Do You Know What a Hand Tool Is? Give As Many Examples As You Know

Do You Know What a Hand Tool Is? Give As Many Examples As You Know

FMS01_ Treball amb eines manuals, eines elèctriques i maquinaria de fusteria
Unit 1. Woodworking with hand tools

In this unit you will learn the names of the main hand tools in woodworking, you will be able to identify the uses of these tools and you will know how to work with them thanks to some DIY videos.

But before starting unit 1 you should know some important words and definitions in order to focus on them later on.

1.1 Definition

Do you know what a hand tool is? Give as many examples as you know.

These are examples of hand tools. Can you recognize them?

File Hand tools jpg


  • Could you write a definition of hand tool in your own words? Write it down and then, share it with your partner.
  • Do you have the same definition?
  • To check it, have a look at this definition on Wikipedia.

/ Hand tool by Wikipedia

1.2 Purposes of hand tools in a carpentry

There are many different hand tools used by carpenters. Hand tools can be used for measuring, marking, cutting, hitting, etc.

It is very important to know the real purpose of each hand tool before working with it, and always having in mind the risks related with each one.


  • Label the tools with the definitions listed below (Image
  1. Ruler: instrument used in geometry, technical drawing, printing as well as engineering and building to measure distances or to rule straight lines
  1. Chisel: tool with a long metal blade that has a sharp edge for cutting wood, stone, etc.
  1. Hammer: tool consisting of a piece of metal with a flat end that is fixed onto the end of a long, thin, usually wooden handle, used for hitting things
  1. Plane: tool used to make wooden surfaces and edges flat and smooth by removing small strips of the wood
  1. Pincers: tool for holding or pulling something, made of two curved metal bars that move against each other so that when the handles are pushed together the other ends close tightly
  1. Square: tool for drawing or testing a right angle
  1. Bradawl: small, sharp tool used for making holes
  1. Mitre box: tool used to guide a hand saw to make precise mitre cuts in a board
  1. Marking gauge: tool used to mark out lines for cutting or other operations
  1. Screwdriver: tool for turning screws, consisting of a handle joined to a metal rod shaped at one end to fit in the cut in the top of the screw
  1. Hand saw: tool used to cut pieces of wood into different shapes.
  1. Spanner: metal tool with a shaped end, used to turn nuts and bolts
  1. Wrench: type of spanner, usually one that can be made larger or smaller for holding and turning objects of different sizes
  1. Tape measure: measuring tool consisting of a ribbon of cloth, plastic, fiber glass, or metal strip with linear-measurement markings
  • What else do you use in the workshop? Add one more tool that you use in the workshop and then write your own definition, paying attention at the parts of the tool, materials and purpose.

  • Now it’s time to classify all the different purposes of these hand tools. Work in pairs and write down each use with the right tool.

Use / Tools
Measuring / Tape measure
Pulling something out

1.3 How to work with hand tools

Nowadays, carpenters use power tools rather than hand tools when they build furniture. However, it is possible to make almost whatever without the help of the electricity.


Speaking activity:

  • Work in pairs. Ask the following questions to your partner and write his/her answers.
  • What was your first hand tool?
  • How many hand tools do you have at home?
  • Which is the most useful? Why? When do you use it?

Watch the following video about how to make a raised panel and an inlaid picture frame only using hand tools and in a few minutes.


  • Write about something that you have made using only hand tools, listing which of them you used.

You can use sentences like: “I have made....” or “The hand tools that I used were...”

You can find a lot of companies that sell carpentry hand tools on the Internet. On their websites there is a lot of extra information about their products. See an example:
/ Carpentry hand tools

1.4 Reading an article about hand tools

Read the following text about the changes that hand tools have experienced throughout the time and underline all the new words and expressions. Make sure you know the meaning of the words in bold.

New words and expressions:


  • After reading the text, answer these questions about it:
  1. What problem do stores have with the carpentry tools?
  1. What is the advantage of a hammer with anti-shock vibration?
  1. Why are titanium blades in hand tools better?
  1. According to the text, what are the reasons why some people have never had in their hands a tool?
  1. Make a list with the names of all the hand tools that are said in the article.

Finally, watch this video about how hand tools are made and answer the following questions.

  • List some of the hand tools that are shown in this video.
  • What are handles and blades made of?
  • What does the lathe do?
  • What does the drill do?
  • What does the dipping machine do?
  • Why do workers insert the chisel blade manually?
  • How long are the 2 strips of aluminium of the T-square?
  • What size are the handles and blades of the standard screwdrivers?


  • Imagine you have an empty toolbox. You can put in five tools you have learnt in this unit.

Write a description of it and draw the tools below.


- My toolbox is ……

- There are many tools in my toolbox: there are ......

- Also there is ….

- I have got ….

- The ruler is for ….

  • Work in pairs. Tell your classmate what you have in your toolbox and he/she has to draw the content of your toolbox.
  • Change roles and draw a toolbox according to his/her description. You can ask some questions to guess the tool:
  • What is it like?
  • What colour/shape/size is it?
  • What is it made of?
  • What is it used for?

At the end of this task, check if his/her drawing is similar to yours.

FMS01_ Treball amb eines manuals, eines elèctriques i maquinària de fusteria / Unit 1