P Touch Label Maker

PT-1280 Label Maker
PT-1280 Label Maker

The Brother P Touch Label Maker has probably made more lables on things that you see than any other device. In fact, if you don’t have a Brother P-Touch, I will show you some who isn’t labeling their stuff. Face it, if your stuff isn’t properly labeled, you may forget what it is called and never know what it was that you were looking for the next time you are unable to find it. Fortunately, Brother P-Touch Labelers have been around for years, helping people label and find their stuff and properly identify and know what that stuff is used for once it is found.


Brother P-Touch PT 1280 Label Maker

The PT1280 Label Maker by Brother is a portable, hand-held device that makes it possible for anyone on a small budget to label household items, folders, files, and/or just about anything they want. Brother P-Touch label makers have been around for over a decade. At one time, they were larger and didn’t do nearly as much or perform as well as models like the PT-1280.  The Brother P Touch label maker uses a small, familiar-looking Qwerty keyboard. It runs on 6 AAA batteries and features a 15-Character LCD Display. Other features include 5 framing options, 2-line printing, auto formats, 3 type-sizes and three-keys dedicated for saving and printing your favorite labels. For an additional cost, you can buy an AC Adapter for it.


How Does the PT-1280 Work?

The PT-1280 produces labels using a common, reliable printing method known as thermal heat-transfer. The key to thermal-heat printing is actually in the tapes. The Brother PT1280 prints on four different size TZ tapes: 9/64″, 1/4″, 3/8″ and 1/2″. Type size is automatically selected based on the size tape and is not adjustable. This is not much of a drawback for a label maker for under $30.00. The one thing that I do find annoying with the PT-1280 and other Brother P-Touch printers is the way they produce a 1/2″ lead before and after the label, which unnecessarily wastes tape and forces me to trim them before applying them to objects. All-in-all, the Brother P-Touch PT-1280 does a decent job. Labels print relatively fast and it is a breeze to use the first time.
Black-on-white, black-on-clear, black-on-red, black-on-yellow, black-on-green, black-on-blue, black-on-orange, white-on-black, white-on-clear, white-on-blue, red-on-white, blue-on-white and Colorado Buffaloes gold-on-black.  Costco or any office supply store. a 26′ long roll of tape sells for $9 to $12.00.


Uses for the P-Touch Label Maker

  • Years ago, when running my own computer business, I used a Brother P-Touch label maker for serializing computer components, and labeling merchandise for sale. I found it to be a very fast, convenient way to keep organized in an office or warehouse environment.
  • Have you ever loaned Music CDs, DVD Videos or movies to friends and/or relatives and worried they might forget to give them back to you? Putting your name, address and phone number on your valuables is a great way to remind them who it belongs to and greatly increase your chances of getting it back.
  • How about labeling the wires, cables and connections on your stereo and computer components? Put labels on the back of your computer where your connections go and make it easy to reconnect all of them if you ever need to move or replace them.
  • Neatly label your file folders in your home office.
  • Lastly, stay organized and find your stuff and remember what your stuff is once you’ve found it!


PT-1280 Review Ratings

  • Performance: 80
  • Features: 80
  • Value: 90
  • Overall: 85

Behr Cement Paint

Behr Concrete Stain
– A Review

Behr Concrete Stain
Behr Concrete Stain

Want a New Looking Driveway?

If you took my advice last month and used Dap Ready-Mix  to patch up your concrete driveway, chances are you have a chip and crack-free driveway full of grayish, funny-looking blotches. What can you do to make your entire driveway look clean and new again? If I knew the answer to this, my own driveway would look clean and new again. Would you settle for almost clean and new again? Okay, I have a product for you.

What is Behr Concrete Stain?

Behr Solid Concrete Stain No. 800 can help you make your driveway look like almost new. If you’re wondering whether to paint your driveway or stain it, rest easy: they are one in the same. If you need to paint or stain any outdoor cement or concrete surface, I have an easy solution.


What can it be used for?

Behr No.800 Solid, White-Base Concrete Stain is a durable, water repellent, solid color paint designed to help protect and enhance exterior and interior, vertical and horizontal concrete surfaces. It is made of a Silicon-Acrylic formula which Behr says is high-performance, durable and long-lasting. By high-performance, we assume they mean it covers well over cement and looks good on your driveway or patio. Behr Concrete Stain is meant for surfaces such as: Concrete, Masonry Walls, Basements, Patios, Sidewalks, Cement Driveways, Garage Floors,  Concrete Pool Decks, Tennis Courts, Cement Blocks, Pillars and Brick, and of course all other sorts of outdoor cement areas.

How Much Behr Cement Paint do I Need and How Much Does it Cost?

We needed about 4 gallons of Concrete Stain to cover a 1,000 square foot driveway. Behr advertises that a gallon should thinly cover about 400 square feet, so exercise their own advice with caution.  One gallon of Behr Concrete Stain costs about $23.00 at Home Depot.


What Else Do I Need to Paint My Driveway?

You will need a Paint Roller with ¼ to 3/8 “nap roller covers. I recommend using 2 or 3 rollers to keep them fresh and clean as you go. Also, 4-6′ roller extension will make the job much quicker and easier. Out of the can, the No. 800 Stain is a very blinding bright white color, so you may want to mix in some black paint dye to achieve a slightly grayish or darker appearance. If you are painting a cement patio, you may even choose a different color dye, such as terracotta, or choose Behr, number 830, which is a dark-base stain.

How to Paint your Driveway Surface

Mix the paint well and begin painting as you would any other surface, using generous amounts to fully cover sections at a time with a roller and extension. I don’t recommend such a thin coat, because you will end up working just as hard to cover it with a second coat. After a first coat is completed, it is recommended that you wait 24 hours before applying a second coat, if it is needed. You might as well cover it as best you can on the first try.


How will my driveway look after it is fully painted?

Unless you’re a complete klutz, it will look like newly poured cement.  Some idiot, and I won’t mention any names, decided he could drive his car back into his garage, just 7 hours after the driveway was finished. You can recognize this moron by the tire-marks in the driveway of his home (in case you’re curious). Behr recommends staying off the surface for 24 hours, and keeping your car off the surface for 72 hours. If you’re not satisfied the color or covering of the cement, you can apply a 2nd coat just 24 hours later.  We will visit this topic later to report back on how well Behr-800 Concrete Stain protects the driveway and other cement surfaces from the wear and tear of winter weather.


Beher No. 800 White-Base Concrete Stain Ratings

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Ready Mix Concrete

Ready Mix Concrete
The Review

Ready Mix Concrete Review

Ready Mix Concrete
Dap Ready Mixed Concrete Patch

Last winter I did a really stupid thing: I used salt on my driveway – lots of it. When the ice and snow began to thaw and melt, I watched in horror as numerous chips and cracks began to appear on what used to be a very nice driveway. It became worse as spring and warmer weather arrived – to the point that 50% of the entire driveway became eroded with chips. It was messy and full of gravel this summer as the concrete continued to erode. My driveway is over 1200 square feet, and very expensive to re-finish. I was looking at a whole new Concrete Resurfacing job. I got estimates from $2,700, $8,500, depending on whether or not I went with a top layer Concrete Resurface, or an entire new driveway. I decided to look into a fix-it-yourself job. If I could get the majority of the chips and holes patched up by myself maybe I could buy a few more years of time before having to replace the entire driveway for $8,500. I did some research and learned there were a few premixed concrete patch products on the market. I decided to try a bucket of DAP Ready-Mix Concrete Patch which sold for about $13.00 for a 1-Gallon bucket at Lowes. I figured that if I could get a section of the driveway repaired, it would be worth buying 5, 6 or however many more buckets needed to complete the job. $65.00 and a weekend of labor seemed like a small price to pay in order to prevent further erosion of the driveway and possibly extend the life of it a few more years. I bought a couple of different sizes of cheap, plastic putty knives and some elastic gloves and was on my way home to try it. I went with less expensive putty knives over costlier trowels because I am a cheapskate. I later found out it was a good decision for other reasons besides cost, and I’ll explain later. Sometimes it pays to be cheap. Even though I’m not completely happy with the driveway’s cosmetic appearance, I’m happy I did pay to have the job done.

The Dap Ready Mix Concrete Patch instructions on the container recommend thoroughly cleaning and damping the surface before applying. I took a brush to clean the area, and then sprayed down the surface with the hose. This is when I learned that you don’t want the surface too wet. The Dap Ready-Mixed Concrete Patch mixture is the texture of cookie dough. It is rather sticky and firm. Like cookie dough, it looks rather appetizing. In fact, I had to restrain myself from dipping my hand in and putting a glob of the gooey stuff in my mouth. Concerned with how concrete patch might settle in my stomach, I opted to save it for the driveway.

I put about a quart of the gooey concrete patch in a separate mixing container and stirred as the directions on the container recommended. There didn’t appear to be much, if any need for mixing, but I did as the instructions said. Applying the mix is a bit of a messy project. For the smaller chips, I put a dab on the paint stick and smeared it over the crack, then flattened it over with the putty knife. I was pleased with how well it covered the chips. The larger chips were a bit more challenging. I recommend using a larger trowel or putty knife to make a continuous, smooth flat finish over an entire section of chips. If you are attempting to cover a wide area, you will want the edges of the trowel to overlap the chipped area from border to border. The color of Dap Ready-Mixed Concrete patch is a bit lighter than the natural color of my driveway. This wouldn’t be a concern if you just wish to patch a few random chips or cracks, but for large sections of the driveway, like mine, you will end up with a driveway that looks like a gang of girl scouts used it for a hopscotch tournament. Actually, after a couple of weeks, I’ve noticed the whiter hue of premixed concrete patch is beginning to darken and blend in with the rest of the driveway. Perhaps the colors will continue to improve and blend in over time. As for now, I can honestly say that I no longer have a badly chipped driveway Instead, I have a badly-colored driveway.

Having gone through the experience and trouble of doing this, I’ll give you some advice that will make the job easier: It is very messy work, so wear grubby clothes and gloves. Make sure to have a small trash can or bucket to collect unusable cement and debris. The mixture doesn’t work well if it becomes gritty or dirty, so keep your mixture fresh, clean and covered. Work with small amounts at a time, so you are not exposing it to the air to dry. Because ready mix concrete is fast-drying, after 30 minutes or so, it becomes pretty difficult to remove. It was after I discovered this that I became glad I went with cheap trowels. The trowels are very hard to clean off and nearly impossible once they are dry. You can buy several plastic putty knifes in a variety of sizes for

Inexpensive Putty Knife
Inexpensive Putty Knife

around $2.00 to $3.00 a piece. Also, choosing a dry, but cool day will make it much easier on you. Have something to protect your knees: Either knee pads or foam that you can kneel on while working will make the job that much more comfortable. I have found that flat-shaped swimming pool floats make very great padding for the knees for projects where you have to kneel.

Only time will tell how well the Dap Ready-Mixed Concrete Patch lasts throughout the year. I will add more feedback to this review after I’ve had the chance to see how this Pseudo Concrete Resurface job lasts throughout the winter and next summer. For now, my goal is to find a stain or paint to help blend the color and seal it for the snow that will be coming soon. I will report on the results of that later. As for now, I am very satisfied with DAP Ready Mix Concrete for cement patching jobs. I am confident you will be too if you just apply a little patience along with the product. It is affordable, easy to use and does exactly what you need it to do.

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