Shop Tools

These are the tools we use to get the job done!

Every tool featured on this page is one I’d fully recommend, and use myself; you will see them in the project pictures/videos that are posted regularly on the site.

A little caveat here first 🙂 There are TONS of features/brands/makes/etc. when it comes to tools. We don’t list the below because we think they are the ultimate best option for every single person.

Our approach in general is to get something affordable and good quality; we have a family, etc. and a specific budget. Once we can justify it and we know we will use it, we will try to get something better later, if we can’t get it right away.

Yes, you can get better quality tools than any of the below and we’re not going to say these are the best tools available on the market today. I don’t know if anyone agrees on that anyway, lol! You have your Dewalt people, your Milwaukee people, etc.

If we were full time contractors using these tools all day every day, we’d probably find some limitations. As it is, the tools shown are excellent and can do everything we need them to do!

Yep, a Humvee is a better vehicle than the 2007 Dodge Caravan I drive, no doubt about it! We just figure we don’t need a Humvee to go to the corner store for ice cream on a summer afternoon :).

Some of the links in the list below are affiliate links. That means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will earn a commission – at no extra cost to you! We recommend them because we’re confident that you will get value from them, not for the small commision we will make if you purchase :). There are more items we could add to this page, but I’ve kept it as it is, since I want to present only the very best.

Here’s a few tools we recommend:

Craftsman 10″ Single Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw

This saw was a gift from my Dad several years ago and has been a great saw. The one “complaint” I’d have about it is the small blade – if you’re cutting through thick wood, a 10″ blade doesn’t have a ton of depth.

I’ll get a larger size when I replace this one. Check here for the saw I’m looking at buying next.

Ryobi 18V Cordless Contractor’s Kit

We like this set because it was very affordable, and has proved to be very good quality.

If you’re after something better, something like this would probably do!

The two batteries have good life and a charger is included; the circular saw comes with a blade, and the reciprocating saw comes with one wood blade and one metal blade.

The flashlight comes in handy at times too, and is nice and adjustable while throwing a good bit of light.

The drill has a few features (beyond being cordless) that I really like.

1. Adjustable torque settings

There are 24 clutch positions and a 2 speed gearbox. The high settings have all the power I’ve needed, and the lower settings are handy for things like assembling Ikea furniture without stripping out the provided holes :).

2. Clip for additional bit

Since I’m pretty much always using either a Phillips or a square drive, one is in the clip and one is in the chuck. I use a bit set similar to this.

3. Magnetic “tray”

If there’s a drill bit in the chuck, then I can just have the Phillips bit in the clip and the square drive on the magnetic tray.

The one thing that I wish was included in the set is an Impact, so I’d not have to swap from drill bit to driver bits, but at the time it was bought, I was mostly in need of a Drill (an Impact would have done too) and a Reciprocating saw and the only other kit was a Drill/Driver set or a Drill/Driver/Circular Saw set – which would leave me without the saw we needed :).

We will get an impact later! Check here to see the one we’re looking at getting.

Important note: If you’re thinking of buying a kit like this, you’ll want to definitely do your research on it. It’s ideal if you can find a brand you feel comfortable with, so that you can use batteries in multiple tools. For example, if you have a Dewalt Drill, a Milwaukee angle grinder, and a Ryobi Impact, you’ll need batteries and chargers for each one.

Many of the major brands offer single tools without batteries for sale, so you can save money once you’ve bought a core set – and even if a battery is included if you buy another tool of the same brand, it just adds to your collection and is able to be used in all the other tools. That’s the route we’ve gone, and for example we can use the same battery in our drill as we can in our Trimmer/Edger.

Quick Clamps

These guys do what it says on the box 😉 , and are nice and handy to have around.

Drill Bit Set

Pretty self explanatory this one :D.

Ryobi Countersink Set

The idea with these is not only being able to recess a screw head, but being able to center up a nice screw shaped hole at the same time, making a perfect and clean setup.

You can set the depth of the drill bit to match the length of your screw so there’s no wasted space, just a nicely seated screw. If you drill a bit deeper too, you can leave space above the screw head for a plug.

Has bits for $6, #8, #10, and #12 sized screws.

Plug Cutters

Speaking of plugs, cut your own plugs from the same wood you’re using with this set – match the grain, etc for a nice finished look. 3 sizes cover pretty much all the screws sizes you’ll need.

Parallel Jaw Box Clamp

General Purpose Safety Protective Goggles

Ryobi S652DGK Orbital Finishing Sheet Sander

4-1/2 in. Angle Grinder

Mastercraft 184-Pc Socket Set

BOSTITCH Portable Air Compressor

BOSTITCH Coil Roofing Nailer

Stanley Fatmax Coping Saw

DEWALT Magnetic Nutsetter Set

Black & Decker Orbital Jigsaw

Milescraft Pocket Jig