tool


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bad workers always blame their tools

If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. The football player blamed the overinflated ball for costing his team the game, but as they say, bad workers always blame their tools.
See also: always, bad, blame, tool, worker

a bad carpenter blames his tools

If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. The football player blamed the overinflated ball for costing his team the game, but as they say, a bad carpenter always blames his tools.
See also: bad, blame, tool

a bad workman always blames his tools

If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. The football player blamed the overinflated ball for costing his team the game, but as they say, a bad workman always blames his tools.
See also: always, bad, blame, tool, workman

a bad workman blames his tools

If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. When Mary blamed the oven for burning the turkey on Thanksgiving, her husband jokingly replied, "a bad workman always blames his tools."
See also: bad, blame, tool, workman

a poor craftsman blames his tools

If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. After John spent all day assembling his new desk only to discover it was lopsided, he immediately declared that the package must have contained the wrong pieces. His wife replied, "only poor craftsmen blame their tools, dear."
See also: blame, poor, tool

idle hands are the devil's tools

When one has nothing to do, one is more likely to get into trouble. When I'm off from school, my grandmother is always trying to get me out of the house, while reminding me that idle hands are the devil's tools.
See also: hand, idle, tool

down tools

To refuse to work, usually in an attempt to force improvement in one's working conditions. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Sir, I'm afraid the workers will down tools if we don't offer them a better contract.
See also: down, tool

the tools of the/(one's) trade

The specific tools used in a particular profession. If you want to become a painter, you have to familiarize yourself with the tools of the trade—which include more than just paintbrushes. As a reporter, the tools of my trade used to be a pencil and a pad of paper—but now technology has changed the game.
See also: of, tool, trade

not the sharpest tool in the shed

Not intelligent; dim-witted or prone to stupidity. His new boyfriend isn't the sharpest tool in the shed, but he's pretty good looking! I wasn't the sharpest tool in the shed in school, but I still managed to find a profession I loved.
See also: not, sharp, shed, tool

tool up

1. To become equipped with the tools, instruments, or machinery necessary for a task or one's job. Now that I'm all tooled up, I can finally get to work repairing this fence. After their lunch break ended, the workers started tooling up again.
2. To provide or equip someone with the tools, instruments, or machinery necessary for a task or one's job. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "tool" and "up." This is your first day, right? Head over to the foreman, he'll tool you up. We still need to tool up the new factory.
See also: tool, up

power tool

A tool that receives power other than from one's hands to operate, typically electricity. Make sure you keep your power tools locked up and out of sight of the children. If you're looking for something to get your aunt for Christmas, you can never go wrong with a good power tool. I think she's been eyeing up a new belt sander.
See also: power, tool

garden tool

vulgar slang A derogatory term for a woman considered promiscuous. The term plays on the meanings of "ho" (a derogatory slang term for a prostitute or woman considered promiscuous) and "hoe" (a tool used for tilling soil). You can't go home with him—he'll think you're a garden tool!
See also: garden, tool

Give us the tools, and we will finish the job.

Provide someone with that which they lack, and they will complete the task, often after others have abandoned or struggled with it. When my mother forgot about my limited budget and criticized my new apartment's lack of furniture, I simply held out my hand for money and said, "Give us the tools, and we will finish the job." Part of the building is still under construction because the company stopped funding it. Just give us the tools, and we will finish the job!
See also: and, finish, give, we, will

Give us the tools, and we will finish the job.

Prov. A reply to someone who wants you to do a task for which you lack the equipment. How am I supposed to wash the upstairs windows without a ladder? Give us the tools, and we will finish the job!
See also: and, finish, give, job, we, will

tool around (in something)

to go around in a car; to speed around in a car. Who is that kid tooling around in that souped-up car? Ann spends a lot of time tooling around in her new car.
See also: around, tool

tool something up

to equip a factory or production line with particular tools and machines, as for new products. The manager closed down the factory so she could tool it up for the new models. She tooled up the factory in record time.
See also: tool, up

tool up

to become equipped with tools. I need some money so I can tool up to do the job. The factory tooled up to make the new cars in only two weeks.
See also: tool, up

tool up

1. Provide the equipment for a particular task, as in Now that we're all tooled up let's repair the boat. This term originated in industry, where it is used for supplying a factory with machinery or other equipment for production. [1920s]
2. Arm oneself, as in They tooled up for their encounter with the rival gang. [Second half of 1900s]
See also: tool, up

down tools

or

lay down tools

BRITISH
If a group of people down tools or lay down tools, they stop working, often in order to protest about something. In August, the workers at this shipyard downed tools and went on strike for pay increases. Metal workers, engineers, waiters and cooks are among those who have laid down tools this week.
See also: down, tool

the tools of the trade

or

the tools of your trade

The tools of the trade or the tools of your trade are the skills and equipment that you need to do your job. He was never really a novelist, having no use for the usual tools of the trade such as plot and suspense. The peasants were deprived of their animals, the tools of their trade, and their land.
See also: of, tool, trade

a bad workman blames his tools

People say a bad workman blames his tools when someone says that something they have done is not of good quality because they did not have the correct things to do it with, to mean that it is really because they did not have enough skill. Complaining about the poor script, he added: `But they say a bad workman blames his tools.'
See also: bad, blame, tool, workman

down tools

stop work, typically as a form of industrial action. British informal
See also: down, tool

a bad workman blames his tools

someone who has done something badly will seek to lay the blame on the equipment rather than admit to their own lack of skill. proverb
A similar 13th-century French proverb observed mauveés ovriers ne trovera ja bon hostill , ‘bad workmen will never find a good tool’, and variants of this early saying can be found in English until the mid 19th century until the emergence of the modern version.
See also: bad, blame, tool, workman

ˌdown ˈtools

(British English) stop work, either at the end of the day or to go on strike: The workers have threatened to down tools as a protest against the dismissals.
See also: down, tool

the tools of the/your ˈtrade

the things you need to do your job: We are proud to make David’s boots, because they are the tools of his trade as a professional footballer.Ambulancemen now believe that helicopters are vital tools of the trade.
See also: of, tool, trade

tool up

v.
1. To equip oneself with tools or machinery needed for a particular job: The company tooled up to produce the new product.
2. To equip someone or something with tools or machinery needed for a particular job: The company still hasn't tooled up all of its new factories. The supplier travels to every workshop each week to tool them up.
3. To supply or equip oneself with weaponry; arm. Used chiefly in the passive: The gang was tooled up and ready for a fight.
See also: tool, up

garden tool

n. a whore; a hoe. (Contrived word play.) She’s nothing more than a garden tool.
See also: garden, tool

power tool

n. a student who studies most of the time. (An elaboration of tool.) Willard is a power tool if there ever was one. Studies most of the night.
See also: power, tool

tool

1. n. an earnest student. (see also power tool.) Of course he’s a tool. See the plastic liner in his pocket?
2. n. a dupe; someone who can be victimized easily. They were looking for some tool to drive the getaway car.
3. in. to speed along (in a car). (see also tool around.) We were tooling along at about seventy-five when the cop spotted us.

tool around

in. to drive or cruise around. (see also tool.) We tooled around for a while and then rented a horror movie.
See also: around, tool
References in periodicals archive ?
Along with FS Tool, a number of companies, including Royce//Ayr and Leitz, also offer dust extraction systems that move dust and chips away from the cutting tool, thereby reducing heat and "secondary collision damage to the tool." "Several tool manufacturers have recog-nized the benefits associated with improved dust extraction and collection, such as re-duced heat build-up, reduced tool damage, and reduced machine downtime due to tool chang-es and machine clean-up," said Mark Alster, regional manager at Leitz Tooling Systems LP.
According to Amona Buechler, owner of BestMassage, adding the Thai massage tools to BestMassage's stock made sense.
In order to optimize precision cutting tools it is critical that the tools are held accurately.
Then came the advent of significant software tools, such as Monte Carlo Simulation, and a new world of possibilities opened to planners.
Rinaldi also expects this tool to serve as a means of attracting additional business to the city as outside companies will use it to investigate the types of opportunities available, and what advantages and synergies can be offered.
Lastly, Hypermedia tools include the use of browsers, web-authoring tools, search engines, and information navigation and evaluation to facilitate the use of a variety of task strategies that engage students in meaningful interaction with content (Kitsantas & Dabbagh, 2004).
Aluminum and P20 tool steel aren't conductive enough.
Firms using trial balance software should be making the move to workpaper tools, which start with trial balance features and add capabilities for indexing other documents, such as Word and Excel files and scanned documents, to create an electronic equivalent of a firm's traditional paper workpaper files and binders.
You can make warranty claims at this site and often get new tools within 48 hours.
One of the most amazing examples is Grokker--the name is derived from the Robert Heinlein science fiction novel term "grok" that means to understand through intimate and exhaustive knowledge--originally a fee-based desktop tool that was recently released in a free Web-based version.
"Attachments allow a customer to turn a single base machine into a specialized tool for that particular function he is trying to accomplish." Uwe Kaush, product line manager for Stanley LaBounty, Two Harbor, Minn., says.
"Our tool is designed with a multipurpose jaw that requires no change-out," he says.
Professional communicators currently measure outputs rather than outcomes, and the majority rate the effectiveness of the tools they use as "uncertain" or only "somewhat effective," which suggests that there is a lot of scope, both for tool refinement and the education of measurers.
The CPA Marketing Tool Kit is now available free to all AICPA members through www.aicpa.org/cpamarketing/.