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Material Requirements

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What to bring for a semester at VWS

Woodworking tools are a major investment, so the Vermont Woodworking School provides every student with a starter tool kit to use while they're in the program. These kits are intended to provide experience with hand tools, enabling students to make informed decisions about which tools they want to add to their own collection.

Students that already have some tools of their own are more than welcome to bring them.


The materials we require students to supply for themselves are listed below.

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Safety Glasses

Keep a backup pair in case you lose or break yours. Eye trauma is no joke.

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Hearing Protection

It gets loud in the shop! You don't need extra fancy ones, but you'll want over-the-ear muffs that are comfortable.

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Sturdy, Close-toed shoes

You want good traction and protection against dropped materials.

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We may ask you to wear a mask in the shop—especially if we know there have been local Covid cases.

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Woodworking creates a lot of dust. None of it is good to breathe.

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Sharpening Stones

We recommend Norton combination waterstones—grits 220/1000 & 4000/8000.

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Keep your waterstones soaking in a plastic container so they're always ready to use.

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Orbital sander

These sanders save a lot of time—especially on a larger project. You won't need this until the middle of the semester, so you can wait to get one.

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Sanding disks

Make sure these fit your sander! You'll want 120, 150, 180, and 220 grit.

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Not required, but definitely useful. We recommend 6" or 12" clutch-style bar clamps.

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6" Calipers - dial or digital works. You may want to make sure it can be read in fractions.

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2" Machinist Square

A small 2" machinist square is handy for marking out joinery, or just as an extra reference you can keep in a pocket.