Tools #1: The Lysdexic looT Chest

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Blog entry by lysdexic posted 11-18-2011 02:15 AM 3350 reads 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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The Lysdexic looT Chest

The following is a blog entry documenting the acquisition of a basic set of woodworking hand tools. I am doing this primarily for personal use. Many of you will recognize the contents of the tool chest because it relies HEAVILY on the list proposed by Chris Schwarz in “The Anarchist Tool Chest.” My intention is not to plagiarize his work. In fact, if this blog entry interests you then I suggest you pick up a copy of his book as he goes into much more detail as to why the tools are chosen. You can buy it here at the Lost Art Press. My list is just help me keep track and I will update it as I go. These are not recommendations. If this helps others or motivates others to buy his book, all the better.

*If Mr. Schwarz ever sees this list and wants me to remove it- I will gladly


Coping Saw – I have a Sandvic for a long time but replaced the blade with an Olson 18 PPI blade
Flush cut saw – the single sided Veritas as recommended
Panel Rip Saw – obtained a 4 ½ ppi E.C. Atkins at an estate sale. Needs restoration. Also, ordered a D-8 with thumb hole from Bad Axe. Also, two 5 PPI thumbhole Disston D-8s
Panel X-cut Saw – Refurbed a old Disston D-8 at 8 ppi. After I cleaned it up I sent it to Matt Cianci for sharpening
Tenon Saw – 14” Tyzack rip saw. Purchased from the tool store above The Woodwright’s school. I love this saw but needs restoration.
Carcase saw –12” Carcase x-cut saw from Bad Axe tool works. Mesquite handle. Beautiful, Tooks 7 months to ship.
Dovetail – bought the Veritas dovetail saw and sold it to Shane. Bought a LN progressive pitch DT saw to replace it.

Hand Planes

Jack Plane – have a T 15 Stanley-Bailey #5 and replaced iron with Veritas replacement. Plan to chamber at 8” radius. Also, have a Veritas BU Jack. Love it and use it on the shooting board
Rabbet Plane – picked up Stanley # 78 at an estate sale. Needs refurb. Schwarz higjly recommends the Veritas skewed rabbet.
Shoulder Plane – Veritas medium shoulder plane
Block Plane – Veritas DX 60 LA block plane
Router Plane – not yet. Schwarz recommends both a large and a small. Square post.Considering Veritas, Lie Nielson, or Stanley #71
Plow Plane – not yet. Considering Stanley #45. Vintage wooden plow is recommended but hard to find a good. Buy a new metal one is most predictable route. Shavings exit toward hand instead of away with a wooden plow.


Stick with one system
Waterstones – need grits 500, 1000, 4000, 8000 to 10,000. Looked at Shaptons? Expensive. Will need diamond flattening plate too.
Oil Stones – probably the way I’ll go.
Grinder – not yet. Bought one at a estate sale but didn’t work. Shame on me. Waste of $12. Recommended a 3450 RPM slow grind with cool friable wheel.
Burnisher – Veritas Tri-burnisher
Granite – not on ATC tool list. Granite slab from Woodcraft
Oilcan – vintage off Ebay

Layout Tools

Cutting Gauges – Tite Mark gauge. Asian mortise gauge from Woodcraft.
Panel Gauge – not yet. Want to make my own
6” Combo square – not yet. I use a 4” machinist square.
24” folding rule – refurbed a vintage brass bound Lufkin.
12’ tape measure –
Marking knife –
Wooden winding sticks – plan to make my own out some Saepele
36” wooden straight edge – plan to make my own
Wooden try square – plan to make one but for now I use a Crown try square
Sliding bevel – Swanson from Lowe’s. Will buy Vintage in the future but how many to I need?
Dividers – bought a vintage 12” Pexto but need more. New Starretts recommended.

Cutting Tools

Bevel Edge Chisels – Got a cheap Woodriver set that I reviewed here. My set of Lie Nielsons should be here tomorrow.
Mortise Chisels – but a vintage 3/8” from the Woodwright’s school. Will probably get more.
Spokeshave – Stanley #51 off Ebay. Not tuned or sharpened yet. Brass cabinetmakers spokeshave with convex sole from flea market.
Rasps – box lot of rasps from estate sale. Don’t knoww hats in there yet. Shinto rasp. Nicholson rasps from Lowe’s. Probably need better one’s.
Card scrapers – assorted pack from Woodcraft.

Mallets and Drills

Chisel mallet – made my own. Project here.
Cross-peen hammer –
16 0z claw hammer – vintage Stanley from estate sale. Vintage BlueGrass form yard sale.
Dead-blow mallet –
Nailsets –
Nail pincers – not yet
Slotted screw drivers – had them but bought a a rusted vintage Irwin at flea market with wooden handles. I really like it.
Sawnut drivers – will file notch into a flathead screwdriver.
Countersinks –
Counterbores –
10” Brace – Vintage Millers Falls 8” brace. Score a 12” North Bros Yankee 2101 at an estate sale. It is in bad shape and needs refirb
Hand Drill – North Bros for estate sale. Don’t know the number.
Set of 13 auger bits – not yet. Irwin style recommended.
Brad point bits – set from Lee Valley
Birdcage Awl – vintage form flea market
Dowel plate – not yet.


Bench hook – made my own. Project documented here.
Saw Benches – not yet
Miter box – Not yet. Friend told me that the red Millers Falls was the best. bought a Vintage Stanley 100 picture frame miter. Right now using a Bosch compound powered miter saw.
End grain shooting board – made my own. Project here.
Long grain shooting board – not yet.
Miter shooting – accessory to my shooting board
Cork backed andind pad – not yet
Work bench – GLARING DEFICIENCY. Plan to build a Roubo style bench.
Cabinet clamps – 24” and 40” Jet parallel clamps. Various sizes of Bessy tradesman clamps.

Good to have Tools

Dial Caliper – Wixey digital. Love it.
12” combo square – Starrett from Amazon
Dovetail Marker – 12 degree from Veritas
Jointer Plane- Veritas BU Jointer and T 12 Stanley #7
Smooth Plane – WoodRiver #4 – don’t like it. On the prowl for a 4 ½
Large shoulder plane – not yet. Will have to really need one before acquiring.
Carpenter’s hatchet – meh.
Draw knife – 10” Blue Grass form flea market. Not sharpened or tunes yet.
No. 80 cabinet scraper – not yet.
Beading plane – not yet
Small complex moulder (ogee ovolo) – not yet
Set of half rounds – not yet
1 ½” paring chisel – not yet
Fishtail chisel – not yet may find a willing vintage to file down
Drawer lock chisel – not yet
Mortise float – not yet
Drawbore pins – not yet. Probably will get these
12” bow saw – not yet
Saw files – not yet, but I want to learn to sharpen my own saws
Mill file
Saw vise – not yet, as above
Saw set – not yet as above
Side clamp honing guide – Veritas MK-II
Trammel Points – recommended to make your own

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

9 comments so far

View ShaneA's profile


7085 posts in 4052 days

#1 posted 11-18-2011 02:33 AM

Sounsd like a large tool chest Scott. Good luck with future acquisitions.

View Bigrock's profile


292 posts in 4416 days

#2 posted 11-18-2011 03:14 AM

Sounds like you are having lots of FUN
By the way Highland Tool Co. has the book on sale for $27.75.

View chrisstef's profile


18140 posts in 4460 days

#3 posted 11-18-2011 04:15 AM

Youre gonna need to buy 2 mules to move that chest around. Well thought out though and definately an intersting topic. I think ill know what to do on my next plane ride ;)

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View lysdexic's profile


5353 posts in 4077 days

#4 posted 11-18-2011 05:02 AM

@Shane – actually the hole premise of the book is a BASIC set of too;s that will fit into a single tool chest. Obviously, not the grinding wheel and stuff. Yet, the is the set that goes into the tool chest.

@Bigrock – its a wonderful amount of fun. A little stressful though. I dont mind spending some dough on a nice tool, but nobody wants to waste a dime.

@chrisstef – funny. I actually outlined this list while flying to Denver.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

View lysdexic's profile


5353 posts in 4077 days

#5 posted 11-18-2011 05:03 AM

updated with some links.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

View RGtools's profile


3372 posts in 4108 days

#6 posted 11-23-2011 03:59 AM

You already seem to have a pretty good start.

Loot chest. I love it.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17824 posts in 4072 days

#7 posted 02-15-2012 04:36 PM

Scott, for the x-cut and rip panel saws, see any need to have multiples with different tpi, or set, or ?

For instance, I’ve got 7 saws filed cross-cut in the till right now. They’re different lengths, set and tpi. What’s best? I can see keeping longer (toolbox) vs. shorter variants, but what out tpi and set? Should I find what works best for me then cull the heard?

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

View lysdexic's profile


5353 posts in 4077 days

#8 posted 02-16-2012 03:42 AM

Smitty, sorry to take so long to get back to you – it has been a long day.

But, you are asking ME? You know that I do not consider myself an experienced wood worker by any means. However, I will tell you my rationale and plan. I have thus far…...

my rehabed D8 x-cut and I think that is all I need
the D8 thumb-hole and an EC Atkins both filed rip. That gives me one more than I need.

That’s it. I currently do not see a need for another. I am going to let experience guide me the rest of the way. In reality, we both have some power tools that we are going to use. But there are times when hand sawing is just faster and easier. I just finished a suspension bridge for the cub scouts and I needed to do some notching. I could have held up an 8’ 2”x6” on the band saw or table saw. Instead it was a jif to just grab my Tyzack tenon and D8 x-cut and be done with.

I did not own a hand saw a year ago.

So, if I were you, you already have a killer D12 x-cut. Find or re-hab a rip and then just see what happens. Not unless you plan to do a lot of re-sawing by hand :^)

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17824 posts in 4072 days

#9 posted 02-16-2012 04:33 AM

Sounds like a good plan, Scott.

I’m an opportunist when it comes to handsaws and that’s how I’ve come by the ones I have so far. I have shorter saws and longer ones, 22” vs. 26” for example, and I do like the shorter saws for some reason. So I’ll probably have a core four good panel saws when all is said done.

Thanks for your input, it makes sense. And like you, I didn’t ‘do’ handsaws at all that long ago. Funny how things change for the better.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

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