We wanted to share the best woodworking guides with you, whether you are a woodworker who is a pro or just starting. You may need something to get you oriented and on your way as fast as possible. Or you’re already at an intermediate to advanced level and want to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for your craft. Our handy guide will provide you with all the information you need to be on your way.
The Selection Process For Our List
Our recommendations for woodworking publications are designed to give a balanced list of books that appeal to different skill levels and interests.
These are the criteria that we used to make our recommendations:
Grounded In The Foundations Of Woodworking
The books recommended are specifically focused on woodworking, covering a range of topics such as tools and techniques. The books are comprehensive and provide practical information to woodworkers.
The books chosen cover a wide range of woodworking topics so that readers will be able to understand what woodworking is all about. They address essential topics like woodworking fundamentals, tools, joinery, wood properties, and project execution.
Woodworking for Beginners
Beginners can benefit significantly from some of the titles, while some are for more advanced woodworkers. These books provide step-by-step instructions, explanations of basic techniques, and guidance ideal for those starting their woodworking journey.
Covering the Gamut of Expertise
The books are written by a variety of authors. Each one brings a unique perspective, experience, and approach to the woodworking world. This gives readers the opportunity to learn about different techniques and discover where they would like to focus.
Handpicked Selections for You
This list does not include all possible books on the subject. Rather than quantity, we went with quality-a few top recommendations revered by beginners and experts. Some have weathered the test of time, and although they have seen some years, they still remain relevant to this day.
- “Understanding Wood Finishing: How to Select and Apply the Right Finish” by Bob Flexner: For all things regarding wood finishing, this comprehensive guide helps with applying various lacquers and varnishes to troubleshoot when things go slightly awry.
- “The Unplugged Woodshop: Handcrafted Projects for the Home and Workshop” by Tom Fidgen: Hand-tool woodworking takes center stage in this book, presenting a range of projects that are perfect for those starting out. Step-by-step instructions and valuable insights are provided for crafting handcrafted furniture and accessories using minimal tools and traditional techniques.
- “The Toolbox Book: A Craftsman’s Guide to Tool Chests, Cabinets, and Storage Systems” by Jim Tolpin: We must not forget the system of storage on the workbench. This book covers that in detail. If you’re stumped for ideas on how to design your workspace, this can surely help.
- “The Essential Woodworker” by Robert Wearing: This book concentrates on woodworking using hand tools, with an emphasis on traditional techniques and abilities.
- “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” by Christopher Schwarz: Focused on tools, this book recommends hand tools over modern powered tools. It also touches on the philosophy and mindset of the craft.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: While the previous book emphasized tools, this focuses on the craftsman’s workspace-specifically the workbench. This book contains detailed plans and photos.
Must-Read Books for Novice Readers
While the books mentioned above provide valuable information for beginners, a few other titles are particularly helpful for those new to woodworking. We’d like to share a few more recommendations with you.
- “The New Woodworker Handbook” by Tom Hintz: Geared towards beginners, this book comprehensively covers the essentials of woodworking essential tools, techniques, and safety practices. It offers easy-to-follow instructions for simple projects, along with practical advice to help you get started.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: When beginning a new hobby, such as woodworking, everyone starts from square one. It involves grasping the fundamentals. This book helps master those basics to master the art.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: If you’re looking for easy projects with practical applications that will make your spouse happy, this starter guide is for you. It includes step-by-step instructions, photographs, and tips for working with reclaimed wood, making it an excellent choice for those interested in sustainability and repurposing materials.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: Despite the title, this book is a beginner-friendly guide that covers the essentials of woodworking. Within the pages of this book, you’ll discover how to best use tools and approach woodworking projects.
Nick Offerman’s Woodworking Book: A Notable Addition to the List
Actor Nick Offerman, best known for playing Ron Swanson, a character on the hit TV show “Parks and Recreation” has written a book called “Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop.” In this book, Offerman shares his passion for woodworking and provides insights into his experiences at his woodworking shop. Offerman’s book dives into his woodworking projects, providing readers with a glimpse into his creative process. Along the way, he generously shares tips, techniques, and adds a touch of humor with delightful anecdotes. It combines a woodworking guide and a memoir, showcasing Offerman’s love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Compact Guides for Woodworkers: Essential Pocket-Sized Books
There are pocket-sized books available on woodworking that can be handy references for woodworkers on the go. They contain essential information when needed in the field.
- “Woodworker’s Pocket Reference” by Charles Self: Encompassing a broad scope of woodworking subjects, this compact reference book is a comprehensive resource that addresses tools, joinery techniques, finishing methods, and various other topics.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This consolidated guide is a treasure trove of information. It covers all the essential topics, and it’s small enough to carry in the field for quick access.
For the size-to-value ratio, these light and portable reference guides pack a punch. Chalked full of value in such a small size.
Whether you are a beginner taking your first steps into the world of woodworking or an experienced craftsman seeking new avenues of inspiration, this field is teeming with knowledge and creative ideas that are sure to ignite your imagination. The recommended books in this guide can serve as trusted companions on your woodworking journey. You can rely on the books recommended in this guide to help you along your woodworking journey.Consider the recommended books in this guide as steadfast companions on your woodworking journey, providing trusted guidance and valuable insights every step of the way. So, grab a copy, dive into its pages, and let these authors’ guidance and wisdom enrich your woodworking endeavors. Happy woodworking!