The first thing I’ve always done when I arrive on a site is roll out my cords from the meter loop to the day’s work area. Next, I roll out my nail guns from the compressor to the areas where they will be used. At the end of the day, the last thing I do is roll these same lines up and place them in my truck.
Up until about ten years ago, this was always a time-consuming task. If I didn’t make the effort to roll or braid these items neatly at pick-up, the next day’s roll-out would be a tangle of 10-ga. cords and 3/8-in. hoses. Then one day I met a fellow with an outfit similar to the one shown in the drawing. It took him only about two minutes to roll and store about 300 feet of cords and an equal length of air lines.
That evening, I made up my own reels using scrap 3/4-in. CDX plywood, 3-in. schedule-40 PVC pipe, and a used lazy-Susan bearing. The pipe winding core is affixed to the plywood discs by way of a couple of plugs that I cut from 2x stock with a hole saw. I countersank the screws that secure the pipe to the plugs to keep the edges of the screw heads from abrading the cords.
On my cord reel, shown here, I have a 4-way outlet with 100 ft. of 10-ga. cord attached permanently. I find that this is usually sufficient to get me from the meter loop to my work area. My other extensions are attached end to end and rolled up on top of the permanent cord. The 4-way outlet allows me to run two saws at my main area, and run two additional cords from that site to wherever they may be needed.
My hose reel simply has a hole in the top disc through which I pass the first hose end. This anchors the hose and keeps it from spinning on the core while 1 roll up 300 ft. of hoses connected end to end.
After nearly daily use, my original reels are still working well. The plywood discs have delaminated a bit and the bearings have become a little sloppy, but that’s okay. I wouldn’t want this work to get too easy.
Ric Winters, Georgetown, TX