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Power tools Y'all!

Rockwell

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Originally Posted by Mr Herbert
can anyone recomend a good book on cabinet making?

im looking at building a kitchen and wardrobes. i need a pretty detailed explanation of every step as i am an office bound.

also, in regards to table saws, are the small bench top units worthwhile?


The bigger the better. Gives you more possibilities if you want to use it for other stuff in the future.
 

L.R.

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I grew up on a farm, but my father is a carpenter. I still work with him on his jobs often, and s such, I highly encourage everyone to do home projects, especially anything to do flooring. I could use some more work.
 

j

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Originally Posted by CityConnection
If you start doing more work you will start to accumulate more tools. Between my brother-in-law and I, we now have an enclosed trailer and most tools to do electrical, plumbing, construction, finishing, painting, and so on. Buy tools as you need them because you will eventually need them all. No need to buy them before you need them because that will free up more money to buy the stuff you need when you need them. And there are some tools that you shouldn't skimp out on and others that you can go cheap on.

my 2 cents


Semi-necro, but very relevant to me in the last 6 months or so, after buying a 1960 house and having tons of stuff to do (mostly optional), and finally space to set up a small workshop.

^ I generally agree with this strategy, for specialized things, but I will say that after I bought this kit:



(I got it at Home Depot on sale for somewhere around 500 bucks)

I have used every tool in it waaaaay more than I expected (aside from the cheesy flashlight I guess). Having decent tools readily available, for a procrastinating/lazy person like me, is often the difference between doing something that needs doing, or letting it go forever.

I was actually kind of scared of circular saws before I got this, now I have no problem zipping through something above my head, left handed, and actually doing a decent job of it most of the time (finally got a speed square which helps a lot for really straight cuts on e.g. 2x4s). I've done lots of cuts with it, it's pretty accurate, and even if you have a more powerful corded one, this is so handy you might rarely bring it out except for setting up a cut station for framing, etc.

The hammer driver is TOTALLY badass. This little lightweight thing can take a 1-1/4" spade bit and power it right through a 2 x 2x6 top plate, with my arm extended all the way out while lying down in the attic to run cable. I recommend the Bosch daredevil spade bits BTW, they have a screw tip that helps feed the bit so you don't have to push as hard. Besides drilling, I have driven probably a thousand "gold screws" by now on various things, huge lag bolts, etc. etc. yet there is enough control to carefully snug up a screw on something relatively delicate. If you work on cars/bikes (or ever use sockets), you will never want to work on them again without this. Get this type of hex-3/8" adapter and now you can hook up all your sockets and have a light-to-medium duty impact driver that can do almost everything you would usually use a 3/8" ratchet for, but basically instantly instead of turning 1/2 turn 20x. If you can figure out a way to get a socket to the fastener (get a bunch of extensions/wobbly/etc. Harbor Freight ones work fine) you can save a lot of time and make working on car stuff much more fun.

The drill, works great. 1/2" chuck. I rarely use it except for simple drilling ops but it does have a hammer setting, still haven't tried it, but I don't doubt it would do pretty well for masonry or whatever. You would still want a real roto-hammer type thing (rent/borrow) for serious concrete drilling stuff, I'm sure.

The angle grinder I took a while to find a use for, but once I did, I really needed it. Long story short,



couldn't figure out how that was supposed to come apart, and ended up not needing to.

The sawzall is also pretty badass, haven't used it on any super heavy duty stuff, but for cutting through studs/drywall/etc. it works quite well. Also great for branches, awkward things like that.

Besides the kit, I would say that if you have the space, start accumulating tools you think you will need when you see a good deal on them. I just got a decent benchtop drill press at an estate sale for $25 and with some cleaning up I think it will work fine for what I will be doing with it (of course, now I start looking into using it for milling and such, decide it probably can't do that much in that capacity, and go straight to trolling craigslist for CNC mills). Estate/garage sales are a great place to pick up well-made older tools for almost nothing - even before you know why you would want that. I can almost guarantee that any tool I buy, I find a use for within a couple of days.

Having the tools on hand and the basic knowledge to use them gives my brain new ways to think about doing things, and inspires me to do projects I wouldn't have thought to tackle.
 

Thomas

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Good Lord! Had there been anything like that when I had gotten married, I might have a considerably more tidy garage now.
 

j

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Originally Posted by Thomas
Good Lord! Had there been anything like that when I had gotten married, I might have a considerably more tidy garage now.
Yeah, I was imagining what havoc I would have wrought if this (existed, and) were given to me as a kid. I'd probably be some kind of master carpenter by now.

Oh yeah, other power tools acquired in the last while: Portalign style mini drill press (free), HF grinder w/ stand ([email protected] sale), RO sander and miter saw (came with the girlfriend), Craftsman jigsaw ($2, needs blade-holder-thing). Probably some other stuff. And tons of hand tools.
 

Thomas

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I had a really bad thing for block planes and chisels for a long time. Still find myself sharpening them here and there, despite not having used them much at all recently.

One of the cooler things I wound up with was a simple AC motor ($5). I ended up adding a mandrel and buffing wheel (from a jeweler's supply) and now I can buff pretty much any metal to a near-mirror shine. I still want to turn it into a small belt grinder but just have not made the time to run with it. Plus, I don't want to lose the buffing capability.
 

Rambo

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That Makita LXT set has long been considered one of the best buys.

If anyone needs something similar, but wants to spend a bit less money, the new Li-on Ryobi sets at Home Depot are very good.
 

CityConnection

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Originally Posted by j
Semi-necro, but very relevant to me in the last 6 months or so, after buying a 1960 house and having tons of stuff to do (mostly optional), and finally space to set up a small workshop.

^ I generally agree with this strategy, for specialized things, but I will say that after I bought this kit:




Agree. You can buy it like that or buy it individually over the course of your first project. hahaha...
 

j

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Yeah, and it is probably twice as expensive to buy all the tools individually.
 

Herhumbrod

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Yes, I am a professional lumberjack and a tree worker, and there you need a lot of necessary tools for craft with a tree, you know. However, in my opinion, the most indispensable is a table-stand with a saw, more info here. For the first time, you can only get by with this table. The cost is no higher than $ 900. A good investment as a start and over time, already unleash their own opportunities
 

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