The Complete Guide to Buying Woodworking Tools

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The Complete Guide to Buying Woodworking Tools

Woodworking tools are any tools designed to create or work with wood and include a range of simple tools and machines. Buyers must choose woodworking tools based on what they intend to do with the tools, the size of the tools, and the capabilities of the tools. An electric saw performs the same capacities as a handheld saw but might be too expensive for anyone who only wants to use it a few times. Conversely, a handheld tool might not be as practical as an electric one for anyone who uses it daily.

Choosing woodworking tools involves setting a budget and deciding where to purchase them. Different woodworking projects might require a wide range of different tools so it is also important to check which tools are necessary for a single project. Most buyers can purchase necessary tools in hardware stores, craft and hobby stores, or online stores. Considerations when making a purchase include the price, weight, and when the tools are needed, as well as what type of woodworking crafts the tools are meant for.

Different Types of Woodworking Tools

Most if not all types of woodworking tools have a handheld and an electric versions so buyers can choose either option, depending on their needs, preferences, and budget. As a general rule, electric versions are more expensive and not always suitable for every project. Beginners might not want to invest in expensive items, for example electric sanders, when they could instead purchase cheap hand sanding paper to get the job done as well. There is a range of different woodworking tools but most beginners can get away with purchasing the basics and then upgrading as they gain experience and engage in more complex woodworking projects.

Chisels and Scrapers

Woodworking chisels and scrapers can be very useful for anyone who does woodworking. Chisels can be used to shape, pattern, carve, and cut down wood for almost any purpose ranging from furniture construction to wood carving. Scrapers are less useful, but can be used to smooth wood, remove old paint, remove splinters, and more. Buyers can look for wood chisel sets in a range of sizes or can purchase an individual chisel, depending on their needs. Importantly, a wood chisel should not be confused with a stone chisel as the head is completely different. Scraper sets can be purchased as well although many people might find that scrapers are cheaper to purchase as part of a painting set with paint brushes included as well.

Painting Supplies

Most woodworking requires some form of painting, even if it is simply the application of protective varnish. Purchasing paint brushes and painting supplies along with varnish and any necessary paint are important steps to finishing many projects. Paint brushes can be purchased in sets or individually, and can be sized according to the project. Paint brushes range from a couple of millimetres wide to upwards of 10 centimetres.


Saws include both electric and hand saws although not all of them are suitable for every project. Hand saws are tedious and time consuming for large projects and most woodworkers can benefit from investing in either a rotor saw or a jigsaw. Most beginners might find that the jigsaw can be used often so it is a good starter electric saw. Buyers can add other saws to their toolkit later, as needed.

Drills and Screwdrivers

A drill is essential in any woodworking toolkit and most buyers should invest in a good one. Drills can be used around the house, for woodworking and for fixing things, so a drill is a good investment not only for a hobby woodworking project. Buyers who do not think they need a drill very often can invest in a cheap drill and then upgrade when it wears out in a few years. Screwdrivers include Phillips and flathead, and come in a range of sizes, expressed in millimetres, usually ranging between 2.4 and 24.


Most woodworkers require at least one standard hammer although many might find it necessary to add to their collection smaller hammers, rubber mallets, and sometimes a larger hammer. A standard hammer can be used to drive most nails and, when paired with a rubber block, can also be used in place of a mallet. Smaller hammers can be purchased to drive penny and smaller nails more gently.

Clamps and Vices

Not all woodworkers require clamps and vices but these tools are very handy for most. Clamps and vices range in size but most should be mounted to a table. Anyone who does not have a work table should likely not invest in either. Clamps and vices are both used to tighten around a project to keep it in place while hammering, carving, or even painting it.

Planes and Sanding

Planes and sanding equipment are used to smooth boards, remove splinters, and give them a beautiful professional finish. Sanding is also used to help paint and varnish stick to the wood rather than eventually peeling off later. Most beginners can invest in a hand plane and sandpaper and then upgrade to an electric sander if they find themselves sanding a lot of projects. Some drills can also be equipped with sanding bits for sanding small projects.


Lathes are frequently used in woodworking but are not necessarily for everyone. Lathes are frequently used in furniture constructions, and can be used to cut, smooth, round, and shape wood into a variety of shapes and angles. Anyone building furniture can obviously use a lathe quite frequently and might want to consider investing in one. On the other hand, anyone who is more prone to building boxes and bird houses might find that the lathe is not an essential tool for them.


A workbench is not always considered a tool but it can be one of the most useful things to a woodworker. A workbench gives the crafter a place to paint, carve, drill holes, set vices, store tools, allow varnish and paint to dry, and much more. While many workbenches are quite large, many are also quite small as well. The idea is to look for something that is either heavy enough that it cannot move, or something that can be bolted to the wall or the floor. Anyone who is tight on space can get a shelf bench that simply screws into the wall but does not have legs. Anyone with more space can consider a larger workbench with storage areas and more.

Purchasing a Woodworking Tool Set

Another option for beginners is purchasing a woodworking toolset. While this set is not likely to have everything necessary for woodworking, it might have a hammer, saw, screwdrivers, chisels, sharpening stone, mallet, scrapers, pliers, and other tools that might be necessary for a woodworker. However, it might not be possible to find a full kit, so some buyers might want to look for individual sets of screwdrivers, scrapers, sanding material, and other tools individually in order to add more complete options to their toolkit.

Most experts suggest that beginners purchase cheap tools and use them until they wear out before replacing them with expensive options. This is for a couple of reasons, including that the beginner might decide woodworking is not really for him after a few months or years, and that many tools might not be necessary when just starting out. Replacing tools with more expensive options as cheap ones break is a lot cheaper than paying for all new good quality tools all at once. In fact, even cheap tools can last for many years so the investment eventually pays off.

Buying Woodworking Tools on eBay

There are many woodworking tools available on eBay including electric and handheld options. Buyers can choose from large and small tools in any style they need without leaving their home. It is also possible to find tools that might not be available from local eBay sellers, which is good for anyone who is looking for a certain brand of woodworking tools. Importantly, it is also easy to search and find woodworking tools on eBay because you can search using a keyword and then refine the results you get by price, condition, location of the sellers, and more.

Try searching directly for the tools you need. Searching for 'wood chisel set' can bring up more relevant options than looking for 'woodworking tools' would bring. Keep in mind that not all items on eBay are new so it is always a good idea to read the description before making a purchase. Finally, check the delivery price, especially on heavy items, to ensure that the item does not cost more than you expect.


Woodworking tools can be used for carpentry, hobby woodworking, and a range of crafts that involve wood. From building furniture to creating elaborate wooden music boxes, woodworkers need a good set of tools to properly work their craft. Those tools can be purchased in places such as hardware stores, craft shops, and on eBay, and can come in many styles, sizes, and at a range of different prices.

Most buyers should start out purchasing affordable basics that can hopefully get them started in the world of woodworking. Replacing tools gradually as they wear out with more expensive items is usually easier than paying for a quality set all at once. There are many factors that go into purchasing tools but practical choices based on needs and budget are important choices. Buyers should also consider what tools they need based on space, woodworking requirements, tools they already have, and of course, budget.

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