Are hand tools enough to get started with making furniture?

I see this question on woodworking communities a lot, and instead of answering each one of them individually, I decided to write thorough analysis on the topic of hand tools and how sufficient they are for woodworking alone. Overall, yes, hand tools are enough to build anything you want. You don’t need table saw or even circular saw to build anything, but it’s a question of want instead of need. Unless you’re one of those purists who have a thing for not using technology in anything, owning and using powertools is much cheaper, simpler and easier than using manual labor. 

A lot of people fall into illusion that hand tools are dirt cheap and therefore, are good set of tools for beginners to buy. As a beginner, you’re not sure what exactly you want, and therefore hand tools, which are universally applicable and are dirt cheap, should be perfect choice for first tools. But only one of those statements is right. Hand tools are universally applicable, and can be used in any project or task whatsoever, but the effort it takes to make them work is so immense that you are better off not using them at all. And the myth that hand tools are dirt cheap couldn’t be further from the truth. It might be true of some low quality, rusty hand tools, which you can even get for free, but if you’re seriously considering woodworking, forget those and save yourself a lot of trouble of sharpening them and breaking them in the process. But if you’re looking for quality hand tools, I can guarantee that they are not cheap. Due to expensive materials involved in building them, some of them are even more expensive than good circular saws on the market. You can get pretty good worm drive saw for fifty dollars, while top notch hand saws can cost twice as much, and don’t even have half the efficiency that circular saws have to offer.  So if you’re a beginner looking to buy your first tool, I would recommend choosing  mini circular saw or buying nothing at all. If you don’t have about fifty dollars, which is usually the cost of high quality used circular saw, you are better off waiting until you have some spare money to spend on quality and efficiency. And unless you have specific  love of hand tools and manual work, I absolutely don’t recommend getting started with hand tools as they take more time and energy than a hobby ever should. And you can use that time and energy to make some money and buy decent power tool instead.

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