Your woodworking tools may have more capability than what you are utilising at the moment. It’s important to realise this for two main reasons. First, the tools will serve you better, make the job go easier/faster and produce better results. Second, just when you think that you need a new tool to get the job done, you realise that the old one can serve the purpose just as well. Which brings us to the first point…
Learn all uses and different techniques.
To get maximum benefit of the woodworking tools you need to know the proper way to use them. If you learn different techniques, you can use the same woodworking tool in many different ways, and therefore manage to do more things with it.
“Just when you might think you need a new power tool, you can discover a way to do the same job with your existing set of tools.”
Many publications are devoted to the subject of how to use woodworking tools using different methods and techniques. Several great books have been written on the subject. You can even find entire books on how to use a single tool. For example you will find numerous books on the usage of a router and the different things you can do with just that one machine.
Read as much as you can specially on the tools that you are going to be using a lot.
Purchase the best quality tool and accessories you can afford
You can get much better results in the first place by purchasing the best quality tools that you can afford.
Always buy high quality accessories like bits and blades. A high quality bit on a medium grade router will deliver very desirable results. It will also increase the life of the tool a great deal. Sometimes buying a high end tool becomes a necessity as the lower grade ones are simply not accurate enough. But in a lot of cases, having high end accessories with deliver great results. So always buy bits and blades of the very best quality you can afford.
Read the reviews
Another advantage of reading woodworking publications is that they help you with is choosing the right kind of tool as well as the right brand. If you are looking to make an addition to your power tools or are looking to upgrade, the number of choices available to you might get overwhelming.
If you are not decided already on any particular brand or make you will quickly discover that there are many makes and variations to the same machine.
Fortunately popular woodworking publications like Popular Woodworking and Fine Woodworking will review many of these woodworking tools and make it easier for you to make a decision. Their reviews are done by professionals and can be trusted with what they have to tell you.
However, remember that reviews too can get confounding if you read too many. Because the reviewers want to cover every element, a small factor can sound like a big deal when you read it. The reviews can get very exacting so do not get get too caught in details that do not matter to you.
Since we strongly urge you to buy higher quality tools, you should follow all methods to get the best price possible on your purchases. Here’s a great post we wrote on how to save money on all woodworking related purchases.
Buy your woodworking tools online.
Buying online frees you from being limited to the choices you have in your local woodworking supplies store. However, in a robust community, these choices might be sufficient. Buying locally will allow you to physically examine the tool maybe even get a demonstration of usage before you decide to buy.
The greatest advantage of buying tools online is probably the pricing. This is also the bane of the brick and mortar stores. The large e-commerce sites are able to offer huge discounts on the MRP. The same goes for larger retail chains. While you may or may not have access to a large retail store, you always have access to sellers from all over the country when you buy your tools online.
You will almost always get a return or a replacement guarantee on your purchase. I always try and go for the return guarantee for the products that I haven’t tried and am not completely sure of.