There are plenty of things most people can do without, but for those who truly love coffee, there’s nothing that takes the place of freshly ground coffee beans, brewed well. In the old days, you could use a hand-powered crank grinder, but they never really ground the beans fine enough unless you put in a lot of elbow grease. Electronic grinders have been around for a long time now as well, but many of them are either messy to use, or still grind the beans, unevenly.
The Black & Decker CBG100S Smartgrind Coffee Grinder, Stainless Steel Black & Decker is ruffed stainless steel, and it holds enough beans ground for 8-10 cups of coffee. Operation is simple. Put 2/3 or less of a cup of beans in the grinder well at the top of the unit, pop on the top, press down, and count to about 16 seconds (for drip pots). You can grind a little less (about 10-12 seconds) for a coarser grind, or a little more (24-28 seconds) for espresso or Turkish coffee.
This is a pretty basic model, but it looks pretty sleek. For most people, it’s all they’ll need to brew truly delicious, fresh coffee. Some of the more sophisticated coffee grinders have a dial that lets the machine grind to just the level of coarse or fine coffee you want. This model doesn’t have a dial, so you have to figure out how long to depress the button for the amount of beans you added and the level of coarse-ness of grind, you want. A little practice is all that is needed to figure it out, however. It isn’t a high capacity grinder, and you won’t want to overfill it with beans, or you’ll risk making a mess when you remove the lid. However, with the proper amount of beans, the top lifts off completely making it clean and easy to transfer your newly-ground coffee into an airtight container. The cord winds almost completely around the bottom of the base when you’re done, so there aren’t any annoying cords hanging around on your counter.
Some people have reported that the blades do not automatically stop when the cover is removed. It may take a few more seconds for the momentum to die down. So make sure that the lid stays in place until there is no movement. The blades are sharp, so children should never operate the grinder, and everyone should exercise caution when opening the top. However, at a suggested retail price of just $24.99 it’s a good entry level coffee grinder.
Another must-have that was featured at the Amazon.com holiday preview, and then again at another holiday event, is something that you might not think you need, until you see it in action: the Black and Decker Sure Grip All -in-One Laser Level. While this might not seem like an exciting item, it makes measuring and hanging pictures, curtain rods, and all those other types of annoying, time-consuming activities, fast, easy and effective. If you’re ever struggled with a level, ruler and pencil, only to find that one picture (or hook, or cabinet, or curtain rod), is higher than the other, you’ll adore this little helper.
You don’t have to hold this laser level. It securely suctions to walls for up to two hours (although there is an optional tack (magnetized on the back to use as well, if you have uneven surfaces and you want to really be sure it’s secure. The suction cup is strong, but it works best on walls that are painted, mirrored, glass, or somewhat smooth. Be aware that if you dump this level into your dirty toolbox and the suction cup gets dirty or dusty, you need to clean it off before you push it onto your wall, or you may still have a ring you have to wash off. You might want to just keep it in the clear, plastic clamshell it arrives in.
The red laser line is long, although some complained it could be longer. But this is a budget-friendly laser level, not “Star Wars.” It fulfilled my expectations, and then some. It lets you accurately pound in that molly, nail or screw, without having to mark up your wall first or find out only after you’ve made a hole in your wall, that it’s not level. The SureGrip laser level line even wraps around corners when leveling objects on perpendicular walls, and the line can be projected on either side of the level, which is really nifty when you’re trying to hang a row of pictures or for example, something huge,like wallpaper panels. Furthermore, while it is often a challenge to see the bubble in the vial to ascertain if something truly is straight, the color in this bubble vial changes from red to green when level, so all you need to know is that when it’s green, it’s good to go! For accurate leveling when you’re not able to see the level (e.g. when you’re installing a new curtain rod), the SureGrip laser level can also be set to provide an audio alert that gently beeps until the item is even.
Freshly-ground coffee is a little luxury that nearly everyone can indulge in. And, while you might not need a laser level today, but marking up a wall with a standard level can be a frustrating, time-consuming chore. This high tech laser level is hardly a splurge if you are a craft-oriented person, but even if you almost never use one, a great laser level is a true boon if you have one ready when you really need it.
The Black & Decker SureGrip All-In-One Laser Level is now available for $29.97 at Amazon.com and it will be available at other major retailers nationwide in October. It makes the perfect holiday gift for any a couple, new homeowner, or any crafts-oriented person. If you are single, it is especially helpful becuase you don’t need to rely on another set of eyes.
Black & Decker evolved from a small machine shop in Baltimore, Maryland in 1910, to a global manufacturing and marketing company with a a broad line of quality products used in and around the home and for commercial applications including: 1910 power tools, accessories, outdoor yard care equipment, home cleaning products, automotive and lighting products, hardware and home improvement products, and technology-based fastening systems.
Check out www.amazon.com to purchase the products in this advicesisters review, or check out the official Black & Decker Website to learn more about all the nifty products the company produces.