New products from all of the toolmakers are bursting out like popcorn this time of year. The volume and variety are almost overwhelming … so overwhelming, indeed, that forlorn postings like this are scattered on various woodworking boards across the Internet: “I’m looking for a [name that tool], which one is best? Which one do you think I should buy?”
Sometimes, these web-based cries for help are answered, and sometimes they are not. Sometimes, the tool buying advice seems (to yours truly) to be sound; sometimes it seems a bit harebrained. But the question that comes to my mind is: how do YOU ultimately choose?
In the end, all that advice and opinion needs to be boiled down and legal tender exchanged. So what are the criteria that you use to make the final selection? Is price the requirement? How about quality, warranties, features, fit and finish … you tell me. E-mail me with your tool-buying techniques (arcane, scientific or otherwise), and I’ll sort through and have them posted on our readers’ response page. It will be interesting and useful to see how different folks go about the wonderful and yet daunting task of buying the tool (or tools) of our dreams.
Rob Johnstone, Woodworker’s Journal