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How to Buy a Benchtop Planer

10 min read


Benchtop Planers for DIYers Table

DIYers, a benchtop planer is essential for projects that require planed wood.

Here’s why:

Key Benefit Description
Efficiency Planers help eliminate tedious sanding and provide a smooth surface for woodworking projects.

| | Versatility | Planers can plane boards of both hard and soft woods, as well as perform other tasks such as mortising and rabbeting.

| | Durability | Most planers are built with metal parts for improved durability and a longer product life.

| | Cost Savings | Investing in a benchtop planer rather than hiring a contractor can help you save money and complete projects faster.


DIYers, a benchtop planer is a great tool for many types of projects.

Whether you’re a hobbyist looking to create a perfect woodworking project, or a pro wanting to save money and time, a planer is a must-have.

Defining the Benchtop Planer

A benchtop planer is a great tool for any serious woodworker.

It is a useful and powerful machine that is designed for precise cutting and shaping of wood pieces.

These planers come in either manual or motorized models and are usually smaller than stand-up planers.

They require a power source and can either be connected to a standard wall power outlet or powered by a battery.

Benchtop planers are great for small projects and can allow you to create smooth, even surfaces on your wood pieces.

They are also ideal for ripping, jointing, and sanding.

Benchtop planers can help to make woodworking much faster, easier, and more efficient.

Our Goal

Our goal is to help you understand benchtop planers and figure out the best option for your DIY projects.

Planers are a great tool to have around the house - they save time and make projects easier.

With the right planer, you can plane wood quickly and effectively, creating smooth surfaces and finishes.

We’ll show you how to select the right planer for your needs, and how to use it safely and efficiently.

We’ll also discuss the different features, parts, and types of benchtop planers, and how they differ.

We know that with the right information you’ll be ready to handle any DIY project!

What Sets Benchtop Planers Apart


Benchtop planers have some big advantages.

The first is their size - they’re much smaller than big-scale planers, so they’re easier to store and use in limited spaces.

Plus, they’re less expensive than full-size planers.

They’re also great for detailed jobs, like planing small pieces of wood.

It’s also simpler to adjust the settings on smaller planers than on their full-size counterparts.

Lastly, benchtop planers are lightweight and easy to move around, so you can bring them with you wherever you need them.

How Benchtop Planers Work

Benchtop planers are tools used for cutting and shaping wood.

They come with blades that cut along the top and bottom of the wood, as well as a long bed that the wood is put onto.

The planer’s motor rotates the blades, which cut into the wood and leave behind a smooth surface.

As the wood passes through the planer, the blades take off thin layers of material from the wood, which results in a precise, even surface.

With a benchtop planer, you can make precise changes to the size and shape of a workpiece, without having to do any sanding or other finishing work.

Features to Look For

When buying a benchtop planer, look for features such as motor power, depth adjustment abilities, bed size, and feed rate.

Make sure the motor is strong enough to handle the thickness of the wood.

Check the depth adjustment to make sure it’s accurate and easy to use.

Ensure the bed size is large enough to accommodate large pieces of wood.

Finally, compare the feed rate to make sure it’s suitable for your needs.

All of these features are important, so research them carefully before making a purchase.

When to Use a Benchtop Planer

Common Applications

Benchtop planers are great tools to use when you need to finish off larger pieces of wood.

They can be used to level rough surfaces, even out warped boards, and add a professional finish.

Some of the most common applications of benchtop planers include trimming doors and cabinets, sanding rough lumber, and creating tongue and groove joints.

These tools also make it easier to join multiple pieces of wood together.

Benchtop planers can also be used to make custom trims and edgings for any type of woodworking project.

Furthermore, these planers can be used to cut intricate patterns as well.

With a benchtop planer, you can finish any woodworking project with a smooth, professional finish.

Benchtop Planers In Your Workshop

Are you looking to add more versatility to your workshop? If so, consider a benchtop planer.

This essential tool can substitute for, or be used in combination with, other common workshop items.

A benchtop planer allows you to surfacer wood to the exact dimensions of your project, opening up your capabilities to handle a variety of tasks.

A benchtop planer also serves as an alternative to sanding for removing stock from boards.

So if you need finer and more efficient cuts in your workshop, invest in a benchtop planer and take your routing to the next level.

Techniques and Tips

When using a benchtop planer, it’s important to keep safety in mind.

Always wear safety goggles and ear protection.

Before use, check the blades for any signs of damage or wear and be sure to read the instruction manual prior to operating the machine.

To ensure the best results, planers should be used to machine dry wood and slow feed speeds should be used.

It’s also important to keep the workpiece level and make sure not to over-feed the workpiece, as that may cause damage to your planer.

To get the most accurate results and prevent kickback, use the infeed roller against the piece while feeding.

Finally, always remember to clean the planer’s in-feed and out-feed rollers after every use.

What To Look For In A Benchtop Planer

Benchtop Planer Options

When choosing a benchtop planer, it’s important to think about how you will use it.

Will you be planing only thin boards, or wider boards? What types of wood will you be working with? Are you planing rough lumber or more finished pieces? These are all important questions to consider when buying a benchtop planer.

For woodworking projects that require more precision, consider a spiral cutterhead planer.

This type of planer produces cleaner cuts than a standard two-knife cutterhead planer.

It also helps prevent snipe from occurring, which is a common problem with regular cutterhead planers.

For those using the planer mostly for small pieces of wood, a combination planer/jointer could be the best choice.

It is a single machine, so it takes up less space than having two separate tools.

It also allows the user to plane and joint boards in one pass, making it a time-saver.

No matter what type of benchtop planer you decide to buy, it is important to make sure it has the necessary power and features to get the job done.

Doing your research beforehand will ensure you buy the right tool for your projects.

Choosing the Right Benchtop Planer

It’s important to think about what you need when you’re choosing a benchtop planer.

Think about the size of the boards you’ll be planeing, the type of wood you’ll be working with and how much power you need from the planer.

If your boards will be wide, make sure the planer is wide enough.

You also want to decide whether a manual or powered feed would work better for your project.

Consider buying a floor stand and wheels for your planer if you plan on using it away from your workbench.

And make sure you look for a planer with a good warranty and helpful customer service.

All these factors should help you make the best decision when you’re ready to buy a benchtop planer.

Brand Reliability

When it comes to finding a reliable benchtop planer with quality and durability, a few brands stand out.

The Dewalt DW734 is a 12” planer that is very well known for its heavy duty construction, making it a great option for those needing to handle big projects.

The Makita 2012NB is also a good choice for those wanting a high-quality planer.

On the more budget-friendly side, the WEN 6550 is a great option with its 15-amp motor and two-blade system.

Hitachi is also highly recommended for their Powermatic 15 planer which is designed to tackle thick pieces of wood with no issue.

No matter what kind of benchtop planer you may be looking for, there are brands out there that are sure to meet the quality and durability standards you desire.

Safety Measures and Precautions


Troubleshooting benchtop planers can be tricky! If the cutting blades are snagging on the wood, it’s likely that the blades need to be replaced.

If the blades are chipped, dull, or cracked, they need to be sharpened or replaced.

Make sure the blades are properly aligned and secured and the material being cut is flat.

Uneven cutting may be due to incorrect blade angle, incorrect blade depth or bent blades.

If planer won’t turn on, check if the power cord is plugged in or if the power switch is set to On.

Problems with inaccurate wood thickness could mean the feed table needs to be adjusted for better accuracy.

Maintenance and Upkeep

Since a benchtop planer has a lot of intricate components, it’s important to keep up with its regular maintenance.

Before each use, check the blades, feed rollers, and any other critical parts for signs of wear and tear.

You should lubricate the blades and all other moving parts regularly.

Additionally, loosen and adjust the blades after every 10 cords of lumber.

Lastly, make sure you always clean the benchtop planer after each use to keep it free from sawdust and other debris.

Following these tips will help keep your benchtop planer running smoothly and help you get the job done.

Staying Safe

When operating a benchtop planer, it’s important to take safety precautions to avoid injury.

Start by wearing protective gear like safety glasses, goggles, and gloves to protect hands and eyes from wood chips.

Make sure to read and understand directions carefully before using the power tool and never wear loose clothing or jewelry.

If any part of the planer is damaged or malfunctioning, do not use it and have it serviced by a qualified technician.

It’s important to keep the work area clean and neat to avoid any tripping or slipping.

Make sure to keep small children and pets away from the planer and unplug it when not in use.


Buying Your Benchtop Planer

When you are ready to buy a benchtop planer, it is important to consider a few key items.

Firstly, you should think about the size and type of planer you need.

Depending on the kind of carpentry jobs you plan to do, you may need a bigger machine or a smaller one.

Secondly, you must think about how much power you need.

If you plan to handle large boards, you will need a more powerful machine.

Thirdly, your budget should be taken into consideration - determine how much you are willing to spend.

Lastly, consider your storage space.

Some planers are bigger than others, so make sure you leave yourself enough room for storage.

Following these guidelines when purchasing your benchtop planer will help ensure you get a machine that suits your DIY needs.

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