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10 Essential Woodworking Tools

From measuring to power tools, Paul Hope picks out must-have woodworking equipment.

hammer
"A must for any woodworker, this hammer’s durable shock-absorbing plastic handle will provide strength and comfort during use."
Curved Claw Hammer with Fiberglass Handle Morris Products $33.03
bar clamp
"Exerting up to 250 pounds of clamping pressure, this heavy-duty clamp can lock down a piece of wood while you saw or drill and requires only a single hand to fasten."
18" Clamp/Spread Quick-Grip Irwin $72.71
table
"A Wayfair favorite, this convenient and portable folding worktable makes even the largest jobs manageable. Added feature: It includes two 12-inch clamps!"
Folding Work Table Keter $78.47
circular saw
"As a small-space alternative to a table saw, this saw allows you to make almost any cut, anywhere. Bonus: a spotlight to improve visibility."
18V Li-Ion 6.5" Circular Saw Hitachi $132.61
orbital sander
"These chisels have rasps right on the blade for shaping and forming stock with a single set of tools."
3 Piece WoodChuck Rasps/Chisels Set Cooper Tools $30.36
chisel
"This sander’s lightweight design allows you to tackle bigger projects, like prepping a larger surface area or removing scratches, more comfortably."
5" Single Speed Random Orbital Sander Hitachi $72.67

"The vibrant yellow makes this measuring tape easy to find when you’re on the job, but it has a built-in belt clip, so it’s easy to keep close at hand."
1"x 25' Leverlock Tape Stanley Tools $15.41
measuring tape
"You'll be onto the next project in no time when working with this three-sided tooth design handsaw. It cuts wood 50% faster than other conventional handsaws."
Short Cut Toolbox Saw Stanley Tools $20.37
saw

level
"Nobody wants a lopsided piece of furniture. Check the alignment of vertical and horizontal surfaces with a level before marking or making cuts."
9" Heavy Duty Magnetic Aluminum Torpedo Level Empire Level $10.58
"Don’t be so square! With a hand jigsaw tool, you can create a more custom look by carving details, softer lines, and curves into your woodwork."
12V STS 12/E Jigsaw Proxxon $75.54
jugsaw
More About Paul
Paul Hope developed a passion for building at a young age, hammering away at projects in his family's small apartment in New York City. After a stint as a professional chef, he now happily swings his hammer at This Old House and in one of the two houses he and his wife, Leah, are restoring.
Portrait: Ian Spanier
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