San Diego Union - Tribune

Tools, tips, treasures for garage geeks

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Circle butt? Waffle butt? Who among us DIYers hasn’t pulled up a milk crate or sat on an upside down five-gallon bucket to work on our vehicles?

It may be a dirty job, but we don’t have to endure those fleshy impressions with the cushy Sidekick Stool by Mychanic.

It is a quality piece with a husky steel frame that will support 450 pounds. The stool glides along the shop floor on 3-inch swiveling caster wheels and there are two drawers (with ball-bearing glides) and a removable tool rack to help keep the job’s tools at hand. Two flip-up and magnetic side trays are handy catchalls. The Sidekick measures 19.7-inches long by 14.6 inches wide and 15.7 inches tall (so it’s not a strain on knees to stand up.) The Sidekick Stool is on sale now at the company website, Mychanic.us, for $100 (before shipping and taxes), down from $119.

Mychanic was a new company to me and one that seems to rethink some old ideas for do-it-yourselfers. There is a limited choice now, including rechargeable lights and jumper cables, but more accessories are planned.

Here are two more I can recommend:

The Rechargeable MEK Light ($50) is lightweight and can be hung, hand held or it will stand on tripod legs. Its ultra-bright light (650 lumens) is a big help under the hood or down low in those dimly lit corners of your project. And it will be a savior for roadside repairs or camping.

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Jumper cables are a hassle, most of the time. They can be stiff to coil up and the alligator jaws can be flimsy and a struggle to connect. Not the Mychanic Jump & Drive Booster Reel.

These pliable “flatwire” cables (sold in two gauge sizes and cable lengths) are contained in a nifty stand and uncoil with an easy pull and then retract by a hand crank. One side of the cable stand is red, symbolizing the positive connection, and the other side is black for negative, with directions printed on the stand. The copper-clad aluminum teeth bite cleanly on battery posts, either top or side. The four-gauge, 20-foot set is $50 and the six-gauge, 16-foot set is $40. As long as you recoil the cables, this set will always be an ever-ready, grab-and-go emergency aid.

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About Delk

DELK, founded in 2001, is a small, fast-growing and privately held Consumer Product Company based in Nashville, TN. They design and distribute products across the U.S. and in over nine countries abroad. The company’s marquee automotive brands include MYCHANIC® and FrostGuard® - winner of QVC's 2014 Product Concept of the Year.

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The company we keep.

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