Tool Reviews

A woodworker is only as good as his tools. In a world with enough woodworking tools to fill entire big-box stores, it’s important to know what you should buy (and what to avoid) so you can produce the best pieces possible and save money. Our tool reviews are different. Rather than use pseudo-science, we use the tools in the shop (we’re all experienced woodworkers), and report back how they perform. So whether you are in the market for a new set of chisels or a powerful table saw, we’ve got the best tools covered.

03pwm1304tooltest

Tool Test: Hock Tools Scratch Stock

By Megan Fitzpatrick Page 14A scratch stock is a simple tool – sort of a combination of a scraper and a moulding plane – for scratching in a profile (typically a bead or other simple shape). And while it’s fairly easy to make a scratch stock out of scrap wood and a piece of thin...

04pwm1304tooltest

Tool Test: Bosch Trim Router Plunge Base

By Robert W. Lang Page 14In 2005, Bosch introduced a new laminate trimmer that eventually became know as the Colt. Powerful and user-friendly, it quickly became a favorite in our shop and in shops across the country. At the time, I suggested to Bosch that they needed to make a plunge base for it.Video: Watch...

01pwm1302tooltest

Tool Test: Blue Spruce Firmer Chisels

These traditional tools are a throwback for a thoroughly modern maker.By Christopher Schwarz Page 14Perhaps the last tools I ever expected to come out of the Blue Spruce Toolworks are the most traditional set of modern bench chisels I have ever used.After all, Dave Jeske of Blue Spruce has spent all of his toolmaking career...

03pwm1302tooltest

Tool Test: Micro Fence Micro Plunge Base

By Steve Shanesy Page 16In the world of routers and routing accessories, it seems that small is big these days. The popularity of trim routers has been growing for some time; in fact, it’s now been a couple years since we praised Micro Fence’s plunge router base for the Bosch Colt, and we recently reviewed...

04pwm1302tooltest

Tool Test: Veritas ‘Workshop Striking Knife’

By Megan Fitzpatrick Page 16Spear-point marking knives are my favorite marking knives because they’re a good all-around choice for most layout tasks in the shop. Because a spear-point knife has two bevels and a flat back, it can easily register against a guide on either the right or left side – very handy when marking...

tooltestfretsaw

Tool Test: Knew Concepts Titanium Fretsaw

The truss system of the spine looks curious, but it works gangbusters.By Megan Fitzpatrick Page 16The crazy design of this titanium 5" woodworker’s fretsaw from Knew Concepts is, I think it’s fair to say, the first thing you notice. But use it and you’ll quickly come to appreciate that the structure helps to make it...

tooltestbiscuitjoiner

Tool Test: Makita PJ7000 Biscuit Joiner

By Steve Shanesy Page 18The biscuit or plate joiner category of the hand-held power tool world has been pretty sleepy over the past few years. But Makita has introduced a new model that, while not revolutionary, adds some nice, user-friendly features.The PJ7000 packs plenty of power in its 5.6-amp motor, yet the motor has a...