Random Orbit Sander

Beginner Power Tool Recommendations

I’m doing a presentation at the Greater Toronto Area Home & Reno Show this weekend, and the topic is Woodworking Advice for Home Improvement Projects.  As part of the presentation, I’m talking about the essential tools you need to start with.  I thought I’d share this with our readers for those who aren’t in Toronto.

If you’re taking on home improvement projects that have an element of woodworking in them, here’s what I recommend for the minimal tools to get started.   As you do the work yourself, the money you save can be put into tools – and if you buy quality tools, they will last you for years to come.

Essential Power Tools

You don’t need a lot of power tools, but you will need a few of the basics.  Full disclosure – there are affiliate links included here, which help fund our YouTube work if you purchase using a link.  There are three power tools you’ll need:

  • Circular Saw
  • Random-Orbital Sander (I use a DeWalt Sander)
  • Drill – I recommend a corded drill as your first drill as they’re less expensive and never run out of batteries.  Look at the Makita or DeWalt models for quality tools.
  • Drill Bits – don’t buy the bargain ones, buy middle of the road and/or a brand name
  • Countersink Set – these are drill bits that pre drill the hole for a screw and also cut an inset so the screw head will sit flush (flat) with the surface of the wood.  Typical screw sizes are #6, #8, and #10, so it’s a good idea to buy these in a set.

Nice to Have Power Tools

After you have the essential power tools, you may want to add to your toolbox.  I recommend only buying these tools as you need them.  These are the tools you will likely need next:

  • Impact Driver – if you’ve never used one of these, you have to try it.  You will never use your drill again to drive in a screw.
  • Jigsaw (I bought a DeWalt DW317 to replace a broken store brand model, and I’m really happy with how well it works)
  • Miter Saw (I’ve used my Makita miter saw since 1999 and it’s still running well)
  • Shop Vacuum – keep the dust under control as wood dust is dangerous.  It is safer to vacuum using a HEPA filter vacuum than it is sweeping with a broom

I hope you’ve found this information useful.  We’ll be recording the presentation at the home show in hopes that it will be good quality to share the video.

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