Another year is about ready to wrap up as the holiday season is upon us. It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but it can be stressful for those in your life that are hard to buy for, especially those in the construction ideas. Our goal is to make that process easier for you or your loved one with our top picks for gifts every year!
We’ve been lucky enough to be able to use many of the tools on this list throughout the year and there are others on the list that we’d love to try because they have been highly regarded in reviews. It should be assumed that the tool manufacturers have given us these tools for free to test out, but none of them have paid to be a part of this gift guide. All tools on this list have been chosen by our staff, because we think they would be great gifts.
This post contains affiliate links, which help us earn a small commission for the things that you buy. The prices in the links are exactly the same as they would be normally and we appreciate your support!
Ultimate Construction Holiday Gift Guide 2018
Construction workers don't have the luxury of working inside in perfect conditions. Rain, snow, grease, and mud make it extremely difficult to keep notes, which are a very important task in the industry. Rite in the Rain notebooks each contain 50 sheets and won't break down in tough jobsite conditions. It will even survive an accidental ride in the washing machine.
Be sure to also pick up an all-weather pen, like the Fisher Space Pen ($17.06 on Amazon), so you'll be able to write on the notebook in wet conditions, as well.
Table Saw Dust Bag
This is honestly one of the best purchases I’ve made and it’s so inexpensive. Table saws are essential on many jobsites and workshops, but dust collection can be an issue. If you don’t have an extensive dust collection system or don’t want to deal with the extra noise of a vacuum, this Bosch table saw dust bag is a no brainer. I’ve been using it on my Milwaukee M18 cordless table saw and it collects probably 80-90% of the dust
On a construction site, communication is key. Like we mentioned in the Rite in the Rain part above, jobsites don't treat traditional paper very kindly. Post-it notes are the lifeblood for some contractors, who use them to lay out schedules or leave notes throughout the site or on drawings. Post-it's Extreme Notes can stick to any type of construction material and can handle harsh weather conditions. For under $5, they're worth a shot!
Everybody needs a tape measure, but you may not always want to carry around a bulky 25 footer with you. This new 10’ magnetic tape from Milwaukee will easily fit in your pocket or glove compartment, so it will be there when you need it. The on-board LED will come in handy, as well, for those low light situations. At $9, this is a no brainer stocking stuffer.
If you own a truck, you know that securing a load can be a huge hassle, especially if you’re used to dealing with bungee cords or traditional tiedowns. With Quickloaders, there will never be any additional slack flapping in the wind, because the excess retracts back into it. It’s so easy, you can do it one handed. There are various sizes and strengths available on their website, starting at around $20, but the QL4500 is a good one to start with, at around $40.
Some dads are extremely hard to buy for and you might not feel comfortable buying a tool for him. How about getting him a customized, handmade felt pennant for his work or home office? The pennants can be made in any shape or size, in many different colors, and with any words, which is great if you want a pennant for a business or just personal use.
My wife actually makes these and she's a very talented graphic designer. Check out the Uptown Heritage Company on etsy at https://www.etsy.com/shop/UptownHeritage
Custom Felt Pennant ($35+) | Uptown Heritage Company
High Efficiency Dust Separator, 12 in. dia, with 2.5 in hose, 36 in. long
Controlling dust is extremely important for long term health and cleanliness, but those who use a shop vac for regular cleanup know what a pain it is to clean out and replace the dust filter.
The dustopper fits onto any 5 gallon bucket and keeps 99% of the dust from getting to the filter. Instead, all the dust will collect inside the 5 gallon bucket, leaving the inside of your shop vac clean and running efficiently. The Dustopper is sold exclusively at Home Depot.
Your dad works hard, so it's important that his lunch and drinks stay cool and protected on the jobsite. The new Klein Tools Pro Tough 9-Quart Cooler can fit 11 cans inside, keeps items cool for up to 30 hours, and has a reasonable price at less than $45. There usually aren't picnic tables on the job, either, so Klein designed the box to be used as a seat and holds up to 300 pounds.
If you need a bigger capacity than 9-quarts, Kelin also offers a 17-quart cooler with the same benefits. It's priced just a little bit higher, at around $54 on Amazon.
Table saws are a must have tool for any carpenter or woodworker, but they can be pretty dangerous. The FeatherPro has hardened foam feathers, which keep your boards straight through the cut, greatly reducing the chance of kickback.
The FeatherPro can be used on the left or right side of the blade with it's reversible hardware. The feathers are non-marring and can be replaced if needed over time.
I purchased one of these for myself and it not only makes me feel safer, but the Featherpro makes it much easier to make a straight accurate cut.
Carbide tipped blades have recently changed the game and Diablo is widely considered to be at the forefront of the revolution. Carbide blades are much more expensive than traditional bi-metal blades, but they cut through material much faster and last much longer.
One of the most handy blades Diablo makes is the new carbide tipped pruning reciprocating saw blade, which can not only assist in the demolition of structures, but are a great for knocking off pesky tree branches.
I’ve used this blade on many tree branches and to make fast, rough cuts through lumber. It’s goes especially well with Milwaukee’s recent one-handed Hackzall release!
Craftsman Versastack 2-Drawer Unit
After being acquired by Stanley Black & Decker (SBD), Craftsman recently launched a brand new line of around 1,200 new tools. It already appears to be a good move for Craftsman tool lovers as it has breathed new life into the old Sears brand. One of the best buys in the new brand is the Versastack 2-drawer unit. Every tradesman or garage warrior needs additional storage and the Verstastack will not only stack on top of other Versastack units, but will also stack on DeWalt T-stack units, thanks to that aforementioned SBD acquisition. Only available at Lowe’s for around $30.
ISOtunes PRO Bluetooth Hearing Protector
Hearing protection is one of those things that construction workers ignore until years later when they realize they have lost a significant amount of their hearing. OSHA has strict hearing protection requirements to avoid hearing loss in workers, ISOtunes PRO Bluetooth Hearing Protectors offer a 27db noise reduction rating and they also limit the audio playback to 85db, keeping your dad below the actionable noise level.
Tablets are becoming an extremely important tool to carry around the jobsite. The biggest problem with that is that there is never a great place to put them down and it’s extremely unsafe to try to climb a ladder with one. One of the best solutions we’ve found is the Runner Universal Belt Clip for tablets. It attaches to any tablet case and hooks to your belt clip for easy, hands-free storage, like in the image below:
If the person on your list works on their feet all day, the greatest gift you can give them is a comfortable boot. Keen Utility really knocked it out of the park on their new San Jose boot, shying away from their traditional look and producing a classic leather boot. It’s lightweight, there’s virtually no break in period, and it looks great. Comes in either a soft or safety toe for around $150.
Having a versatile, compact tool in your arsenal can be the difference between hours of frustration and a hassle free finished product. The M12 3 inch cut off saw is one of those tools that you’ll absolutely love when you need it. It comes kitted with 3 different blades: one for metal, one for drywall or cement board, and a diamond blade for tile. The included dust shroud will help make cleanup a breeze, as well.
The DeWalt 20V jobsite fan is a super-efficient, powerful, and convenient option for the workshop or jobsite. Delivering up to 500 CFM of air, the fan can easily last a full day on one battery. If your battery runs out of juice, no worries, because it can also be plugged into an outlet through an extension cord. Rated IP54 for dust and water resistance, it’s ready to be put to work in tough conditions.
A favorite among the IG tool community, Truewerk’s T2 work pants buck the trend of stiff fabrics or the classic denim. Their rugged, waterproof exterior is equally matched with their soft and moisture wicking interior, giving you all day comfort along with durability.
With the ability to be opened or closed in less than three seconds, the DeWalt Folding Portable Workbench is a versatile worktop for a variety of different tasks. It’s equipped with clamping holes throughout to allow clamping of materials from any angle. The table is able to support up to 1,000 pound load capacity, so there won’t be many jobs it can’t handle.
I bought one of these from Tool Barn myself and it’s one of the best purchases I’ve made. Extra table space is at a premium on most jobsites and work shops and this one sets up so fast that you’ll wonder why you didn’t buy one years ago.
Grab it for $69 on Tool Barn
When it comes to jobsite lighting, nobody tops Milwaukee Tool. They have so many different options for different applications and I've had a great experience with all of the M18 line. One of my favorite new lights of theirs is the M18 Compact LED Radius and Flood Light because it's very small, provides a lot of light (2,200 Lumens on high), and is extremely versatile.
Not only can it switch between a 360 degree area light to a directional flood light with a click of a button, it can also hang from many different materials overhead with the use of the on-board metal hook. The light doesn't have to run on an 18-volt battery, it can also be powered by an extension cord for long term use.
You can grab the light at Ohio Power Tool for $149.99
Available for both men and women, the Milwaukee M12 Heated Axis Jacket is unlike any other heated jacket I’ve ever worn. It’s much less bulky than normal work jackets and it’s compressible for easier layering or if you need to store it in a bag. While it has reinforcement in high wear zones that protect from abrasion and tears, this isn’t going to be the most heavy duty jacket you can buy, but it’s extremely comfortable and it’s become one of my favorite jackets.
Just like Milwaukee excels with lights, Bosch excels in laser measures. The Bosch GLM400CL is the coolest laser I’ve ever used, because it solves a laser measure’s biggest problem: sunlight. With the use of a built-in camera and on-screen crosshairs, this measure lets users measure up to 400 feet away without the need to see where the laser is pointing. This laser will set you back around $300, so if you don’t want to spend that kind of cash, Bosch makes plenty of other great laser measures that won’t break the bank. Their GLM30 model has a 100’ range and can be found for around $70 currently.
Turns out, personal deep tissue massagers are all the rage among cross fit members and other high performance athletes. Construction workers work many long, hard hours and might also be able to benefit from that type of massage, especially around the knee, calf, and shoulders. Jigsaw Massage works on most t-shank jig saws, which, chances are, the person you’re buying for already has. Because you only need to buy the adapter, this option is much more affordable than the several hundred dollar units that are sold as all-in-one kits. Jigsaw Massage has several different heads, all priced around $50-60.