In brief

June 24th, 2015 12:17 pm

First Posted: 7/26/2013


Q: My niece travels frequently, and her suitcase lost a wheel. Where can she take it for repair?

A: Many shoe-repair shops no longer do luggage repair because replacement parts are available only in bulk, and the shops don’t get enough repair orders for any particular model to justify that investment, Bob Ferguson of Highland Shoe Repair said.

If your niece is handy, she can buy generic replacement wheels from It’s the retail arm of Ohio Travel Bag in Solon, a luggage-parts wholesaler.


SKIL’s NEW 360 Quick Select cordless screwdriver keeps a selection of bits at your fingertips.

The screwdriver has a rotating magazine that stores 12 of the most common drill bits, making the tool look a little like a revolver. The bit window is illuminated to make selection easier, and the tool also has a built-in LED light to illuminate the work surface.

The 360 Quick Select is only about the size of a glue gun and comes with a wall charger and a USB cable.

The screwdriver has a suggested retail price of $49.99 and is available at some Lowe’s, Home Depot and Sears stores, but call first to make sure it’s in stock. It can also be ordered on the Lowe’s and Home Depot websites and on

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Chances are your pull-down attic stairs are costing you money.

Uninsulated attic hatches are a common spot where heated air escapes into an attic. Owens Corning’s Attic Stairway Insulator makes it easy to stop that heat transfer.

The insulator is a tent made from insulating material and reflective foil that covers the stairway opening. It’s lightweight, so you can just move it aside when you need access to the attic and put it back when you leave.

The product will cover an opening up to 25 1/4 by 54 inches.

It’s available from building supply stores and home centers including Home Depot. You can find a retailer that carries Owens Corning products by using the store locator at, but call the store first to make sure it carries the stairway insulator.

Suggested retail price is $53.95.

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Lee Mothes has such fond memories of building a childhood clubhouse that he wants other kids to have the same experience. So he’s sharing his know-how in “Keep Out! Build Your Own Backyard Clubhouse.”

The book is a how-to guide that young people and adults alike can use to build a backyard getaway. He teaches basic construction techniques such as pounding nails and sawing boards, describes helpful tools and walks readers through all the steps involved in design and construction.

Mothes encourages kids to be creative, scrounge for materials and build their clubhouses themselves, maybe with a little help from an adult. But he also includes more complex instructions for a grown-up getaway that could be used for such purposes as a guest cottage, a studio or a potting shed.

“Keep Out!” is published by Storey Publishing and sells for $18.95 in softcover.

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Whether your room needs just a quick freshening or a total overhaul, you can find inspiration in Better Homes and Gardens’ “Makeovers: Room-by-Room Solutions.”

The book is stuffed with decorating ideas to steal. There are before-and-after photos of room makeovers, clever storage tips, paint color suggestions and much more to get your creative juices flowing. You’ll even find guidance on grouping artwork, making up an attractive bed and arranging items on a coffee table.

Some of the ideas use reclaimed or inexpensive elements, so you can add style without breaking your budget.

“Makeovers” is published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and sells for $21.99 in softcover.