Control Panel


I can't emphasize enough the importance of using the correct tools. For my first cabinet, I tried to get by with just a jigsaw and a power drill, and that resulted in many of the imperfections in the box. For my second and third machines, I fleshed out my tool collection a little:

Your basic tool for cutting wood. Most of the major pieces were cut with this, and it is essential for cutting pieces with curves in them.


Circular Saw
I thought that I'd use this a lot when cutting straight pieces, but I actually found that I got straighter lines with the jigsaw. However, I did need the circular saw for cutting pieces with angled edges. While the jigsaw could do this, it wasn't very good at it, and the pieces would come out uneven. With the circular saw, they came out right every time.


Spiral Saw
This is sort of like a hand-held router. It's used for cutting grooves. I used it to cut the grooves for the T-Molding, as well as cutting out inner portions of wood (such as where the speakers went) and making indented surfaces for the metal plates on the control panel to fit into. This is a very useful tool.


Power Drill
Obviously, this is used for drilling holes for screws. Combined with a hole saw bit, it was also used to drill the button holes in the control panel. I pre-drilled all of the holes on my cabinet.


Power Sander
I got more use out of this than I would have liked, because I kept painting stuff, then using the sander to remove the paint. However, even without that sort of trouble, you need a power sander for sanding the wood smooth before applying vinyl.


Sanding Block
You'll need this for smaller sanding jobs that require more control that the power sander gives you.


This was used for applying the countertop-laminate and the vinyl. An inexpensive tool that really helps to get this glued on evenly and without bubbles.


I had to use this to saw off the ends of a few screws that stuck out too far.


Used for miscellaneous tasks


Goggles and Braces
Really important. Extremely important. Unbelievably important. I shouldn't have to explain why.


Assorted Screwdrivers and Wrenches
This just goes without saying, doesn't it?