As part of the government’s employment recovery plan in the 2021 budget, the chancellor announced financial incentives for people undertaking apprenticeships and going into skilled trades.
Working with our hands can be beneficial to our mental wellbeing and many would-be apprentices are looking at carpentry and woodworking, but what tools will they need to do the job?
Hand tools vs power tools
There is some debate out there around which tools are better for woodworkers, especially when it comes to hand tools vs power tools. Many seasoned carpenters think that new and aspiring woodworkers should learn their trade using hand tools initially, to help them understand the tricks of the trade.
However, others believe a blended approach to tools will help woodworkers navigate the pressures of consumer demand. Either way, there are essential tools any woodworker will need at their station.
No matter the woodworking project, you will almost certainly need to cut wood to a specific length and shape to create a piece. Saws are therefore essential. Having a mix of hand and power saws such as circular saws will help you when woodworking.
To create smooth, precise, detailed wooden furniture or objects, you will need to use a plane. A variety of depths and blade size will also help to elevate your work. There are several different types of plane, so stock your workstation with the ones you will need.
Manual sandpaper might be all you need when starting out on woodwork projects, but as you progress a quality power sander can save you time when trying to achieve a smooth finish. A well-stocked workstation should have at least one, small hand-heled power sander.
Hammers and mallets come in a huge range of sizes and styles, and there is not a one-size-fits-all solution for woodworking. Invest in a few decent hammers for different uses when setting up your station. A good mallet or two will help with trickier projects too.
Woodworking is a two-hand job, yet sometimes you will need some extra help. Keeping wood in place while you cut, plane or sand, vices are an essential item for any seasoned or aspiring woodworker. You might need two or three, depending on the size of your projects, so buy good quality vices from the start.
A workstation needs a place for you to work. Invest in a high-quality workbench that can withstand the kind of work you will be doing on it. It is also important to position your workbench on a level surface so that all your work is precise and level too.