Small tools for woodworking are considered to be those whose size and capacity fall well beneath that of industrial woodworking machinery, such as small sanders and handheld routers. No matter how advanced your woodshop or woodworking factory becomes, have these and other basic tools on hand is a great way to accomplish small tasks that would be senseless to address with industrial machinery, such as occasional splintering during the production process and the occasional nail head that isn’t driven as deeply as it should be.
Is it Worthwhile to Buy Used Small Tools for Woodworking?
In most cases—and especially for industrial woodworking operations—buying small tools new doesn’t present a budgetary concern. But, in an era where cost savings are helping to keep companies afloat, it pays to consider buying even smaller tools used if they can be found in good condition. Unlike industrial machinery, small woodworking tools generally aren’t designed for decades of heavy commercial wear, making it crucial to evaluate your buying options, a process made easy when you observe the four steps for buying used industrial woodworking machinery.
1. Only Buy from Professional Sellers of Used Woodworking Machinery
When woodworkers opt for used tools, they often look for them in places that don’t guarantee the quality of what they sell, such as pawnshops, or through amateur sellers on Craigslist or on eBay. Even though most pawnshops and amateur sellers aren’t out to swindle their customers, they often do so by default by not knowing how to properly assess a tool. Professional sellers of used woodworking machinery, on the other hand, specialize in valuating used machinery according to numerous criteria.
2. Investigate a Seller’s Reputation at the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
Investigating a seller’s reputation at the BBB can often tell you whether you’re dealing with an upstanding merchant or a charlatan. Sellers that fit the latter description usually have unresolved customer complaints on their record, which means that they failed to remedy their customer’s product/service related problems. Sellers that care about their customers and their public appearance find a way to resolve all customer complaints, and quickly.
3. Ask for a Copy of a Tool’s Logged Service Record
While some companies don’t keep a logged service record for such tools as circle saws and pen lathes, others do, and these are the tools that you want to buy used. Tools that have a spotty service record, or no record at all put you in the position of having to gamble on their future reliability.
4. Conduct a First Hand Inspection of Tools Before buying them
In many cases, the pictures that you see of a used product online are of its most flattering vantage points. Therefore, inspecting it firsthand (or having another party conduct the inspection for you) to assess its overall only makes sense.