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sjc5454

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Reply with quote  #1 
I am coming in to a little bit of a windfall in the next couple of months, so I was wondering what tools you toymakers would recommend I get to make the process easier. I will have approxiamately $1500 to spend. I have a tablesaw, scrollsaw, benchtop drill press, and homemade disk sander. I am thinking of getting a used bandsaw, not sure if I should go with a 14" or a 12" for the type of work I do, I am limited to what I can lift. I am also thinking of finding a benchtop 12" planer and/or benchtop 6" jointer because of the size of the boards we use to make our toys. I also want to get several of the toy plan collections and books to expand what I make. What would you do in my place? I have only been doing this for a short time, less than a year, so any advice would be welcome.
Douglas

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Reply with quote  #2 
Hi , In my opinion ,I would definitely get a band saw ,because these can handle heavier work that the scroll saw cannot manage ,as well as just being a useful saw ready to use immediately . In fact I use my band saw more than my scroll saw .  A planer is very useful too ,as it cuts faster than trying to sand a piece of timber flat .You can use scrap wood then ,as you can plane it up to look as good as new . I have got a lathe too which really gives you a lot more opportunities to make things ,like little people , wheels , dowels , anything that is round really . It can also be adapted for horizontal drilling , you can make a faceplate disc sander to run on it .....the possibilities are endless and I would not be without mine . Mine is a professional lathe but a cheap small lathe is good enough for toymaking . But if you want to branch out into bowl making , lamp making  etc. then I would suggest a mid range lathe . I also have a router with a flush trim bit ,which is excellent for copying templates for making multiple toys of the same specification . I have a round over bit too, which I use to round corners off toys ,so they cannot splinter out and injure a child.  Hopefully you will have some change left after all this to buy lots of toyplans . Why not draw and develop you own toy plans ,that is fun too ....experimenting .  Have fun , hope this helps . I expect you will get further advise off the rest of the forum today . Douglas
Ken Martin

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hi sjc5454
   I would go with the Band Saw, but I would buy an expensive on like from Sears.
I use mine all the time, and cut all my axles in it because it is so quick and fast.
   In fact if I came into some extra money I might buy several small Drill Presses so I could leave the most used drill bits loaded up all the time.  A friend has three small drill presses side by side for all the main holes needed, then he has a bigger floor model.
I use mine all the time, and cut all my axles in it because it is so quick and fast.
Also go with the planner.
   I also bought a simple router and table from Sears as well.  I don't do anything fancy on it but use it all the time to round over edges on cars.
My next purchase will be a small Lathe.
   I just bought a Mop Sander.   I don't use as much, but I do like it after rounding over edges to get a finer edge.
   Have fun shopping for toy patterns.  There are so many.  I like to wait for their sales, then buy.

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pdaunno

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Reply with quote  #4 
If you don't already have one I might suggest a sliding compound miter saw. If you end up making toys that are of a size beyond the capability of your table saw it would come in handy. There are many other uses for one besides toy making. A router, router table and some quality bits for template routing and rounding over would also be helpful. Definitely invest some of it in patterns from this site. The books are a good value even if not on sale. I have a planer, jointer and small bandsaw but by far they get used less than the rest of my tools.
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Udie

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Reply with quote  #5 
sjc5454 - Boy would I like to have your problem. LOL
   Here is my two (2) cents worth - you gave us a description of what you already have (table saw, scroll saw, drill press, home made disk sander) excellent start.
   Are you happy with what you have? Should I (being you) consider upgrading my existing equipment to something a little better or are they perfect for what I am doing now.
   Will I be doing other larger scale wood working projects outside of toy making and what you described as your possible wish list (12" board thickness planner and 6" jointer) sounds like you just might be.
   Is your shop inside the house or outside (garage) - reason I mention this is dust control?

   I have two shops, inside and a garage. For the indoors shop,  one the first shop tools I purchased was a dust collection system. With it can I do all the table saw, band saw, chop saw, planner, jointer, routing and sanding inside quite comfortably without everything being covered with dust. It does not get all of the fine dust because there has been times the wife does a walk by and asks what on TV and I proudly say DUST! Using a shop vac is OK but the filter gets clogged up very quickly. Take a look at one of the archived articles on Toymakingplans.com web site - here is the link to my submission - Toymaking Gallery - Imants Udris.
  
   Band saw - great tool to have - in my article/video on the Freaky Fords, posted May 23/14, page 6 I show you a low cost band saw I use for much of my toy making. Don't be fooled about it's size, they perform very well. However because of my other woodworking interests the garage has an industrial size.
   Board Thickness Planner - another great tool for making stock wood, as well as re-purposing wood like pallet lumber, old furniture, etc. Just watch out for nails/staples, etc. In one my recent projects when I was salvaging logs, I found a lead bullet. Luckily it did not damage my blades. And even if it did most models use reversible blades and again lucky for me, there is shop close to me which re-sharpens my table saw blades, planner blades and jointer blades at a very reasonable cost.
   6" jointer - another great tool, in house I have a simple 4" jointer, little noisy and must be used with the vacuum system. The 8" industrial is in the garage. It is a tool that is not often used in my toy making but does come in handy every now and again for toy making and the large one is used constantly on my other projects.

So, to conclude, here is what would be on my wish list.
Safety first - please take a look a Micro Jigs The GRR-Ripper.
Safety glasses and ear protection.
If you are an old guy like me, I had a pair of prescription, bi-focal safety glasses made with the side wings.

Dust collection system.
Band saw, a starter or better (if purchasing used, check first if you can purchase replacement parts 
such as blade tensioning mechanism, guide blocks, bearing rollers and rubber for the blade wheels, as well as different blades, 1/8" to 3/4" in various teeth per inch, if not - do not buy it.
Sliding 10" compound mitre saw - you will really enjoy this tool once you have one.
Belt (1" or larger) / disc sanding station. there are many kinds of these out there.
Router and router table - nice to have but not really a necessity in toy making unless you are going to replicate many parts like I demonstrated in making the Play Pals and Freaky Fords.
Oscillating Drum/Belt sander with interchangeable drum sizes - nice to have.

Shop essentials should be on you list also - and there are Forum posts on Fractional Dial calipers, drum sanding kits and a drum sanding station you can make, glue applicators, other measuring tools, L-squares of various lengths, Brad Bits as well as Forstner bits, etc.

Hope some of this helps - looking forward to hearing what you decide to purchase as well as seeing what you have made with your new tools.
Douglas

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Reply with quote  #6 
Well said Udie about the safety bits .
Ceefa

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Reply with quote  #7 
My next purchase when I get some money is to buy a set of Forstner bits. In watching some of the videos on toymaking I see a number of toymakers using these and they seem to make a cleaner cut. I agree with Ken, a bandsaw is a must. I have a small Ryobi one and i use it more than a table saw. I like the idea of multiple drill presses.  i would also go as far as to say multiple routers with different bits in them already set up. But that's going a bit over the top eh?
sjc5454

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Reply with quote  #8 
Thanks for all the advice. It is much appreciated. Udie, the reason I am thinking of a planer and jointer is because I use reclaimed wood and it is not always straight or completely flat. I have made a jig to cut one side square and then use that side to get the rest of the board flat and square so I can use it. I recently resawed a lot to make the Vintage train. I did get a router for Christmas, but only a couple of bits. Made a router table to mount it on, but need to work on the fence holding clamps.

I think I am going to get a 14" bandsaw as most will allow me to resaw up to 6" or more depending on the make. I have looked at Grizzly and Harbour Freight bandsaws, but am not sure which to go with. The drill press I have is a HF 8" 5 speed, but I am finding that the shaft is starting to wobble a bit and have had to adjust the bearing several times now. I might have to replace it as well. I am also thinking of getting a dust collector, but not sure how much room one will take up as I only get a quarter of the two car garage for a shop. The rest is storage for stuff we don't use. I made the girls all promise me that when the weather warms up to get rid of as much as possible. We'll see how that goes.


Ken Martin

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Reply with quote  #9 
sjc5454
   Good luck with getting rid of stuff not being used.  I had the same problem with our garage when I married Susie. 
Solution:  I finally rented a Mini storage garage, and told her we would keep it until she got tired of paying for it.  That did it in 6 months.
Happy Tool hunting.

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sjc5454

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Reply with quote  #10 
This is the list of tools I decided to go with, forstners bits, pilot point drill bits, new hand chisels, modeler's plane, 12" Craftsman bandsaw, disc/belt sander, portable dust collector with a Thein baffled dust seperator I will make for a 20 gal fiber barrel. A respirator and a shop made air cleaner. Then I also bought 20+ plans, so I will be making a lot of new toys over the next year.
Thank you everyone for your input and recommendations.
Ken Martin

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Reply with quote  #11 
sjc5454
We look forward to seeing what comes our of your newly outfitted shop.  Hope you bought the plans while they were on sale.  
Have fun learning and making new stuff.

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Udie

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Reply with quote  #12 
sjc5454 - Great selection of tools, I think you will really enjoy the Forstner bits and Brad bits as well as the bandsaw.
Looking forward to seeing your posts.
You know you can post work in process as well as finished projects.
DavidT

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Reply with quote  #13 
Your list sounds like my most commonly used tools. I also use a 1950s Craftsman scroll saw. A lot of my hand tools were bought second hand from ebay and yard sales gradually over the years, some were my dads. Many of the old tools were really built to last.
sjc5454

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Reply with quote  #14 
Ken, oh yea, I bought them while on sale. 35% discount was a huge savings on 42 plans and books, I have enough to keep me busy for the next couple of years and then some. Now, I need to get ot work and finish the Vintage train, then figure out which plan to do next. I will have to get some help from my grandson, I'm sure he'll know which one he wants next.
Now I have to clean up and reorganize to make room for the new tools, make the dust seperator, a toolstand, and possibly another small bench for finishing.
Steve Currier
Udie

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Reply with quote  #15 
Steve (sjc5454) - Sounds like you have a great attack plan for organizing your workshop as well as a project coordinator (your grandson) to direct the shop assignments. Living the Dream.
   Let's talk about the dust separator for a minute - There are quite a few YouTube videos on how to make a home dust separators, simple ones as well as complex ones using your workshop shop vac.
   This is something that many of our members would be interested in - how to turn your shop vac into a dust separator.
   I am going to ask you a favour - while you are building your separator, would you have the time to take a couple of photos of what you are building and post it on the Forum?
   You could post it in the "Discuss Tools and Machinery" section. 

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