First off, welcome and howdy! I personally do the exterior after it is built. I sometimes wallpaper and paint the interior before gluing it together. Also, I recommend doing a dry fit before glue to make sure things are lined up correctly. Also, do NOT use a glue gun. As far as tools.....glue, sandpaper, painters tape or masking tape, clamps, the lust can go on and on. As you come across particular obstacles, you will learn what you need. Plus, we can help. Most importantly, be patient and have fun with it.