I can't remember where I got hip to this tool, but for certain tasks it's changed my life. Hartmann alligator forceps
are like tiny needle-nose grabbers on the end of a long thin shaft. They're perfect for retrieving dropped items from tight spaces, they can pick up things that won't stick to a magnet, and they're ideal for installing nuts and washers in places where you can't get your fingers. Just yesterday I used mine to start the nuts way down at the bottom of the spar carrythrough, and they made an otherwise tough job a snap.
The ones I have are 14 inches long, and I paid all of $16 for them from Amazon (click here
). They're surprisingly nice quality and seem like they should last a long time if I don't abuse them. Not a tool I reach for every single day, but definitely one of those "when you need it, you need it" tools.