What tool am I missing?

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Forum topic by TelescopeMaker posted 04-13-2012 05:32 PM 1091 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View TelescopeMaker's profile


65 posts in 1765 days

04-13-2012 05:32 PM

I’m casting about for ideas. I’m thinking of getting another tool, and I’m curious what you would get if you already had:
table saw <old>
bandsaw <ridgid><makita>
6” grinder <delta>
router <ridgid>
12” benchtop drill press <ryobi>
small air compressor and brad nailer.
dust collector <cheap>
I had a 12” SCMS, but I never used it and recently sold it because it was in the way.

I might have around $300 to spend.
I’m thinking of making a fliptop cart with the grinder and maybe a new spindle sander or a disk sander.
I am just now finishing a cart for the DP and Planer.
I’ve got other hand power tools. drill, circ saw, palm sander, dremel, biscuit joiner, belt sander, recip saw, saber saw.
I’ve also got a collection of hand tools, various planes (#7 jointer #4 1/2 jack, smoothing plane, a scrub plane I made, several wooden planes I inherited from my family)
My shop is 12×19, and I have very little room left :)

I have made boxes, and bottle stoppers and calendar frames. and I have made shelves and a hutch, and would like to make a coffee table, and a bedframe, bathroom cabinet/vanity. I like the arts and crafts style, stickley, greene&greene. simple things. I make telescopes too, but that’s a different story :)

I’ve thought of maybe a jointer, but really, the large #7 hand jointer and the jack plane do an excellent jobs. A router table, perhaps, or at least as an adjunct to the rails on the table saw.

A new/used table saw isn’t out of the question either, but I think I’ll have to spend a bit more than $300.

-- Telescope Maker, Woodworker, Brewer, Gizmologist, Gardner, Lawn Mower

18 replies so far

View newwoodbutcher's profile


386 posts in 1595 days

#1 posted 04-13-2012 05:46 PM

A thicknes planner would be my next choice

-- Ken

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

1741 posts in 1667 days

#2 posted 04-13-2012 08:48 PM

I would opt for a 6” x48” bench top belt sander myself. Making the small crafty items that I make, that sander is the most used tool in my shop.

-- In God We Trust

View crank49's profile


3506 posts in 1716 days

#3 posted 04-13-2012 11:06 PM

I don’t know why you never used the SCMS?

When I go to build something, I work in stages.

Joint and thickness.

Then rip or cut to length. Here I use my miter saw as much as the table saw.

Then details like holes, rabbits, bevels, etc.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View MrRon's profile


2975 posts in 1988 days

#4 posted 04-14-2012 12:04 AM

It depends on the kind of projects you do. Think about a time when you needed a certain tool that you didn’t have. Maybe that is the next new tool. I probably wouldn’t pick a sander without updating the DC system. One tool I could recommend is a cordless impact driver; greatest thing since sliced bread. How’s the saw blade? A good saw blade improves your work.

View davidroberts's profile


1011 posts in 2231 days

#5 posted 04-14-2012 12:33 AM

I usually buy a tool or tools I need when I do a specific project. Or build it better, quicker. Let the projects guide your tool selection, else you may have a tool sitting around for months not earning its keep. The exception is old solid great value tools that don’t come along often. And that could be any type of power or hand tool. The other exception is shop and tool accessories and upgrades, like MrRon suggested, a good grade saw blade, dado set, Kreg kit, clamps, hock or IBC plane blades, chisels, vice, wood, wood, wood. The final exception is tool clearance sales, 1/2 price, deep discount is good stuff.

-- God is great, wood is good. Let us thank Him for wood......and old hand tools.

View dbhost's profile


5387 posts in 1977 days

#6 posted 04-14-2012 12:43 AM

A planer would be my next choice… You can joint on a planer, but you can’t plane on a jointer…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

View RussellAP's profile


2966 posts in 1031 days

#7 posted 04-14-2012 12:43 AM

Miter saw. And you have just about the right amount of $’s. It’s a lot easier than a table saw for cross cuts and we all make tons of cross cuts.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View TelescopeMaker's profile


65 posts in 1765 days

#8 posted 04-17-2012 03:50 AM

Meant to make it clearer. I have a planer, a makita… something happened to my post.

A miter saw might be it. I just don’t need a huge 12” scms, but a small one would be fine. Space is a huge consideration. If I need to make big cuts, the table saw is fine.

Just sharpened the table saw blade about a month ago. Nothing like a sharp blade. A box joint blade would be nice. A hock blade, yep.

I’m actually going to try my hand at making clamps.

The best tool is the one I’m going to build… a real bench.

-- Telescope Maker, Woodworker, Brewer, Gizmologist, Gardner, Lawn Mower

View a1Jim's profile


112818 posts in 2322 days

#9 posted 04-17-2012 04:22 AM

Upgrade your BT3000 to a used Ridgid contractor saw. or a lathe for your Telescopes.

-- Custom furniture

View bondogaposis's profile


2741 posts in 1096 days

#10 posted 04-17-2012 04:32 AM

I would get a lunch box planer.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Loren's profile


7822 posts in 2392 days

#11 posted 04-17-2012 05:17 AM

You must be skilled indeed if you can joint and square
your boards confidently with hand planes. Personally
I find jointing is not so difficult but squaring can be
very tricky with hand planes. A jointer is an expedient
to the craftsman who wants to eliminate all the planing
and checking with a square.


View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


10327 posts in 1363 days

#12 posted 04-17-2012 05:57 AM

How about a hollow chisel mortiser? It makes the mortise and tenon joints you’ll use on those larger projects so much easier…

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

View Loren's profile


7822 posts in 2392 days

#13 posted 04-17-2012 07:14 AM

Or get yourself some sweet mortising chisels.


View knotscott's profile


5601 posts in 2120 days

#14 posted 04-17-2012 07:23 AM

If you use dimensional wood, a planer is a game changer…

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View steliart's profile


1816 posts in 1433 days

#15 posted 04-17-2012 07:31 AM

I would have gone with a planer/jointer combo

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions - --

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