Hand planers...? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
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Default Hand planers...?

Hello again everybody...been lurking recently but would appreciate your opinions on 3 1/4 in electric hand planers...

Are they one of those tools that you didn't know you needed until you got one...?

I used one helping a friend repair his teak swim platform and I'm guessing I would have done a lot of sanding otherwise...or sharpened my "planer de manual"...

Anybody out there use one for those odd jobs...?

Thanks in advance...and don't forget man's shopping day is next week...Happy Fathers Day...

Nick
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 07:00 PM
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I have an inexpensive one and it is a "rough and ready" type tool. For removing lots of wood it's OK but I put it away when I want precision. Then I take out the hand planes. Depending on your needs a belt sander might be an alternative. Much easier to manage the amount removed by changing the grit of paper.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 09:39 PM
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I use an inexpensive one for rough forming and a higher quality one for doing things like beveling doors prior to hanging. The higher quality planers are easier to adjust and usually have a fence to help keep it square to the reference edge.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 10:11 PM
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I have one that I almost never use, as for what I do, it just doesn't offer any real precision. I used it once to shave down so doors after getting new flooring. Also most of those hand held planer have a single blade, which I can imagine that teak would cause it to go dull in no time. Have you considered a floor sander?

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 12:12 AM
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I'm in agreement...I've had a portable planer for probably 30 years(?) and have used it less than a 1/2 doz. times.
I can't even remember whose make it is...probably Makita, from back then.
I think there was an accessory stand available that you could buy if you wanted to use it upside down like a bench planer.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 05:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickp View Post
Hello again everybody...been lurking recently but would appreciate your opinions on 3 1/4 in electric hand planers...

Are they one of those tools that you didn't know you needed until you got one...?

I used one helping a friend repair his teak swim platform and I'm guessing I would have done a lot of sanding otherwise...or sharpened my "planer de manual"...

Anybody out there use one for those odd jobs...?

Thanks in advance...and don't forget man's shopping day is next week...Happy Fathers Day...

Nick
I have one made by Power Devil - cheap but it works. The main issue is ensuring that the blades can't move in the revolving holder and the sole plate is true and correctly adjusted.

One word of WARNING!!! Some years back, I had hired one of these devices and was using it to construct a deck for a customer, planing hand rails etc. I had been using it on its side, which is generally safe as long as you don't stand near the cutter and keep your hands on the handles. I had just finished a cut and let go the power switch, but VERY STUPIDLY went to grip the planer to lift it clear, by holding on to its side and I let my fingers stray down the sole plate and into the still revolving blades. Had the power still been on, I would have lost the top of at least one finger, but as it happens there was only sufficient kinetic energy to part slice into one finger. It gave me a hell of a fright, a short hospital visit and a lesson well learned. I will NEVER do that again.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 08:45 AM
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I have an old Skill that uses the same disposable blades as a Bosch. Blade changes are a breeze and I use it to take high spots out of framing lumber in walls. Will hog out a lot of wood, as evidenced by the huge pile of chips it will produce (it has zero provisions for chip/dust collection) and is a great rough work tool. No "Fine Woodworking" here! I have used it for years with no problems or issues.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 09:33 AM
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Hey Nickp! A planer will always 'one day' come in handy. I bought mine may years ago and in real terms have hardly used it. But when I have, it has been there waiting and grinning at me (Hah..told you you'd need me). Mine is a Makita and it is really good. Can't go past a Makita. So much easier than using a hand-planer, but some would say that you don't get the satisfaction. Just keep your fingers away from the blades!!

Andrew
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 07:41 PM
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I have an inexpensive one also, Harbor Freight. Seldom use it, but when I do it works like a charm, and generates lots of noise, chips, sawdust. Wonderful fun. But you have to be cautious, they'll take off a lot more wood than you'd expect. Like has been said, NOT for precision woodworking, but very handy regardless.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 07:43 PM
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I've had a Makita for 20 years or so. I used it to build a house. I used rough 2 x 10s for floor joists and it was a great help at evening them out, one to the next. It was a major remodel so from time to time I needed to make a wedge shaped fit and it was great for that too. And as Troy posted, it is very handy for shaving sides of doors to fit the hole they are supposed to go in.

If those are jobs that you will rarely ever do then it is probably a waste of money. You would be just as well off with a manual one picked up at a flea market. Those still work fine, you just have to learn how to sharpen which is transferable to chisels too which is something I use constantly. Many things can be fitted very precisely and fairly quickly with a really sharp chisel.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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