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Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Its the MWA Woodworks 2021 Woodworking Tool Gift Guide! I’ll share ten tools that I use in my shop every day that I think would make awesome holiday gifts and cover a wide range of budgets. I’ll share with you why I love each one and how it benefits me in my work. Give the list a look and tell me what you think!


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TOOLS COVERED IN THIS GUIDE

Centipede Work Holder 4×8 – https://amzn.to/3E5LGxY
Amana Countersink Drill Bit – https://amzn.to/3xurCTn
DeWalt Cordless Trim Router – https://amzn.to/3D5WtGW
DeWalt Plunge Base – https://amzn.to/3o1Lvho
Digital Angle Gauge – https://amzn.to/3lgE588
Castle TSM-12 Pocket Cutting Machine – https://bit.ly/castle-tsm-12-pocket-cutter
FastCap Righty/Lefty Tape Measure – https://amzn.to/3HXP9km
FastCap Standard/Metric Tape Measure – https://amzn.to/3nYftmv
True Position Tool Cabinet Hardware Jig – https://amzn.to/2ZAvJRk
Mag Switch 165 – https://amzn.to/3D18TzK
Mag Switch Starter Set – https://amzn.to/3ldmRsb
Fisch Brad Point Drill Bits – https://amzn.to/318zCx2
PEC 4″ T Square – https://amzn.to/3p6UOvJ

*Disclaimer – As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Centipede Work Holder 4×8

Alright, the first item on my list is the centipede work holder from Bora and it changed how I cut plywood in my shop.

With a piece of rigid foam insulation on top this becomes an amazing place to use your circular saw or track saw because the blade has a safe place to go as your cutting.

Cutting in a standing position is more comfortable and helps you be more accurate with your cuts too. Also getting older sucks and cutting plywood on your knees is no fun Ha!

centipede work holder

This actually sped up my process because I can walk freely around my work marking and cutting things from any angle.

And the Centipede folds up easily and gets out of the way when your done with it. If you’d like to get one of these for yourself, check it out here: CENTIPEDE WORK HOLDER 4×8

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Amana Tools Countersink Drill Bit

If you want to make me happy, give me a tool that does two jobs at once. That’s exactly what you get with the countersink drill bit from Amana Tools. This bit will drill your pilot hole and then countersink it for you all in one motion.

It has a stop collar that spins until you hit bottom then it will stop spinning letting you know you have reached your depth. And both the drill bit AND the countersink are adjustable independently to suit your need.

One piece of advice from me, its little things like this that speed up your processes. If you have 100 countersunk holes to drill, you can do that in 100 moves, and not 200 moves. Those little times savings add up over time, increasing the speed of completing your project!

I’ve found that the countersink cutter leaves super clean holes in plywood so your projects stay nice and pretty.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

DeWalt Cordless Router (w/wo plunge base)

Handheld Routers are no joke and can be dangerous if you don’t give them your full attention. One of the things that can take your attention off the spinning router bit is trying to manage the router’s power cord!

Trying to keep the cord from wrapping around the router, trying not to run into it with the bit and damage it is a hassle you don’t need when you’re running a dangerous tool.

The good news is there are now many options for cordless trim routers.

The bad news is there are now many options for cordless trim routers! Which do you choose? I went with DeWalt for these reasons:

  1. Its a little bigger/more powerful than the other trim routers on the market so it can get more jobs done
  2. It has a really nice brake feature on the bit. When you turn off the power, the bit stops running IMMEDIATELY which in my opinion is a game changer right there. VERY SAFE!

You can also get a plunge base for this router as well which makes it that much more versatile. In my opinion this is the best of all the cordless trim routers out today and worth every penny in my shop.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Digital Angle Gauge

This is one of those tool you never think about until you use it and then you’re like “Wow, that was easy!” A digital angle gauge is one of the most handy items to have around the shop.

They have a magnetic base so they stick to saw blades, fences, router bits or anything else you need to set an angle for. I’ve used mine to set the angle on my table saw, miter saw and my jointer fence as well as the table of my band saw.

They also store away easily because they can stick right to the side of your tool for grab-and-go use!

The digital angle gauge from Wixey is super accurate.

I’ve used mine for about eight years and can show you in my work that my miters are super tight and accurately cut using this gauge to set the bevel on my table saw.

One of the trickiest things to do is cut bevels on the edge of a cutting board and have all four corners match up exactly.

You can see here what mine look like and it was super easy to set up the cut with my angle gauge!

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Castle TSM-12 Pocket Cutting Machine

The first thing you may notice is this thing doesn’t look like your typical drill pocket jig. The TSM-12 is a seriously efficient pocket cutting machine that has changed how I cut pocket holes.

This machine uses a set of routers to cut the pocket as well as the pilot hole for the screw all in one easy motion.

You can see here when I push back on the lever one router bit swings up cutting the pocket.

When I pull the lever forward another bit drills the pilot hole.

The result is a very clean pocket with no debris left inside. And the ease of use makes this machine very quick at cutting lots of pockets in my cabinet parts. You can also use a guide clamped to the table to cut pockets in thin parts like these face frame pieces.

Besides making super clean pockets the other advantage to this pocket cutting machine is the angle of the screw is much shallower than the typical 15 degrees of a drill pocket jig. That matters because these screws are going in almost parallel to the work which virtually eliminates the dreaded pocket hole creep that happens where your work piece moves slightly as you fasten them together. You can see here I’m using just my thumb as a clamp which I would never attempt with a 15 degree drill pocket hole.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

FastCap Righty/Left & Metric/Standard Tape Measures

I haven’t added them all up, but over time I’ve probably collected 30 or 40 tape measures. But last year I found the FastCap line of tape measures and have been really loving them. I mean, we’re talking tape measures here. How much can I “love” them? But doing simple things to level up the tool is what sets these apart.

The tape is white and the numbers are crisp black making them high contrast and really easy to read, even the smallest markings on the tape. Also, they make a “Righty/Lefty” tape measure that can be read weather you measure from the left or from the right side of your work piece. The numbers always face you!

They make metric tape measures as well, but what I really like is this tape measure that combines metric and standard measurements on the same tape! I LOVE that. Simple things that make work better/easier.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

True Position Tool Cabinet Hardware Jig

Do you build cabinet projects on a regular basis? Have you ever had to make 5, 10 or more cabinets full of doors and drawers? Once you’ve spent the time and investment in building all of those cabinets, you’re still faced with another time consuming part of the process… installing the hardware. It can take time to measure out and mark exactly where the placement needs to be and to make sure the holes are the exact distance apart to make the pulls install correctly.

That’s where this cabinet hardware jig comes into play. It gives you positive reference points for the side as well as the top of your drawer front so that you can place the hardware exactly in the same position on every drawer front you have.

Its also has fully adjustable drill guides so you can accurately drill the holes for the screws the exact distance apart you need.

Once you set the distance you can double check with your actual hardware before drilling the holes.

And just like that you have a perfectly placed drawer pull. and now that you have all the distances figured out it doesn’t matter if you have 50 more to do. You can place all the pulls in the exact right place on all of them thanks to the jig! And this just works for door pulls too.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

MagSwitch 165 & Starter Kit

Do you like magic? Magnets have always been magical to me but never really helpful until I discovered how they can be useful in the shop. That’s where MagSwitch helps out with their mag blocks and jig accessories.

If you’ve never seen these, they come in different sizes (weight capacities). I like the Magswitch 165, pictured above. Its nice and square on all four sides and makes an excellent positive stop at any tool that has a cast iron top. Useful at the table saw, bandsaw and more. Just place it anywhere on the table to create a stop that allows you to make the same plunge cuts over and over. Or set it out to the side of your miter gauge to always cut the same exact length boards over and over.

They also sell kits and jig accessories like feather boards, hold downs, resaw fences and more to increase the versatility of your tools. I did a video on FIVE WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR TABLE SAW which shows the mag switch in action!

I’ve even used my mag switches to hold work pieces in place so they don’t slide around. As long as you have cast iron tools, mag switches are your new friend!

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

Fisch 29 Piece Brad Point Drill Bit Set

This drill bit set is a great all around value. Twenty-nine bits ranging from 1/16th to 1/2 inch all in a well organized case.

If you’re a woodworker, you should have a set of brad-point bits. These are not like regular twist bits that you’d use for general purpose work in all types of material. These are meant for doing accurate, clean work in wood. That’s where they shine.

They have a sharp point on the end that perfectly centers the bit right on your mark to drill precision holes in wood and the cutting edge makes really clean sharp holes, even in sketchy plywood they work really well. A good set of bits should be in every woodshop and these are the one’s I’d recommend.

Woodworking Tool Gift Guide

PEC Tools 4″ T Square

Last, but definitely not least is a good square. There are LOTS of types of squares and the come in a full range of sizes. I have carpenter squares that are 30 inches! But for most uses in the woodshop you just don’t need all that. One, small, adjustable square can do almost everything you need. That’s why I like this little 4″ adjustable T square.

You can fit it in almost any project that has tight spaces and you can even throw it on your cabinets to check for square accurately too. Then you can put it in your pocket or apron to easily carry it around everywhere you need it.

Do precision work easily no matter the size of your project and the adjustable rule helps you mark different distances from the edge of the work or provide a straight edge to strike a line if you need to cut your work piece with a saw.

Well that’s it! Ten tools in a wide range of prices for every budget that I use in my workshop every day. I’m only recommending products I ACTUALLY USE and that I think provide value to the average woodworker. I hope you check some or all of these out yourself and agree with me.

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