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Woodworking Tools & Materials

Discover a guide to the tools & materials involved with your woodworking.

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The 5 Best Random Orbital Sanders (2022 Review)

Random orbital sanders are a must-have item for any woodworker, as they allow for wood to be sanded without worrying about the direction of the grain. In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the five best random orbital sanders on Amazon to help you find the product that’s right for you. The products included in this article are available at various home improvement stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

Wood Putty vs. Wood Filler: What’s the Difference?

You can confidently repair holes, cracks, or scratches in your woodwork when you know which product to use for the job. This guide will help you understand what makes wood putty and wood filler different, and when to use each so you can restore damaged trim, molding, or even furniture to its original glory without fear of doing harm.

Choosing & Using Random Orbit Sanders

How do you use an orbital sander? What’s the difference between an orbital sander vs palm sander? Learn about the tool that takes the hassle out of sanding wood.


Celebrating Craftsmanship: The Principles of Sanding Wood

Ask This Old House general contractor, Tom Silva, explains why he loves sanding and what goes into a good sanding job.


How to Choose and Use Wood Filler

Looking for the best wood hole filler? We offer a variety of options for plugging holes and filling cracks, with This Old House general contractor Tom Silva.

Choosing and Using a Random-Orbit Sander

The tool that takes the hassle out of sanding wood

Choosing and Using Hand Planes

Plane tools are the best tool for smoothing and shaping wood. Here is why you would use one and the types available.

Making the Cut

Choosing and using handsaws

Easy Way to Extract a Stripped Screw

Too much torque can strip a fastener clean in seconds, but this fix is just as quick


How to Choose Tools for First-Time Woodworkers

Ask This Old House general contractor Tom Silva explains the best tools to have in your shed to start beginner or intermediate woodworking projects


How to Stain and Finish Wood Furniture

Wood finishing expert Bruce Johnson shares tips for refinishing new and old furniture

House of Blue

A curiously colored, waterproof wood fights bugs, fungus, and mold

Non-toxic, Affordable Pressure-Treated Lumber

A new process encases wood fibers in trace amounts of glass, with surprising results.

Files & Rasps

Both are meant to be used between the rough cut of a saw and the smoothing of sandpaper — we'll tell you what types to use for what jobs

Protect Against Plier Marks

Keep your grippers from digging in with this tip

Making Wide Miter Saw Crosscuts

Get a bigger bite with this tip

Finishing Plywood Edges

Iron-on veneer tape does the trick