Who makes a good thickness planer? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
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Who makes a good thickness planer?

I can only find reviews on benchtop planers. Every review recommends the DeWalt DW735. However, I read some individual's reviews at Amazon that were less than complimentary. On the other hand, a few individuals gave reviews on floor standing models from Shop Fox, Jet, and Powermatic. All recommeded a floor standing model over a bench model. The DeWalt DW735 isn't cheap, when you factor in the "optional" infeed and outfeed tables. I'd like some recommendations on bench vs. floor and on good floor standing units. My budget is in the $1000-2000 range. Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 03:21 AM
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First, take the reviews on places like Amazon with a bit of caution. I have seen exchanges on other forums where guys regarded posting bad reviews on some of those sites as a kind of sport. Look more at the overall tone of the reviews in total, not just a few. I think that way the 735 still comes out on top in the benchtop category.
That said, I have been through several benchtop planers and have moved up to a floor model. I use the Powermatic 15HH with the Byrd head in my shop. I have reviews of that and several other floor models (and more benchtops) at the link below if more info will help.

Planer Reviews
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post #3 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 05:17 AM
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I have a 15" Jet

Like this:http://www.southern-tool.com/store/15_jet_planer.html
or from Sears: http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...=21-81942444-2 It produces a great surface, has plenty of power and is easy to adjust. I have a few others, but this is my go to planer for most work. I have the straight blades, but probably would get the spiral cutter head if I were to purchase a new one. More $$$, but it depends on the type of work you do and if you have a thickness/drum sander for figured work. bill

There is no charge for the free advice, but you get what you pay for ... just sayin'

Last edited by woodnthings; 10-22-2010 at 05:21 AM.
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post #4 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 09:52 AM
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Going this afternoon to pickup a new RIGID Benchtop Planer however if I had the working budget you list I would be looking at either a Powermatic or Grizzly Floor model. I am only getting this one because I let all the smoke out of my old one last weekend and it is now locked up. Was trying to save for a 735 but necessity sometimes overrules what you want to do. BTY Amazon lists the 735 with the infeed and outfeed tables and a spare set of blades on special for about $20 more than the bare unit.
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post #5 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T H Huxley View Post
I can only find reviews on benchtop planers. Every review recommends the DeWalt DW735. However, I read some individual's reviews at Amazon that were less than complimentary. On the other hand, a few individuals gave reviews on floor standing models from Shop Fox, Jet, and Powermatic. All recommeded a floor standing model over a bench model. The DeWalt DW735 isn't cheap, when you factor in the "optional" infeed and outfeed tables. I'd like some recommendations on bench vs. floor and on good floor standing units. My budget is in the $1000-2000 range. Thanks in advance.
I have the ridgid planer and 6" jointer. Both are very good out of the box. You can buy those for a lot less than the big name brand's. Which will not do any more . I use mine every day to plain and join. These are around 5 yrs old if i remember . I haven't had any problum with eather. These are double edge blade's . 2 blade cut. I find it work's for me. I toutch up the edge's of the blade's with a sanding block with 1000 grit wet and dry paper that is what was on hand. I take a sharpe pin and color the blade so it is like black. Now take the sanding block and go across the blade tell the black is gone. Be careful and don't let the blade get you. I have 3 set's of knives and haven't had to take them to a sharpner yet. the planer number is R4330. and jointer number is JP0610
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post #6 of 25 Old 10-22-2010, 11:30 PM
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I have a DeWalt 733 and frequently use a DeWalt 735, a very old 20" Oliver and an even older 24" (?) Oliver.

Obviously the Oliver floor models are superior. I do avoid using the 735 because it is so noisy. Even with Peltor muffs it is rather annoying after a few minutes.

If you can find a used Oliver, go for it! (I'm not sure about the newer Oliver machines.) Grizzly has some good planers. Try to pick one that is made in an ISO 9001 (9002?) factory. I have a band saw that came out of that factory that is superb.

You will find some convertibles, jointer/planer. They are good machines but inconvenient to change between operations.

Use the right tool for the job.

Rich (Tilting right)
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Remember that when we have the "BIG ONE" everything east of the Rockies falls into the ocean.
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post #7 of 25 Old 10-23-2010, 09:55 AM
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my work shop has a planer with a helical head, home shop has the standard long straight blade head. if you can afford it, the helical head system is miles ahead of straight blade systems.
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post #8 of 25 Old 10-23-2010, 12:43 PM
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i have the 735 and love it. the loudness doesnt bother me, and my neibors havent complained yet.
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post #9 of 25 Old 10-25-2010, 06:34 PM
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And if you're on a huge budget, I just picked up a 15" Delta with an extra full set of new amana solid carbide knives for $450 from craigslist. I thought it was a good deal cause the knives are worth that much. I may have to sell it though considering it's wider than my door frame (3 of them) to get to my shop in the basement. And it's 220 volt and the only hookup is in my shop. So my options are either,
1) Hire an electrician to hook 220 in my garage
$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$,
2) take the thing apart and reassemble
3) remove the jambs and hope I never move.
4) make up a 50ft extension cord.
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post #10 of 25 Old 10-25-2010, 07:15 PM
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Look at it this way...

You saved a ton of money on a good planer. An electrician should not charge more than 2 hrs labor, if that and materials the wire and outlet and box. You can mount the box run the wire and let him do the hook up and save even more $$$.

Your other option, remove the door frames, is not good.

Disassemble will be OK, cheapest, most work on your behalf.
If you throw out your back it may be the most expensive. I have moved planers, 450 lbs and up using a chainfall and a dolly. Murphy's Law and gravity are big here. bill

There is no charge for the free advice, but you get what you pay for ... just sayin'

Last edited by woodnthings; 10-25-2010 at 07:22 PM.
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post #11 of 25 Old 10-25-2010, 10:40 PM
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I have a DeWALT 735 and dont have problems with the noise, I purchased it off amazon I find they have really great prices and their free delivery on orders over $100 is amazing haha.

I agree with bill it shouldnt cost too much to have an electrician fix ya up

For all you Fein Multimaster Owners I have found a website with great info and prices on Fein Multimaster Blades

Looking for a new Dewalt Compressor?
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post #12 of 25 Old 11-18-2010, 09:19 PM Thread Starter
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I'm looking at Craigslist to try to find a bargain. None yet. I did see a new post for a brand new Powermatic PM2000 (1 ph, 3 hp) table saw for the astonishing price of $1250. I was pretty sure this was going to be a scam. I emailed them, and they emailed back on 10/17 and gave me a web site (MyHomeClearanceDepot.com). I did a search and found out that the domain name was created on 11/16. The web site wasn't very professional and they were clearly trying to steer the buyer into making a payment using Green Dot MoneyPak, which is pretty much the same as sending them cash. I called the state consumer protection agency to report this, but I didn't talk to an investigator. I gave all this information and more to the person answering the phone. She didn't know what Green Dot MoneyPak was, and I'm not sure she believed it was a scam. Anyway, I thought they could be proactive, but, instead, they might be getting complaints in two weeks when this scam has moved somewhere else under a different name.

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post #13 of 25 Old 11-18-2010, 11:26 PM
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I've had a collection of planers. I owned a custom cabinet shop for 20 years. Now I have a home shop. The best planer I ever owned was a Northfield 24". Next was an Oliver 24". The worst was an 18" Delta. I even had a Yates American, and a Newman single 24.

Now I have a Makita 12", a Powermatic 15", a Woodmaster 18", and a 37" SCMI widebelt for abrasive planing. I like them all. I do different things with them all. If I'm making toys I use the Makita. If I want something perfect with no chips, snipe, or tear out, I go to the sander every time.

Click on the link to see a picture of the Sioux River falls near my home.
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Eastern South Dakota is very pretty with hills, rivers, and trees.
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post #14 of 25 Old 11-19-2010, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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Another scam?

In restarting my woodworking hobby, I seem to keep finding scams. I bought a table saw on ebay. It was one of those "buy it now" items. I went to check out, but I couldn't get past the fist page of the form, so I called the help number. The woman who answered was trying to help me through the form. She mentioned the price. I said "No, you have it on ebay for $1000 less." She said "I'll talk to someone in sales". After 10 minutes, she got back on the line and said it would take some time to resolve the problem. I refreshed the ebay page, and then it went up a $1000. I said "It went up $1000 while you were gone." She acted completely surprised. I made a PDF of the checkout form and the original ebay web page that I had open on another computer, both with the original price. Also, ebay sent me two emails with the original price. Apparently, you can't talk to anyone on the phone at ebay. So I did the "chat". I was rather shocked by it. They knew the price was raised $1000 after the deal was done. They suggested I cancel the order. I wrote "You have the evidence that the price was raised $1000 after the deal closed. I thought ebay was a reputable site that policed itself." Apparently not. The rest of the "chat" just got more ridiculous. At the end he wrote ". . . and welcome to the ebay family". Nobody got my credit card number, but the seller still has lots of items for sale on ebay.

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post #15 of 25 Old 12-08-2010, 01:01 AM Thread Starter
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Bought a planer

I finally bought a thickness planer. I looked at buying an Oliver. That's an impressive piece of equipment, but even the used ones were well above my budget and I don't think I could get one in my basement. At your suggestions, I looked into getting a planer with a helical head. I settled on the Powermatic 15" Planer, with Byrd SHELIX Helical Cutterhead. It was more than I wanted to pay, but I should get years of service from it. From what I read, this planer might be a little underpowered for professionals, but it should be great for my purposes. The guy who delivered it told me he was looking into buying one. He was a smart guy who seemed to know what he was talking about. I was wondering how I'd get it in my basement. I found a Lectro Truck on Craig's list for $500. It seemed to be in good working order, so I bought it. Now two people at work already want to borrow it to move things to their basements. That's fine with me, it looks like its built to last.
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post #16 of 25 Old 12-08-2010, 03:08 AM
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Quote:
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..... The worst was an 18" Delta....

What didn't you like about the Delta? I'm assuming it was the wedge bed. I thought those were pretty bullet-proof?
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post #17 of 25 Old 12-08-2010, 11:13 PM Thread Starter
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The Delta

I didn't buy the Delta because someone in another thread (worst tool) mentioned that he thought that, other than the Unisaw, Delta's quality control had declined recently. I saw similar comments elsewhere. I looked for a used Delta on Craig's list, like hansmike, and on online auctions, but there were none within a 150 miles of where I live. And thintz liked the Powermatic, so I read up on it, and saw favorable comments on other web sites. In one review, a criticism was that it was a little underpowered, but overall the reviewer liked it. The guy who delivered the Powermatic delivers woodworking equipment of all brands. One of the reasons he was considering a Powermatic was that none had been returned recently, so I felt better about it once I heard that.

Last edited by T H Huxley; 12-09-2010 at 12:49 AM.
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post #18 of 25 Old 12-09-2010, 12:22 PM
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Let's address this logically.

On Amazon there are reviewers that give good, honest reviews, reviewers that fluff stuff due to some sort of interest in the product, usually financial, and some reviewers that slam products because they have a vested interest in the competition, usually financial. Take those reviews for what they are worth..

The biggest issue you are going to run into with a planer, bench or floor model, is snipe. It is sort of the nature of the beast. Cutter head locks, and infeed / outfeed tables go a long way to reducing, or even eliminating the problem, but they aren't perfect.

The price range you list is some big bucks for a planer, so I am wondering if you are looking to do production type work, or if you are a home hobbyist. There is no need to buy a $2K industrial planer that will last several lifetimes of hobby work, when a $500.00 bench top planer does as good of a job, with a much smaller footprint in your shop.

So the bigger question is. What are your requirements beyond budget? What is best for one guys shop isn't for the next.

I mean for me, I feel blessed to have my little Ryobi planer. It's not the best on the planet, but it's the best I could afford at the time, and it sure has been a workhorse! A guy trying to run 100s of board feet through a day would quickly break this little thing though...

Interested in my woodworking, workshop and whatnot? See http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com, want to see my other interests such as hunting, fishing, off roading, and camping? See http://wildersport-outdoors.blogspot.com
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post #19 of 25 Old 12-10-2010, 01:30 AM Thread Starter
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Reason for the Powermatic

You're correct. Any cost-benefit analysis would probably tell me to go with a bench top planer, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I’m pretty frugal in most aspects of my life. Right now, I have one hobby and it doesn’t cost much, beyond the initial investment. I have friends who spend significant amounts of money fixing up classic cars, and I have one friend who spent an astounding amount on a new kitchen. I’ve never had the car bug, and I could outfit a shop several times over for the cost of that kitchen. In a former life, I worked on a framing crew, and caught the woodworking bug that way. I've always liked machinery, ranging from circular saws to tractors. So the Powermatic wasn’t necessary, but, for me, it’ll be a joy to use, and I guess it’s my version of a sports car.

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post #20 of 25 Old 12-10-2010, 01:59 PM
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Well, there's certainly no arguing with your logic. Very well presented! You got yourself a topnotch planer that should give you a lifetime of work. Good luck with it and we're looking forward to seeing some of your projects.
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