Basic Tool List For Wooden Boat Building
First of all let me say you do not need the finest tools to build a proper boat, try to find used tools, garage sales and the like will yield tools that are just fine. Although I will call out when to buy the best you can when it is really necessary.
1. Table saw: 10 inch cabinet saw, not one of those little saws that set on a table top, Again find a second hand saw, 2 to 5 horse power and a simple fence is all you need. so long as the blade can be squared up and the fence can be adjusted true. rust can be overlooked, and belts can be replaced. One thing here to spend money on is the blade, carbide tipped 50 to 60 tooth spend $50.00 to $70.00. you will want two $50.00 blades not one $100.00 blade. One blade is either at the saw sharpener or ready to go the sharpener. point is a sharp lower cost blade is a lot better than dull $150.00 blade.
2. Surface planer: A must have tool, but you do not need a $2000.00 24 inch model, a 13 inch at the home store will do nicely for $300.00.
If you find a used one shop very carefully, as 3 new knives on some machines could cost more than a new machine. also check a used machine by running several pieces through and checking for square and quality of the cut. a badly treated used planer might not ever get adjusted right again. so take care.
3. Router: 1 1/2 to 2 HP find a good used one, unless it’s been dropped and kicked around a lot a good router lasts a long time, two things to look for first brushes that can still be bought and easily changed and two both a 1/4 and 1/2 inch Collete. a router that uses only a 1/4 Collete is of very limited use. if you can a new router of good quality can be bought for $100.00 and you really don’t need a plunge router ( but they are nice ).
4. Band saw: Don’t spend a lot. just about any saw that will turn on and not throw the blade is fine. 14 inch is big enough and 3-4 blades 3/8 4-8 tooth per inch
will do. on a used saw make sure the table will adjust square and stay that way.
5 Misc small tools: Drill motors at least one, you will drill hundreds if not thousands of holes, but seldom will you need the 1/2 chuck and big power, besides those drills are heavy. one cordless drill is nice to have 18 volt nothing smaller, and a couple spare batteries. Jig saw and finish sanders, just about any will do but get the best your budget will allow. one good random obit sander is a must, sticky back or hook and loop, I’ve used them both and don’t have a favorite.
belt sander get a 4×24 ( belt size ) they cost more but trust me on this.
6. Clamps: The more the better of all kinds, but again I’ve used really good expensive clamps as well as the Harbor freight cheapies, just buy the cheapies in all shapes and types buy them as you need them, our shop has hundreds and sometimes I still run out.
7. A list of not completely necessary but still nice to have tools: 10 inch chop saw ( miter saw ) router table ( build your own ) works as a shaper table.
shop vac ( tons of sawdust is produced ) makes clean up easier plus you can rig almost any shop vac into a crude dust collector. air compressor, bigger the better again get a used one. I have never used any air tools in the boat shop as an air compressor big enough to keep up is way to expensive. blowing off shavings ( and sawdust out of my hair and back ) is how I use mine.
That’s all for now. see ya round the boat shop, now get to work on that boat.