These days, a lot of our devices just keep getting more complicated. Our phones are actually more powerful than the computers the Apollo astronauts had at their disposal when they went to the moon. Our cars are so full of advanced electronics that anything more complex than replacing a tire or changing the oil is generally beyond the average person's capability.
That's why it's so lovely that some devices don't change so quickly. The tools of carpentry in particular are so old that you could recognize version of them from thousands of years ago. Plumbing is somewhat newer (though the Romans had under-floor heating using hot water in pipes), but the basics haven't really shifted a lot since the Victorian era, when indoor plumbing became common in modern homes. Electricians have to update what they do as fire codes and other regulations change, but even as the source of the energy that lights our homes may change - from coal, to oil, to natural gas, to nuclear and these days, to solar - the basics of what makes a circuit work are as they ever were. That means the outlines of the tools don't shift so quickly.
All of this means you'd know their tools if you saw them... or would you?
These are pliers, and they're actually used by everyone - but not for this purpose. Electricians use them for stripping wires all the time, however!
Plumbers often need to trim pipes to the right size for specific houses. This adjustable tube cutter is designed to do just that!
This is a test light. You use it to check whether a circuit is working when you can't test the thing you're actually trying to light up!
This is a pipe cutter and it's essential for plumbers. It's actually not entirely dissimilar to what a doctor might do if you get a blockage in your intestine.
It's not impossible that a carpenter or electrician might need some metal bent, but they generally wouldn't do it themselves. A plumber, on the other hand, will have a blowtorch in order to be able to bend smaller pipes by first softening them.
The stop cock key is used by a plumber to shut off water to the house itself. This means the plumber can work without the pipes leaking all over him and everything you own!
Sometimes you need to find a cable in an area you cannot see into, or pull it through a space too small for your hands. This fish stick is designed to let you pull the cable where you cannot reach or see.
The multimeter is better than the ordinardy volt meter. That's because it measures voltage, current and resistance all at once.
This jigsaw is very useful if you are a carpenter. While stone masons do use saws, they could not get much out of this one, however, as it only goes through slim pieces of wood.
This isn't the one you use to get onto the internet. This is what a carpenter uses to make the edges pretty on a table or other item.
This cable lubricant is special, as it is fully non-conductive and does not drip. That means it is very safe for helping to get wires along conduit that is long or has several bends in it.
This is the tool of an electrician. It is for cutting through copper cables. What's clever about it is the ratchet system whereby you can move it tigher one click at a time, without worrying that it will slip.
This is a radiator key. It is designed to open the valve so that water can come out of your radiator. That means you can check levels and be sure that there is not an air bubble trapped in the pipes.
This tick tester is also known as a glow meter or a sniffer. It detects electrical current in a circuit without you having to make any contact, which is much safer for many circuits.
Carpenters are not the only ones who use a vice, but they're the only ones in this question. Electricians and plumbers might use clamps to hold things in place.
It's easy to turn all your own circuit breakers off until you isolate the right one, but you can't do that in an office building. This device helps you figure out which one isn't working without making potentially hundreds of people mad at you!
This is a jack, and mechanics use it to raise your car so they can get at the underside or change a tire. It's not for electricians, plumbers or carpenters!
This nail gun is a very dangerous tool in the wrong hands! It can shoot a nail deep into wood - though it could probably also go into an electrical circuit or scratch up your sink, a carpenter is the only person you want using it near you!
This is a tone generator. It serves a similar purpose to a voltage detector, but instead of lighting up it makes a sound. If you have an electronic keyboard, it probably has similar insides!
This device is called a deburrer. It's designed to smooth out the surface of metal objects. Deburring is a major cost in manufacturing, and if your pipes are not properly deburred, you will get blockages all the time.
This clawed-looking device is for pulling nails out of things. Most hammers have one on the other side of the head from the side you used to knock in the nail in the first place!
This is actually not a carpenter's tool, though it looks like one as it is a saw. A reciprocating saw is largely used to cut conduit, which as we've seen is used to trail cables or bundles of cables around buildings.
This is a plunger, of course - we're giving you an easy one to reward you for your performance so far! A plumber uses this to break up and dislodge basic blockages. It's something you should own and know how to use, as it will spare you a lot of misery.
The main occupational hazard for an electrician is being zapped. This handy screwdriver has a little outfit on that saves its owner from that fate.
There are tubes in your building that carry electrical wires about the place, called conduit. If you cut them with regular tools, you can end up with jagged and thus dangerous edges. A reamer will ensure this doesn't happen.
This is the ultimate tool in carpentry! You can make one yourself and use it to test whether your vertical lines are on the square or not.
This is not for carpenters, electricians or plumbers. It's for someone else; a stonemason or other type of craftsman who needs to take out a section of wall. He may well be working with all the others, though!
This is a great device to help you figure out where to put say, a light fixture, when you can't mark up the ceiling easily. You map it on the floor and use the laser to show you where to put your circuitry.
This is a stud finder. You run it along the wall and it will beep when it finds the supporting struts. This helps you know where you can drill, and where you will hit something.
A plumber uses this so that when you flush the toilet, the water goes into the pipe. If it breaks, water will leak all over your floor. Trust us, it's not pretty.
This is four-post hoist and you use it to lift up a car. It's thus used by a mechanic, not a plumber, electrician or carpenter.
A lathe is used to smooth the surface once your item is finished and ready to be varnished or painted. It takes the rough parts off with more vehemence than sanding and more precision than sawing.
This highly speicalized device is used for stripping wires that have a metallic casing. You cannot simply clip their casing safely, and the roto split will help you do it.
This is a pipe bender. It's used for when the pre-made pipe sections don't fit, and you need to curve or straighten them just a little to get them in.
This serves a similar purpose to our carpenter's fish sticks from earlier. It's about being able to apply pressure and reach where you cannot see.
Carpenters often mark in chalk before they cut. This way they don't have to make a permanent mark or risk losing sight of the right spot.
This is a lot like our fish stick from earlier; it's used to get wires through tricky holes. The difference is that it can be very long and comes on a wheel to keep it neat.
This is an electrician's knife. Sometimes you need to cut things when you work as an electrician, and it helps if you have a knife that won't cause a spark or shock you when you do!
Carpenters use this device that is called a set square. It's also used by stonemasons and designers, but in this case, we're all about the carpenters!