Know Your Way Around Construction Equipment

4 Specialty Hand Tools Used For Intricate Woodworking Projects

If you are looking to expand your offered contracting services, it might be beneficial to consider creating custom woodworking elements. Custom woodwork can take your client's projects to the next level in appearance and functionality. When you can handcraft wooden materials for your clients, you will stand tall above the competition limited to using commercially available supplies. If you want to get into woodworking, you can go ahead and set down the power tools in favor of a few specialty hand tools. Here are four specialty tools that will help you start out on your woodworking journey.

Marking Gauge

Although you are surely used to measuring out your materials using a tape measure, you need to switch to a marking gauge while woodworking. The marking gauge allows you to measure and scribe wooden materials in one smooth movement. With this tool, you will make the marks with a pencil, steel pin or knife blade attachment after confirming your measurement twice over. Depending on your planned woodworking projects, you can also pick up specialty marking gauges that make quick work of planning out large complex designs or precise mortise and tenon joints.

Mortise Chisel

High quality woodworking projects feature curved elements and complex joints. To achieve these important features, you need to learn how to expertly wield a set of mortise chisels. The chisels feature a heavy-duty handle on one end and a strong, sharp blade on the other. You will use a big mallet to drive the sharp end of the chisel into the surface of the wood to carve out sections in a precise manner. Make sure the set you pick up initially includes 1/4", 1/2" and 3/4" blade sizes to suit nearly any project imaginable. As your skills advance, you can also invest in swan neck and corner cutting chisel varieties.

Backsaw Saw

To achieve precise cuts without gouging sensitive wood grains, you will need to use a backsaw to bring your wood materials down to size. Unlike other cutting tools, the backsaw allows you to carefully remove material at the ends of the wood pieces to create intricate dovetail joints.  You may also want to invest in a miter box to keep your backsaw perfectly straight and level throughout the cutting process. If you find it difficult to move your backsaw through the wood, blow out the sawdust and apply a thin layer of wax to the blade. You do not need a specialty wax product either; just use everyday canning wax from the grocery store.

Try Plane

When you want to smooth out a warped wood surface, you may normally reach for the sanding block and go to town. A much easier way to create a flat, smooth surface is by accurately wielding a try plane. Due to its ease of use, the try plane will quickly become your best friend when faced with frequent shaving jobs on rare cuts of wood.  While you're at the hardware store, pick up a large pack of extra blades for your plane.  Do not hesitate to switch them out if you find yourself having to press far too hard while shaving the wood boards. Otherwise, you could damage the wood surface and impede your progress.

Keeping Your Specialty Tool Set In Good Condition

When properly used, cleaned and stored, your specialty woodworking tool set will last for decades after you retire from contracting. You can keep your tools from breaking or dulling by always selecting the perfect one for the job. For example, never use your chisel to shave off large areas if you can perform the task efficiently with a plane.

At the end of each day, you must clean off sawdust, residue and moisture on the surface of your tools to keep the items from corroding. Once any of your tools start to rust, the corrosion will spread across the surface and eventually weaken the structure of that item. Before you place your tools in a lined storage container, rub the wood and metal surfaces with light oil, like linseed, for an extra bit of protection. For more information on specialty tools, check out sites like