Q&A

Question:

What tools would Highland recommend for outfitting a basic woodworking shop in my garage?

Answer:

This list includes a wide variety of tools used for general-purpose "straight-line" woodworking—that is, tools and machines for turning are not represented. This is not intended to slight woodturning, which is not only an integral part of much classic furnituremaking, but a fine sport unto itself. The focus of this list, however, is on the tools and machines most often used for basic woodworking: cabinets, shelving, tables, boxes and other common projects.

The choice of tools herein naturally reflects personal predilections, and there's doubtless plenty of room to debate the merits of any specific item. These are our favorites, tools we've learned about, used and enjoyed during the past twenty years. Occasionally two or more similar tools are listed, marked with a red asterisk, to offer a choice of features or price. You'll get what you pay for, but the less expensive alternatives are nonetheless good, functional tools. Please consult a current Highland Woodworking catalog for specifications, additional options, related items and current prices.

Our catalog numbers are shown (where applicable) to help you identify the tools precisely. The tools are labled to indicate their usefulness in most shops:

•••• Critical; tools you can't do without.
•••   Essential in virtually any shop; their lack will always limit what you can do.
••    Almost essential; you can get by without them, but they'll pay for themselves quickly.
•     Very useful; significant convenience. Substitutes can often accomplish the same functions.

Sharpening
*026445 •••• Set of 3 Japanese waterstones: Green, 1000, 6000
*026446 ••• Set of 5 stones: Green, 800, 1200, 4000, 8000, nagura
026425 •• Nagura stone
026461 Waterstone holder
025331 Set of 4 diamond paddles
Planes
*199205 •••• Anant No. 7 jointer plane
*031307 ••• Clifton No. 7 jointer plane
*199203 ••• Anant No. 4-1/2 smooth plane
*031304 ••• Clifton No. 4 smooth plane
*197412 ••• Anant 60-1/2 low angle block plane
*034277 ••• L-N 60-1/2R low angle block plane
034237 ••• L-N low angle adjustable mouth block plane
031804 Stanley 92 rabbet plane
199409 ••• Kamal flat spokeshave
077018 •• Veritas low angle spokeshave
Joinery Tools
146012 •••• Narex bevel-edged chisels, set of 6
146605 ••• Octagonal Japanese hammer
078472 24-oz. deadblow hammer
199104 •••• 6" steel square
065008 ••• Woodworker's dial caliper
*067010 •••• Veritas marking gauge
*055201 Tite-mark marking gauge
061116 •• Marking and mortise gauge
061521 ••• Starrett 12" combination square
061202 •• Sliding bevel
066401 ••• Japanese marking knife
*063020 6" steel rule
*063021 ••• 12" steel rule
*062001 •• Center Point 24" stainless rule
*061513 •• Starrett 24" rule
167215 •••• 16' left and right reading tape rule
061528 •• Starrett 24" straightedge
*126435 •••• Silky dozuki saw
*126421 •••• Silky kenzo ryoba saw
*056406 •••• Dozuki back saw
056423 •••• Japanese dovetail saw
051901 ••• Coping saw
056427 Flexible flush-trim saw
*199151 ••• Groz 7" quick release bench vise
*199152 ••• Groz 9" quick release bench vise
*168042 ••• Patternmaker's vise
019714 •• Pair of round bench dogs
017004 •• Veritas Wonder Dog
163504 •••• Six 6" Jorgensen light bar clamps
163506 Six 18" light bar clamps
199162 •• Four 48" Groz bar clamps
163502 •••• Four sets 3/4" pipe clamp heads (plus several lengths of threaded pipe)
CT50 ••• 50" Clamp 'N' Tool Guide
167201 Glue spreader
185101 Bench brush
Finishing
031509 ••• Bahco 474 scraper
035306 ••• Round burnisher
031205 Stanley #80 scraper
  ••• Variable speed random orbit sander
Machinery
* ••• Contractor's tablesaw
* ••• Heavy duty tablesaw
  •• 6" 1 HP jointer
  ••• 12" thickness planer
  ••• 14" bandsaw
* 16-1/2" drill press
* 12" drill press
* 6" belt / 9" disc sander
* 4" belt / 6" disc sander
115101 ••• Shop Fox 1-1/2 HP dust collector
D10101 First Stage Separator Kit
Hand Power Tools
••• 7-1/4" circular saw
•• 3/8" electric drill
•• 12 volt cordless drill
301001 ••• Triton 3-1/4 HP plunge router
101032 ••• 6 piece router bit set
DW682K •• DeWalt biscuit joiner
Personal Safety
117001 •••• CFR-1 dust mask
087003 ••• Peltor hearing protectors
085016 •••• Corded ear plugs
085072 ••• Safety glasses
085009 ••• Clear goggles
087009 ••• Face shield
196033 ••• Nitrile disposable gloves
Books
201037 ••• Complete Manual of Woodworking
201281 ••• Understanding Wood
202299 ••• Complete Illustrated Guide to Sharpening
203621 ••• Understanding Wood Finishing, Revised
201260 ••• Great Wood Finishes
200393 •• Band Saw Handbook
200351 •• The New Router Handbook
202241 •• The Table Saw Book
200595 •• The Nature and Aesthetics of Design
200504 •• Cabinetmaker's Notebook

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