List of Machinist Tools & Their Uses 2022 [Updated]

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List of Machinist Tools & Equipment for Beginners & Experts 2022 [Updated]

machining tools for beginners
Calipers can be very useful when measuring parts for machinist projects. They offer high precision measurements to ensure correct part dimensions.

Machinists are a part of a very versatile trade that requires many different types of tools and equipment to complete projects. However, these projects often all require a set of common tools.

Having these important tools in your workshop for any machinist project can allow you to create and successfully complete general projects. Many of these tools have multiple purposes that can be very useful if you are just starting out in the trade of if you’d like a minimal array of tools

The following list is composed of the tools that should be a part of every machinists’ arsenal. This list will be very useful to newcomers to the trade as it is composted of tools and equipment that serves both beginners and advanced machinists alike.

Complete List of Machinist Tools & Equipment

1) Workbench

Every machinist should have a workbench are where they can work on any projects. The workbench is a key part of the equipment needed to be able to actually set workpieces down and work on them.. Workbenches are typically made of sturdy wood or metal to provide a solid. setting for your projects.

Goplus Adjustable Workbench, 48" 1500 Lbs Bamboo Top Work Bench for Garage, Heavy-Duty Steel Work Table...
  • 【Work Bench with Height Adjustment】With 15 different height settings, the workbench can be...
  • 【Sturdy Structure】This work bench for garage is supported by solid steel legs, which is built to...
  • 【Eco-friendly & Thick Bamboo Top】The top of heavy-duty workbench is made of solid bamboo board,...

2) Bench Vise

A vise is another crucial piece of equipment to have in any machine workshop. Vises allow you to form and shape a workpiece without needing to hold the workpiece yourself. This feature is incredibly helpful when you are working on a project on your own and require the workpiece to be held firmly in place by some other external means.

Many modern machinists use precision mill vises to ensure a better grip. Although these vises are generally more expensive, they certainly deliver in terms of instrumental resolution for high precision projects.

Shars Precision Toolmakers Vise 2" Jaw Width, 3-1/4" Jaw Opening 202-1210 P[
  • Part# 202-1210
  • Jaw opening: 3-1/4" ;Jaw Depth: 1"
  • Product Dimension: 5-7/8" L x 2" W x 2" H

3) Calipers

Calipers are a staple of every machinist’s workshop. This is an extremely important measurement tool, especially if you will be using small parts that require specific measurements with small tolerances. Although calipers with higher resolutions are typically preferable, it is important that you find and use calipers that will allow you to measure the specifications on the parts or projects on which you will be working.

Many calipers now have electronic LCD displays that allow you to easily read any measurements and convert them into different units. This feature can be very helpful if you are constantly using metric and standard units in your projects.

Digital Caliper, Adoric 0-6" Calipers Measuring Tool - Electronic Micrometer Caliper with Large LCD...
  • Precise measurement: Measurement range: 0 - 6''/ 0 - 150mm; Resolution: 0.01”/ 0.1mm; Accuracy:...
  • 4 measuring modes: This digital caliper can be used to Measure inside and outside diameter, depth...
  • Inch/mm conversion: One button quick switch between two units: inch and millimeter, definitely save...

4) Micrometer

Like calipers, a micrometer is another incredible measurement tool that every machinist should have. A micrometer is a device that allows you to measure very small objects. Although the objects being measured are small, they are measured with very high precision.

Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet Stop, 0-1" (0-25.4mm) Range, 0.00005"...
  • Calibrated micrometer measures 0 to 1" (0 to 25mm) with 0.00005" (0.001mm) resolution and +/-...
  • LCD screen displays in inches and metric units
  • Plastic components are oil-resistant and measuring faces are carbide-tipped for durability

5) Drills & Drill Bits

One of the most important cutting and shaping tools that every machinist should have is the drill. Electric drills can really facilitate the whole process of creating holes in solid pieces of metal. It is important to have a reliable drill with an accompanying drill bit set for different types of projects.

There are many different types of drill bit sets with varying ranges of drill bit sizes. It is important to know what size drill bits your machine projects will likely require prior to picking a drill bit set for your workshop.

COMOWARE Cobalt Drill Bit Set- 115Pcs M35 High Speed Steel Twist Jobber Length for Hardened Metal,...
  • 115 PIECES INCLUDED: 29pcs Fractional Size:1/16” to 1/2” in 1/64th increments; 26pcs Letter...
  • HSS WITH 5% COBALT: Durable, Higher Heat & Abrasion Resistance.
  • PRECISE 135° SPLIT POINT & TWIST DESIGN: Prevent walking, clear chips and particles faster.

9) Calculator

Machinists use trigonometry very often. The ability to understand mathematical concepts like sine, cosine, and tangent will allow you to easily convert measured values of a small workpiece’s angles to create a larger or small version of that piece. These ratio relationships are so important, that every machinist should at least have a scientific calculator that could handle trigonometric calculations.

Helect 2-Line Engineering Scientific Calculator, Suitable for School and Business (Black)
  • Professional grade scientific calculator with 240 scientific functions. Easily handles 1 and 2...
  • 12-digit widescreen HD display. 2-line display shows inputs and results at the same time. Works...
  • Meets the ergonomics design and offers a comfortable grip. Responsive buttons, clear numbers, and...

10) Ruler

Machinists often have a lot of rulers in order to ensure that their projects are being measured precisely. The most popular rule is the 6″ ruler that allows machinists to measure small parts very precisely. These rulers are typically made of stainless steel for durability and black markings to allow users to easily read measurements.

Breman Precision 3 Pack Metal Ruler Set - 1 6 Inch Ruler & 2 12 Inch Stainless Steel Rulers - Steel...
442 Reviews
Breman Precision 3 Pack Metal Ruler Set - 1 6 Inch Ruler & 2 12 Inch Stainless Steel Rulers - Steel...
  • The Most Practical Choice - No more splinters from wooden rulers or markings that fade on breakable...
  • Durability You Can Trust - Made from high-grade, rust-proof stainless steel, each precision ruler is...
  • Precision You Can Rely On - You can't afford mistakes, so we designed each handheld ruler to work as...

14) Center Punch

The center punch is a really helpful tool for drilling. This tool is to be used in conjunction with the drill to punch the exact spot where the drill should target prior to drilling a hole. Center punches come in varying sizes and sets. Much like the drill bits, ensure you are picking a center punch size or set that will most help you with the types of projects on which you will be working.

Mayhew Tools 62215 Center Punch Kit, 4-Piece
  • Used for piercing, or marking for starting drills, in metal and other materials
  • Point sizes vary to achieve the most appropriate hole size
  • Black oxide finish for additional rust protection

12) Wrench Sets

Wrenches are extremely important tools to have in a machine shop or toolbox. There are many different kinds of wrenches that could be useful for different machine projects. However, the most popular wrench types are adjustable wrenches and Allen wrenches. Allen wrenches are also referred to as a hex keys. These wrenches can be very useful when screwing or unscrewing bolts or screws into different sockets.

Investing in a good set of wrenches can immensely help in situations where tightening or loosening metal connections is required.

DEWALT Mechanics Tools Kit and Socket Set, 1/4" & 3/8" Drive, SAE, 108-Piece (DWMT73801)
  • Mechanics Tools Come In A Removable Power Tools Accessory Case
  • Socket Sets Feature Quick Release, 72 Tooth Ratchet for high torque ratcheting
  • Durable anti-slip vinyl grip bit driver with maximum comfort for the mechanics tool set.

13) Hammers

The ball peen hammer is one of the most useful tools for machining. Its head consists of a flat face and a peen on the other end. The handle of this hammer allows for a good grip during its use. The flat face allows you to flatten a workpiece and the peen shape can create rounded indentations on a workpiece, adding texture to a design.

Vaughan TC120 20-Ounce Commercial Ball Pein Hammer
26 Reviews
Vaughan TC120 20-Ounce Commercial Ball Pein Hammer
  • Polished face, bevel, and pein
  • Head finished in rust resistant black paint
  • Compression Wedge hickory handle

14) Block Sets

Machinists use block sets to help the setup of projects. Blocks are calibrated metal blocks that act as supports for the metal pieces that machinists are working on. These blocks can be mounted in different ways to ensure that the correct spacing and angles are achieved. Since the blocks are produced with tight tolerances, they are very reliable for high precision mounting applications.


Anytime Tools 1-2-3 Blocks Matched Pair Hardened Steel 23 Holes (1"x2"x3") 123 Set Precision Machinist...
  • MATCHED PAIR, Professional Quality Tool
  • Precision ground Steel and Case Hardened on all six sides
  • Squareness on all sides within 0.0001"

16) Safety Glasses or Goggles

It is always important to wear appropriate eye protection when working on machinist projects. Small pieces of metal or sharp objects can cause serious injury to the eyes if they are left unprotected.

3M Safety Glasses, Virtua CCS, ANSI Z87, Anti-Fog, Clear Lens, Blue Frame, Corded Ear Plug Control,...
  • DUST DEFENSE: Foam gasket helps limit eye exposure to nuisance dust and other particles while...
  • WRAP AROUND DESIGN provides extended eye protection and unobstructed viewing.
  • ANTI-FOG LENS COATING and removable foam-lined gasket with airflow vents make this protective...

17) Safety Gloves

Leather or other heavy duty gloves can be very useful when cutting or drilling metal pieces. Gloves can protect your hands from abrasive or sharp materials, allowing you to work on your machine project with increased safety. However, it is important to understand when and where to use gloves and when it is better not to. Gloves are notorious for getting caught on machining equipment if not used properly.

DEX FIT Level 5 Cut Resistant Gloves Cru553, 3D Comfort Stretch Fit, Power Grip, Durable Foam Nitrile,...
  • HIGHEST CUT PROOF CE EN 388 4544 – Hands protection from cuts and punctures when cutting meat,...
  • COMFORTABLE - Ergonomic snug fit to all fingers. Second-skin feel. LIGHTWEIGHT 13-gauge cool HPPE &...
  • NON-SLIP EVEN IN LIGHT OIL & UNDERWATER - Prevent pipes from slipping and minimize hand fatigue....

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