Demolition and Construction Tools
You probably already have some basic carpentry tools around the house. To handle the demands of a remodeling project, make sure the tools you have are good quality and in good condition. If not, purchase new ones.
One of the most basic tools is the hammer. A 16-ounce framing hammer is an essential. It is heavy enough to drive the large nails used for framing, yet small enough for use when installing moldings. Add a 22-ounce framing hammer for heavy work. Straight and Phillips screwdrivers are necessary for installing hardware and occasionally for opening a paint can. A utility knife does everything from sharpening your pencil to cutting drywall. Keep plenty of blades on hand and replace them often so you always have a sharp cutting edge ready.
You'll find nail sets handy for driving finishing nails below the surface of moldings and extending your reach into hard-to-hammer places. An awl is a sharp-pointed tool you'll use for marking hole locations and starting screws. For cutting and pulling small nails, nothing beats a set of end nips. Along the same line, three tools will handle your prying tasks: a cat's paw for pulling big nails, a flat bar for general prying, and a ripping bar for heavy-duty demolition. A sledgehammer is also useful for demolition and for nudging wayward walls into position.
For cutting wood, you'll need some chisels, saws, and other edge tools. A toolbox saw packs a lot of cutting capability into a compact size. A coping saw is indispensable for cutting moldings at inside corners. For making accurate crosscuts and miters in molding, you'll need either a miter box or a power miter saw. For paring and fine-tuning the fit of door hinges and other hardware, you'll want a set of chisels (blade widths of 1/4 inch, 1/2 inch, 3/4 inch, and 1 inch). A block plane makes short work of fitting a door. A putty knife is a multipurpose tool. Its obvious use is for applying putty to fill nail holes, but it is also useful for prying off moldings without damage. A pair of heavy-duty metal snips comes in handy for a variety of cutting tasks, including the installation of metal studs.Keeping cutting tools sharp: Step 1
For best results, keep your cutting tools sharp. Use a sharpening stone and honing oil. Drip some oil on the stone, then polish the tool's bevel, moving it in a figure-eight pattern. Make sure both the heel and toe of the bevel remain in contact with the stone.Keeping cutting tools sharp: Step 2
When all marks and other nicks are gone from the bevel, turn over the blade and polish the back. The combination of the two polished surfaces makes a sharp edge. To test that it's sharp, look straight at the edge with a strong light behind you -- light will reflect from a dull edge.
- Home Design Styles
- Planning Your Remodeling Project
- Building Interior Walls: How to Frame & Build a Wall
- Customizing Walls: How to Customize Interior Walls
- Baseboards: How to Install Baseboard Molding
- Crown Molding: How to Cut & Install Crown Moldings
- Project Ideas
- Choosing Lumber Materials
- Woodworking Tips & Techniques
- Paint & Wood Finishing Secrets