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Basic Woodworking Hand Tools

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basic woodworking hand tools

Basic Woodworking Hand Tools

Basic Woodworking Hand Tools. A quality woodworker needs a good set of hand tools. They’ll help you take precise measurements and make perfect joints.

You’ll need a sharpening stone for your chisels and planes, too. These stones come in a variety of grits and can be water- or diamond-based.


A screwdriver is a tool used for driving or unscrewing screws. They come in a variety of styles and are often manual or electric.

TedsWoodworking Plans and Projects

They are one of the most basic hand tools, and a good set should include a variety of sizes. They’re also great for DIY projects like putting together furniture and other household items, or doing bike repairs.

Some manual screwdrivers have interchangeable tips that fit into a socket on the shaft and are held in mechanically or magnetically. Others have a hollow handle with various types and sizes of tips, and are designed with a reversible ratcheting action that allows multiple full turns without repositioning the tip or the user’s hand.

The heads of some screwdrivers are shaped to reduce slippage. This improves the user’s grip and prevents them from rolling when they set down. The handles are typically made of cellulose acetate and can be coated in a soft material like rubber to improve the user’s grip.

Another popular type of screwdriver is the flat head. These screwdrivers fit into slotted screws and are used for many DIY projects.

According to Spruce, flat-head screws have been around since at least the 1500s. They’re one of the most common types of screws used in woodworking, and a good set should include varying sizes.

There are a few different types of screwdrivers, including Phillips and Torx. The former are designed to fit in the X-shaped notch of compatible Phillips-head screws, and they’re known for their ability to “cam out.” This makes them a popular choice for the automotive industry. But they can be a pain for do-it-yourselfers who don’t want to risk slipping the screw out.

Nail Sets

One of the most basic woodworking hand tools is a nail set. Nail sets can be used to sink finish nails flush with or below a surface, without smashing the surrounding wood.

They’re commonly used in finishing work, such as installing molding or other trim, where the appearance of the finished product is critical. The tool fits into a dimple in the head of a finish nail, then is struck with a hammer to drive the nail head flush to the surface.

Another use for a nail set is to push a nail below the surface of a piece of wood that’s going to be stained or painted. Once the nail is below the surface, you can fill in the gap with wood filler or paint.

The most important thing to remember when using a nail set is not to strike it too hard. Too much force can crack or damage the striking end of the tool, and it could send sharp shards toward your eyes.

A good quality nail set is made from heavy tempered alloy steel that won’t bend or collapse when you’re hammering it. Most have ridges or crosshatches embossed in the handle to prevent slipping.

Occasionally, the striking end of the nail set may lose its round shape from repeated use, or the head might develop a chip or crack. If this happens, you should replace the tool with a new one.

Many carpenters, though, have eliminated the need for a nail set by owning a power brad nailer. These tools, powered by compressed air or electricity, automatically drive and countersink all types of finish nails. They’re also easier to use than nail sets, which need to be held firmly while you strike the nails with the hammer.

Tape Measure

A tape measure is one of the most important basic woodworking hand tools that every home owner should have. It can be used to take measurements, hang artwork, measure cabinet sizes, and more.

It’s also great for marking out spaces, such as a doorway or window sill. Tape measures come in lengths ranging from 6 feet to 25 feet and longer, so you can get the exact measurements you need.

Tape measures can be made from various materials, including stainless steel, nylon covered steel, and fiberglass. It’s best to choose a material that will stand up well in your working environment.

Some tapes also include a lock button that secures the blade when taking measurements. This helps to protect the blade and prolong its lifespan.

In addition, many tapes feature red EC classification symbols printed on the blade that can help you identify which type of tape measure you’re using. This is especially helpful if you’re taking measurements for building permits or other applications that require a permit.

Another common feature is a floating tang or hook on the end of the blade that helps you make accurate measurements outside and inside. The tang connects to the tape with loose rivets through oval holes, so it can move a distance equal to its thickness to provide both inside and outside measurements that are accurate.

Some tapes are designed with a belt clip that allows them to be worn on a tool belt or pants pocket. It’s a great way to keep your tape measure handy without putting it in the drawer or trash can. You can also use a lanyard/tethered loop attachment for added safety and convenience.

Sliding Bevel

Sliding bevels are basic woodworking hand tools that are used for taking measurements and marking angles on a workpiece. They can also be used to create beveled edges on wooden furniture and other projects.

These tools consist of a metal blade and handle that can be adjusted to fit any angle. The blade can be locked in a certain position by loosening or tightening a thumbscrew or wing nut.

The blade on these bevels is usually made of tempered hardened steel. The handle is usually a wooden one that can be gripped easily.

You can use sliding bevels to take measurements on any kind of surface, including wood, concrete, and metal. After you take the measurements, you can mark them on your workpiece so that you can cut them properly.

When you are using the sliding bevel, it is important to open the nut or screw before using it. This will make it easier to adjust the handle and blade of the tool.

Another important feature of a sliding bevel is that it can transfer any kind of angle to another piece of wood. This can be helpful when you are creating dovetails or making polygons.

A sliding bevel can also be useful when you are trying to test the accuracy of a chamfer or bevel. You can use this tool to mark the angles on your workpiece and then use a pencil or any other marking tools to make sure that they are accurate.

A sliding bevel is a valuable tool for woodworkers and carpenters. It can be used to measure and mark any angle on a workpiece, so it is an essential part of any basic woodworking set.

Basic Woodworking Hand Tools Layout Square

Layout squares are an important tool to have in any woodworking shop. They are used to align pieces of wood or other woodworking materials so that they can be cut or drawn accurately. They can also be used to check the accuracy of other tools such as a saw blade and layout knife.

Layout squares come in different shapes and sizes and are typically made from aluminum, stainless steel or composite materials. Some have a magnetic surface, built-in block levels or diamond-shaped cut-outs for laying out common rafters and roof trim. Others feature bold, black gradations and 1/4-inch spaced notches for easy scribing.

Most layout squares have a matte finish that prevents glare and resists dirt and grime. Some have a center finding rule and small holes for marking parallel lines to an edge with a mechanical pencil.

In addition, many of the more advanced squares have a sturdy aluminum handle design that allows them to stand upright on their own. They may also have rare earth magnets that help secure the base to cast iron surfaces such as a table saw top.

Lastly, many layout squares come with instructions for use in various types of projects including rafter tables and stair construction. Some even have folding extension arms that allow them to function as a 7- or 12-inch square.

Layout squares can be used to mark or cut simple cross-cuts as well as a 45-degree miter. Whether you’re constructing a doorjamb or a rafter, a layout square is an essential hand tool that will increase your accuracy and save you time.


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TedsWoodworking Plans and Projects