Woodworking Talk banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello

I am interested in starting woodworking as a hobby and I was wondering if anyone could recomend some basic cheap equipment and what projects that I could with them. Thanks to all that help me out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,690 Posts
Depends on what you want to build. Some guys have a whole shop full of tools that they only use once in a blue moon, but it is there when they need it. Others like scroll saw craftsmen just have a nice scroll saw , a sander and maybe a table saw. Others still are lathe people and their shops center around their lathes. If you are wanting to build big projects like cabinets, you will need more tools and plenty of room. Small craft projects like birdhouses and squirrel feeders (for example, there are 1000 examples I could have used) or small turnings your tools can be minimal as well as shop space.
Name your project and I am sure there will be a dozen guys jump in here and give you a shopping list of tools :laughing:. Tool shopping can be a hobby in itself :glare:.
 

·
johnep
Joined
·
2,140 Posts
In my youth power tools for the amateur were non existent. We used a hand drill. belly brace for larger holes, a tenon saw, screw driver and a hammer.

Most useful tool is a variable speed power drill.
johnep
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
help

I was thinking of bird houses, small tables, book shelves, plus things for the house like storage shelving and maybe even some sort of crafts. I like so many things its hard to narrow it down. Would it be a good or bad to start off with cheap tools. For example I see that craftsman has some cheap table saws, band saws and mitre saws. Idealy I would like to buy 3 or 4 cheap tools not over 1000 dollars total that would give me the greatest versatility. Thanks guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Its far better to get good tools appropriate to your scale. There are some systems with a circular saw that runs along a fence that you clamp onto your work piece. Something like this - the is a fancier one that the saw can plunge into the work piece but I can't remember the name.)

http://www.amazon.com/PSI-Woodworki...83-6094409?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1188245311&sr=1-4

Anyway - something like the above or the fancier version will take you further than a cheap table saw that has no precision. You can use something like this for cross cuts and rips.

Check out the forum posts from Niki - he does a lot with basic tools. But every one of his "basic" tools are very high quality.

Remember your trusting your fingers to your skills and your tools. Personally I plan to count to 10 for a long time. You might check into a local jr. college woodworking class. That where I learned the basics and you don't have to buy any tools for that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Stewie,

If you truly want to learn a craft and make money at it, look around. Pick something you will enjoy and pick your tools accordingly. I would not waste my money low end tools. Not that you have to spend a fortune, but I would stick to the woodworking brands like Delta, Jet, Porter Cable. They will cost a little more now, but they will last longer and give you better precision.

Once you decide what you want to do, let us know and I am sure you will get a ton of recommendations

Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
714 Posts
Its far better to get good tools appropriate to your scale. There are some systems with a circular saw that runs along a fence that you clamp onto your work piece. Something like this - the is a fancier one that the saw can plunge into the work piece but I can't remember the name.)

http://www.amazon.com/PSI-Woodworki...83-6094409?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1188245311&sr=1-4

Anyway - something like the above or the fancier version will take you further than a cheap table saw that has no precision. You can use something like this for cross cuts and rips.

Check out the forum posts from Niki - he does a lot with basic tools. But every one of his "basic" tools are very high quality.

Remember your trusting your fingers to your skills and your tools. Personally I plan to count to 10 for a long time. You might check into a local jr. college woodworking class. That where I learned the basics and you don't have to buy any tools for that.
I agree... this method of cutting would be far better than a cheap table saw... (I wish I had known about this when I started back into ww'g)

The bigger / better model, I think is this: (I think it's made by Festool & is very high quality)
http://www.amazon.com/Eurekazone-SG...44-0779326?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1188262218&sr=1-1

A SUPER nice quality tool that will last you for years... even after you get a better table saw... Good for cutting down plywood sheets, etc... BUT, it can also be used to cut Parts for your projects... small or large!

I LOVE my Grizzly G0555 Band saw... it is a real pleasure to use... I think I use it more than Table Saw type cutting.

A combo Disk / belt sander is nice to have... saves a lot of elbo grease.

You'd be surprised what you can do with a Router too...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
Forgive my ignorance but couldn't you just make your own jig? I went to the library tonight and got several books for beginners and one is on how to make your own jigs. Just a thought!

An offset cutting guide. It, the book :smile:, basically shows you how to use 2 pieces of wood to make the guide and you can then use a circular saw for ripping. Anyhow, I'm by far not one to listen to yet. :smile:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Jigs

Hitman,

You most certainly can make a jig. There are thousand of jigs and many of them are better than what can be purchased in the store. It just becomes a balancing act as to how much time you want to spend making jigs and how much time you want to spend on your projects. Some times it is easier to just walk into the woodworking store and buy the jig you need. Watch New Yankee Work shop. Norm has tons of home made jigs. He also has every tool known to man.

Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
Lol, true. I wish that show aired more down here. Only get it once a week.

Personally, and maybe Stevie will get a few ideas from my ramblings, I had decided to make some jigs/guides as my first projects. They require a low skill level and would help me ease into woodworking. Figured it'd save me some money too, which I can use for wood down the road. Anyhow, hope it all works out for you Stevie, GL. :thumbsup:
 

·
Forgotten but not gone
Joined
·
5,674 Posts
For joining large pieces I have often used a simple straight edge clamped to the work piece and a circular saw with a sharp 40 tooth blade. Just make sure the straight edge is straight, and that you check for perfect 90 deg square from your base plate and blade. make sure your square falls between two teeth on your blade so a tooth does not prevent the square from lying flat against the blade body.
You can get very acceptable results this way. Apply force down and in a little against the straight edge and make sure it is clamped tight enough that the force wont make the edge slip.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Yes Festool its the fancy system I was thinking of.

http://www.festoolusa.com/ProductDetails.aspx?ProdID=561174&id=3

There's the link. And yes you can look at it and tell you could do the same thing with a 2x4 and 2 clamps. However, you have heard the word precision mentioned a couple times. Woodworking is all about precision. This is why machinists make the best woodworkers. You want to work in a tolerance of 1/64 of an inch. What you get from a store bought system is hopefully a high degree of precision with out having to learn it the hard way. It follows from there that if your going to make a jig, you cannot make a jig that is MORE precise then the tools you make it with. Everyone here has said cheap tools aren't worth it. Well the difference between cheap and expensive tools is predominately....you guessed it ... precision. So cutting a board is pretty easy. Cutting it square is a little harder. Getting it sized and square to the dimensions you want within 1/64 of an inch - that will take a little practice. With a cheap table saw the problem is you might not be able to do that. I think I spent $350 on my first table saw and the Festool circular saw system would have taken me a lot further. The only difference is precision - now I own a $15,000 dollar combo machine from Austria and once a year or so I spend hours cussing the thing with a dial indicator in one hand and engineer square in the other. But when its all adjusted and tight damn its sweet. If I had bought the thing and plunked it in my garage without knowing how or caring to adjust it, then it would be only so much garbage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
about begining woodworking

Hello stewie . I would recommend taking a couple of woodworking class at a local school or community college. See if they have any class in the fundementails of woodworking. What i would do next is by a good paire of chisels a wood mallet to go with it an learn how to use it then get a good table saw or a circular saw system. I agree with the other guys you should put your money into good tools and not cheap ones if you are serious about woodworking. You will need a small gringing wheel to go with the chiels so you can sharpen them and a combo sharpening stone resaon that will save you money in the long run instead of buying a bunch of stones. The combo stone are course on one side an fine on the other. I wish you luck an if you need any help let me or any of use on this forum know i am sure most of us are glad to help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
714 Posts
Hello stewie . I would recommend taking a couple of woodworking class at a local school or community college. See if they have any class in the fundementails of woodworking. What i would do next is by a good paire of chisels a wood mallet to go with it an learn how to use it then get a good table saw or a circular saw system. I agree with the other guys you should put your money into good tools and not cheap ones if you are serious about woodworking. You will need a small gringing wheel to go with the chiels so you can sharpen them and a combo sharpening stone resaon that will save you money in the long run instead of buying a bunch of stones. The combo stone are course on one side an fine on the other. I wish you luck an if you need any help let me or any of use on this forum know i am sure most of us are glad to help.
As an alternative to grinding wheels, etc., I have found the Scary Sharp sharpening system to be Fantastic!
It's cheap... fast... and good!
You might take a look at it for chisels and small stuff...

Would not be so good for Turning tools, hoes, shovels, etc. :icon_smile:

http://www.woodworkstuff.net/scary.html

Rockler has Kits for various grits, etc. which I found to be cheaper than buying the individual pieces.
I would get a Coarse System and a Fine Set... you would be Set!
http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=5983&sid=AFF17
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,276 Posts
Hi Stewie
If you don't already have any hand held power tools, I would suggest you start with an electric drill. It can be corded, or cordless. If you go cordless, make sure it comes with two batteries. 1/2" capacity is best. Buy a decent skil saw,for straight cuts, and probably a jig saw, for doing curves. A dual motion orbital sander is great for smaller projects. A belt sander can be added later, if you start doing larger projects, such as bookcases. Some chisels, and a mallet are handy too. If you really get into it, and enjoy what you are doing, then you can start adding some bench tools, as space and budget allow. I think you will be pretty amazed at what you can accomplish with some fairly basic tools. Also, as you progress, you will start to develop confidence, and a better idea of which type of projects you would like to try.

Have fun, because that's what it's all about.

Gerry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
help

Thanks for all the great advice everyone. I have narrowed down the first projects I would like to tackle. They are humidors and bird houses. Any help about what tools I would I need would be great.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top