A recommendation for a chisel set for a beginner.
Welcome! / Forums / General Woodworking Discussions / Tools and Tool Maintenance/Restoration / A recommendation for a chisel set for a beginner.
Tagged: beginner, Chisel Set, chisels, Set, Starter
- This topic has 22 replies, 10 voices, and was last updated 5 years, 8 months ago by Paul Dallender.
28 September 2017 at 3:18 pm #324983
I’m looking for a decent chisel set that will last me a few years. I have a budget of around £60-70. I’m looking for a set with wooden handles. Can anyone recommend a decent set for a beginner?
Richard.28 September 2017 at 4:05 pm #325000
Are you in the UK? Get the set from Aldis. I don’t have them, but Paul (and everyone else) really praises them!
Seattle, WA28 September 2017 at 4:09 pm #325002
I am in the U K. I could look at that. They’re only £7.99 but I do want something that will last. I’ve had a look at a few vintage chisel sets.
Richard.28 September 2017 at 4:22 pm #325011
Maybe other people can chime in, but from what Paul advocates they are really good. With the savings you would be able to get a saw, or router plane, or #4, or wood for a project
Here are the first 4 posts I could find, and there are many more.
28 September 2017 at 4:23 pm #325012
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Joe Kaiser.
I contacted Aldi uk recently and sadly they say they have no plans to sell the chisels at the moment.
You can get them on eBay. Look for Workzone chisels. You pay a bit more of course.
Saying that, i’ve found some excellent vintage chisels on eBay that work fantastically well, and all they needed was a clean and sharpen. Worth a look.
Darren.28 September 2017 at 4:38 pm #325021
Thank you for that Darren. I’ll keep an eye out for a variety of old chisels, I have one in my collection which is brilliant to work with. I’ll also be looking at purchasing this kit: link to sharpen my tools. Paul did say you can easily build up a set of old non-matching chisels for around £50.
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Richard Duffy.
Aldi Chisels have always been hit-and-miss. They stock only a few, in selected stores, for a short time. They’re gone before you know they’re in. No-one ever knows if or when there’ll be any more. Chisels are not in Aldi’s Business Plan.
Vintage Marples, Ward etc. are ridiculously expensive. Just because they’re recommended here.
Boot-Sale sellers tend to think every rusty old tool is worth a fortune. Few bargains to be had today.
I’d look for a named secondhand set: Stanley 5001, Stanley 5002, Footprint…
Ones with Brass Ferrules come-up really nice. You should get a decent set (eBay) for £30-£35 for five or six.
A couple of months ago, I bought 6 x Footprint Firmer Chisels for about £20. Good condition but paint cracked from age. Scraped the paint off, stained, finished. All looking great.28 September 2017 at 9:05 pm #325184
Thank you for that Alan. I’ve picked up a couple of plastic handled chisels from a car boot. I’ll have a look out on eBay for a set. Thank you.
Richard, I didn’t notice your specifying WOODEN HANDLES when I first read your post. Have a look at these:
Four FOOTPRINT Firmer Chisels £25
Four FOOTPRINT Bevelled Chisels: £25
I’d go for both lots; Bevelled for Dovetails and Paring, Firmer for Mortices.
Wooden handles, Brass Ferrules, vintage Sheffield Steel, made in England, trusted Brand, all matching, good condition, £50 the lot. You might even get a discount on postage (it’s the same seller).
I wouldn’t recommend a £65 specialised Waterstone Sharpening Kit. That’s overkill. I’ve got one of these: FAITHFUL Diamond Sharpening Plate £25 (£13 if you don’t want the FAITHFUL Name) 1000 Grit one side, 400 Grit the other. It even comes with a Bench Holder and Wallet.
Plus an ECLIPSE No.36 Honing Guide. £10 or so.
As a beginner myself a couple of years ago, I went trough all the options, reviews, forum threads and condensed it down to what I’m suggesting here. “Buying good tools cheap” as Paul says.
You’ve saved £50 already (that means more tools!) and you’ll have a set of chisels that will last a lifetime with all the sharpening equipment you need.
Kind regards, Alan
29 September 2017 at 7:00 am #325428
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Alan.
Aldi’s chisels are perfect for a beginner… They sharpen easily, hold an edge reasonably well, and are sized right for most projects. Trust me on this, I have been woodworking for nearly two years now, and still consider myself a beginner.
My one piece of advise for you is: you dont know what you dont know at this point… You need to learn how to sharpen, how sharp is sharp, and how to control the tool before you can make a decision on what is or is not a good tool.
The Aldi chisels will get you through this stage, and then you can make an informed decision on which chisels are worth your money.
29 September 2017 at 1:50 pm #325572
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Steve Kaminska.
Thank you all for your advice. I’ll take a look into what sharpening systems are out there. I’ll also purchase a leather strop and some polishing compound. I now have quite a broad spread of recommended chisels. Thank you all for your advice.
Richard, (and other Brits looking for vintage chisels), I suggest that you have a look at this Ebay link:
Note the search terms. Any older British made chisel is probably a good one. Typing “British”, “English”and “Sheffield” within parentheses and separated by commas brings up any listing containing one of those words and the other term, “chisels”. By searching for “chisels” (with the inverted commas) you’ll skip the many listings for individual chisels and save on per-unit shipping costs.
Try to be flexible, both in regard to maker and style. While most people these days prefer bevel edged chisels, the straight firmers seem to be more common and generally go cheaper. Both work fine.
29 September 2017 at 7:11 pm #325716
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Dave Ring.
I had the old narex, and didn’t like the shape of the handles. I got the aldi’s on a whim since they were so cheap. Not crazy about the handles either, and had one tip break off. I ended up with the Ashley Isles (and a few vintage). I looked at the 2 cherries and liked those too. I think Paul blogged about them. I like them. I say get one chisel. Maybe a 3/4.If you can test them out, feel them that’s nice too. Don’t worry about getting a whole set. Get them as needed. Probably only need 4 chisels total.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.