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Beginners Guide to Power Tools

Bosch Fixed-Base Router The use and purchase of power tools can be intimidating for those who do not use them on a regular basis. The power drill, one of the most commonly used tools, is a tool with a rotating drill bit used for drilling wholes in a range of materials. These introductory tips can help any beginner use the right power drill for their project.

  • For standard use a corded electric drill can be used
  • If you will be drilling in a confined space consider using a cordless drill (keep in mind that differenct battery types are avialable for chordless drills)
  • Power drills are used for driving screws, fastening bolts, and drilling wholes
  • Different speeds are available, including single speed, two speed, and variable speed which gives the user the most flexibility over drill speed
  • Power drills can be used on metals, wood and masonry (for masonry projects is is better to use a drill with hammer action abilities

DeWalt DC390K Heavy-Duty XRP 18V Cordless Circular Saw Kit Power saws are used for jobs that require cutting. There are many different types of saws designed for large and small jobs. Although the uses and styles of saws are different two functions are the same of all power saws:

  • The higher the voltage or amperage of the saw the more powerful the saw will be
  • The greater the TPI or teeth per inch the finer the saws blade will cut

The following eight saws are the most common:
  • Electric Band Saws are most commonly used to cut wood, both large pieces and small decorative pieces.
  • Electric Circular Saws are a type of rotary saw that use circular blades, the blades vary in size depending on the size of the job. Circular saws can be used on different types of materials because the blades can be switched to accomedate the material, but are most commonly used for cutting straight long lines in wood rapidly.
  • Electric Jig Saws are most commonly used to cut wood, clipboard and plastic. The narrow vertical blade is especially useful for cutting material into shape for further construction, or for sharp curved cuts.
  • Electric Miter Saws are also known as mitre saws, their function mimics their name as these saws are most commonly used to make miters in a workpiece. A miter is an angled cut that joins two pieces at a corner.
  • Electric Reciprocating Saws are most commonly used for fast convenient cuts, this is because the saw features thin straight blades and cuts using a push and pull reciprocating motion.
  • Scroll Saws and feature a very thin blade useful for cutting intricate curves and highly detailed shapes where a jigsaw would be too large.
  • Table Saws are most commonly used in woodworking shops. These saws can be portable or stationary, the blade is mounted from under a table so that the items to be cut are fed through the blade on top of the table which contributes to the accuracy of the cut.
  • Tile Saws are specialty table saws and are more specifically used for wet cutting tile, ceramics and types of stone.

Makita BGA452 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Cut-Off/Angle Grinder Kit Power sanders and grinders are used to prepare, smooth, and finish material surfaces. Sanders and grinders are similar in both look and function but can differ in application. Sanders are more commonly used to remove excess material and create a smooth finish. Electric Grinders can be used for grinding, cutting finishing and shaping.

Different sanders are specialized for different projects:
  • Orbital Sanders are used to smooth flat surfaces.
  • Random Orbital Sanders are used to sand quickly on both flat and curved rough surfaces.
  • Belt Sanders are used to smooth flat surfaces that are larger.
  • Detail Sanders are used on surfaces that are in an awkward position or that have tight corners.

Grinders are also specialized tools:
  • Bench Grinders are most commonly used to sharpen other tools, remove rust and shaping.
  • Die Grinders are used to reach inside cylinders or ports by using a long spindle
  • Angle Grinders are used for hand grinding on metal and masonry materials

Bosch 1618EVS 2.25 HP EVS Fixed-Base Router, Routers are used for grooving out areas in a piece of material for joint and decorative finishes. An important tip to remember when purchasing a router is the amount of horsepower and the bit-shank size of the router. Routers with more horsepower and larger bit-shanks are better equipped to handle larger jobs. The two most common types of routers are Fixed-base routers and plunge routers.

  • Fixed-base Routers are used for grooving but are less versatile because the drive shaft is fixed
  • Plunge Routers are used for grooving but do not have to be lifted in between cuts because the drive shaft is spring-mounted