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Creating a Workshop Shouldn’t Cost a Fortune
Hobbyists need space dedicated to whatever it is they are doing. To function efficiently, a woodworker needs an organized, well-lit area and proper tools. If you’re serious about creating a workshop, you’ll be happy to know that it can be budget-friendly and accomplished relatively easily.
Creating a Workshop
Here are the basic things you’ll need to turn your goal into a reality:
Since space is limited, it’s best to have at least two, inexpensive, rectangular tables that can be folded up and put away when not in use.
One table is where you’ll saw and sand your projects. The other is for assembly and finish work, such as gluing and painting.
A basic supply kit should include sandpaper, files, wire, string, tape, screws, nails, etc. For measuring, you’ll need a tape measure and a 12” ruler, and to mark measurements, get a pencil and a cheap pencil sharpener.
Purchase a basic tool kit which has a hammer, an awl and screwdrivers, and buy a power strip.
It’s just what it sounds like, a saw that works without any other power source other than your muscles. You can get one for under $20.
This triangular-shaped tool costs about $10 and is a marking tool to make square cuts.
Pneumatic Staple Gun
A pneumatic (compressed air) stapler does the job of a hammer without tiring out the user. You can find a versatile, efficient one for around $50.
A battery-operated drill is a must for any workshop. You can get a good one for $50, but you may want to pay a bit more to get one with two batteries so that one can be charging while the other is in use. You’ll also need drill bits in a variety of sizes.
After you’ve cut, sanded and assembled the wood for your project, you’ll need a hot glue gun, Elmer’s Wood Glue, craft paints, paint brushes and any trinkets, trim or other extras to finish it.
You can use spray paint, but keep in mind that it takes longer to dry than water-based craft paints.
Organizational & Cleanup Items
To organize your space, you can use pegboard, shelves and/or a chest of drawers. Things will function better when you have a specific place for everything and can easily access what you need. For cleaning up, purchase a small, canister shop vacuum.
With just the items above, you’ll have a rudimentary start at woodworking and be able to make small items such as birdhouses.
As a novice woodworker, if you purchase some other power tools, you can do more ambitious small and medium-sized projects and do everything more easily. You’ll be able to make benches, shelves, boxes, small tables, toys, picture frames and a variety of hobby projects.
Most good brands have entry-level tools that are well made and very durable. It’s not necessary to spend a fortune for a brand’s top-of-the-line tools, but you’ll want tools that are made to last. Always check product reviews online and talk to a woodworking expert before buying.
Here are suggestions for power tools that will greatly enhance your woodworking skills and help you improve those skills:
Sanding by hand is hard work, and if you’ll be doing numerous projects, you’ll want to invest in an electric-powered sander. Battery-powered sanders are available, but for this tool, electric is better. Priced at around $50, an orbital sander goes in all directions, making a great overall finish. For easier clean up, some sanders come with a built-in vacuum.
With a cost of about $50 for a decent one, a jigsaw is handheld and cuts straight, angled and curvy lines, making it much more versatile than a hand saw. Its small blade cuts in an up-and-down motion. You can cut complicated shapes using a jigsaw, even a “jigsaw” puzzle piece if you wish.
A miter saw is a fixed saw, not handheld, that cuts straight lines at a variety of angles. It’s limited to cutting narrow boards. “Compound” refers to the tilted angle of the blade which makes it possible to cut both a miter cut and a bevel cut. A good miter saw will cost $100 – $150.
Consider taking a woodworking class to hone your skills. YouTube is a great resource where you’ll find detailed videos for making just about anything. Enjoy creating a workshop, and have fun working on many wonderful projects.
Thank you so much Paul for this great post on creating a workshop on a budget. Paul is a hobbyist woodworker and the editor-in-chief of a woodworking site Woodworkboss. Via his site he hopes to inspire fellow woodworking enthusiasts and shares useful tips and tricks for all skill levels, from newbie DIY-ers to experienced woodworkers.
Creating a Workshop Shouldn’t Cost a Fortune
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