If you have, or were to create, a good basic/starting hand-tool set/
kit that covered the majority of home repairs, maintenance and a
little construction that went along with it (woodworking, etc.)--
something, say, to stock a reasonable little backyard toolshed/
workshop-- what would it consist of (including maybe what they might
cost and look like)?
I'm swamped at the moment, but I'll give this some thought and work up
a list and post it when I get some breathing space. You need to give
some more specifics, and not be so over-reaching. You'll have to
acquire tools over time. What sort of things do you think you'll need/
want to be doing first? What are your current skills like?
Certainly no rush, thanks. Good questions...
My skills are next to none, save for some periodic college-related
stuff ages ago, as well as some recently-acquired natural/timberframe
housebuilding and even some formative wooden boatbuilding theory
that're both growing slowly.
I may be looking at some woodwork/wood-built/wood-based renovation/
restoration first, and therefore am interested more in those kinds of
tools-- especially given their apparent versatility/flexibility with a
view toward their possible 'adaptive reuse' for houses, wooden boats,
and wood furniture, etc.. Perhaps even enough to attempt a
rudimentary backyard-type shed, guest-cabin, treehouse, or even a
wooden boat salvage-restoration, should I be so lucky. :)
...Am I to image things along the lines of saws, chisels, planers,
hand-drills, clamps and tables/benches?
More or less. For a versatile set of general woodworking hand tools
I'd start with the following.
block plane with adjustable mouth ~6" long
Stanley #4 or equivalent ~10" long
Stanley #5 or #6 or equivalent ~15" long
combination plane with different irons (Google Stanley 45 to get an
Japanese Ryoba pull saw - double sided with rip teeth on one side and
crosscut on the other
Japanese Dozuki pull saw - for more finished work
Folding Japanese style gardening saw
Bow saw for working with trees
Fastcap tape measure (they're cheap enough with nice features)
set of Marples blue handled bench chisels
utility knife with retractable blade
heavy duty scissors
needlenose, linesmen and adjustable jaw pliers
Sloyd type knife for whittling and other general purpose cutting edge
needs (Mora makes a nice one with a sheath)
wooden mallet or deadblow hammer
16 oz claw hammer
nail sets - finish and common
22 oz framing hammer with serrated face
pry bars - 9", 14", 2' or 3'
half bastard file
sharpening water stones, or look into the Scary Sharp method for
ratchet screwdriver with interchangeable bits
cordless drill set with driver/drill with hammer drill function, and
(these are hand tools (of a sort) and essential)
-if you want to go totally hand, then look into a Yankee screwdriver,
eggbeater drill, and brace and bits.
Small and large adjustable wrenches
Clamp assortment (you can't have too many, and better clamps are worth
it - think garage sales)
There are things I've left out, and some things are not entirely
essential, but in general that's a good starting list.
As far as benches, that's entirely dependent on where you are and what
you'll be doing. A door on two sawhorses is a good start for a work
surface and cheap enough to come by.
Thanks, Rico, it looks like a nice list. I will go over it later this
evening and maybe acquaint myself with some prices and images online
Good to know a couple of sawhorses and a door is a good start. I
happen to be using, as a kitchen table, an old but very nice wood
bathroom door (narrower than usual) a neighbour let me have in the
process of his bathroom remodel.
Definitely familiarize yourself with the look of the tools and keep
your eyes out for garage sales. Best place to get started for tool
shopping. Most people already have the basics and you can pick up
some decent tools at very good prices. Sometimes they might need a
little work, but that's good too as it will familiarize you with the
tool and how it functions. Hammers might not need
Solid core doors are heavy, but they let you pound on them a bit. A
hollow core door is easy to move around, but it's only suitable as a
big general work surface and for gluing up smaller projects. Make
sure the door isn't warped.
Good advice in your previous post and, really, practically an
ingenious recommend here. Thanks!
The way the nation-state gov't/dictatorships/aristocratic systems
seems to be faring these days, we might all be inevitably forced to
become anarchists of a sort.
No time like the present.
It's getting bad.
To demonstrate the outright systemic contempt for nature and "farm"
animals, such that people are subject to, to varying degrees of
severity, I probably mentioned this before, but there's the
Here's a little something a little less "stimulating":
<sniff> I can't utoobz or I'll get spanked by one of howard hughes
I recently had an epiphany on something I have been wrangling with for
a long time.
I haven't sorted all the details yet but it goes something like this:
(may be a cognitive dissonance)
I like the flavor of most meats, within reason.
I don't like the fact that an animal must suffer/die to satisfy that
Yes I know man is the master of his domain and all that.
And I also know that rights are only for those that can defend them
and their representative(s).
But there is a difference between say, a cabbage and a cow.
What is that difference?
A cabbage cannot look at you.
A cabbage cannot come when you call.
A cabbage cannot respond to your touch.
A cow can, and that makes it different than any other *living* thing.
A cow is closer to (being) man than a cabbage will ever be.
IOW, a cow is more similar, shares more traits with man, than a
I am not saying that cows have rights, but rather they should receive
Now, the counter to that could be that if that cow wandered out onto
the Serengheti the lion would have no consideration for the cow.
That is true, but it has no bearing on how *I* conduct myself.
Two wrongs do not make a right.
IOW, just because a bad deed is done (lions) does not justify further
bad deeds (slaughter houses).
Just because the lion was not considerate of the cow does not mean I
get a free pass and can make animals suffer or die.
Does this make sense?
Like I said, I am still sorting this out, but the whole notion of
interaction between species or whatever seems, to me, to take
precedence over the merely passive existence, as in plants. I don't
see vegetarianism in my immediate future, because I like the taste of
meat, but I have made other major changes in my life and I doubt I
will ever stop. Just some food for thought. pun intended.....
You have to be more task specific to get a reasonable feedback.
Rico's list is pretty good but look at the costs of all that stuff.
What good is a Dozuki saw if you're doing rough framing?
(come in real handy though if you do some dovetails)
How about a couple good shovels? A cats claw? Drywall tools? Painting
Next, how do you judge a good tool from a bad one, IOW, what do you
My dad taught me the basics, then curiosity and stupidity took over in
I've bought more than my share of junk.
As a rule, you can pretty much trust Craftsman brand (Sears) hand
tools but on their power tools you're on your own.
I have a Craftsman router thats been working hard since 1978 and a B&D
circular saw bought at the same time is still gettin it, though I'm
yearning for a Milwaukee worm drive. I also have a Craftsman 10" CMS
with laser that is the best in the industry - I've run tons of wood
through the thing and it jumps right in it. No safety switch either!
I'm an advocate of most Ryobi 18v cordless tools, especially their
drill/drivers, standard and hammer.
How about an axe? I've managed to get by without one but only barely,
I shopping right now.
Rico's suggestion about garage sales is good but if you don't know
what you're doing you can't take the tool(s) back like you can a
If you are doing any kind of finish woodwork clamps are imperative and
I agree, you can never have enough.
If you had 50 clamps you'd end up doing something that required 60.
I have about 50 and all of them are in use almost all the time, and
look it - covered in glue, tape, magic marker marks all over them,
My wife and son have a standard rule, for christmas, birthdays, etc.,
get me clamps and shop rags, lots of shop rags.
(tomorrow is laundry day for my shop rags and my wife will be raising
holy hell again HA)
Lighting, don't forget that.
Seems like there's never enough of that stuff too unless you're
I keep a AA cell LED in my right front pocket all the time and use it
multiple times each day.
I just rigged some old bathroom light fixtures up at my lathe for some
deep bowls I've been turning.
I did have my 300 watt shop light directed at it but the heat was
If you have a friend that knows tools get him on board and use his
experience as a guide of sorts.
Tools can be very expensive so choose wisely and use the hell out of
it real fast so you can find out if its junk and take it back. LOL
That's why the Ryoba was on the list. A bow saw with different blades
can pretty much do it all.
If WW wants to take the effort (he should), he should make his own bow
saw from scrap wood and some bandsaw blade stock of various flavors.
More good advice, thanks, Don, including the clamps, rags and
lighting. Clamps seem to be used especially extensively in wooden
boatbuilding such as to bend the wood planks along the frame... And
hereagain, to be specific, my project-thoughts run along the lines of
classical hand-built wooden-boat boatbuilding (eventually a small-to-
medium seaworthy sailing boat) and natural house structure, like maybe
straw-bale, mud-stucco, cob, rammed-earth, thatch, natural adobe brick
and mortar, post-and-beam timber-frame, stone-laying, etc..
Hows the heat over there by the way? We also feel it here in Ottawa.
Well, here's something to help get you and the rest cool if you might
be so inclinded:
Get a Buck 112 (look it up and check it out) lock blade knife and
start carrying it in your left pant/shorts pocket all the time.
(if you are right handed)
Make sure that every single time you have britches on that knife is in
that pocket, always.
Then condition yourself to remember it is there and use it for stuff,
even if to just clean a dirty fingernail.
I got mine on amazon for about $35 but you can find knockoffs
everywhere for as low as $5.
Use it to open envelopes, cut tape, cut wire, cut rope, trim a small
piece of wood, whittle, use it for anything you can think of.
Do not be afraid of harming it, of scratching or denting the wood, or
nicking the blade.
It is a tool, nothing more, nothing less and it is meant to be used
all day everyday.
More importantly, it is conditioning your mind into a tool user
With your mind and your hands and your knife you can do many, and
amazing things, things you never dreamed of.
But you have to have it on your person before you can do that.
Why the left pocket and not the right you may ask?
Because in step 2, which happens 6 months from now, I'll tell you what
happens in your right front pocket.
In just a few months time I developed the habit of carrying 3 things
in my pockets at all times that are the very basic means of survival
and by having them accessible to myself at all times has given me the
opportunity to exploit each far beyond their intended use.
As an experiment, I tried something I heard several times and found
out it was true, at least in my experience.
I heard that if you can force yourself into a function for 21 days in
a row it will automatically become a habit.
I wanted to eradicate sugar from my diet so I did not consume it for
The first couple days were OK but by about the 5th day the cravings
By the 14th day I pretty much had it in control.
I did 21 days without sugar and don't miss it at all.
My next step, and its gargantuan, is to eradicate ALL sugar from my
diet and seeing that it in just about ALL commercial food you can see
what I'm up against.
But I'll do it.
Its as hot as a half fukked fox around here.
And I'm about halfway into a major outdoor project.
Pressure washing 1000 sf of deck and 140' of railing, then painting
the railing, then sealing the deck.
Been at it for almost 2 weeks now. shwew.....and have lost about 20#
in the process, mainly sweat.....my britches keep fallin clean off'n
I'm gonna get arrested for indecent exposure. This isn't the backwoods
of british columbia you know..........
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