First of all you should make sure that you have the right tools for the job. If you are working with an old piece of furniture and want to remove scratches and make it look like new, or better, then you will need an electric sander if you don’t want to spend days sanding it down by hand. You need to use 100 grit sand paper on most woods to begin with, or even 80 if your sander parts are dull. Then you gradually work your way through finer grades of sand paper and you also need to blow off particles after each change of sand paper. If you don’t have a compressor, use a vacuum cleaner to do this. Usually, if you are thinking of finishing the piece with polyurethane or varnish you can stop at 180 grits paper. But if you are going to use a wipe on finish such as linseed oil, it might be better to go to 220 grits. Most people who work with wood hate sanding, but it doesn’t have to be a problem.
The most common hand woodworking tools that a craftsman needs to begin his work for just about any project include: the claw hammer, which should have been used by anyone at some point, the layout square, a precious woodworking tool that is not only fast and easily used for denoting a square line, but can also quickly mark and gauge angles up to 450, as well as an excellent retractable tape measure which should have metric and standard marks, as well as a little loose popper at the end and a locking system.
The range and list of woodworker tools can be quite huge and elaborate. To buy every piece of woodworker tools out there will cost you a hefty sum or may even punch a large hole in your bank account. The woodworker tools can be generally categorized into 3 basic types:
There are so many people like yourself who want to get into woodworking for various reasons, but find the high cost of new tools to prohibit them from diving in. This is why many decide to look for their tools by taking advantage of the used woodworking tools available. It is easy to find a number of great tools to use if you know where to begin looking.
If you’ve developed the itch to work with wood, then you’re going to need some tools.
Finally you need a woodworking tool or two for detailed work. A utility knife with replaceable blades is extremely versatile and can be used for hundreds of different tasks. Chisels are needed for cleaning out waste and clogged lines. Nail sets are important when you need to make nail heads flush with, or sit just below, the surface of your wood. Finally a block plane is the perfect way to cleaning up edges and removing minute levels of wood from your stocks.
Remember there are just about as many ways to accomplish something in woodworking as there are tools on the market. In fact, most of the time when you think you’re up against a limitation caused by your lack of tools… it’s your imagination and self skills that will come up with a workable solution if you just re-think the situation.
While there are plenty of more tools that can come in handy when woodworking, these are the ones that are necessary for anyone working with wood.
If you are able to do so, you should look at the pawn shops that sell used woodworking tools in your area. Sometimes if you look through various shops you will see that the inventory and prices really fluctuate but can easily be much cheaper than new tools in the hardware and lumber stores. It always helps if you call in advance to see if they carry the tool you are after, and to check back often since inventory is not constant.
But before you run off and bust the bank buying woodworking tools, consider that woodworking isn’t always about having the best tools. There is something to be said for developing your skills, your imagination, and problem solving without always having the best power tool to overcome every issue.