How to Start Woodworking with a $500 Budget

How to Start Woodworking with a $500 Budget

Woodworking doesn’t have to be expensive, but the tools used can make it quite costly. As a beginner, you don’t have to go all the way and expense every cent of your savings to buy the tools and materials that you need. As a wise and practical woodworker, here are ways on how to start woodworking with a $500 budget.

If you are woodworking on a budget, you can start by looking for a cheap shop that sells used but quality woodworking tools. You can also look for online sellers that offer sales and promotions. More importantly, look for some wooden projects that require accessible materials and fundamental tools.

So, is woodworking expensive? It doesn’t have to be, especially if you’re just starting. It may sound impossible, but here are some tips and techniques to build a simple woodshop that fits your budget.

How To Get Started In Woodworking?

For you to become a woodworker under a $500 budget, you should start with learning how you can get started in woodworking. Let us give you a better idea of how you can do it, but you can also check out our complete beginners to learn woodworking.

Learn The Basics Of Woodworking

You can begin by learning the basics of woodworking first. Online, there are many woodworking books and lessons available tailored for beginners. There are also several professional woodworking courses available. Learning necessary woodworking skills will allow you to build trust. Even if you are living in an apartment, you will be able to create simple woodworking projects. The core competencies would act as a building block for later handling challenging projects.

Create A Woodworking Space

You need to devote a woodworking room, area, or space. This room can function for woodworking where you can practice the craft—no need to build a costly workshop. You can even set up a woodworking table in your backyard. You can transform your patio into a studio, as well. You can use the space for woodworking if you have shed space or a workshop. Whatever it is that is available, be creative.  

Put enough lighting to avoid injuries, which can result in temporary or permanent disability. If you want to stop upsetting your neighbors with all the noise, an indoor workshop is perfect. To minimize noise, you can sound-proof the workspace. Also, to reduce the noise from your workshop, you should consider purchasing low-noise woodworking instruments. Check out these ways to limit the noise from your woodworking room.

Buy The Right Tools

You should purchase the right woodworking equipment for your workshop. Buying the wrong tools is one of the biggest mistakes beginner woodworkers make. You’ll end up spending too much on tools that aren’t needed for the beginner goods.

Another important thing that you should note is not to shop online second-hand instruments that are in poor condition. In general, after a few uses, these resources are on their last leg and split. Buying good quality woodworking equipment will save you money in the long run.

For your woodworking project, you should decide what tools are relevant. In this way, you would not spend a long time on tools which remain unused in the package. You can also set a budget before spending on the equipment.

For under $500, you can purchase simple woodworking hand-tools. On the other hand, you can buy some essential power tools for under $1,000. In a while, we will give you a list of the vital tools in woodworking, so you don’t get confused with several tools out there.

Learn From The Experts

Who else can you learn the best woodworking lessons, but from other expert woodworkers who have experienced several woodworking activities? Don’t be afraid to ask and learn from them. Be open with constructive criticisms because it is the best way to gain experience and expand your skills.

Take Small Steps

Once you have the appropriate workshop and equipment, you can practice necessary woodworking skills. A lot of newbie woodworkers make the mistake of trying online complicated projects that they see on Pinterest or Reddit, for example. As a result, they end up overwhelmed by the difficulty of the job and even quit the hobby.

When starting, the safest way is to take gradual steps. Initially, you shouldn’t jump into complicated projects. You should concentrate on mastering the core competencies. The fundamental skills would later act as a building block for detailed tasks.

Have Fun Building Wooden Objects

You should consider incorporating imagination to your projects once you have mastered basic woodworking skills. You will finally come up with something that you will call your own as you keep on experimenting. Although woodworking is an enjoyable hobby, if you don’t take proper safety precautions, it can become a nightmare.

So, make sure to wear a safety suit more often while working. Don’t forget to put on your protective goggles, noise-cancellation headphones, and masks for wood dust. Taking precautions on safety will ensure your life is not in great danger!

15 Tools To Get Started Woodworking Under $500

Tools used in woodworking is the most crucial factor to consider that dictates whether this hobby would become expensive or not. So, we suggest that you buy from certified and trustworthy woodworking stores that offer high-quality tools at a price that you can afford. Check out these tools that you can buy under $500.

How to Start Woodworking with a $500 Budget

1.Woodworking Chisels

You can start with only one chisel size and begin to learn how to use it and keep it sharp properly. If you are serious about manually mastering the woodwork, you might want to spend more on your chisels. Notice that some cheaper sets don’t have steel extensions to support hammering through the handle. 

2.Rubber Mallet

If you have chisels, of course, you must have rubber mallets, too. This tool is necessary to make indentions in the wood and to force the material through your chisels. Moreover, it is also useful when doing wood joinery as it offers a little finesse, compared to a conventional metal hammer. 

3.Tool Sharpening Kit

You want your chisels and hand saws to stay sharp, right? With frequent and extended use, instruments with sharp metal edges are susceptible to dullness. So it’s nice to have a sharpening kit like an upright water stone or sharpening stones with a diamond plate.


When you want precision and accuracy, useful woodworking squares are essential tools for beginners. As for woodworking, most designs have an angle of 90 degrees. Besides, virtually every joint you’ve ever made in woodworking needs the same measurement. So, the squares are functional and a good investment.

5.Tape Measure

It may not be the ‘right’ method for beginners to calculate, but it’s one of my most common tools for many projects. It is suitable for the construction but not for greater precision. However, it does not suggest it is unhelpful for several different reasons. You’ll find that many of the measurements and cuts you’re making do not need precision. When simplicity is needed, tape measurements will work equally well on measures of both short and long. It’s easy to put it on your belt, so if you need fast measurements, you can always have it with you.

6.Marking Knife

In woodworking, you will still use pencils, but for the proper length, you also need better and more accurate markings. A marker knife comes in handy in this situation. In place of those graphite lines from a pencil, it leaves a tiny scratch in the wood fiber. So get yourself a simple marker knife, it doesn’t have to be costly.


In holding your materials, clamps will provide stability and are essential, especially in gluing pieces of wood. We all know that most woodworking projects involve the use of glue, rather than screws and nails. Also, when preparing, sanding, and securing your job, clamps are helpful. Different clamps are available, but you do not have to buy them all. Choose one that is suitable for your projects.

8.Block Plane

For cleaning corners, flattening small pieces, applying a chamfer to the side, cleaning up the folding carpentry and more, a hand plane works well. Wood Planing helps in building horizontal, vertical or inclined flat surfaces on workpieces which are too wide to form. There is a particular hand plane system for each shape that can do the job accurately. It is essential to know how to correctly use this tool to avoid destroying the quality of the wood. 

9.Hand Saws

For specific projects, a regular finishing hand saw comes in handy. Even a pleasant pull saw wonder. Since before the advent of power tools, hand saws have been critical in woodworking. It cuts the pull movement, making it more reliable and versatile for intense investigations. Another useful alternative is a hack saw for metal cutting. You can use it when making sleds and jigs that require aluminum hardware for table sawing.

10.Sanding Block

Often it is not enough for sandpaper, and it takes a sanding block to smooth the whole surface. A sanding block with a velcro handle is a unique woodworking system for beginners. You’ll have to buy patented sanding pads for it since it’s much quicker than other sanding block styles. That isn’t important, though.

With simple sandpaper sheets and universal sanding blocks, you will get along with that. They’re going to take a little more setup, but they’re going to do the trick, and getting full quality sandpaper sheets will save you money.


Each woodworker must have this powerful tool, regardless of experience and ability level. A drill is vital for woodworking, drilling holes for screws, and wood joinery, from handy-man DIY projects to significant building. This tool would also help you have screw settings, countersink and clearance settings, and pilot holes. The clearing hole removes the threads and enables free passage of the bolt or screw. 

12.Cross-Cutting Tools

You can always start with crop cutting tools if you don’t wish to have table saws yet. These are the materials that you use to cut through the wood’s grain to make the board shorter. Every project involves 99 percent of the cross-cutting needed, especially if the furniture, picture frames, and other small crafts are required. Whenever you need to make it, your cross-cutting system can also manage the miter cuts. 

13.Jig Saw

Jig Saws are another handheld power tool which makes the curve cutting process more accessible and faster. In addition, when it comes to straight cutting, it does a good job. If you want flexibility with cross-cutting equipment, you can pick from various varieties of blades for Jig Saws that work for different kinds of cuts.

14.Random Orbital Power Sander 

For both beginners and skilled woodworkers, a power sander is a popular and useful tool. Although opinions can vary about what kind of power sander you should be using, using a random orbital sander can still produce great results.

Furthermore, this tool uses hook and loop sanding pads of various grits, rotates in a circle, and oscillates side by side such that the circle is uneven. This action decreases the risk of leaving the circle marks anywhere it affects.

For an excellent, random orbital sander, the strategy is to use the right grit to do the job and eliminate too much strain. It makes it much easier to sand and does better than a simple palm sander. However, it also depends on the wood’s roughness. With those sandpapers, you can always file your side, but it’s exhausting, especially for large projects. So get a power sander, and save time and effort.

15.Table Saw

Table saws are one of the most useful and powerful power tools in any woodshop, by far. It may also be easy for a novice woodworker to use a table saw on a variety of projects. Also, it is a successful step in discovering new abilities and developing woodworking skills to the next level. You may start with a less costly table saw, and with several styles of cutting and joinery techniques, it will still allow you to use it.

If you find you’re not ready for a table saw yet, then that’s all right. You don’t have to force things up, particularly if you feel it would be difficult and dangerous to use table saws. With or without table saws, you can still enjoy woodworking. You should look for a tremendous cross-cutting tool, instead. Planning the tasks, too, is essential.

Avoid These Mistakes When Buying Your Woodworking Tools

When buying for your woodworking tools, avoid these common mistakes that most beginner woodworkers do. So, avoid spending twice and get ahead of your woodworking skills and plans.

A Complete Beginner's Guide to Power Tool Safety

Believing In Fake Or Paid Reviews

When shopping online, reviews are a deal-breaker for most of us. However, you have to make sure that those good comments are from real people who purchased the item and used it without getting any kickbacks.

Buying Second-Hand Tools Advertised As Good Condition

It is one of the most common scams when it comes to buying used woodworking tools. As much as possible, inspect the item before you hand in the payment. It will also help if you read more reviews from “real” users.

Buying Too Much In Quantity And Price

You might think, “Why not buy the top of the line because it’s going to last longer? or “can get the best while I spend money as well.” Those kinds of thoughts will get you into significant trouble, though, and it’s entirely wrong. Buying tools that are too costly or buying tools you don’t need is one of the most common mistakes.

The fact is, it doesn’t take much for you to create something you can imagine. Additionally, you can get a good deal if you know where to look, you can get high-quality equipment for significant discounts.

Relying On Too Cheap Tools And Equipment

Buying affordable tools and materials is what we all want, but you should never settle for something that has low quality. You can purchase tools with good quality for bargain prices if you know where to shop. Just remember, never pay for cheap tools with low quality.

Tips For Every Beginner Woodworker

For beginners, for a few reasons, beginning woodworking seems to be overwhelming—the first explanation of why it is difficult for individuals with unfamiliar woodworking equipment to do the job. The second challenge in studying woodworking techniques is to spend a lot of time doing woodworking. The only thing that matters when it comes to learning woodworking techniques is practice and practice.

How to Start Woodworking with a $500 Budget

For woodworking practice, you must set aside two or three hours per day. Yet maintaining the amount of time is complicated in our busy life schedule. However, if you follow the steps below, it will be a breeze to learn the woodworking job.

Set Up A Simple Woodworking Place

Selecting a workplace is the first step of the woodworking project. When it comes to finding a workspace, people think automatically about setting up the workshop in their basement or garage. It is, of course, a brilliant idea to build a woodworking station in a basement or garage. Getting a permanent workspace is tremendously beneficial as you do not need to set up your power tools or other equipment each time before you resume working.

However, it’s also true that many of us have no free space, such as a basement or garage. It is especially important if we live in a small apartment building. So, what solution is there? The simple answer is in such a scenario set up a workshop table in your patio or backyard. To start your initial learning process, a table will be helpful.

Learn How To Get Measurements

One of the basics of woodworking is learning how to get accurate measurements. Most of us learn it in school, so make sure to review it correctly. Otherwise, you would end up doing inaccurate wooden projects. It will result in wasted materials, time and effort. For every project that you make, never forget to list down the length, width, and height. For circles, you should know how to get the radius. Then, match the measurements of the whole project with the other details.

Understand The Wood Dimensions And Its Types

The dimensions of wood are represented as 2×12, 1×2. You need to work out what these statistics mean. When it comes to buying lumber from the shop, knowing the wood component is very important.

The learning characteristics of various forest types are another significant thing. Woods are classified widely into hard and softwood. Each wood type is suitable for making wooden products or furniture of a specific type. With a softwood like pine, you need to learn what you can make or when it becomes necessary to use a hardwood like oak or mahogany.

Learn How To Choose Straight Wood

In contrast to bowed or twisted woods, straight woods make woodworking projects more straightforward and more comfortable. And you need to know how to pick straight lumber from the store’s piles of timber. It’s also extremely doubtful you’ll find straight wood altogether. Nevertheless, make sure the wood is as straight as possible for ease of woodworking.

List The Tools That You Should Need

In the woodworking project, there are a few tools deemed necessary. Hammer, drill, drill press, drill bit sharpeners, nails, miter saw, clamps, sander, etc. include these Since it would be costly, buying all these tools and learning how to use each of these tools. Instead, what some woodworkers prefer is to buy these tools one by one, and then get to know how to use them separately. The learning process would be faster and less costly in that way.

Learn How You Can Make A Smooth Wood Surface

The surface is immensely crucial in woodworking projects having smooth wood since a simple wood surface ensures proper painting or finishing of furniture. So, as a beginner, the last stage of learning woodworking is how to sand the wood surface. Sanding Wood is both dull and repetitive. You can sand your wood either by hand or by computer.

The benefit of using hand to sand wood is you have more control to smooth out the wood surface. It can be hard to hit the region of the lumber piece with sandpaper, which is not possible with a computer. Using a wood sanding machine like a belt sander, however, will give you a quicker outcome.

Frequently Asked Questions

Woodworking is an excellent hobby, and you don’t have to spend too much to get started. With a budget of $500, you can already build several wooden objects. All you need is to be wise in looking for excellent woodworking tools sellers and look for something that has high-quality. Then, search for a project plan that is perfect for beginners. Use your imagination, unleash your creativity, and start making beautiful wooden pieces.

How do I start a woodworking shop for beginners?

When it comes to starting a woodworking shop, the first thing that you have to do is to look for a vacant room, space, or any area where you can build your first project. It should have enough space where you can move freely and put your tools and materials. Moreover, make sure that it has enough light in it to prevent unwanted accidents. 

Then, buy only the essential tools needed for woodworking. Start from the fundamental tools that will help you with various tasks. For your first project, you can build a workbench where you can create and execute all your woodworking plans.

How do you layout a woodworking shop?

Nowadays, the best layout for a woodworking shop is a mobile one so that you can move, as well as your tools, freely. To do this, you should first think about your workflow. Then, group your tools and store them near the workbench for easy access. It will be ideal if your workbench is near a window for better lighting and a more pleasant working environment.

How much would it cost to start woodworking?

The cost of starting woodworking depends on the projects that you will make and the tools needed to complete it. For starters, you don’t have to buy every woodworking tool that you can see. You can start with chisels, hammer, handsaw, drills, plywood, and sandpapers. These items will cost you less than $500, and there’s already an array of wooden projects that you can do.


Woodworking needn’t be costly, but the equipment used can make it very expensive. As a novice, to purchase the equipment and supplies you need, you don’t have to go all the way and spend every cent of your savings. As a wise and practical woodworker, we hope that with a $500 budget, you will now have a better understanding of the ways to start woodwork.

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