Beginning Woodworking: Power Tools

The first and formost thing to keep in mind about using power and to a lesser extent hand tools is safety.

You should read and follow all of the safety precautions that come with every tool that you buy.  Also, there are instructions, especially with the power tools on how to use them, it’s a good idea too to read these as they will save you a lot of time in learning how to use them.

If you buy the tools second hand then order an operators manual online for it.  Not only do these owners manuals have the safety and operating instructions for the tool you bought, but they have the part numbers in them in case you need to order replacement parts.

I keep all of my manuals together in a binder, this helps me to locate a manual easily for reference.

You don’t really need a lot of tools to get started and you don’t have to buy them new.  In fact, I recommend that you purchase them on Craigs List or a similar website.  Remember, when you buy them second hand always ask for the owners manual.  If the person you’re buying from doesn’t have the owners manual this is one indication that it wasn’t taken very well care of.

When you find a tool (like a bandsaw) ask the person you’re buying it from to operate it for you.  Do your best at this time to learn as much as you can about it and then decide if the tool is going to do what you want it to do.

There are a lot of woodworking clubs out there and it is a good idea to join one if you are serious about learning to make things out of wood.  If that option is not feasible then try to find somebody that lives nearby to help you learn how to use your tools safely and efficiently.