3 Homestead Woodshop Essentials You Need to Have Now

homestead local woodshop essentialsWendie and I both run our businesses out of our home. Whether it is our market firm, our small press publishing company or the homestead woodshop, we love being able to say we are making our way on our own terms. The days of the rat race and providing our talents for someone else to prosper from are long over. Now, I still teach night classes, but no one can say the college is making an unfair buck off of my knowledge. If they were, I'd figure out a way to do it myself.

A good share of our profits go back into the businesses, and that is no more true than with the woodshop. Our margin is comfortable without gouging the customers, and with the profits we can invest in new tools and materials to reach a broader client-base. What once started as a little something extra making cutting boards turned into a custom-made chess cabinet business with a specialty clientele. Who knew?

Our Homestead Woodshop

homestead local woodshop essentials
A great many of the tools I started with were picked up from my college years while working at Sears. Not my finest days, but it was at least before the company's collapse. It was a good place to work and anytime there was clearance sale or an open box discount, I was on it. 

Craftsman wasn't the greatest quality product line, but it worked. A table saw here, cordless drill set there and I slowly built up my future urban homestead woodshop.

I suspect the greatest deal I ever got was a table-top mini-lathe that lasted a few years until it started to shake apart. I learned to turn Christmas ornaments on that little lady and when it finally passed into the junk heap in the sky, I didn't know what to do. I wasn't invested in the woodshop yet, so I didn't see a new option to drop a few hundred on a new one. But now, the need is there and I have a place already ready where it will sit.

Running a Local Woodshop

homestead local woodshop essentials
Running a local woodshop has taught me a few things about being part of a community. First off, if a neighbor needs some help with a project, they aren't clients. I won't charge them for my time, experience or even the use of the tools. 

I want to be there as a resource, as it lets me give back to great neighbors who have done so much for us, from accepting the kids into their lives to hosting grand gatherings every Friday during warm weather.

Second, I'm not always educated on what project they have in mind. Recently one of my neighbors asked for a custom window for their RV. I knew the principles of building a channeled window but had never done it. 

I was able to teach myself the basics and deliver on time. Running a friendly homestead local woodshop is pretty sweet if you ask me.

Then of course there's the third lesson I picked up. I needed to invest in my business. Last year I was at a hardware store and came across a good deal on a high-end sliding miter saw. I texted Wendie and said that would be nice to have and she responded, "Do you need it?" I did, and she said, "Then get it. End of conversation." 

The point being that one investment in woodshop essentials meant opening new potential for items we could build that we couldn't before. The saw paid for itself in two months.

Homestead Woodshop Essentials Wish List

homestead local woodshop essentials
That brings us to the here and now. We are dedicated to filling our homestead woodshop essentials list. That mini-lathe is on my mind and I think the time has come to make the investment. But this time, I'm going to focus on buy quality in something that I can really get a great deal of use out of. 

Instead of just the lathe, I'm looking at both an extension arm and some serious turning chisels. Cheap tools make cheap items, so only the best will do.

I figure with spring coming around eventually, we'll be out in the woodshop with the doors open wide, working on whatever project comes our way. Being in business for ourselves affords us that opportunity. If you're looking for something handmade by an up and coming tradesman, take gander at what we can do for you. If what you're looking for isn't there, let us know. We'd love to learn something new.

Do you keep a dedicated woodshop on your homestead? What are your woodshop essentials, those tools that you just can't function without? We love sharing our homesteading experiences with you all, and would enjoy hearing your advice or suggestions in the conversation below!