Are you interested in woodworking but don’t have the money to invest in a full set of expensive power tools? Most power tools are essential for the beginner and in the end you’ll need hand tools anyway so why not start your collection there. Hand tools can be quite expensive in the long run so it’s good to start with the basics and then go from there. Here are some of the essentials and some tips to finding them inexpensively.
While some tools should be purchased new, most can be bought used. They may need some maintenance but they will perform just as good, if not better than new ones. You’ll be able to build your collection and save some money.
Hand saws are essential and you’ll need a back, tenon and dovetail saw. These can be picked up used but make sure the teeth are not missing or bent. If they are dull you’ll need to have them sharpened. Planes are also a must and to start off with, pick up a block plane and jointer. A good set of files in a variety of sizes and mills will be needed.
Clamps are necessary for woodworking and you’ll need quite a few of these for your workbench. These are generally inexpensive and come in a variety of sizes. You’ll also need a set of chisels in different sizes as well as a few sizes of hand and paint scrapers.
Besides these woodworking essentials you’ll also need other basics which, if you’re a handyman already, then you should have them in your tool chest already. This includes a hammer, screwdrivers, levelers, a tape measure, awls and utility knives.
Finding inexpensive tools can be daunting but don’t let your budget get in your way of having quality tools. Cheaply made hand tools will not last you very long so it will be a waste of money. Purchase brands that are reputable and that are recommended by other woodworkers. Many antique tools are superior to new ones so hunt around for good quality used ones. Inspect them carefully for wear and ensure you can have them sharpened.
For used tools, check out garage sales and flea markets. It may take several weekends but you will eventually build up a nice tool collection. Many don’t know what they have so you can usually get a box of miscellaneous tools for a huge savings. Arriving early will give you a better selection but arriving later will be better for haggling down the price.
Building a collection of woodworking tools is an investment of time and money but start with the basics and look for quality used tools. You’ll soon have a complete collect for your workbench.