Woodworking

MannDude

Just a dude
vpsBoard Founder
Moderator
What are the wood working essentials? I feel like I should own more power tools!

I've got some projects in mind that I want to build myself, starting with a small and basic coffee table, then an inside workbench and finally a new computer desk.

Any recommendations of what to get / what to avoid? I took shops class a decade ago, but haven't messed with powertools too much since then.

I know I'll need a circular saw, jigsaw, dremel (I think, to make holes in stuff), saw horse and clamps... Whats the tool that bevels edges? I've used it on my old shop class stool and birdhouse, but that was ages ago and I don't recall. Hmm, what else?

I've got some neat / simple ideas and want to make some cool stuff.
 

HalfEatenPie

The Irrational One
Retired Staff
Obligatory "Bow chica bow wow"

Besides for that I'd also suggest tons and tons of sandpaper.  

For all the rough-stuff you have all the essential tools there (we built homecoming floats, chariots, etc. using circular saws, had tons of saw-horses, drills, clamps, etc.  

I don't recall what the bevels edge tool is called but we did have one.  You'll also probably want some stain on that and then the final protective coating solution (to prevent possible water damage and/or additional/unwanted stain).  
 
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drmike

100% Tier-1 Gogent
I am no carpenter or furniture maker.

I'd buy a good gas chainsaw for long term use and harvesting your own timber.  

There are rather cheap sawmills out there on Ebay $200~.   They take a chainsaw usually at that price point for cutting trees into lumber.  Pretty useful, especially for a guy with cabin and DIY dreams.

I like Sawzaws and similar powered saws for all sorts of cutting.  Everything from weed style trees to metal to whatever.  

Jigsaw, yeppers.  Circular saws, yes.

I like rustic and low manufacturing style stuff and find it very doable DIY without tons of gear or know-how.
 

MannDude

Just a dude
vpsBoard Founder
Moderator
I am no carpenter or furniture maker.

I'd buy a good gas chainsaw for long term use and harvesting your own timber.  

There are rather cheap sawmills out there on Ebay $200~.   They take a chainsaw usually at that price point for cutting trees into lumber.  Pretty useful, especially for a guy with cabin and DIY dreams.

I like Sawzaws and similar powered saws for all sorts of cutting.  Everything from weed style trees to metal to whatever.  

Jigsaw, yeppers.  Circular saws, yes.

I like rustic and low manufacturing style stuff and find it very doable DIY without tons of gear or know-how.
I've looked into building small 'DIY' sawmills. Read "The $50 up and underground house book" years ago and my mind ran wild. Seems simple enough, really. Honestly I wouldn't even mind using more handtools and less electric ones, may be harder but I feel like I'd be less likely to mess up.

Don't really want to create anything too elaborate (yet). Basic tables initially, desk eventually, whatever else after that down the road.
 

drmike

100% Tier-1 Gogent
Tables, desks, etc. at this stage should be mainly hardware store visits to buy your wood.   Circular and jigsaw are your two big tools for cuts.

Lots of wood glue and fasteners :)

It's getting real pricey and hard to find good aged wood.  Amazed by what Lowes and Home Depot are selling folks.  Lots of junk.

I have some local lumber yards, but rather special pricing that is just silly high.

I can't wait to get out to big acreage and building things.... Buildings mostly.   I read Mike Oehler's book too :)  
 

Slownode

New Member
You need to make your own 3D milling machine so you can print objects from blocks of wood.

Screw carpentry skills I have technology.
 

drmike

100% Tier-1 Gogent
DeWalt.  When it comes to power tools, I won't use anything else.
Yeah yeah, sure you won't :)   They make good tools, but you pay often heavily for them.   I like their battery drill and circular.   Other stuff, ehh, hit or miss.

My neighbor shares your DeWalt love, except when he has to replace another one (he's a carpenter and burns through tools).
 

HostVenom - Brandon

Member
Verified Provider
Plenty of tools! Saws, sandpaper, etc.

I wouldn't use battery powered tools if it can be avoided. Battery powered tools are much weaker and can make your task harder depending on what is being done.
 

HalfEatenPie

The Irrational One
Retired Staff
Plenty of tools! Saws, sandpaper, etc.

I wouldn't use battery powered tools if it can be avoided. Battery powered tools are much weaker and can make your task harder depending on what is being done.
I feel like that's incorrect.  Battery powered tools or just electric tools in general are designed to help ease the task at and.  If it makes the task harder then it completely defeats the purpose of an electric tool.  Can you expand on this please? 
 
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drmike

100% Tier-1 Gogent
I feel like that's incorrect.  Battery powered tools or just electric tools in general are designed to help ease the task at and.  If it makes the task harder then it completely defeats the purpose of an electric tool.  Can you expand on this please? 
I sort of agree about battery tools not being up to task.

Battery tools are plagued by odd weight issues, typically due to battery.  Run time/life for most of them is laughable (small AH batteries).

I have an electric chainsaw :) It works pretty good.    Would I want an electric sawzaw?   Well I have one, it works good... Battery sawzaw, no thanks.

Battery chainsaw, ahh no thanks. Battery circular saw? DeWalt and a pile of battery packs.

If we compare grid electric to gasoline powered tools, not a huge difference unless you need things in excess of say 2-3HP.  Then are pushing 120V (in US) ceiling likely.

All the sanders I use, electric powered.

The few tools I have that are gas powered are either due for replacement or not suitable for electric replacement (i.e. tiller, generator, etc.)
 

HalfEatenPie

The Irrational One
Retired Staff
Ahh...  I blanked the difference between battery and electric.

I see your point then.  

For the record though, I hated my electric drill.  It was a pain to use and restricted me to however far the cord was.  A battery drill?  I didn't have any problem getting into those difficult places and didn't have to worry about having a long enough extension cord.  Those Homecoming floats would never have gotten built without a battery drill with the places we had to take it (especially those last-minute fixes right before the parade).  
 

drmike

100% Tier-1 Gogent
Cords are always an issue in my world. My family likes to repurpose them for their needs. My carpenter neighbor likes to "borrow" all my high priced heavy cords (I am beginning to think he takes them for scrap copper/metal as they never seem to show up again).

Broke down and bought a 4 pack of 3 prong to 2 prong grounding blocks since I still have 2 prong plugs here and there (100 year old building and other is 1950's which they didn't totally change over).

Couldn't find an extension cord long enough for my electric drill (I prefer it to the battery around the house). Bathroom has one plug out of the way and it is... 2 prong. Was trying to drill a hole to level below to fish a 12VDC line up to power a backup / free / motion light that gets juice from solar panel(s) and my ongoing DIY home improvised power distribution system.

Yeah 2 prong, old artifact of sorts. It stays. I am not tearing out perfectly good plaster and lathe. Oh the horror, mess and tonnage to haul outside. Been doing that with a leaky roof that did damage in one of the buildings. Sucks hauling the stuff down and outside hundreds of feet.
 

MannDude

Just a dude
vpsBoard Founder
Moderator
Well, keep in mind I'm about 200 or so yards from a river that washes up driftwood, after I get used to working with 'store bought' wood I can start having some fun and get creative with what washes up out back.

Also, I want to use screws instead of wood glue, only reason being that I have hundreds of .45 ammo casings laying around that I've saved for when I start reloading. These will recessed into the finished product and will sit flush / almost flush with the wood to cover any area where I used a screw :D I think it's a simple little addition that'll give my furniture a bit of character. :p
 

Aldryic C'boas

The Pony
Not even Black and Decker? ;)


(They're one and the same.)
Did not know that, actually.  But no, all of my stuff is DeWalt.  A good bit more expensive than the rest, aye... but I prefer to get a good 5-10 years out of my tools rather than just 1-2 (if that).  I've also _never_ had manufactory issues with a DeWalt.. can't say the same for other brands I've had to use >_>

On the hand tools side... pretty much all Craftsman.  Got a few Kobalt pieces (picked up from Lowes when I couldn't find what I wanted in Craftsman).. and they've held up decently so far.  Haven't put them under any heavy stress yet though - hand tools with a plastic handle is just junk and untrustworthy to me.
 

MartinD

Retired Staff
Verified Provider
Retired Staff
Surprised no-one has yet mentioned a plane and rasp .I'd say they were pretty basic and must have's!
 

notFound

Don't take me seriously!
Verified Provider
Not even Black and Decker? ;)


(They're one and the same.)
No, not really. Black and Decker has really bad brushes on their motors, wear out really easy. I like Matika for my drills, Bosch used to be decent but now they're all on the cheap. DeWalt is good for other tools.

I sort of agree about battery tools not being up to task.

Battery tools are plagued by odd weight issues, typically due to battery.  Run time/life for most of them is laughable (small AH batteries).

I have an electric chainsaw :) It works pretty good.    Would I want an electric sawzaw?   Well I have one, it works good... Battery sawzaw, no thanks.

Battery chainsaw, ahh no thanks. Battery circular saw? DeWalt and a pile of battery packs.

If we compare grid electric to gasoline powered tools, not a huge difference unless you need things in excess of say 2-3HP.  Then are pushing 120V (in US) ceiling likely.

All the sanders I use, electric powered.

The few tools I have that are gas powered are either due for replacement or not suitable for electric replacement (i.e. tiller, generator, etc.)
Battery drills, depending if you get a good one are much better for use as screwdrivers and also power drills. It's just not practical pulling a cable everywhere, for example while doing work in the loft and not having power or space for a generator yet etc.
 
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