The Best Woodworking Tools and Tool Reviews

Welcome to Wood Tools Guide! Our team of experts researches, reviews and recommends various woodworking tools including the best routers, planers, circular saws, laser levels and more. We do the homework to find the best woodworking tools so you don’t have to.

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best woodworking tools

Essential Woodworking Tools You Should Own

From beginner to expert, you need some basic tools to really have the freedom to do anything you want when working with wood and general carpentry as well. Let’s talk about some essential tools that any woodworker or carpenter needs.

Measuring Tape

There’s no doubt that you need a good measuring tape for almost any project. Whether that’s cutting wood to length or hanging a bookshelf or mounting a TV to the wall.

If you think that there’s not much difference between measuring tapes, you’re sorely mistaken. Everything from the measuring tape metal tab to the tape itself makes a HUGE difference in terms of accuracy.

Given the importance of measuring tape, it seems pretty reasonable to spend a little bit more money on a good one. The measuring tape that I always recommend is the Stanley FatMax 25′ Tape Measure. It’s relatively cheap, it is probably the highest quality tape measure that I’ve ever used in over 25 years of woodworking and it’s built like a tank and can take quite a few drops.

Cordless Drill and Driver

Whether you’re drilling into studs on a wall or using a hole saw bit, a good cordless drill is very important. Get yourself a high-quality drill with a good clutch and powerful battery and you’ve got a winner.

I really like the Ridgid R9600 x4 drill and driver kit running on 18 volts. The drill is perfect for when you need to be precise and the drill driver is super powerful for when you need to quickly put a couple screws into a stud or drill into concrete or other hard surfaces. This drill/driver combo kit is built like a tank and has served me well over the past 5 years without issue.

Wood Chisels

We recently wrote a guide to the best wood chisel sets so I’ll let you check that out. A good, sharp chisel is almost worth its weight in gold as far as I’m concerned. Chisels are great for sharpening up the edges of dado cuts, chipping out recesses for door hinges and even for when using a wood lathe.

Miter Saw

Another absolute woodworking essential is a good miter saw. I recommend going with a 12″┬ámiter saw with a laser line and if you can afford it, go with a compound sliding miter saw. The laser line is very useful for quickly lining up your cuts and miters and the sliding feature is great for cutting larger pieces of lumber.

As far as miter saws go, choose one from a trusted name brand rather than the cheapo Chinese stuff. By all means, if you know that you’ll never use a miter saw more than 10 times in your life, go and buy a cheap one at Harbor Freight. However, if you’re going to be using your miter saw for a large project like cutting wood flooring or continuous little projects like building a workbench, go with a quality miter saw.

I really am a big fan of Hitachi miter saws for the money and the quality. One of my favorite bang-for-your-buck miter saws is the Hitachi C12RSH2 12″ Sliding Compound Miter Saw. For the money, you probably won’t find a better value in miter saws for the casual woodworker or weekend warrior.


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