Framing is one of the fastest and most rewarding parts of building a home or addition. In a short order an empty space is defined by walls and floors. It is the first real look at the future home. But to do framing requires the right tools. This begins with the essentials.
Circular Saw: A good reliable corded circular saw with at least 15amps of power. We use Porter Cable and it has run flawlessly for several years. Do not purchase a cheap $50 saw, unless you are only making a few cuts. They will not have to power to cut all the wood. Make sure it is well built with an aluminum base. A good framing saw blade is also essential, we prefer Dewalt for those but any will do. The saw will need to be electric, cordless simply don’t hold up on larger scale jobs.
Compressor: Compressors are available in many sizes and shapes. For a basic job a pancake compressor is fine. We go through these about every 2 years. They tend to wear out with use. Porter Cable makes a good entry level unit, but you get what you pay for her. Make sure you don’t overload what ever circuit the compressor is on. Many of them will pull a solid 15 Amps+ and won’t run right if they can’t get it or the extension cord is not heavy duty rated.
Framing Gun: A good framing gun will make the job go faster. Ridgid, Porter Cable, Bostitch all have great choices. We have both a Ridgid and a Porter Cable. The Ridgid has worked flawlessly for several years and is one of the best Framing guns on the market at a great price.
6″ Square: You will need a metal square to make sure your cuts are straight. Mark the wood at the right point, then use this to draw straight line. Slide it to the left and hold it down as a quick guide to cut the wood.
Tape Measure: Stanley metal are the industry standard. You truly get what you pay for here. A cheap tape measure will not last. A 25′ Stanley is under $10.
Chalk line: needed to snap and layout walls.