The Hand Tools for Woodworking You Need to Get Started

Beginners always have a lot of questions about basic woodworking hand tools. This list is brief so that only the fundamental tools are mentioned to help beginners move away from heavy reliance on specialty tools for woodworking projects. There is nothing wrong with specialty tools but learning how to work with just the basic tools will help beginners improve their elementary tool skills.

Below is a short woodworking hand tools list of the five fundamental tools any beginner will need have for basic woodworking projects. This guide is made to help starters who are always swamped with the chore of understanding the necessary hand tools for the initial stage. The process of figuring out the best hand tools for woodworking as a beginner can be frustrating and this guide will help you avoid that annoying feeling.

Five fine woodworking hand tools

As a beginner, you will be set with the right startup kit when you get these fine woodworking hand tools.


We have four types of planes as fundamental hand tools for woodworking.

  • Smoothing plane: this is basically sandpaper. Choose one with a dead flat sole, thin shaving, and a tight mouth. That choice could nearly replace a block plane.
  • Jointer plane: this plane is for making planes true and flattened. Short versions are okay but longer is better.
  • Router plane: this is a versatile joinery plane. This plane adds repeatability and consistency to woodwork.
  • Scrub plane: this is a thickness planer which has an advantage over other options because of its small footprint.

In place of hand tools, new modern tools for woodworking have come. Many woodworkers have long started using routers. But not everyone knows how to choose the right device for yourself. To do this, we recommend reading the wood router buying guide and watching videos.


There are different saws for different specific uses and this woodworking hand tools list will highlight five important saws.

  • Tenon saw: this saw in 18inches with the 3.5inch depth of cut and 10ppi filing is a bigger saw that will provide more balance and depth of cut.
  • Dovetail saw: this is a fine general usage saw for dovetails as well as smaller cuts and notches.
  • Rip hand saw: this is a fast saw for ripping.
  • Carcass saw: cutting bench tops and final dimensions is a job for this saw.
  • Crosscut hand saw: this is for swiftly cutting rough stocks to reasonable size


Just two fine woodworking hand tools will do in the drilling aspect.

  • 1/4 and 3/8inch Jennings pattern bits: about 90% of your mortise work can be handled with these two sizes. All draw boreholes and pegs will also be tackled by these choices.
  • 10inch swing brace: this hand tool is able to take care of almost every drilling work from it’s of 1/4inch small going up to 2inch wide bits.


The following will handle your marking needs.

  • Square: if you want proper trying and layout of the plumber, you will invest in a good quality square.
  • Wheel marking gauge: a lot of joinery tasks will require you to have different settings for consistency all through the process so it is a good idea to have more than one of these.
  • Bevel gauge: this is used for everything that is not a 90degree angle.
  • Dividers: this tool is used when you want to layout uniform distance or for evenly spacing out elements on a board.
  • Marking knife: for those airtight joints, this will be more useful than a pen. The knives with one flat face and a spear point are a good choice.


Definitely among the best hand tools for woodworking are the following chisels.

  • 5 – 2inch wide paring chisels: defining the edges of joints will definitely need a wide chisel. General chamfering and peeling off debris from the saw are other uses.
  • 1/8, 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2inch chisels: these chisels will definitely serve numerous purposes for any woodworker in the shop. For use in 30degree bevels, these chisels should be sharpened.
  • Mallet: the round styled carving mallet s a great choice but the conventional cabinetmakers square faced mallet will work just fine as well.
  • These basic woodworking hand tools will help you build almost any structure that has straight lines. When you want to move on to curves, you will need another saw selection and along with some shaves and rasps.

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