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Forum topic by WoodsmanWoodworker posted 09-03-2010 09:55 PM 1526 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View WoodsmanWoodworker's profile


146 posts in 2847 days

09-03-2010 09:55 PM

Topic tags/keywords: handtools woodworking new tools planes chisels help question

REVISED EDITION based on below help

OK, i want to start woodworking with hand tools only, not power tools. I found this guy named roy underhill at this site. It was very helpful, but he didn’t answer my emails so i need help with some tools to start off with. Here is a list i have complied with my research so far. Please let me know what i missed or what i don’t need. Thanks…
Bit and brace
Rip saw
Crosscut saw
Miter saw / gents saw
Bench chisels
Mortise chisels
Work table with stops and vices
Planes ( i need to know a lot about these, what kinds and what they do best )
Gouge chisels
Treadle lathe
Hand powered drill
Hand powerted drill press
cabinet scraper
miter box
coping saw

Picture above:
Also i just got these and would like to know what kind of planes they are and what it is they do. Thanks
P.S. I think they might be a jack plane and block plane.

-- We must protect the forests for those who can't speak, for the trees and animals. ~THE WOODSMAN~

6 replies so far

View ShannonRogers's profile


540 posts in 3812 days

#1 posted 09-03-2010 10:30 PM

Whoo boy are you asking a tough question to answer. First of all, welcome to this obsession and congratulations on discovering the hand tool ways. Roy Underhill is a great guy, but between his TV show and school I’m not sure how much he gets to his emails. This site is a great place for you to be to learn about hand tools and woodworking so block off some time and get ready to learn. I get a lot of emails similar to your query and I always answer them with “what kind of work do you want to do?” If you plan to build furniture then you can be fine with some saws, chisels, and a few planes. You may never touch a lathe and you may never need a drawknife. If you want tot make chairs then a draw knife and shave horse might be your first bet. The good news is that only a small tool kit is really needed to build furniture. There are so many ways to do things that a set of chisels can take you a long way. However you will find that some tools excel as specific things and as you do more of that task your life is easier by getting those specialized tools. For instance regular bench chisels can cut a mortise, but a mortising chisel will do it better. The key is to build your collection slowly and as you need the tools or you will spend all your time buying tools and not making anything nor building your skills. I would suggest you decide on a good first project to build and this great group of guys will be able to guide you. There are a lot of free resources here on the net that can help you as well but you might get a lot out of a comprehensive woodworking how to book. I have done a lot of videos and blog posts on hand tool working on my own site, but their are others like Logan Cabinet Shoppe for purely hand tool work. There are a lot of videos here as well.

So in summary you question is not one that is easily answered in one post and we may need to break it down to more specifics to help you. Feel free to email me at and I can walk you through anything. I am excited to meet a new face and happy to help as is everyone here.

PS: that is a block plane and the other may be a #3 or #4 plane which is used for smoothing and final finishing work. The block plane excels at cutting end grain but is also a small utility plane for all kinds of work.

-- The Hand Tool School is Open for Business! Check out my blog and podcast "The Renaissance Woodworker" at

View Jonnyfurniture's profile


59 posts in 2852 days

#2 posted 09-04-2010 12:43 AM

Hi Woodsman,

When I saw your avatar I thought you may be related to my girlfriend.

I would add something like a #7 jointer plane if you plan on making any wide panels.

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3008 days

#3 posted 09-04-2010 02:32 AM

First off welcome to LumberJocks. Roy Underhill is a great guy and story teller so ya he’ll be hard to get a hold of. As Shannon has said there are a lot of great people here to help and give advice. As Shannon stated start easy with the tools until you are sure of what you want to do. A basic set of bench chisels will take you a long way before investing in mortising chisels and the like. Don’t use a hammer on your chisels but a mallet. Its not hard to make a mallet and you will be making a tool you didn’t need to buy. Don’t forget you will need something to sharpen those chisels with. Stay away from grinding if at all possible. When you say miter saw, a gents saw will do the trick. Making a miter box would be a good starter project thus providing you with a tool that you made yourself as well. A brace and bits are a good way to go. Here again you will need to learn to sharpen them as well for them to work properly. When working with hand tools learning to sharpen them will be an education in itself so be prepared for a lot of sharpening and honing. When it comes to planes keep it simple to start with. A jointer, jack, and block planes will start you off good. Hand drills I would get what they call an egg beater style and a yankee drill. As for a lathe and lathe tools save that for later after you have developed your basic woodworking skills. One thing I didn’t see on your list was a cabinet or card scraper this will save you a lot of sanding. As you can see your simple post is a lot to answer in one post, so you might want to wait till you get going and then start posting questions so that you don’t get to over whelmed with so much information before you get started. Remember there are no stupid questions except the ones you don’t ask. Once again Welcome to LumberJocks.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View Mark's profile


1807 posts in 3298 days

#4 posted 09-04-2010 03:11 AM

hows about some files…and heres a link to my shavehorse I just built…you will love to work on one..

p.s. welcome to LJs…u’ll get addicted be careful :P

-- M.K.

View swirt's profile


2780 posts in 2996 days

#5 posted 09-04-2010 04:27 AM

clamps, you need some clamps. You can do a lot with a pair of handscrew clamps and a pair of 12” F-clamps

As Greg and Shannon have said, your kit of tools will be steered by what you intend to make. With a couple of saws and some chisels you can make a workbench and by the time you are done with that, you’ll have a acquired some additional tools as you needed them and you will have a better sense of what kind of woodworking you enjoy and what you want to do more of.

-- Galootish log blog,

View WoodsmanWoodworker's profile


146 posts in 2847 days

#6 posted 09-06-2010 08:18 PM

Thanks all

-- We must protect the forests for those who can't speak, for the trees and animals. ~THE WOODSMAN~

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