Bob Beacham


Name: Bob Beacham

Title: Contributing Writer

Bob Beacham is an engineer by trade and has spent 35 years working on everything from auto parts to oil rigs. He is also an avid DIY enthusiast. Bob started writing for the Bob Vila team in 2020 and covers tools, outdoor equipment, and home improvement projects.

Expertise and Experience

Bob spent many years working as an engineer. This gave him the opportunity to travel around Europe and the U.S., working with component suppliers to Aston Martin, Audi, Rolls-Royce and Volkswagen. He also spent some time working on control systems for the aviation and petrochemical industries.

In his late 40s, Bob changed career paths. Since woodworking was one of his favorite hobbies, he decided to start his own woodshop. During this period, he remodeled an old rural farmhouse from the ground up with his wife—the first of two similar projects. As a result, he gained extensive experience with techniques and tools. The woodshop was hugely enjoyable, but not particularly lucrative. He supported his passion with consultancy work and began writing freelance articles about his experiences for several online publications. After 10 very enjoyable years, Bob closed the woodshop after relocating to his current home. The consultancy work and writing continues.

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MARCH 28, 2021 | SUNDAY
The Best Spark Plugs for Your Riding Mower

A spark plug works by taking a small electrical charge from the ignition coil and passing it through two electrodes. The difference in the charge at each of those electrode points creates...

MARCH 22, 2021 | MONDAY
The Best Pipe Thread Sealant of 2023

Threads are a remarkably efficient mechanical device, ideal for connecting pipework. Depending on the material, they can safely transport all manner of fluids and gases while withstanding...

MARCH 22, 2021 | MONDAY
The Best Lineman Pliers for Electrical Work in Your Home

Every home electrician’s tool belt should carry at least one pair of lineman pliers. Used by people in the electrical trade, these tools can cut, straighten, and bend wire as well as twis...

MARCH 21, 2021 | SUNDAY
The Best Gas Pressure Washers of 2023

Gas pressure washer models can be much more effective than their electric counterparts on tough stains, cleaning large areas, and heavy-duty tasks like removing exterior paint. Understand...

MARCH 19, 2021 | FRIDAY
The Best Gas Chainsaws of 2023

Gas chainsaws have a reputation: they’re loud and sometimes hard to use. However, we've found that some of the best gas-powered chainsaws prove otherwise. Whether you need a high-powered ...

MARCH 16, 2021 | TUESDAY
The Best Allen Wrench Sets for Your Tool Box

Although square and triangular drives appeared around 40 years earlier, it was William G. Allen’s hex drive, introduced in 1909, that became popular. Today, Allen fasteners are found ever...

What’s the Difference? Hammer Drill vs. Impact Driver vs. Cordless Drill/Driver

Stroll down the power tool aisle at the hardware store and you’ll see a variety of drills and drivers that look fairly similar. Don’t be fooled: Each has subtle differences geared to acco...

The Best Slip Joint Pliers to Add to Your Tool Box

It often seems there are pliers for every task, but few offer the versatility of the best slip joint pliers. They make a great addition to any DIY or professional tool box. Perhaps becaus...

The Best Fencing Pliers for Fence Repairs and Maintenance

Many different types of fencing are available, and various methods are used for installation and maintenance. Post and wire fencing remains a favorite, particularly over large areas, beca...

The Best Heat Pumps of 2023

When compared with traditional heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems that use a furnace for heat and an air conditioner for cooling, heat pumps can offer significant e...