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If you are not sure what to buy for your selected woodworker or perhaps your idiot husband, I am here to help. I have put collectively a set of gifts that I would be happy to receive and assume that other woodworkers and dummies alike would enjoy. I use included name brands where I think they are necessary to keep a good gift idea from becoming a flop. They are in no particular order of course, if you do the math there are probably more than ten.
Woodworkers will tell you that they can not have too many clamps. While this holds true, they can have too many bad magnetic clamps. Even if you just buy one pair of clamps, make them good ones. QuickGrips are excellent one-handed clamps and are great to have around the shop. I recommend the 12? length. For smooth panel glue-ups parallel clamps are the best. I actually prefer Bessey because they were the original, but others work well, like Jorgenson. F-style clamps are also handy. Again, Bessey is a top name along with Jorgenson. I might stay away from pipe clamps. I don’t like the way they work and they may seem to be very fancy for a gift.
Dewalt Impact Driver
Not long ago impact drivers weren’t so widely used. I remember considering that they didn’t appear like an improvement over a regular drill for generating screws. I was wrong, wrong, wrong. If you know someone who uses power tools and does not already have one, the impact driver is a no-brainer. They are on the higher end of the purchase price scale, but worth it. I haven’t fulfilled an impact driver that was bad. The distinction in price is usually the quality of the electric battery. Cheaper tools have batteries that don’t last very long. I use Dewalt, but other guys I work together with use Makita, Hitachi, Milwaukee, and Ridgid with no complaints.
Stanley Hand Planes
Good hand tools are always appreciated. Start with a block plane. When they already have a block plane step up in size to a bench plane. If they curently have a bench plane step up to a bigger bench plane until you run away of money or options. Lie Nielsen is a name that woodworkers aspire to have. If you have a never-ending source of money and can wait until next Christmas, look at a Sauer & Steiner.
A good jigsaw is a blessing after using smaller quality tools. I feel a fan of Bosch, again the first and still the best. The jigsaw is utilized more for installations and on-site work, but is also useful in the shop on a regular basis.
Porter Cable Router
Routers are being used on almost every job in my shop. They can be used for making parts, doing joinery, or fancying up an border. The most common size is 1-3/4 horsepower and is a good all around pick. Porter Cable has an array of selections in routers and accessories and is the first choice brand for most outlets.