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What tools?

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  • What tools?

    Ok I am still new here and to woodworking. I am a asst. builder for the larges builder in the US. Si U know a thing or to about building a house. I am trying to get started in woodworking. I love building stuff at work. So I think I would love building other stuff also.

    My question is what tool are something I should not do without. What tools do I really have to have. I also have a list of tools I have. What tools should I really still get that you feel I will get use out of.

    My tools.
    6 pc. Riobi 18v set.
    2 air compressers
    4 nails gund (23ga,18ga,16ga,stapler)
    small 8 1/2 miter saw
    cut off tool
    spray gun
    dremel tool
    DA air sander
    This week Table saw and 12' dual slide miter saw

    I might have a few more that I forgot. So what eles do I need. I just don't want to buy some tools that I might never use.

  • #2

    From my perspective, the projects that you want to do should dictate the tools that you will need. You've already got a pretty good inventory in the power tools that you listed and I'm sure you've probably got an even larger number or hand tools.

    I think you'll get quite a few suggestions. Different people will consider "must haves" based on thier work methods and project preferences. While I'm a bit of a tool junky, I've come to a point where I've learned that the best way to add tools to the shop (in my humble opinion) is to look at something I want to build, closely examine the details of building it and see if the tools I already own, will do the job. Thus I decide, "I need a new tool, because... !" In other words, "Let the project dictate the need."

    I realize this isn't the hard answer you may be looking for (like, you really have to have a drill press or a thickness planer or a jointer); but given my experience, it will save you some $$ and room for a tool that you really "must have".

    I hope this helps,



    • #3
      Until you decide that you're in this for the long haul it may be best to buy tools as your projects dictate you need them. In order to get started you'll probably need, in addition to what you already have;

      1. Table Saw
      2. A Quality Saw Blade
      3. Random Orbital Sander and Paper
      4. Clamps
      5. Jigsaw and Blades
      6. More Clamps
      7. Shop Vac

      Those items along with the tools you already have will give you a good start. Once you've decided that this is a hobby you'll enjoy you can start adding more and more tools like;

      1. More Clamps
      2. More Routers and a Router Table
      3. Jointer
      4. Planer
      5. Drill Press
      6. Dust Collection System
      7. Dedicated Rip and Crosscut Saw Blades
      8. Dado Set
      9. Band Saw
      I decided to change calling the bathroom the "John" and renamed it the "Jim". I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.


      • #4
        Ditto on the tool junkie bit. I'm very much in that boat, and very much with Ridgid stuff. I've bought a lot of other brands in the past, and Ridgid has seemed to hold up quite well, have a LOT of value and features for the money, and seems to just have a lot of thought and intelligence put into the design, something I always look for considering my professional work.

        Anyway, with all that said, I'm somewhat new to the woodworking side of things too. I've been a bit of a home remodeler, but never had to worry so much about things being perfect. (I just built my first drawers this weekend, might I say they are DEAD ON nearly perfect. I'm ecstatic.)

        I've found that yes, Clamps and more clamps are good. A good dado set is great, and a few other little add-ons for your table saw can save a lot of time and energy. And in my opinion, when it comes to safety products, don't worry about price. Can you really put a value on your fingers?

        I'd agree that you should buy the essential tools, then the ones you REALLY need for a certain job. However, you may surprise yourself. I bought a thickness planer on a whim, and ended up using it much more than I thought I would. What a handy damn tool.

        And the dust collection system: damn right.

        Speaking of that, what's with HD and Shop-Vac? My Shop vac bit the dust today, and I went to buy something new. Naturally, I was already leaning towards Ridgid, but saw that HD doesn't carry anything but for shop vaccums! Then I realized that the only place I have seen Shop-Vac lately is Lowes, and they are all colored blue and grey..........


        • #5

          Ridgid is the brand of shop vacs you'll see at HD. The ones at Lowes are special made for Lowes. If you already own a ShopVac and want filters, a new hose, accessories or just to see what's new try their web site. ShopVac has many models and you'll find them all over. Try K-Mart, Target and Walmart if you want just something basic. ACE Hardware has some too. Now if you want a more serious model of ShopVac, try the big online tool dealers and / or industrial supply houses. They are a wild company making anything from little toys up to some pretty serious models for serious customers. Try to really look around on their site and look for where you can download and view the .PDF files.

          Now for the fun. WWW.SHOPVAC.COM

          Good luck finding what you want.
          Last edited by Woussko; 11-13-2006, 12:26 AM.


          • #6
            What you need is somewhat dependant on what types of projects you'll build. The tools of someone who primarily turns bowls and lamps is very different than someone who builds coffee tables and cabinets.

            That said, I'm a proponent of dimensioning nearly all my stock on the tools that make up the main work triangle...jointer, TS, and thickness planer. A jointer flattens the face of a board and creates a straight reference edge adjacent to that flat face. The planer reduces the thickness as needed, but also creates a face parallel to the one flattened on the jointer. I use the TS to rip to final width and cut to length. This method provides flat square stock at the beginning of each project, which ensures tight fitting joints and reduces frustration of twisted wood and ill fitting joints. There are ways around this and other methods of accomplishing it, but none more effective and efficient at it. Those tools also allow you to use wood from almost any source.

            Putting your router in a router table will add an element of safety and add alot of versatility. Having a dedicated router in the table and one for handuse is convenient, but I the vast majority of my routing is done on the table.

            A good surface or workbench is pretty important IMO, but it can be extremely simple and crude. Clamps have been mentioned, sanding and finishing is a key step worth learning, good blades and bits are worth their cost. A jig saw can provide flexibility for curves and other uses until a decent bandsaw becomes necessary.
            Last edited by hewood; 11-13-2006, 07:01 AM.


            • #7
              I think I just have a problem and can't stop looking for tools I could buy.


              • #8
                I know what you are going through...

                I have the same problem Bigworm.
                Does the government have programs for people with our affliction?
                Yoroshiku onegai shimasu