes the front part rotate at several different speeds. The part that actually comes in contact with the material in question, however, is the drill bit, typically used for boring holes. Drills are used in woodworking, metalworking, as well as for some other, perhaps less expected tasks, such as medicine.

All in all, whether it’s clearing up your backyard, mixing up a perfect salad in no time, or boring a hole in a wall to hang a picture, power tools will be your best friend, as long as you use them properly and clean them up once in awhile. Whatever you need to get done, chances are, there’s a power tool that would be just perfect for the occasion!