My students are constantly asking me where they can buy the tools that we use in the shop. I figured many people watching my videos might have the same questions so I made this page.
Even if you can't take guitar building classes right now you can still help support my guitar building school by purchasing these tools. Thanks to affiliate links, every time you click on one of these tools, and then purchase that tool at Amazon, our good friends at Amazon will send a small referral fee. You pay exactly the same price and it helps me out at the same time.
This is my drum sander. It is absolutely the workhorse of my shop. Totally reliable and a HUGE time saver. This is a must have for any guitar builder.
My compressor is no longer sold but this one has the same specs and it's made by the same company. You can't go wrong with a Campbell Hausfeld compressor.
I finally replaced my 12 year old DeWalt drill with this when my batteries died. My old drill still works like new (with a battery adapter). However this one is smaller, lighter and just as powerful.
10 mm curved bottom finger plane. My favorite tool for brace carving. My students hate it, until they learn to hold it, then they love it!
This is a handy little rasp. It has both fine and course teeth as well as both flat and round sides. Great for carving necks.
Smaller version Dragon Rasp. You will need a coarse rasp like this when you carve a neck that has exotic wood stripes laminated in mahogany. It cuts the hard and soft woods evenly.
This is my favorite chisel. It is great for cleaning up glue squeeze out when gluing on braces, it is very handy when carving braces as well.
When your chisels and plane blades need a little more work start with this stone and finish with the DMT D8EE
Flexcut also makes nice carving tools. This would be a good substitute for the Two Cherries carving set if you want to save a few dollars.
We have all heard that we should watch our guitars humidity. It is even more important in a shop to keep the humidity at the proper level. Guitar tops can turn into a potato chip overnight if humidity drops.
This is the Martin long and short fret scale template. I have several of these templates. I prefer these over the plastic ones because these do not break over time like the others do.
It's hard to find a better nut and saddle file than the Stew Mac files. They aren't perfect but they are pretty good.
I burnt up the motors in 3 cheap belt/disc sanders in just a few years before I finally purchased this one. It gets used daily and works perfectly after years of heavy use.
You're Going to need a good set of calipers and you can beat the price and function of the IP54. I have several sets of these around the shop.
I bought this saw because is was much cheaper than most of the other big names. This saw has lots of high end features and plenty of power to resaw 12" tall tough exotic woods.
If you need a high quality router at a good price then this one should be on the top of your list. I use mine in my router table, fret board radius jig, neck angle jig, and many other jigs.
If you can't afford a good band saw then start out with a nice jig saw like this one. You can use it to make most jigs, body molds, side bending forms, and anything else that requires a curved cut.
This 12mm curved bottom plane is about the largest plane I am comfortable using to carve my braces. It is better suited for detail work when carving the neck.
These rasps are awesome. You will need a coarse rasp like this when you carve a neck that has exotic wood stripes laminated in mahogany. It cuts the hard and soft woods evenly.
You will need this smaller version of the fine rasp to carve the neck after you have finished your rough carving.
This is a narrower version of my favorite chisel. It can get into areas that my favorite chisel cannot reach
Tools like planes and chisels will not work unless they are really sharp. Wetstones are ok but if you really want to get things sharp you will need one of these.
These are different than the carving chisels in the other set. These are great for more detailed work.
This little gadget can be used to thickness wood (such as tops, backs and sides) using a drill press and palm sander. It's not as fast as a drum sander but it is much more affordable.
This is a great starter set for all fret work. You will need every item in this set of fret tools.
If you already own a table saw then this is the best way to cut fret slots. A simple shop made carrier sled and a fret scale template is all you need for accurate frets.
Everyone needs a good sander. This is one of many great choices.
Pretty good dust collector for the money. I've been using mine several hours a day for several years with no problems at all.
Another great Bosch router. I use this for my binding machine, saddle slots, inlay pockets, rosette channels, roughing out carvings and lots of other things.
Nice affordable drill press. This is actually one of those must have tools to produce accurate work. I also use my drill press to power my bowl sander!
This 18mm flat sole plane is great for carving top and back braces. It's also useful when carving the neck. You just can't beat the Ibex quality.
You will need this fine rasp to carve the neck after you have finished your rough carving.
This is a nice set of chisels. They hold their edge well and are reasonably priced. You could spend much more for a quality chisel but why would you want to?
These are great for getting glue out of hard to reach areas.
A nice set of carving chisels. You will use these to carve rosettes, inlay work, binding and perfling channels, etc.
I recently replaced all my florescent tubes with these LED bulbs. They use half the energy and are twice as bright. Well worth the investment. There is no better tool than light!!
SAFEST saw on the market !! It is not cheap but it may save your fingers or your life. That makes it worth every penny. I own an older Rigid table saw but Sawstop is the only brand I would recommend
Once you level your frets you will need this diamond file to put the round shape back onto the frets. These last a very long time. I've crowned the frets on close to 50 guitars on my current file.
You can't get a perfect shine without a good buffing machine. This is one of the only consumer grade buffers on the market that is worth purchasing.
Combine this bit with the correct bearing and you can cut any binding channel you need. I've used this set for years. It's the only one I would use to cut my binding channels.