Author Topic: Tools Necessary to Start Building?  (Read 98146 times)

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Offline Miedrn

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Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« on: June 21, 2006, 11:29:46 PM »
Well I've sure taken advantage of this board, haven't I? I appreciate your knowledge. Perhaps someday I'll be able to give back as much as I've received.

Now for my next question!

Say for instance you don't have tools. None....nada. Oh, I might have a $3.00 hammer to put pictures up on the wall, a $1.00 screwdriver that helped put together a computer desk...but not much else.

Not only that, I don't know how to use them either which hopefully, Habitat will fix... :) I read another topic on these boards that someone suggested nailers........two of them, a framing and a finishing??? Right?

Okay, so what about a saw? Levels? Ladders? I noticed in some pics that people were wearing tool belts. My bet is that my kids will end up with it after we're finished but what would you suggest? Does anyone have a link to a list.......a shopping list? :) Could we put one together?

Offline Daddymem

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2006, 01:29:21 AM »
I tried this once and didn't get too far.  There is a topic on this board that answers some stuff.  Here is something we put together that may help you: http://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/2WM5QYKZS9FVL
Save yourself a ton...learn how to show Amazon deals and find surveys for free GCs for Amazon and you can save a bundle.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 01:30:35 AM by Daddymem »
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Offline Jimmy C.

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2006, 04:15:04 AM »
Great Question!........
That same question caused a lot of responses a few months ago.

here is the link.. I hope you have a full afternoon to read it all.

http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1133363893/0
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 04:16:27 AM by Jimmy_Cason »
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Offline Miedrn

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2006, 05:37:15 AM »
Good lord and holy .........I'm going to have to work a year just to buy the tools!


Seriously, have any of you ever bought a tool and in a few years forgotten what it was used for? :)

Offline Daddymem

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2006, 07:27:58 AM »
Keep in mind that there are tools that are "must have" and ones that "would be nice to have."  Plan on building many homes and your tool purchases are vastly different from building one house.
Here's a decent starter: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002HC56S/103-1694848-4291845?n=228013 get to $25 for free shipping.
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2006, 09:03:16 AM »
You suckered me in, Daddymem.  I had to add the Big Johnson 25' power tape to qualify for the free shipping.  It was 65% off.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0009WG58U/qid=1150999151/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/104-1018554-5367917?%5Fencoding=UTF8&s=hi&v=glance&n=228013

Big Johnson is great.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Daddymem

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2006, 12:17:07 PM »
Look out Sassy  ;)

That tape is really bad though  :(
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 12:18:04 PM by Daddymem »
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2006, 12:50:29 PM »
Oh well --- what I saved on shipping will about pay for the tape - and it can't be any worse than the generic one I have now.  I stick it way out there and the end of it just sags and droops.  It's really frustrating.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Daddymem

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2006, 02:17:35 PM »
Stanley Fatmax...the only tape to buy.  Mine never droops like your Johnson will  ;D
Où sont passées toutes nos nuits de rêve?
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2006, 02:23:16 PM »
I am familiar with it, Daddymem but I resist because it is so large---It is quite a handful.  If it wasn't so large and heavy hanging on my pants pocket when I walk around I would get one.  I generally find that too much weight hanging on the front of my pants causes them to sag even worse than normal. :-/
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2006, 02:37:22 PM »
How about we make a minimum list of tools needed to build a house for MIEDRN.

I'd start with:

Framing hammer

Skill saw

Framing Square

Short tape 25-30'  Long tape 100' or 50' min. steel tape.

Carpenter Pencils

Speed square - could substitute framing square though

Hand Saw

Drill and wood bits

Adjustable wrench -Crescent type

Sledge hammer

Electric Chain saw - minimum cheap one - for one house - or Sawzall type saw

Chalk line

and as you posted -- levels and ladder -- there are some pretty cheap laser levels out there now too - some are fair - some are great.

Forgot what one of my tools was used for???  I try not to --no guarantees --- but if I can remember what it is I guess I can always go back to the net and study up again. :)
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 02:43:25 PM by glenn-k »
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Rich B

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2006, 05:03:26 PM »
glenn pretty much said it .get a good skil saw like worm drive one of the tools you will use every day I E worm drive saw .And the same for a drill 1/2 chuck those are power tools that get alot of use and abuse .If you need to get a generator make sure it will handle th ampsfor the tools have a tag onthe generator and tool if it has 15 amp that will do most of the time.Or get some friends in the building trades and have a house raisingmost will bring tools with them and alot or fun for all with a bbq at the end of the day. ;D

Offline Miedrn

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2006, 07:13:05 PM »
Thanks Glen!

I started making lists from that post Daddymem listed for me, wish I had seen your list first! :)

If anyone wants it........http://www.geocities.com/cgariety/owner_builder_tools.html

Any other tips would be useful.......I hope to reformat it to print out as a shopping list. Some of the tips here are invaluable, thanks. Evidently I'm not very good at searching this site or I would have found it. Feel free to copy the list to put here if you like. I find that notes on the net are the easiest way for me not to lose them! :)

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2006, 07:25:24 PM »
Daddymems post has a more advanced list but this should get you started and do most tasks.

Add a wonder bar, or wrecking bar commonly known as a crowbar.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 07:27:48 PM by glenn-k »
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Miedrn

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2006, 07:31:12 PM »
Quote
I tried this once and didn't get too far.  There is a topic on this board that answers some stuff.  Here is something we put together that may help you: http://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/2WM5QYKZS9FVL
Save yourself a ton...learn how to show Amazon deals and find surveys for free GCs for Amazon and you can save a bundle.


So how do I show Amazon deals.........and what are free GC's?

Offline Amanda_931

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #15 on: June 22, 2006, 07:57:46 PM »
Some of those guys can use the 20+ ounce framing hammer with the long long handle and the checkered face, but I can't.  

But with hammers one that doesn't suit you will leave you with a hurting elbow.  Wood or fiberglass handles (or even the Sears tubular steel handle) have a bit more give in them.  No way would I buy a hammer without trying it--particularly one with a wood handle.  I'm kind of partial to the solid steel Estwings.  But I know people who loathe them.



http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/product.do?BV_SessionID=@@@@1124820533.1151035364@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccegaddidkkieffcegecegjdghldgfi.0&vertical=SEARS&sid=I0093600100004900085&pid=00938362000

Nothing wrong with a 16 oz with a curved claw for general use.  If you find it feels light after a day of pounding nails, a real framing hammer would be fine, or a fairly short-handled 20 oz.  13 oz is a nice weight for trim. And drywall hammers are wonderful for drywall, if you're not screwing that on, but a lot of that has been done with your basic 16 oz workhorse.

I really like cordless drills, even if they are right pricey, especially with 1/2" drive.  I've got DeWalt, and like them, although I think other brands may be rated higher now.  And they work for deck screws.  Mixture of drills for predrilling spikes and screws, a couple of wood bits.

Because when we really needed it, we were using long long extension cords--heavy duty ones, but still--I got a 13 amp circular saw, instead of the more "professional" 15 amp one.  Quite a bit lighter than the worm drive jobs, which are generally nearly bulletproof, although I've never used one much.  Cheap circular saws have crappy bearings.  Cordless seem to run out of juice quickly.  But one and a lot of batteries will work if you're out of electricity range.  And they're good if you're cutting plywood up on the roof--often easier than taking it up, setting it in place to mark it, bringing it down to cut it and then hauling it back up.  I'd rather use extension cords.

Make yourself a pair of sawhorses using your new framing square (aluminum doesn't get as hot out in the sun, but it costs more) and maybe stair gauges (little screw-on jobs to make repetive markings easier) and saw.  PEG's are nice.  Having done this will help you when you go to cut rafters.  Also, make yourself a nice little tool carrier.  Minimum 24 inches long on the inside so you can put your framing square in it. You may prefer a metal tool box for use, but this is a teaching tool.  How to mark and cut your wood.

Wonderbar and/or chisel (inexpensive, not the good cabinet maker's ones) for evening up notches, file, for sharpening both of them--nobody sharpens saw blades themselves on the job any more.  Nail set. pocket knife.  I know people who swore by a 4-way rasp.  I never used one much.  Sliding bevel gauge.  Ditto.  

Tool belt.  Not too heavy.  Not too many pockets or you will lose something vital when it's really in some rarely used pocket.  But large enough that you aren't having to go over and get nails every five minutes either.

Hammer, chalk line, tape, sharpened pencil will probably always be on the tool belt.  Speed square will be next to the sawhorses and saw.  Framing square will live there unless you are laying out a wall, when you will be using it for that.

Small notebook.  For lists--shopping, what needs doing today in what order, drawing to figure out how to do it, etc.  Something other than a carpenter's pencil to write in it.

(when you get to wood you're going to paint, ball-point pen bleeds right through.  pencils don't)

Offline Jens

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #16 on: June 22, 2006, 08:04:41 PM »
A cat's paw is a must for pulling nails.  A framing square can be used the same as a speed square?  I'm not just being an ass here, but, is there a book that shows you how to pull the roof pitches and angles with one?   :-/  Buy some decent nail bags, or nail apron, and get used to wearing it.  Helps immensely when you have your tools with you.  As I have said in the other tool thread, I tend to buy not the best that money can buy, but the best I can afford.  I am a framing-to-finish carpenter, and my bags cost $39 at Home Depot.  Framing hammer $25, cats paw $5, chalk line $15 (and the extra money has paid for itself!), speed square $10, tape measure $20 (Fat Max, won't use anything else), utility knife $5 (you guys forgot that one, didn't you), 1 1/4" chisel $5 (a must have), Smith and Wesson sunglasses $6 (gotta protect those peepers against shotgun blasts).  I have other stuff in my tool bags, but those are all of the must haves in my opinion.  Just got a Bosche sawzall BTW...it's a gem!  I always look for rafter hooks on my big tools, as there isn't much that pushes back productivity like climbing down to get your saw every time you need it.  Don't forget extension cords.  Get 12ga or bigger.  Rope is a good thing to have, as is a hammer tacker.
just spent a few days building a website, and didn't know that it could be so physically taxing to sit and do nothing all day!

Offline Miedrn

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #17 on: June 22, 2006, 08:12:54 PM »
Thanks for the tips. There is so much I don't know and sometimes I wonder what the heck I'm doing thinking I can do this. Still, I know there are others that have so it's encouraging.

How do I try a hammer out in the store in a way that I'll know if it's right for me? It may sound like a stupid question and I'll have to admit, it does even to me!

I was wondering what I could practice on and saw horses (as my Father used to call them) sound like a good place to start. Maybe I better review fractions too! I use algebra in my job.......but haven't used fractions since high school! :)

Offline Jens

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #18 on: June 22, 2006, 08:17:51 PM »
Go to the library, and study up.  Almost every thing I know how to do came from reading, and then trying.  Keep in mind, that you will always fail, but don't let it discourage you.  Everybody fails, always, nothing ever gets done perfectly.  If anyone ever tells you that they do things perfectly, or that you did something perfectly, fire them immediately!  HAHA.  Just kidding...sorry bout that.  Seriously though, I am a pretty darned good carpenter, and if I don't fail every day I go to work, that means I didn't do anything!  Would you agree PEG?
just spent a few days building a website, and didn't know that it could be so physically taxing to sit and do nothing all day!

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #19 on: June 22, 2006, 09:00:19 PM »
I'm not a pro-carpenter, Hobbiest, so probably am not on to the fastest way to do things, but generally still get them done.  I just lay out the pitch in the proper direction with the framing square such as 12/12 is 12" each leg of the square = 45 degrees on the speed square.  4/12 is 4" on one leg -- 12" on the other.  Pitches are already marked on the speed square.  Probably lots more use tricks you can tell us. :)

I know there are tons of tables etc. on some of the framing squares but I'm never into it deep enough or long enough to learn the use of them.  

Here is some of the info for a framing square.  No blue book that I know of though. http://www.homefocus.com/410/framing_square_know-how.htm

I came across this site looking for rafter table infomation -- Looks like quite a bit of well explained information for those who don't know.

http://www.josephfusco.org/Articles/Roof_Cutting/raftercutting.htm
« Last Edit: June 22, 2006, 09:21:43 PM by glenn-k »
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Offline Daddymem

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #20 on: June 23, 2006, 01:14:20 AM »
This will get you to movers and shakers:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/new-for-you/movers-and-shakers/-/home-improvement
This will get you to today's deals in tools:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/browse.html/002-2647263-5571244?node=760330
A site with daily tool deals:
http://www.dailytool.com/index.php/category/cool-tools/
Search for "free amazon gift certificate".  You'll find taking surveys, or getting a new credit card, will give you a gift certificate etc.
Où sont passées toutes nos nuits de rêve?
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Offline JRR

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #21 on: June 23, 2006, 04:24:28 AM »
Most table saws are kinda permanent in their nature ... so heavy you don't want to move them around very much.  These usually stay in the "shop".

But Ryobi sells a light, sturdy 10' that folds up complete with handles and roll-around wheels ... perfect for the building site.  Easy to move about and store.  Approx $200 at Home Depot.

Offline Amanda_931

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #22 on: June 23, 2006, 06:44:05 AM »
You can use a framing square for everything you'd be tempted to use a speed square for, and I think a framing square is better than a speed square for rafters and so on.  But the (bigger) bright orange plastic speed square is less likely to get lost, and it's marginally easier to use for 90o cuts--which are 90 percent of them.  So I use both.  They tend to crack by that diamond shape hole.  Which may not make them any less useful.  Somebody relatively local has one, don't buy it on line unless you're getting a whole bunch of stuff from the vendor.  But you could get it from here:

http://www.doityourself.com/invt/6314140



I've been lusting after one of those portable "contractor" type table saws.  But the next project may not have electricity right there.  Unless I get a generator.  And I hate generators--if you must, refuse to look at the price and get either a Honda or one with a Honda engine.  They're quite a bit quieter.  And get one that's big enough to run a 15 amp tool plus something else--and/or the start-up on a compressor.

String for laying out posts.  Bright colors are good here too.  And how about something like a sledge hammer for pounding in posts so you can tighten your bright nylon string without bending the post over?

Has anybody mentioned levels?  I have and use a handful.  The 4-footer is used both for leveling measuring things that are 4 feet or more--I've had a couple of inexpensive ones that could only be used for that--good idea, if you can, to check these in the store, easy enough for vertical--does it read the same when you reverse ends.  Post levels that work on both sides of the right angle seem to work better than anything else for those, and if you use John's plans you're going to need it.  And something smaller for your tool bag, maybe one on a try-square or a torpedo one that came with some others.  You'll need a line level as well.  I've always thought they were right horrible, but nothing else does what they do, except maybe a laser level....

Cheap laser levels (sub a couple of hundred bucks) are fine for showing lines--sometimes only when it's not real bright out.  Not sure I'd trust one to show me "the level."  But in conjunction with a trusted level they are a help.  And it's pretty easy to get someone to gift you with one.  I think mine was well under $30, but I bought it when they were on Father's Day special a year or so ago.

Check on-line for how to use tools--here's This Old House on squares:

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/knowhow/tools/article/0,16417,403568-3,00.html

You really can't "test" a hammer in the store, any more than you can a tennis racket.  But pick up and swing about 20 of them, and you'll start to notice differences.  Handle size is pretty easy, to some extent balance may be personal preference--some newer hammers have a lot of weight forward.  Back in the days when good wooden hammers were pretty common (not common any more, IMHO) you could often find one on the rack that suited left-handers better.   (for a while at least Rigid was making a for sure left-hand hammer--it wasn't a hammer I was in love with in the right-hand form, though)
« Last Edit: June 23, 2006, 06:55:38 AM by Amanda_931 »

Offline JRR

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #23 on: June 23, 2006, 12:16:32 PM »
I have been unlucky with Hondas.  I have made (new) purchases of: 1 off-road motorcycle, 1 Civic sedan, 1-16hp power washer, 3-6hp lawnmowers.  Now not ALL of them were "big trouble" ... but enough of them were trouble enough so that I now avoid the brand.

Especially since I have a 20+ year old (bought used) welder/generator with a Kohler engine that still runs fine.   And several Briggs' engines that seem indestructable.  

Of course, we all have different experiences ... many of you are happy with Hondas ... and I shouldn't reach conclusions based on such a "small sample size" ... but its my money.

Do they still make Kohlers?

Offline Amanda_931

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Re: Tools Necessary to Start Building?
« Reply #24 on: June 23, 2006, 03:37:30 PM »
Had a Honda motorcycle stolen from me once, got a ticket on a Honda scooter.  

I've never owned a generator with the Honda engine.  But my neighbors in Nashville did, they loved theirs, which they used for lights and occasional tools at the drag races--mama and papa and baby brother all rode drag bikes--baby brother was about 8 at the time, big sister worked the concession stand.

The generator I had (Briggs and Stratton engine) before the dogs buried was so noisy I hated to use it even, or maybe especially if I was inside or even up at the neighbors.  We all heaved a great sigh of relief when it ran out of fuel for the night, leaving the trailer battery charged, only one light at a time usable for the next day or sometimes two--I since learned how to turn some hidden loads off.

 

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