Dig­i­tal DIY

Popular Mechanics (South Africa) - - Contents - BY BREN­DON PE T ERSEN

Do-it-your­self pro­jects seem like a great idea – un­til you start them and re­alise that maybe build­ing that enor­mous cas­tle was a bit more am­bi­tious than you’d an­tic­i­pated. We have rounded up eight of our favourite apps and web­sites to help you with any DIY project, no mat­ter the size. 1 [ Youtube

When it comes to tricky DIY pro­jects, one of your first ports of call should be Youtube. Not only can you find ex­cel­lent videos with tips, tricks and ad­vice on how to do spe­cific things, but you can also get in­spi­ra­tion to take on pro­jects you’d prob­a­bly never even thought of. Here are some of our favourite DIY chan­nels on Youtube:

Make: If you en­joy build­ing things out of me­tal, wood or pretty much any­thing else, then this is the chan­nel for you. With 1.6 mil­lion sub­scribers, Make is one of the best hard-core chan­nels on the site, fea­tur­ing a new project ev­ery Tues­day and show­cas­ing a new skill ev­ery y Thurs­day. y

I Like to Make Stuff: Mike Clagett’s chan­nel has ±2 mil­lion sub­scribers, and when you watch it, it’s easy to un­der­stand why. This fa­ther of four makes ev­ery­thing from fire pits to se­cret- door book­cases, and even ex­per­i­ments p with 3D print­ing.

The Sorry Girls: If you’re look­ing for some­thing more stylish and in­te­rior fo­cused, then be sure to visit The Sorry Girls. Kate and Becky do ev­ery­thing from fash­ion to home decor, us­ing cost-sav­ing ma­te­rial and tips. With 1.4 mil­lion sub­scribers, they def­i­nitely seem to be on to some­thing.

2 [ Tap mea­sure

If you have an IOS de­vice (an iphone or ipad) run­ning IOS 11 and up, you need to down­load this app. Tap mea­sure uses aug­mented re­al­ity and com­puter vi­sion to mea­sure spa­ces. You can hand­ily use it to cap­ture point-to-point mea­sure­ments, cre­ate a full 3D scan of your house and help you level any framed art­work, thanks to its vir­tual laser-level ca­pa­bil­i­ties.

Avail­able on the Ap­ple App Store as well as via tap­mea­sure.io.

[ Du­lux Visu­al­izer app 3

Have you ever seen a paint colour you ab­so­lutely loved, bought it and then dis­cov­ered that it doesn’t look the same on your y walls? Yeah, you’re not alone.

Du­lux has made an app that can solve this prob­lem for you. When you open the app for the first time, it asks you to select your favourite rooms from a va­ri­ety of images, which helps the app to de­ter­mine your favourite colour pal­ettes. These then be­come the ba­sis of your colour pal­ette op­tions, though you can eas­ily change colours if you’d like.

The real magic hap­pens in when you ‘cre­ate a new project’. Al­low the app to take pic­tures and video, and then select the colour you’re in­ter­ested in us­ing on your walls. Thanks to aug­mented re­al­ity, you’ll get a real-time view of what it will look like. If you like what you see, the app can help you find your clos­est Du­lux store.

It sounds quite sim­ple, but trust me, it will save you many colour- choice in­duced headaches.

Avail­able on An­droid and IOS.

4 [ Wik­i­how

If you’re a cit­i­zen of the in­ter­net, there’s a pretty p yg good chance you’ve al­ready heard of Wik­i­how. Started in 2005, the site of­fers over 190 000 how-to ar­ti­cles, and is avail­able in 17 lan­guages.

If you have a ques­tion about DIY, then some­one on Wik­i­how has the an­swer for you.

Avail­able as an app on An­droid and IOS, or on­line at wik­i­how.com.

5 [ ifixit

If you re­ally need to fig­ure out how to fix some­thing, es­pe­cially elec­tron­ics, get the ifixit app. The app is di­vided into sec­tions on com­puter hard­ware, Mac, PC, games con­soles and more. Se­lect­ing any one of these then brings you to a range of items within those cat­e­gories. For ex­am­ple, if you’ve se­lected Mac, you’ll then be able to choose from Mac Desk­top, Hard­ware or Lap­top. Keep se­lect­ing un­til you find the item you’re look­ing to re­pair. Images and a list of re­quired tools are in­cluded with most of the re­pair in­struc­tions.

Avail­able for An­droid and Win­dows de­vices.

6 [ Handy­man Cal­cu­la­tor

If you work in car­pen­try or con­struc­tion or you’re just busy with some­thing that needs its units con­verted (such as inches to me­tres, or ounces to grams), then the Handy­man Cal­cu­la­tor app is, well, handy. But that’s just the tip of the ice­berg, as the app con­tains dozens of cal­cu­la­tors and charts.

The free ver­sion is loaded with ads, and the user in­ter­face isn’t the great­est, but it’s a very use­ful app nonethe­less.

Avail­able on An­droid.

7 [ Helpout

A South African-made app, Helpout is the best way to find skilled elec­tri­cians, plumbers, handy-peo­ple and more in your area.

It lets you get quotes or re­quest emer­gency work, and you have the op­tion of choos­ing to pay via credit card or cash.

Helpout cur­rently works in Cape Town, Pre­to­ria, Joburg, Port El­iz­a­beth and Dur­ban.

Avail­able on An­droid and IOS.

8 [ Leroy Mer­lin

South African DIY home store Leroy Mer­lin has an ex­cel­lent on­line store where you can buy ev­ery­thing from kitchen equip­ment to paint, or even small ac­ces­sories for your house. The web­site in­cludes a Project Space, where peo­ple can show off their DIY pro­jects and ( hope­fully) pro­vide you with some in­spi­ra­tion for pro­jects of your own.

Our favourite sec­tion is the 3D Plan­ner, where you can cre­ate a full 3D plan of a house in­clud­ing doors, win­dows and stair­cases, and then dec­o­rate it once you’re done.

Head to leroymer­lin.co.za to try it out.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.