10 Hand Tools to Have in your Shop

10 Hand Tools to Have in your Shop

1. Chisel Set

A proper chisel set can make your work go from DIYer to professional woodworker. But chisels are not just for specialized tasks like cutting dovetails. They are great all-around tools that aid in a variety of different ways. Many woodworkers own two sets, one nice and one beat up. The nice set is your prized possession and keeping them sharp and clean is key to making sure they treat you right. The beat-up set will become some of your favorite tools to grab for cleaning up glue squeeze out or scoring a board for a cut.

2. Marking Gauge

Woodworkers use many different tools as marking gauges and finding your favorite can round out your pouch or apron. Some prefer a combination square, some like sliding T-squares. Whatever your preference is, make sure it allows for accurate measuring.

3. Utility Knife

A utility knife is a valuable tool that a woodworker uses every day. Opening packages are just the start of a utility knife’s purpose. They make small cuts on delicate profiles, wipe glue squeeze-out, and clean excess tear out. Most makers and DIYers can recognize the standard look of a utility knife, but recently new folding options have become common and a small tool to keep in your pocket.

4. Block Plane

Woodworkers obtain a lot of planes over time. They are useful tools with incredible value. The most important plane for any maker is the block plane. They come in a variety of styles with low angle and 3-in-1 options topping the list. However, they are some of the most expensive hand tools on this list and take a fair amount of care to keep sharp. But a good block plane is a necessary addition to your range of hand tools.

5. Non-Marring Mallet

Mallets knock together most woodworker’s joints and are a key member of a maker’s belt pouch when working around a shop. The essential aspect of a solid mallet is that it will not mar even the softest wood. A new mallet is a great investment as they stay in your shop for years.

6. Paint Scraper

The paint scraper may be the most aggressive tool on this list. They are generally used for cleaning up dried glue prior to sanding and that can be a daily task for woodworkers. Keeping your scraper clean is crucial to its effectiveness. In addition, you can also keep a few extra replacement blades on hand. 

7. Flush Cut Saw

Mastering a flush cut saw will pay dividends in your woodworking. They are a perfect tool to remove rounded corners and cut excess material in joinery tasks. Specialty hand saws such as Japanese pull saws and Dovetail saws have become popular. But a trusted flush cut saw is an all-around great tool to have. Beginner woodworkers should start with a flush cut saw before moving to other, more specialized saws.

8. Tape Measure

Not all tape measures are created equal. Different tape measures have different features, and everyone has their favorite. The features range from nail notches, housing measurements, retractable buttons, etc. Try out different brands and find your favorite!

9. Spring Clamps

Keeping clamps handy is essential to an efficient workshop. Good spring clamps last a lifetime and pay for themselves after a few days. Holding scribe board, attaching build-up, and gluing faces together are only a few of the immense number of spring clamp uses. Make sure to keep the non-marring rubber on the clamp for proper grip as the medal can dig in easily.

10. Cabinet Scraper

Much like a block plane, the cabinet scraper’s main job is to take off small layers of material from a part’s face. These tools take some time to master and repeated use is the only way to ensure a flat surface. Once a woodworker becomes confident with their scraper, they can make any surface smooth.


Do you have any favorite tools you want to share with our woodworkers? Let us know by emailing us at marketing@forest2home.com or on social @ShopF2H.

1 comment

  • David Rush

    Enjoyed your latest video….Keep up the good work. Your products are of great quality and your order response is very timely. As a former resident of Upstate NY and now living in Texas, I appreciate your ability to ship quality NY goods.

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