Can you imagine cooking without something as simple as a measuring cup or mixing bowls. Most kitchens have the essential tools to cook meals, but many home workshops don’t have the tools for simple projects. Having the right tools is often essential for accomplishing the  task.

Today there are many low priced power tools available that work well for the occasional user. For example, table saw prices start at approximately $140 great for weekend projects. Hand circular saws can be purchased in the $90 range, and a quality battery operated drill for $80.

All of the tools needed for a project , such as a backyard playhouse, can pay for themselves in savings on that one project alone. To prove this, simply compare the price of a purchased playhouse to your cost of materials plus tools. You now have the benefit of owning these tools for the next 20 years at no additional cost.

Our power tool recommendations are based on weekend project use, but will also sustain heavy duty use for short periods.

1. Battery drill/screwdriver. Look for a drill between 9.6 volts and 12 volts. This will be used mostly as an electric screwdriver with Phillips head screws.

2. Electric drill. Buy the lowest priced 3/8 inch variable speed drill that is a national brand.

3. Circular saw. Buy the lowest priced circular saw with ball bearing (or roller bearing) shaft…it will outlast 3 of the $59.00 saws.

4. Table saw. Almost essential for building indoor furniture and built-ins…not as necessary for outdoor projects. Should be in $150 range, and will probably last you a lifetime of weekend projects.

5. Router. Same uses as table saw but priced much lower

6. Miter Saw. Purchase the lowest priced 10" COMPOUND electric miter saw. The compound feature (will cut both angle and bevel at the same time) along with the 10" blade will allow the cutting of  large boards.  Approximately $150 price range.

HINT: Unless you are building furniture or built-ins, a miter saw is more important than a table saw early in your tool owning experience. We recommend using the miter saw to make virtually all end cuts for any project because it will always cut a true 90 degree cut. This includes cutting 2x lumber up to 2x8 for decks and outdoor projects.

7. Reciprocating Saw. This tool is essential for remodeling, which includes building your own house. Not used for accurate cutting, but rather reaching into areas other saws can’t, and excellent for cutting through wood with nails in it.

8. Sabre Saw-Jig Saw. Useful for any accurate curved cut, occasionally even in 2x wood. Very useful to have for weekend projects. Purchase the lowest priced one unless you plan on making a habit of curved cuts.

9. Band Saw. Specialized tool for cutting accurate curved cuts and through thick wood. More useful for the serious woodworker.

10. Belt Sander. This tool is useful for many projects around the home for medium to heavy duty wood sanding. Not used very much for finish sanding, but useful to have.

Remember, whoever dies with the most tools WINS!!!

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