15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs: A List of 15 Woodworking Must-Haves for the Serious Woodworker

In order to do a job properly, it is essential that you have the right tools. For anyone who works with raw materials, this tool list is going to be relatively large and specific due to the flexibility required to make a large number of different items from your original material. This is completely true for anyone working with wood, whether you are a professional carpenter, a joiner, or even if you just enjoy the therapeutic nature and artistic release of making your own furniture at home, it is essential that you have the tools required to make the best possible end result. 

For anyone who works with raw materials, this tool list is going to be really helpful !

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Here is a compiled list of the 15 tools that every woodworker needs​.

1. A Thickness Planer

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

While there are various methods of straightening the edges of your work with hand tools, these can prove difficult when working over a large area, or with rough or reclaimed lumber. As such, having a thickness planer means you can efficiently and effectively flatten the faces of a wide variety of raw timber.

Considering that this is the first part of any furniture or other artistic projects, a thickness planer is a necessity for everyone working with wood.

2. Circular Saw

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

While traditionally used more in carpentry than fine woodworking, circular saws are one of the most versatile tools available to anyone working with wood. They also offer a huge amount of flexibility too; by combining them with clamps they can be just as accurate as fixed table saws, and can be used to complete many of the same jobs including cutting plywood or medium density lumber.

As such, more and more people in the industry are seeing the benefits of using a circular saw, and it is no longer just the power tool of carpenters.

3. Jigsaw

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Also known as a sabre saw, a jigsaw allows the user to cut curved and circular patterns, as well as being able to cut fine niches in a wide range of lumber. Not only do jigsaws allow for this type of cutting, it can also be used in more artistic fashions to create intricate designs which allow for experimentation with materials and styles of working.

They cut far more accurately, precisely and quickly than any hand held equivalent too, and can be used effectively regardless of experience. Furthermore, the major advantage of a jigsaw is that due to it's thin blade, it can start cutting anywhere across the board, rather than just at the edge - all you need to do is drill a hole and drop the saw inside.

4. Random Orbital Sander

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

A random orbital sander allows the user to create a smooth finish in their final product, removing the rough textures that are common to certain types of woods. While manual sanders are cheaper, they are also much more inefficient, and will not receive as smooth a finish.

Equally, we would recommend a random orbital sander as this machine uses hook and loop sanding disks which don’t sand in patterns but instead use a random motion. This significantly reduces the chances of sanding marks appearing in the final product, and gives a smoother finish overall.

5. Power Drill

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

While not as versatile as a cordless drill, power drills offer a huge amount more power than their cordless cousins, which is necessary when securing larger pieces of timber together, especially if the end product is designed to take any weight. Power drills also allow you to attach various heads and drill bits, meaning you can create a variety of hole sizes, and can work with both heavy-duty screws, and finer, more delicate ones.

6. Chisel 

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Handwork is an integral part of woodworking because it adds a unique perfection to any piece. It shows a clear distinction between factory work and craftsmanship. The kind of uniqueness that handwork offers is hard to find. Therefore, it's important to use hand tools as well. Working with hand makes it easier for people to create quality joinery.

Chisel is one such tool that's vital for people working with wood. You can use it for creating mortise and dovetails. Apart from that, you can also use it for creating tenons.

If you think Chisels are only for wood carvers, you are wrong. They are for everyone. While buying these tools, make sure you get the ones made of high-alloy carbon steel. Also, make sure that they have hardwood grips. Since these tools are available in a variety of sizes, you can get the ones that you need. 

7. The Japanese saw

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Different from a European saw, the Japanese saw is a vital tool for people working with wood. Most European saws cut with a push stroke; however, the Japanese jaw is opposite because it works on a pull stroke.

It won't be wrong to say that it's one of the best pull saws! So, if you want to increase your efficiency, make sure you get the Japanese saw for your workshop. 

8. Table Saw 

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Incorporating a circular saw blade the table saw is a vital woodworking tool. If you are in the woodworking business, you must have a table saw. Mounted on an arbour, it works with the support of an electric motor. To change the depth of the cut, you have to move the blade up and down.

Earlier, the blade used to come attached with the arbour, so people had to move the table up and down to get the desired cut. However, for governing the angle of the cut people had to make the necessary adjustments in the position of the blade. 

9. Compound Miter Saw

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

If you are looking forward to using a tool that makes accurate cuts, the Compound Miter saw is the right option for you. It's a tool that's perfect for both workshops and individuals who want to indulge in DIY projects. If you are thinking of carrying out a DIY project, you can't work in the absence of these saws. 

10. Router

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

If you are planning to buy a quality handheld woodworking tool, then a router is the best option for you. There are several forms of the router and the most common among them are hand tool and power tool. If you talk specifically about the hand tool, it consists of a narrow blade and a broad base. So, based on your requirements you can choose the right one for your project. 

11. The Block Plane

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Whether you want to add a curve to a piece of wood or you want to flatten it, the block plane is the right tool for you. It's a versatile tool that can make your work quite easy. You can also use it for smoothening the joint. It's also the perfect tool for easing the edges of a piece. A piece with sharp edges is not safe to use as it can hurt you anytime.

While using this tool, make sure that its blade is sharp. Otherwise, you won't be able to get good results. 

12. The Hand Saw 

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

A quality hand saw is essential for any workshop. Since you can't use a power saw in everything, you can rely on a hand saw. In fact, you should have different types of hand saws.
Since you will be working on different projects, you will need these tools in various sizes. 

13. The Metal Detector 

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

If you want to keep your blades safe, make sure you use a metal detector. When woodworking tools come in contact with metals, the metal detector can provide the help. In short, if you want to keep metals away from your cutting surface, nothing can help you apart from the metal detector. You can scan the wood piece with the metal detector to figure out whether it has nails and screws. 

14. The Bench Grinder

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

The bench grinder is the must-have tool for every woodworker. It doesn't need much space; therefore, you can keep it anywhere. It will help you in sharpening your tools. It's hard to carry out a take efficiently with dull tools. So, make sure you invest in a quality bench grinder to keep your tools in the perfect working order. 

15. The Band Saw

15 Tools Every Woodworker Needs

Use the band saw for creating precise shapes and curves. It's the perfect tool for cutting tenons as well as rabbets. You can also use this tool for making laminated strips. For more features, you can go for free-standing models. Since the free-standing band saws are sturdy, they last longer. And because you get a professional finish with these tools, you must have them in your workshop. 

Other crucial tools that you must have in your workshop include the tool storage system, featherboard, clamp, Miter gauge and moisture meter. If you fail to use these woodworking tools correctly, you can end up getting injuries.

Therefore, while using these tools, make sure you take all the necessary safety measures. Always use protective gear to keep your body parts (such as hands, eyes, and legs, etc.,) safe from danger. Use quality gloves, safety glasses and earplugs, etc., to enhance your safety.


Although all the tools contained in this list are crucial for every woodworker, my favourites include random orbital sander, power drill, and the Japanese saw. The reason I like them is they are efficient and offer the perfect finish to the workpieces.

However, I would also love to know your favourites, so don't forget to mention them in the comment section below. And, if I have missed the tool of your choice, you can let us know about it. Last but not the least, if you think this post is valuable, do share it with your friends and industry professionals. 

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