12 Essential Tools for Woodworking: A Guide For Beginners

With the right tools, you can find more success in your woodworking journey. When you have the right tools that beginners need, you’ll be able to improve the experience you have with this craft. You’ll also be able to save a lot of money over the long run.

Woodworking can be challenging, whether it’s your profession or just a hobby. Here are the basic tools, including hand tools, layout tools and even small power tools, that you’ll need, to be a successful woodworker.

  1. Marking Gauge

A marking gauge can be important both for basic as well as advanced joinery. They are also easy to use. You will need a marking gauge for mortise as well as tenon joints. You’ll need then for dovetails as well as rabbets, among many other tasks. This is an essential tool when it comes to woodworking.

This should also be one of the first tools you buy, since they’re so cheap. For beginners, the best marking gauge to get is a combination gauge of good quality gauge. This will do the job of a mortise gauge as well as a marking gauge.

  1. Combination Square

A combination square is another layout tool that you’ll need. This is a versatile tool that’s also easy to use. You’ll be able to both mark as well as cut at 90 as well as 45 degrees. The 90 degree angle is needed for tenon joints. The 45 degree angle is necessary for corner joints as well as many other cuts.

Your combination square shouldn’t even be off by a degree or two, or this could affect your finer tasks.

  1. Clamps

If you’re a beginner to woodworking, then you should know that you need clamps for practically everything. From gluing panels to assembly, clamps are necessary. For a beginner, just around eight clamps are enough. Pipe clamps will be what you mainly use. These are sold in sets.

  1. Hand Saw

The hand saw may be a simple tool, but it’s also one of the most important tools you’ll find yourself using. For beginners, using a hand tool for everything just isn’t feasible. Consider opting for a high quality hand saw, as the cheaper ones just aren’t worth the money.

  1. Smoothing Plane

With the help of a good quality smoothing plane, you can do all the planning work you need to. When you become good at using a smoothing plane, you’ll also be able to cut down on the time it takes to do sanding.

  1. Mallet

You may already have a claw hammer in your home. You may also think that you can use it instead of a mallet. However, this isn’t a good idea, especially not if you want your tools to last. A good mallet can be used to tap the joinery into its place. You can also use it to smash chisels into hardwood.

  1. Chisels

One of the tools that you should put careful thought into before buying, is a chisel. This is as there are a lot of junk chisels available, even from brands that are reputable. Invest in a set of six chisels and learn how to use and sharpen them.

Also consider getting insurance, with a comprehensive insurance, carpenters get better protection. Visit this website to know more.

  1. Sharpening Stones

A sharpening stone is essential if you want to keep your chisels and quality plane sharp. This is as cutting tools tend to lose their edge with time. That’s why they need to be sharpened with sharpening stones. For woodworking, you can consider water stones as well as diamond plates.

  1. Circular Saw

A circular saw is one of the most important power tools you’ll own as a woodworking beginner. Table saws, while also important, tend to be more expensive. If you invest in a good circular saw that comes with a track, this can be really helpful. The track will help you get crosscuts as well as rip cuts that are perfect.

  1. Router

A router can be a little more difficult to use than a circular saw. You’ll find that your router is the tool you go to, for many tasks. With a router, you can cut circles as well as other shapes easily. Routers usually come with basic bits. Eventually, you should invest in a router table as well.

  1. Power Drill

This is probably one of the few woodworking tools that you already have. This is a must have tool that can help you with even home repairs. You can do everything from assembling furniture to drilling holes in walls where you can hang picture frames.

What you need to consider is whether you should get a drill that comes with a cord, or cordless options. Those that come with a cord are less expensive, but cordless models can be more convenient to use.

  1. Random Orbital Sander

The final tool you should have can feel like it’s a luxury, but this is actually an essential tool. Sanding is one of the more tedious aspects of woodworking. A random orbital sander can be more expensive than a belt sander, but it’s well worth the investment, as it makes sanding easy.


These well the twelve essential tools that a beginner woodworker needs to have. With time, you can get more tools as well. But with the tools mentioned on this list, you should be able to start your journey as a beginner woodworker.

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