Tools We Use
The following are a list of the tools and equipment we use and recommend. We aren’t brand loyal, and we do extensive research to get what we believe is the best tool for the job. This means a good quality tool that meets the demands of woodworking (& DIY) but is also a sensible price and is suitable for our small workshop. We’ve also provided a mini review of each product.
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Large Power Tools
Table Saw - Dewalt DWE7485
This is the newer version of our DW745, despite being a compact saw it has proven its power, accuracy, and ease of use. We especially like the fence design. Only gripe is the riving knife is too tall and must be removed for some cuts.
MITRE SAW - EVOLUTION R255SMS-DB+
New and improved version of our Rage 3, very well featured at a great price. This has served us faithfully for many years. The dust extraction could be better, and needs careful alignment. But still an easy recommendation.
OSCILLATING BELT SANDER - TRITON TSPST450
Spindle sander and belt sander in one package. Well thought through design that’s quick to swap between functions. Be sure to fine tune the table so that it is square to the belt.
Thicknesser Planer - Triton TPT125
We purchase most of our timber as rough sawn, this little unit has easily processed it without a grumble and soon paid itself off. Combo it with good chip extraction and sled to reduce snipe.
Band Saw - Titan TTB705BDS
Benchtop band saws are all much the same, and sadly the quality could be better all round. Having said that, after a little setup this one is performing great and has plenty of power. A larger saw with a deeper throat would be preferable. But, if you are space limited this is a solid option.
Drill & Impact Driver - Dewalt DCK2059D2T
After many years use during a house rebuild and regular wood working, these drills are still going strong. Cannot fault them and easy to recommend. There are more powerful models but they are unnecessary for woodworking.
¼” Palm Router - Dewalt DCW604NT
Only regret is not buying this sooner, one of the most used tools in the workshop and one of the first tools you should invest in.
Biscuit Jointer - Draper 83611
Easy to use, accurate and great dust extraction.
Track/Plunge Cut Saw - Festool TS 55 FEBQ-PLUS
Take the ‘plunge’ you won’t regret this purchase, it really is one of the best tools in the workshop, especially a small one like ours. Although there are cheaper alternatives, in this instance it is absolutely worth spending that little bit more.
Track - Festool Guide Rail FS 1400/2
Can’t have a track saw without track. We’d first recommend having two lengths of 1400mm (55”) track. A single length of 800mm (32") track can also be really helpful for smaller cuts.
Random Orbit Sander 5" 125mm - Bosch PEX 300
Let’s be honest, this isn’t the best sander on the market. But it costs a fraction of the Festool equivalent. With an orbit diameter of 2mm, you can't expect to remove material quickly but with a little patience you should still achieve the desired effect.
Random Orbit Sander 6" 150mm - Festool ETS 150/5 EQ-Plus
It's hard to say exactly why this tool is worth paying so much more. But it is, simply everything is better and easier. This version has a 5mm orbit which removes material quickly and is suitable for up to 220 grit. For Ultra-Fine sanding (320+ grit) get the 150/3 variant.
Circular Saw - Bosch Professional GKS 190
Very powerful saw that will cut through anything, mostly been overshadowed these days by the track saw, but useful to have on hand for the tougher jobs. Worth immediately replacing the stock blade.
Jig Saw - Makita 4350FCT
A hard product to review because it just works. Easy to change blades, plenty of power and decent ergonomics.
Hammer SDS Drill - Bosch Professional GBH 2-26
If you have a regular need of this kind of drill, our advice is don’t cheap out. Having used (and broken) a few over the years, we are very happy with this one. Not only has it survived, but every job is that little easier.
Brad Nailer - Silverline 868544
Cheap, light and reliable. Only drawback is that you need an air compressor. But on the plus side, now you have an excuse to get an air compressor.
Parallel Clamp 1500mm
These clamps are excellent for larger glue ups, the stable base means they don’t fall over as you are working, and the parallel clamp means they are less inclined to warp your project as they tighten.
Irwin Quick Clamp 50cm
You can never have enough clamps; these ones are a good go-to option that are quick to apply and surprisingly versatile. Also look out for the various attachments for other use cases (corners etc).
Steel Spring Clamp
Useful and versatile clamp to have in the workshop. The relatively cheap price makes them a must have.
Tape Measure - Stanley PowerLock 8m
Accurate, robust and available in metric, imperial or both.
Jigs & Acccessories
Dowel Jig - Wolfcraft
You’ll always find a use for dowels in woodworking. There are many kinds of jigs available, but we prefer this style. While it is slower for some jobs, it is very adjustable to suit almost every application.
Pocket Hole Jig - Wolfcraft
Fantastic jig that works well and easy to use. There are more extravagant jigs available, but this is well suited to a small workshop and less routine use.
Concealed Hinge Jig
If you have more than a handful of doors with concealed hinges (kitchen door hinges), then it’s well worth getting a jig. Most seem to come from the same factory, so shop around.
Drill Guide with Chuck - UJK
In a small workshop that doesn’t have space for a pillar drill, this is the next best thing. Well designed to suit a variety of applications and easily stored.
Drill Guide - Big Gator V-Drill
Extremely helpful guide to keep your drill holes straight. Works on flat timber and dowels.
Vacuum - Fein 35L Dust Extractor 92028223240
After purchasing and destroying several cheaper vacuums, I feel confident in strongly recommending this item. Powerful, quiet and keeps on working no matter what you throw at it. I would recommend coupling with a HEPA filter and dust cyclone.
Cyclone Dust Collector
This is an essential add-on to any shop vac! It saves the vacuum from clogging up with dust, saves money on vacuum bags and most of all allows you a little more time between emptying the system.
After years of making sawdust, I have developed a bit on an allergy. This air filter makes a huge difference to your lungs and keeps work surfaces cleaner longer. Nothing will get everything, but this certainly helps.
I think all these compressors come from the same factory, so best to hunt around and look for the best deal. We use the compressor regularly for the nailer, inflating tyres and painting projects.
Lumber Storage Rack
Keeps your lumber off the ground, flat and dry. We doubled them up at 1m spacing so they can carry more weight and the timber remains flatter.
Tool Chest - Clarke
For some strange reason, tool chests don’t seem to be a popular addition to a woodworker’s workshop. Maybe we’re just too proud of our tools to hide them away?! We, however, find this tool chest extremely helpful and space efficient.
Workshop Speaker - Bose Soundlink
Every workshop needs music, this speaker may be small, but produces enough sound to annoy the neighbours. As a bonus, it’s waterproof. That should mean it will even survive our dusty environment.
Abrasive Sanding Discs - 3M Xtract Cubitron II
After years buying cheap discs, we finally learnt what a false economy it was. These discs remove material quicker and last significantly longer than the closest competition. In the long run, these are the cheapest and best option.
Drill Bits - Bosch Professional Drill Bit Set
Very handy to have a complete set of drill bits with storage in the workshop. Can easily replace individual sizes as you blunt/snap ones.
Table Saw Blade - Freud LP30M 025P
A great all-rounder blade for ripping and crosscuts. If you're still using the stock blade, you'll be amazed how much difference a quality new blade will make.
Glue - Titebond Original
Rarely use this, essentially the other glues are better, but this is cheaper. Interior use only. Dries transparent, good for light timbers (maple, oak).
Glue - Titebond II Premium
Great go-to option. Open time (3-5 mins), weatherproof. Assembly temp > 13C (55F). Dries yellow, good for light timbers (maple, oak).
Glue - Titebond III Ultimate
Another great go-to option. Open time (8-10 mins), waterproof, strongest bond. Assembly temp >8C (47F). Dries dark, good for dark timbers (walnut).
Glue - Titebond Polyurethan
Good for wood with high moisture content, prefinished or oily timber. Good for non-perfect glue ups (with gaps). Very waterproof. Ugly if visible. Short shelf life.
Forstner Bit Set - Axminster
I am always surprised how perfect the hole is from a Forstner bit. Having a proper set of quality bits ensures you always have the right size when you need them and they won’t be blunted rattling around in a drawer.
Camera & Audio Equipment
Camera - Sony A6600 APS-C Mirrorless
After months of research, we settled on this camera. For a whole host of reasons, we found it to be the best video camera for YouTube type work. The full frame cameras are better; however, we found the difference to be negligible, but the A6600 is smaller, lighter and has a flip screen.
Primary Lens - Sony 18-105mmm F4
While this lens doesn’t perform great for photography, it is fantastic for videography. Has a good focal range, maintains focus while zooming, is stabilised and sufficiently fast even for a dark(ish) workshop.
Secondary Lens - Sigma 16mm F1.4
Very high-quality lens for both photography and videography.
Gimbal - MOZA Aircross 2
Excellent gimbal that is very well suited to our camera & lens combo.
Shotgun Mic - RØDE VideoMicro
Good all-round mic that allows us to capture machine noise and voice if we aren’t too far away. This option doesn’t require batteries, so don’t need to remember to turn it on or charge batteries.
Wireless Mic - RØDE Wireless Go II
Allows us to give you clear audio, even if we are in an echoy workshop. Very easy to use and rig for any setup.
Lavalier Microphone - RØDE Go
Typically, we just use the wireless units as mics, but when we want that more professional look or in a windy environment, then we have these lavalieres.
Screen - FEELWORLD F6 Plus Monitor
We struggled to get shots framed and in focus from across the workshop, so this monitor was the solution. Well featured and good quality unit that’s size is well suited to the APS-C setup.
Voiceover Microphone - RØDE NT-USB
Used for all voiceovers recordings in our videos. The USB PC connection means no additional expensive gear.
Camera Cage - SMALLRIG BUC2498
A cage is essential for videography, so that you can attach all the paraphernalia to the camera. This slim line model suits our needs nicely and doesn’t add too much bulk.
GoPro Hero 10
For all those hard-to-reach places, extra wide-angle shots and unique angles. This waterproof camera is the ideal candidate.
Studio Lighting Kit
Very helpful when lighting a product for video or even photography.
Software & Website
Video Editing - DAVINCI Resolve
Not sure why anyone would use anything else. Easier to use than alternatives, powerful yet kind on your computer and there's a free version.
Photo Editing - Affinity Photo
We have ditched the ludicrously expensive fees of Adobe and discovered the joys of Affinity Photo. We haven’t looked back since.
Manual Publishing - Affinity Publisher
A better solution that Microsoft Publisher and without the insane fees of the Adobe equivalent. Affinity really is the future.
Elementor - WordPress Plugin
We created the website ourselves using WordPress, with the Elementor plugin and Hello Theme. A slightly steeper learning curve, but plenty of scope to design however we like.
CAD - Fusion 360
With a background in Product Design Engineering, I have used a many different CAD packages. This is my current favourite for ease of use, price and function.