If you don’t have tools, or you don’t have many tools, but want to get started with epoxy woodworking, this is the resource for you. I waited to build this until I could compile a list of my favorite tools.
If you already have something different that works – use it. This is by no means a requirement as much as a suggestion to get you started (and help you pick something that will last). My goal is to get you something that is both affordable and works well enough to get you past some major projects! Just click the title or photo to view any product.
Tools Needed for Epoxy Woodworking
The first part of this list is the tools needed for epoxy woodworking – these are pretty much absolute minimums for getting the job done. These are to give you realities for what is needed in the post about necessary tools for an epoxy table.
A chisel can also work for this. This is used primarily for debarking – while I like this style with the handles coming out, you can get a straight one to save a few dollars.
The main thing is to be able to get the bark off the live-edge slab. If you won’t have this issue – skip this tool completely for now.
I happen to be partial to Ryobi for a lot of reasons. They are one of the more affordable battery-powered toolsets and they are incredibly good. I would suggest them for just about anything.
Again – if you’re on a budget buy a cheaper one, or if you already have a working circular saw, stick with it. The one thing I recommend is to not get a corded one if you are buying – you would be amazed how annoying cords can be when working.
If you are buying a new saw and drill, get both Ryobi and you will be able to use the same batteries for both! I would suggest looking in your local Home Depot for a pack that comes with these and more – it will save you money overall and you can get other tools with it.
These come in all sorts of sizes and are pretty much the standard for quick clamps. I would suggest knowing what sizes you need and then looking for those specifically. You can get other brands! I would check Harbor Freight if you have that near you – sometimes they have quick clamps at a third the cost.
Anything like this will work. If you have a kitchen blow torch you can even use that. You just need something that will cast a nice flame to pop bubbles as they come up.
While I used to be a big advocate of Shurtape – Tuck Tape is actually more affordable and works just as well. I was turned onto it by some others in the epoxy woodworking community. This is the cheapest way to make an epoxy mold for sure.
This could be any brand, or could be in your local store. I do suggest plastic or metal for mixing epoxy because any porous materials will be prone to causing extra bubbles.
Any cheap, plastic mixing buckets will work. If you don’t clean them well right away you may being throwing them out – so don’t bother purchasing something too expensive.
Pro Tools and Extras
These are some extra tools that make your life easier for creating projects. These aren’t necessary but will cut down on hours of extra work from using the bare minimum requirements of a sander, to get you the sleekest looking project ever.
The reason this says “any of them” is because they are all limited. Most planers that are affordable to use for hobbyists are under 15″, therefore they won’t help you with large projects. If you are able to do what you need with a small planer – DeWalt is the way to go.
Ryobi R1631K Router (For Planing)
While with most of these tools I say “get the cheaper one if need be, it’ll work” I am unable to say that with routers. While you don’t have to get the Ryobi, you do want one with handles that are up a little. When building a router sled, this will be important to have control without handles hitting the sides of the sled.
When adding oil or wax to the result to finish – you can do it by hand, but most of those products react to heat. Having an electric, orbital polisher will make it more even and soak in better – leaving you with a professional finish.