LumberJocks

All Replies on Whats a must have?

  • Advertise with us
View slolearner's profile

Whats a must have?

by slolearner
posted 02-10-2018 04:20 PM


32 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 4036 days


#1 posted 02-10-2018 04:24 PM

It depends on the sorts of things you want to
make. I could give you a whole list of things
that save me time and aggravation in making
furniture and plywood cabinets, but the list would
be long and the price to buy the stuff would
add up to quite a lot. A planer is a great time
saver for sure.

If you knew what your next 3 projects would
be, what would they be?

View sras's profile

sras

5083 posts in 3517 days


#2 posted 02-10-2018 04:24 PM

My rule of thumb has been to not buy a tool until I am in need of it. That said, a planer is very useful for thinning stock – especially if you can resaw it with your band saw. It depends on what your projects need…

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View slolearner's profile

slolearner

27 posts in 500 days


#3 posted 02-10-2018 04:30 PM

I believe I am going to be somewhat of a furniture, cabinet kinda guy..

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 4036 days


#4 posted 02-10-2018 04:39 PM

Planer, jointer, circular saw, bench planes, bench,
vise, chisels, rasps, files, brad point drills, bench
grinder, sharpening equipment, clamps, dust
collector, 6” sander, dowel jig, pocket hole jig.

View slolearner's profile

slolearner

27 posts in 500 days


#5 posted 02-10-2018 05:41 PM



Planer, jointer, circular saw, bench planes, bench,
vise, chisels, rasps, files, brad point drills, bench
grinder, sharpening equipment, clamps, dust
collector, 6” sander, dowel jig, pocket hole jig.

- Loren

Thank you for the insight.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

5278 posts in 2697 days


#6 posted 02-10-2018 06:07 PM

For cabinets and furniture. IMHO, Tape measure and pencil, table saw, planer,jointer and band saw and sanders. Because the first thing you want is flat, straight, square stock to work with. Once you can properly get your stock ready you need some layout tools for laying our your joints and tool to cut you joints with. After that buy them as you need them.

BTW I’m assuming you’ll be mostly a power tool guy.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Aj2's profile (online now)

Aj2

2267 posts in 2186 days


#7 posted 02-10-2018 06:17 PM

You need to get some wood lots and lots of it. Alder is a very popular choice:)

-- Aj

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

2288 posts in 3332 days


#8 posted 02-10-2018 06:21 PM

Going with the “[d]on’t buy it until you need it” concept, you need GOOD dust collection now.

In that vein, I added a sanding table a few years back. It helped, but was so-so until I put sides, back and a top on it using some nylon I had laying around. It is, now, one of my indispensable tools.

By building my own table, I got more table for the money I would have spent on the commercial ones, which, without the sides, back and top, are pathetic.

I even router small items in the sand station, when the table won’t do, and it knocks down the dust significantly.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

5278 posts in 2697 days


#9 posted 02-10-2018 06:23 PM


You need to get some wood lots and lots of it. Alder is a very popular choice:)

- Aj2

+1 Alder is cutting edge friendly. Won’t blunt your edge tools like the exotic do :)

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

7387 posts in 2587 days


#10 posted 02-10-2018 06:26 PM

My rule of thumb has been to not buy a tool until I am in need of it.

+1

Only time I will buy something I don’t really need is if I run across something for a stupid low price that I can’t resist. Unfortunately, that happens far too often, and I’ve long since run out of space :-O

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View LesB's profile

LesB

2089 posts in 3831 days


#11 posted 02-10-2018 06:29 PM

First thing you need is an adequate space for all the tools you are going to accumulate if you continue to grow you wood working activities.
Then as others have said, I get tools according to projects I can “justify” them with….for some people that means justify them with their spouse….I don’t have that restriction. My wife actually buys me about half of my desired tools….usually as birthday or Xmas gifts.
I haven’t seen anyone who did not enjoy having a good lathe. Great for relatively small, useful, artistic and just challenging work that doesn’t take a lot of expensive wood.

-- Les B, Oregon

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

12803 posts in 2768 days


#12 posted 02-10-2018 06:58 PM

Pick a project, buy what you need to build it. But you can build a lot of things with just a saw, hand drill, a router, some chisels, and a hand plane.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View slolearner's profile

slolearner

27 posts in 500 days


#13 posted 02-10-2018 07:38 PM

Looking into it I think I need a jointer right more than the planer, any hidden jems i should now about? are bench models ok? Do I need to drop a lot on one?

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1275 posts in 1297 days


#14 posted 02-10-2018 07:53 PM

Good quality table saw blades for ripping and crosscutting. Maybe a dado stack, too.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1275 posts in 1297 days


#15 posted 02-10-2018 07:55 PM


Looking into it I think I need a jointer right more than the planer, any hidden jems i should now about? are bench models ok? Do I need to drop a lot on one?

- slolearner


Buy as many good quality used tools as you can find. Craigslist is a valuable resource and there are plenty of knowledgable members here who can answer questions about used tools you find before you invest your time and money.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

2288 posts in 3332 days


#16 posted 02-11-2018 03:18 AM

To repeat what others said, buy the best you can. However, if you cannot afford quality, even a forty year old Black and Decker jig saw bought off craigslist can be gold.

I have an 8” jointer with a spiral head. It may only get turned on once a month, but when it does get turned on, I’m more than a little happy I have it. If I didn’t, as was the case a few years back, I’d make do with with a lesser machine.

The long bed makes flattening long stock for jointing or planing a breeze. If I had a bench jointer, I could still joint boards, they just wouldn’t be very long. Too, it might go out the door a month after I got it, like my first jointer, which was a four inch Craftsman. Said another way, spend a lot of time looking at reviews on every significant piece of equipment you add to your shop.

View bilyo's profile

bilyo

694 posts in 1491 days


#17 posted 02-11-2018 04:08 AM


Looking into it I think I need a jointer right more than the planer, any hidden jems i should now about? are bench models ok? Do I need to drop a lot on one?

- slolearner


IMO, you should go ahead with the planer purchase and then build a good sled for it. With the planer, sled, and a well tuned table saw, you can flatten, thickness, and square up the edges of rough sawn boards up to the width of the planer. A jointer will be a nice addition for later, but with the planer and sled, you may decide you don’t need a super wide one.

View alittleoff's profile

alittleoff

541 posts in 1665 days


#18 posted 02-11-2018 04:33 AM

I think a jointer is one of the most important tools you can own, unless your into hand planing and really enjoy it. Even with hand planing you wil easily spend enough money on planes to pay for a nice 8 in. Jointer.
Gerald

View caboxmaker's profile

caboxmaker

280 posts in 776 days


#19 posted 02-11-2018 05:05 AM

After you purchase the planer a jointer is the next must have tool.

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2755 posts in 3271 days


#20 posted 02-11-2018 05:36 AM

It’d be nice if the LJ site had “sticky” topics like other sites that could be at the top of a reference page, b/c this is a topic that gets asked here almost every day in some form or another. Every beginner, including myself has asked this question at some point. It’s tough to know what you “should” get, esp. in response to the almost endless stream of WW information.

I think the worst mistake that most beginners make is to go out and buy a bunch of tools that they think they need. I did it. A lot of us do it. Many times it leads to purchases that aren’t really what you need down the road. I think the best thing that any beginner can do is read a bunch of ww magazines, look at projects online and purchase tools based on what you need for whatever build you’re doing.

Buy what you need for the projects you want to make. Buy the best you can afford. Learn early how to sharpen, how to use a handplane, how to use chisels; handtools will often be quicker and safer for trimming/fitting than machines. Resist the urge to buy jigs/gadgets etc just b/c they are shiny and they promise to make ww easier. We’ve all bought them and there are multiple threads on LJ’s where members discuss how they’ve bought stuff that then sits on the shelf.

Really like barnwood and Ana White projects? Probably don’t need a jointer and planer. Mostly work with plywood and big box store wood? Prob don’t need a jointer and planer either but may benefit from a good biscuit joiner and/or router table and/or pocket screw setup. Don’t have any plans for curves or resawing, maybe don’t need a bandsaw yet. Mostly do small projects and/or work with 4/4 stock; can probably use a small TS.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View jimintx's profile

jimintx

916 posts in 1973 days


#21 posted 02-11-2018 06:01 AM

Loren made a good list. I use rasps often to smooth off cuts and wood fiber splinters and so forth.

You will want a lot of clamps. All of us on here joke about how you can never have too many clamps, and it is the truth!

I had the jointer before a planer, but now I think the planer is more useful.

There are many cool things you can do with a router; and then another one, mounted in a router table of some sort.

I would be very sad to have to work in my shop without a drill press.

Money spent on great lighting is maybe the most important thing I have done in my own shop.

I am really happy I popped for a moderate quality tool chest on casters. Having my mechanics tools organized and well-stored makes them take up a lot less space, and makes getting the needed tool to adjust or fix things a breeze. My wood shop was not nearly as nice for me when my mechanics tools were a jumbled mess.

I get a ton of value from having a moderate size air compressor: blow gun, nailers, the occasional impact wrench. I consider this a must have.

I’d pick out two platforms for cordless tools, and then stick with them so you don’t end up with a big mess of chargers and batteries. In my case I have Dewalt 20 volt and Milwaukee 12 volt tools. Love using all of them.

I do not agree that you need dust collection first. But – it is certainly very nice to have. I was an active and frequent wood worker for about 25 years before I decided to fully enclose my shop and add an A/C unit. And then I did the dust collection.

. . .

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

8648 posts in 2965 days


#22 posted 02-11-2018 04:04 PM

Folding ruler, pinch sticks, and winding sticks :) Enjoy the journey.
Public domain:


View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 4036 days


#23 posted 02-11-2018 04:07 PM

Back when I started learning this stuff in the
90s there was no internet so I learned from
library books and old magazines that had been
written in the 1970s or before.

One thing that stands out to me now is that
a lot of hobby woodworkers didn’t have a planer
because those American made planers were
a pretty heavy tool and quite a big investment.
A lot of people got by with a table saw and a
4” jointer. Jointers are simpler machines than
planers. I suppose you’d rip boards to 4” wide,
joint one face, take two passes on the table
saw with the board on its edge to make a parallel
face, then joint the other face to clean it up.
You’d joint the edges and glue up your 4” boards
to make wider panels.

The newer magazines had articles full of 8” jointers
and benchtop planers but I didn’t have much money
to buy machines so I learned to do things by hand
while I saved and looked for used machine bargains.

If I could only have one, I’d choose the planer.
I don’t find it much trouble to flatten boards with
hand planes. It’s sure a lot less work than thicknessing
them by hand. I never made a sled but the nicer
ones sure look like they’d be nice to have.

View pete724's profile

pete724

70 posts in 1197 days


#24 posted 02-11-2018 04:37 PM

Uh hmm,

you can cut smooth and profile with what you have but, What do you make holes with??

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30350 posts in 2726 days


#25 posted 02-11-2018 04:41 PM

100% dependant on what you want to make and how you want to make it. Hand tools vs power tools. Custom furniture vs hobby type work. The best part of this life, there’s something for everyone.

Welcome to Lumberjocks

Ask as many questions as you want.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View jimintx's profile

jimintx

916 posts in 1973 days


#26 posted 02-11-2018 04:43 PM

My experience parallels what Loren has written in the prior post. My first jointer was a bench-top 4”. That Craftsman device got a lot of good use. I thought I was hot stuff when I got a 6” floor standing jointer. I soon saw the value of the 12” lunch box planers that a couple of buddies bought. I am still happy with the same 6” jointer (an early Ridgid). A couple years ago I sold off my first 12” planer and got the now well-known DW735 which is a heck of a machine.

When I made my list in post #21, I left off another thing that is oft-used, namely a good miter saw. Very useful, and it is not necessary that you build an elaborate counter and cabinet to get tons of good use from one. I used my original on a piece of plywood sitting on a B&D Workmate. My current Bosch has a place on a side counter. Once I got this one, I sold my two (yep, 2) radial arm saws and have never ever missed having a RA saw.

And speaking of that old Workmate, it remains a great device for a workshop; as are some decent, not elaborate, folding saw horses.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View woodbutcherbynight's profile

woodbutcherbynight

5966 posts in 2797 days


#27 posted 02-11-2018 04:52 PM

Based on what you posted you have for tools get started on a project. Working with the tools you have finish this project. Now look back and see what you might have needed to make this one project easier or that would improve accuracy, quality of build, etc etc. Then do another one, repeat. After a few projects you will see the next tool or tools you really need. You will also see how shop layout affects work flow and how to best place your tools.

With the internet we have a tremendous resource of knowledge at our fingertips. But no amount of knowledge can impart experience and show us where we need to improve.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View slolearner's profile

slolearner

27 posts in 500 days


#28 posted 02-11-2018 05:16 PM

To better explain my current situation of my current tool line up this is exactly what I am working with… Craftsman ( circa 1970ish ) radial arm saw, Its makes most cringe but i enjoy using it and use the hell out of it. bought used off craigslist from original owner never used with original blade…100.00 Craftsman 14inch bandsaw bought off craigslist used twce 100.00 Bosch Circular saw bought new, Bosch,Craftsman and Makita handheld routers. Dewalt chop saw bought new. I know some will need to be upgraded like the radial arm for a table saw but it suits me for now. The band saw for a better unit. My router table i am going all out right out of the box because it seems like that needs to be a solid system or it will kick your ass with setup and repeatability. I have a 5hp 60 gallon air compressor. I have a very hard time with hand planes, like i suck at it. I know I will need all my clamps I have counter sinks and of course good drills and bits.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

5278 posts in 2697 days


#29 posted 02-11-2018 06:32 PM

As you see many have different ideas of how to proceed and I hope you don’t fall into the Anna White pocket screws everything and don;t allow for wood movement crowd.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View msinc's profile

msinc

567 posts in 892 days


#30 posted 02-11-2018 06:32 PM

Based on what the OP says he has so far my vote would go to a nice table saw or “cabinet” saw. Next would be at least a 6” jointer. Don’t get me wrong, I have and like my 735, it is a very nice little planer, but I find that when working with trying to make wood flat the jointer works better. Like Loren, I don’t have a sled….yet that is. In process of putting together my new shop and a sled is on the list of must haves when all moved in.

View Holt's profile

Holt

280 posts in 3017 days


#31 posted 02-11-2018 06:54 PM

I think the most important thing to have is a doting wife with a trust fund and/or private fortune.

On a more serious note, a used ShopSmith will give you pretty decent versions of a whole shop full of tools. When you eventually replace all the functions (except horizontal boring machine. Insanely useful and I’ve never seen anyone buy one), turn the Smith into the worlds best sanding station and power source for any shop made tools you cook up (like a thickness/drum sander)

-- ...Specialization is for insects.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

5278 posts in 2697 days


#32 posted 02-11-2018 07:47 PM


Based on what the OP says he has so far my vote would go to a nice table saw or “cabinet” saw. Next would be at least a 6” jointer. Don t get me wrong, I have and like my 735, it is a very nice little planer, but I find that when working with trying to make wood flat the jointer works better. Like Loren, I don t have a sled….yet that is. In process of putting together my new shop and a sled is on the list of must haves when all moved in.

- msinc

With a jointer alone you make one face flat and one edge straight and 90 degrees to the face that you flatten. You can then go to the table saw and make the other edge parallel to the first edge. If you don’t have a planer how you going to make the remaining face flat and parallel to the first face other than hand planes?

A planer what not made to make wood flat that’s why you have trouble with your 735. If you can’t have a jointer and a planer the next best is to have a planer and go the sled route.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com