Be it you are a professional carpenter or a DIY person who wants to produce a table for home, the job of woodworking will be incomplete without a thickness planner. The planer can be used to cut the wooden board to the required thickness with smooth finishing.
The thickness planers are used along with the trimming boards to maintain the same level of thickness while cutting the wood throughout its length. You can also use the planer to thin, smooth, and level the boards with ease. The carpenter does not need to spend a lot of time and put physical strength to carry out the carpentry job using this tool. It makes the carpentry job a breeze for beginners and professionals.
You must insert the wooden board in the planer to cut the layer of your desired size. The thickness planer is heavy but would help you carry out the simplest to the most complicated wood related jobs with ease.
With an overwhelming number of thickness planers available in the market, it is always challenging for the professional or DIY person to choose the best one that fits in their woodworks. There are different models available, and few come with a price tag. We have compiled the list of top 5 thickness planners for the new and experienced woodworkers. You can go through the reviews of each and choose the best that fits your individual needs and budget
List of The Best Thickness Planer:
- DEWALT Thickness Planer, Two Spee
- WEN 6552T 13 in. 15 Amp 3-Blade Benchtop Corded Thickness Planer
- PORTER-CABLE Thickness Planer
- Makita 2012NB 12-Inch Planer
- Cutech 40600H-CT 13” Spiral Cutter head Planer
The Best 5 Thickness Planers in 2021
Here are the top five thickness planers that we have listed. Now the professionals or beginners do not have to spend a lot of time researching for the best planers anymore.
1. DEWALT Thickness Planer, Two Spee
If you are looking for the thickness planer that delivers excellent performance and lasts longer, then this model thickness planer is for you. It has three knife cutter head that gives the best result in cutting the wood smoothly. The blades are sharp and made of quality materials that it does not lose their sharpness despite using multiple times.
It uses the motor that rotates 20,000 times per minute. With the help of the two-speed gearbox, the user can change the speed that allows you to cut the wood precisely. The depth of the wood you can cut is up to 1/8 inch with 6 inches depth and 13 inches in width.
Though it is heavy and comes with a price tag, it is best to be used by professionals to carry out all types of wood-related tasks. It is suitable to be used by professional users who work in the workshop.
The wooden boards that are cut with the planer would give a smooth finishing. It will cut 10,000 per minute. The motor equipped in the planer has a series of gears that allow you to change the speed at which you cut the wood.
The dust hose adaptor will allow you to clean the planer that is filled with dust and debris after the work with ease. The hose will remove debris that leaves the cutter head immediately. It is essential when you are carrying out a lot of work in a short time. When the trash is cleared, you get ample space to work conveniently.
Though, it costs you high but comes with superior quality and reliable construction. It is portable that you can carry from one place to another with ease. Many semi-professionals would choose this tool.
Pros & Cons
- Huge capacity
- Comes with dust hose adaptor
- Perfect to be used by professionals
- Two-speed gearbox
- Equipped with reversible knives
- Three blades cut with precision
2. WEN 6552T 13 in. 15 Amp 3-Blade Benchtop Corded Thickness Planer
If you want to do something with the worn-out wood and give a smooth finishing, then this is the best thickness planer for you to buy. The effective 15 amp motor will deliver the best performance and allow you to cut the wood precisely. You can cut 25,000 times for every minute using this tool. The feed rate of the tool is 26 feet per minute.
You can use this planer to plane the wooden boards that are of 13 inches in width and 6 inches in thickness to attain the snipe you want. The cutting width of the planer would allow you to carry out various cutting tasks.
You can adjust the height of the infeed and outfeed table.
The WEN planer will come with the granite board that allows you to move the boards smoothly without having to leave any kind of ugly marks on the bottom of the board while doing the work.
The granite will keep the board from getting lodged. The dust port equipped to the tool will remove the sawdust and debris that is accumulated around the machine while working from time to time.
The three-blade design of the thickness planer allows you to work with all types of wood materials, especially with the hardwood that is tough to cut with the other planer.
It is sturdy and lightweight that it last longer despite extreme wear and tear. The blend of cast iron base and onboard planning gage would make the planer sturdy. The quality of the product is top-notch, and so the price.
The size of the thickness planner is a perfect fit for semi-professionals. It can also be used by DIY users who want to carry out wood-related tasks. The design of the planer is best suited for different areas of work.
Pros & Cons
- Easy to transport from one place to another
- Large thickness scale
- Excellent motor
- Infeed and outfeed table allows you to increase its width capacity
- Can handle all types of woods
- Three-blade design
- There are no additional blades
- Size and power not perfect to be used by the professionals
3. PORTER-CABLE Thickness Planer
If you are looking for the best thickness planer for doing the woodwork, you can choose this model thickness planer. It delivers the best performance and allows you to finish the woodworking job smoothly and without much hassle. You do not need to break the bank to get this tool added to your toolbox. You can buy this for your workshop as it comes with impressive features.
The powerful 15 amp motor will allow you to cut the wood smoothly and as per the thickness you need. The double-sided blades will have holes that will enable you to easily replace the blades that are worn out after few usages. The blades assure you to perform well and last longer. The best part of the double-sided blade is that when one side is blunt, you can swipe and use the other end of the blade. It works like a new one.
You can adjust the blades on the porter cable with the help of the cranking mechanism. It is helpful to carry out wood-related tasks. You can use the patented cutter elevation to elevate the four sides and make it stable so that you can do the work with perfection, especially the finishing of the wood job.
You must take them off the cutter head and sharpen or replace it for cutting the wood precisely. It is a fantastic tool that you can add to the small workshop. It helps you to cut all types of woods with ease. It does not produce any kind of noise while cutting the wood. Nobody around your workshop would get distributed with the noise of this planer.
The poly v belt cutter head drive would help you attain maximum transfer of power.
Pros & Cons
- Disposable knives
- Use cutter elevation technology
- Comes with infeed and outfeed rollers that boost the capacity
- Produce snipes
- Single-speed planer
4. Makita 2012NB 12-Inch Planer
If you are looking for a portable thickness planer that can be used anywhere, then this model planer is the best choice for you to buy. It is lightweight and can be transported from one place to another on a job.
There is a large table extension that allows you to carry out the woodwork comfortably. The planer does not produce much noise, so it won’t cause any kind of disturbance to the people living in the surroundings of your workshop. It operates quietly at 83 decibels, which makes it perfect to be used in different places.
The LED lights equipped to the tool would indicate whether or not the power is supplied to the planer. You can adjust the depth up to which you want to cut the wood. You can cut the wood repeatedly. It cuts the wood at a brisk pace. It is quite easy to change the blades. It is cost-effective and is of the superior quality planer to be used by professionals and DIY users. It is compact in design and offers portability.
It is highly safe and comfortable for you to operate. The powerful motor delivers excellent performance and comes with the 8500 RPM rating. It can cut the width up to 12 inches. The cut depth would be 1/8th inches, and the planning depth would be 1/16 inches. It is perfect to be used by the new woodworkers.
The double edge planer blades allow you to cut the wood precisely. You can replace the blunt blades when they are worn out. As it is double-edged, so when one side of the blade is blunt, you can flip and use the other side without causing any interruption to work. You get wrenches and a toolbox along with this planer. If you want a dust collection hood, you must buy it separately.
Pros & Cons
- Powerful motor
- Portable to transport
- Produce less noise
- LED light indicator
- Does not have dust collection hood to collect the sawdust
5. Cutech 40600H-CT 13″ Spiral Cutter head Planer
Be it you want to cut the oak, ash, pine, or poplar wood; you can buy this model planer. It works effectively and helps you finish the job in no time. It is perfect to be used by the professional woodworkers working in the workshops.
It is lightweight but is durable and strong. It is built using an aluminum base and carriage that is housed using stamped steel. It has 26 two-sided cutting inserts that allow you to index the wood properly.
The powerful motor with the 15 amp rating would be ready to cut the tough hardwoods. The infeed and outfeed table of 14*9 inches is perfect for doing the cabinetwork and other types of woodwork projects.
The unique feature of the product is the four leveling screw posts. It keeps the snipe at bay and offers optimal control while doing the woodwork on this tool. It is easy to control the dust. The finishing of the wooden board would be perfect despite you use 50 feet board that is made of walnut. No board will snipe so that the end result will be smooth finishing.
You can adjust the height as per your convenience, and the anti-Snipe lock will let you do the job smoothly. The heavy cast used in the product would make it sturdy.
Pros & Cons
- Allow you to control the dust
- Carbide blades that help you attain smooth cut
- Spiral cutter head
- Sturdy screw posts
- Heavy-duty guideposts
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
What are the different types of planers available?
There are different types of planers available in the market. However, each planer has a rotating drum and blades in common. You can observe the change in the planer in terms of its speed and portability.
- Power handheld planer
These are widely used in construction sites. You can use this to work with the wood pieces that are already there. The planers are small in size and convenient to use. The small motors equipped in the planer allow you to cut up to the width of 31/4 inches.
- Thickness planer
These are the planers that are used to cut the board of the same thickness throughout its length. The material that is cut for the same thickness would be used for lamination.
- Benchtop Planer
This type of planer is used to make the surface parallel by tweaking the boards that are of different thicknesses. It requires minimal space to set up the planer and is the perfect choice to use in workshops. The cutting head of the planer is 12 inches and can be used for boards of different sizes. With its ability to attain the boards of the same thickness, it is used to manufacture the boards that are thin in size.
Can we use planers in the workshops?
There are different types of planers available. You must choose the one that best fits your job needs.
How to replace the knives in the planer?
If you find the knives to be blunt and you are unable to perform the woodwork task quickly, then it is an indication that you must replace the blades. At the time of replacing, you must turn off the planer and unscrew the old blade.
You must thoroughly clean the area where you are going to mount the blade carefully to avoid dust from making the blade corrosive. When you place the blade snugly in the respective location, you must secure the planer with the help of screws. This task must be performed carefully to avoid cuts.
How much must you spend to buy a planner?
The thickness planer would cost you high. Based on the thickness capacity of the planer, the cost keeps on increasing. You must spend a good amount of money to buy the planer that would last for a more extended period. The high-end ones are highly reliable and durable over the low-end models that are available at a lower price.
Do I have to buy the thickness planer with a dust collector?
Yes. It is recommended to buy a thickness planer with a dust collector so that you can quickly remove the chips as soon as the wood is done without piling it up in one place. It also makes your work area neat and safe for you to work.
How to feed the lumber to the thickness planer?
When you are using the planer, you must feed the wood from the front rather than from behind. You should not pull the wood from behind. You also need to keep the board uniform on both sides of the machine. This helps you to attain plane wood as per your requirements.
How to use the thickness planer?
The thickness planer is easy to use by professional woodworkers. It is better to use the thickness tool to cut the wood rather than purchasing the milled wood that would cost you an arm and a leg. You can buy rough lumber and plane it on every side to see wonderful results using the thickness planer.
You can use the planer effectively by choosing the wood of length between 12 to 13 inches. You can adjust the settings on the machine to the wood thickness you want to cut. The main intention of using the thickness planer is to make smooth lumber for the woodworking projects at construction, homes, and commercial places.
You need to feed the wood from the front of the machine than behind. When you are using the thickness planer for making the lumber smooth, you must wear goggles, earplugs, and respirators.
When you know how to optimally use the thickness planer to make the rough cut lumber smooth, you do not have to spend a huge amount of money on milled wood that is required for many woodwork projects. A thickness planer is an effective tool that allows you to plane a huge quantity of stock from the rough lumber. When you feed the rough lumber to the machine once or twice, it turns out to be a smooth one.
The thickness planer also makes use of the cutter head similar to the other planers available in the market. The best part of this type of planer is that it can handle thick stock. The benchtop planer can handle the stock that is of 12-inch in width. There are a few models of thickness planers that can plane the wood of 36 inches or more in width. The smaller planers can plane the wood up to 6-inch in thickness, whereas the larger models can handle the wood with 9-inch thickness.
Working of the thickness planer
The thickness planer will cut from above rather than cutting from below. You must feed the lumber to the machine wherein one side of the lumber must be facing the bed. There are a few rollers which you can place on the front and rear side.
The lumber is fed to the machine by maintaining consistency. The cutter head attached to the planer would be placed between the rollers with many knives attached.
The knives will do the planning work using the bars that are on the wood.
The first bar is known as the chip breaker that would not let the wood to tear out and the other bar equipped to the planer will not let the flush of the wood to fly rather would keep it on the feed bed. It is the planer that is highly for the woodworkers to use.
The thickness planer is quite easy for professionals and DIY users to use to perform woodworks. The setting of the planer has to done in a way that suits the wood you are going to plane. You must adjust the feed bed to the appropriate height so that just 1/16 inch of the wood will be planed when it is passed every time through the planer.
The majority of the thickness planers will come with the control wheel. You can adjust the wheel for setting the speed at which you have to move the wood through the cutter head. You must measure the thickness of the wood in the corners and surface the wood with 1/16 inches less than the thickness you need. This helps you attain thin ends.
When you push the wood into the machine, you should stand aside. The wood must have support to make sure that the weight would not push the surface towards the cutter head. When the machine has made the wood plane to half extent, you would have to plane the wood on the other side.
Planer Thin lumber
The carrier board that you must use to plane the thin lumber must be like a layer of plywood that is three-quarter in its thickness. The plywood you are using must be longer than the wood that you are going to the plane.
Choosing the right type of planer
With many types of planers, you must select the right one that is designed to carry out all the wood tasks you would want to perform. The latest models that are available in the market are portable, lightweight, and compact. The DIY users must spend a small amount to buy the basic model of the planer. These machines would be able to handle the lumber that is of 13 inches in width. If you want a smooth surface of the wood, you must choose the thickness planer.
Setting up the planer
The majority of thickness planers that are available in the market are easy to set up in the small workshops as these occupy very less amount of space. When you choose a model, you must install the planer closer to the power outlet. This avoids the wire entangling in the workshop and reduces the number of accidents. You must connect to the outlet instead of using the extension cords, which again give rise to the potential hazards.
There should be ample space on either side of the planer so that you can feed the stock with ease. The base where you are placing the planer must be rigid and free from slipperiness. You can feed the wood into the machine and make a fine wooden plank that is ready to use in the woodworks. There are different types of woods you can turn into a plane surface such as cedar, mahogany, and so on.
What to look while buying the thickness planer?
There is a lot of research that a woodworker must do before buying the best thickness planer that fulfills their needs. You must first determine the features that you want in the planer. A few key factors such as thickness you want to cut, quality of planer, motor, and so on must be considered when choosing the quality one.
As you are spending the right amount of money on the planer, you must buy the one that is durable, portable and delivers excellent performance.
Size of the planer
It is the vital factor to consider when you are planning to buy a thickness planer for your workshop or home. You must buy the planer that fits in your workshop with ease, especially if you have a space crunch.
Before buying, you must know the workshop dimensions. This helps you to buy the perfect sized planer that won’t cram the workshop. There should be some space around the planer where you place it for walking freely.
The efficiency of the tool depends on the motor. If you are looking for the thickness planer that can cut any type of wood, be it the pinewood or hard oak, you must look for the motor that rotates at high speed.
There are two different types of motors with which the thickness planers run. One is the electric induction motor, and the other is the universal electric motor. The planer equipped with the induction motor is durable, robust, and heavy. It is perfect to be used in workshops or industries.
The planer with a universal motor is lightweight. The planers that are cost-effective would have university motors. However, you cannot use this type of planer for cutting hardwood, so you must buy the planer that is equipped with an inductor motor. It can cut all kinds of woods.
The other critical factor that you must consider when you are planning to buy a thickness planer is the noise that is produced from the planer when you are working. There is always a huge noise produced in the wood workshops.
The professional woodworkers are used to the sound, but it would be annoying for the people in the surroundings of the workshop. However, there are a few models of thickness planers that produce lesser noise compared to others.
The thickness planers that produce lesser noise would not have the capability to cut denser woods. If you want to do DIY tasks, you can buy the planer that produces lesser noise.
The range of the thickness planer would be from USD 250 to USD 1000. However, the one you want to choose depends on the work you are carrying. It does not mean that the costlier one would be of superior quality. You must invest in the one that meets your requirements rather than buying the model that has many bells and whistles, which you do not use and need.
The planner that is made of sturdy material would allow you to work with wood continuously. It performs at its best even when there is vibration. You must buy the thickness planers that are made using heavy-duty materials.
Size of the table
When you buy the buyer, you also get the table. Many models of thickness planer would allow you to cut the wood up to 15 inches thick. This area is enough to complete the basic wood projects. You must buy the planer that can accommodate the wooden boards more than 20 inches.
Be it you are professional or a person who likes to make things with wood, you must buy the thickness planer that can handle your size projects with ease.
Type of work
You would need a thickness planer that plane the wood. The kind of work you want to do would determine the model of thickness planer you must buy. If you want to cut or plane hardwoods, you must buy the thickness planer that is stronger.
Woodworkers can’t work with manual wood planers. When they use the thickness planers, they can save a lot of time on doing the wood-related tasks. Though the price of the thickness planer is high compared to the manual ones, it also comes with top safety.
Depth of the cut
The planer will cut in different depths and lengths. The thickness planer would cut the wood up to a certain depth for each pass. The measurement would range from 0.04 to 0.12 inches. If the cutting depth is less than 0.4 to 0.8, you must pass the wood several times through the planer to cut the appropriate depth you want. If you are carrying out smaller tasks, you would need to buy the planer that can cut the depth up to 12.5 inches.
Knife cutter head
You can cut the wood precisely and to the appropriate length with the help of a knife cutter head. It is another vital factor to consider when you are planning to buy a thickness planer. Many models of thickness planers would have three knife cutting heads, while a few will have two knives.
You must purchase the tool which has many knives as it is reliable to cut and would do the job efficiently. The tool that you are purchasing must allow you to change the blunt knife without much hassle.
Dust collection bag
You must buy the thickness planer that is equipped with the dust collection bag. There is a lot of sawdust that is generated when you are working with the planer. You can keep the workshop safe and less harmful for the workers by having the dust collection bag which collects the dust at one place without scattering in the workshop.
There are many chips generated. The integrated fans to the planner will suck the chips from the cutter head.
There would be 2 to 5 blades on a planer. The higher would be the number of blades; the more comfortable it would be your job. If the stroke count is high, you can cut the wood smoothly.
You must look for the thickness planers that are equipped with carbide steel knives. These are the superior quality knives that allow you to perform the cutting job quickly. You must buy the knives that serve your purpose.
If you want to use a planer along with the jointer, you must buy the thickness planer that can perform these two jobs. The multipurpose tool will reduce your expenses.
Thickness and width
The thickness is the thickness that the planer would be able to accommodate it. If you are working with the rough wood, you would need to buy a planer that is lightweight and is perfect for industrial use.
If you are working on a smaller woodwork project, you would need to buy a portable planer that requires enough thickness capacity. The depth stops must be equipped on the planer so that you set the machine to appropriate width so that you do not have to stop the tool time and again for measuring.
It is another critical factor to consider when you are buying a thickness planer. It tells you how briskly the planer with fed the materials. There are two different types of blade speeds you get. The first is the fixed type of speed where the thickness planer would run at a single speed, and the other type of planer would run at different speeds.
You can adjust the speed as per your job requirement. You can buy the second one that comes with variable speed. It allows you to adjust the speed with which you are comfortable to execute the woodwork project. If at all you have to plane many wood logs in a short period, you must buy the planer with high blade speed.
If you are new in using this tool, you should buy the planer at a lower speed.
Here are a few maintenance tips you must follow to improve the longevity of the thickness planer. When you maintain it properly, it also helps you to improve the efficiency of planing the wood.
- Use the planer by following all the safety precautions to keep the accident at bay. You must wear ear and eye protection while you are making the plane wood.
- Use a dust mask to avoid inhaling the sawdust that is produced while carrying out the woodwork using the planer.
- Make sure that the workspace in your workshop is illuminated.
- Ensure that the knife is set for the depth and clearance precisely.
- Lubricate the equipment regularly to make them work smoothly and for a long time.
- Ensure that the knives that you are using in the planer are sharp and balanced to carry out the job quickly and smoothly with unmatched precision.
- Ensure that there is ample clearance for the stock that you are going to use for the woodwork project.
- Use the downward force to keep cutter head from forcefully pulling the stock that is held in your hands.
- Work at a slow place and methodically with the planer to avoid putting your life at risk.
- Keep the workspace free from dust and debris.
- Do not turn the machine when there is wood material on the feed bed.
Buying a thickness planer is overwhelming and exhausting for professional and DIY users. However, our guide will help you select the right one that fits in your needs and budget. We have listed five best thickness planers with pros and cons. Out of all, DEWALT Thickness Planer, Two Speed, is found to be the best choice.
The thickness planer handles all types of woods. It is powerful and delivers the best performance. The three blades, a high-speed knife with a powerful motor, gives a smooth finishing. The blades of the thickness planer are sharp and durable. By using this, you can carry out all types of woodworking projects smoothly.