My New Blog: TF Workshop

Monday, September 25, 2006

Tools - One of my favorite subjects


I am not counting tools in the $10K total for the remodel. I figure anything additional I buy, I will use well beyond this project.

I have been "collecting" tools for about 20 years. I have a few expensive tools, but for the most part I buy economical ones. At the risk of offending the tools snobs out there, I rely on Harbor Freight Tools for a lot of of the small things I need. Their air tools have never let me down - and I have been using a simple little finsh nailer regularly for a number years. That being said, if I were back in the trades, I would buy the heavy duty tools - Dewalt, Senco, Ewing, ...

So here is my major tool list:

Saws

  • Tables Saw - 10" Craftsman professional series. The heart and soul of my shop.
  • Chop Saw - 10" Harbor Freight sliding compound miter. Has worked great for 5 years
  • Skill Saw- basic model - 2nd one so far
  • Reciprocating Saw - Ryobi
  • Saber Saw - Ryobi
  • Cordless Circular Saw - Ryobi
  • Japanese Pull Saws - Use these all the time for finish work - TopMan from Harbor Freight
  • Tile Saw - Harbor Freight 1HP professional series table model

Planers

  • 7 inch jointer - Harbor Frieght
  • 3 inch portable planer - Ryobi

Sanders

  • 5 in random orbit - Ryobi
  • Palm sanders - Harbor Frieght, Rigid
  • Belt Sander - Craftsman

Routers

  • 3/4 HP router - Craftsman
  • 2 HP industrial router / shaper - Craftsman
  • 1/2 little trim router - Harbor Freight - one of my favorite tools, since I can run it with one hand.

Drills

  • Corded - Dewalt 3/8" Professional Series.
  • Cordless - 18V Ryobi; 12V Craftsman
  • Table top drill press - Craftsman

Air Tools

  • Compressor - Husky - next to the table saw the most important tool
  • Finsh Nailers - Harbor Frieght
  • Staplers - 1/4 crown 18 gage - Harbor Freight. I ground down the tip of one from a flat to a 45 angle so I could get in really close on corners - indispensible
  • Coil Roofing Nailer - Harbor Frieght
  • Framing Nailer - 21 deg - Harbor Frieght
  • Latex paint sprayer - Husky - yes an air tool that sprays latex, looks like glass once applied
  • Low profile cut-off wheel - Harbor Freight

Misc

  • Shop Vac - Ridgid
  • Bench Grinder - Ryobi - this is another high-value tool, since it keeps stuff sharp.
  • Lots (OK, too many) hand tools: hammers, crow bars, chisels - various.
  • Clamps - Quick Grip are the best by far, don't skimp here.
  • 1/2 heavy duty industrial drill for mixing morter, grout, concrete - Dewalt
  • Biscuit Joiner - I really dont use this very much
  • Basic electrical, plumbing, sheetrock, masonry tools
  • Laser level - works great for laying out floors, etc.
  • Automotive sissor jack - great for making things fit when they dont want to.

Custom Tools - ones I fabricated

  • 3' x 5' work bench.
  • Cutting sleds for the table saw - use this all the time, especially for large lots or repeative cuts
  • Wooden squares that can be clamped as guides for saws, routers, etc.
  • Special straight-edge for laying out and pre-shimming doors - saves a lot of time
  • A busted screwdriver ground down to a sharp tip, used as an awl, punch, drill pilot, etc. This takes the place of a real sharp pencil in many cases
  • Short saw horses that we use for painting, setting up low tables using planks. Well worth the time to make these.

5 comments:

Tara said...

I see you've got a few Ryobi on the list. Are they reliable and powerful? They're the most affordable at the hardware store, but I don't want to buy junk.

TTFWEB said...

I have been very happy with Ryobi. The sawzall I have has pounded through a lot of old walls - no issues.

donutboy said...

Great blog! It is very exciting to read others adventures in the kitchen remodel. I like the idea of posting costs of goods in the blog. You are saving a ton by building the cabinets yourself, I saved by doing the concrete countertops myself.

Can't wait to see the finished product!

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Angelle Marshall said...

Your blog is very impressive and interesting. Remodeling the whole house or remodeling kitchen or bathroom is a very difficult work. I don't go for remodeling because it cost a lot, that's why i did go for remodeling.