Carpentry

The Best Hand Planer [Our Reviews and Comparisons]

Hand planers (also called hand planes) are an essential tool for anyone who works with wood. They remove excess material, so you can shape wood, flatten out any uneven wood boards, or smooth them down to prepare them for varnish and other final touches. 

Aside from being versatile, hand planes aren’t as noisy as other power tools, and won’t create a lot of dust. That alone is a pretty good reason to invest in a good hand plane. We check out some of the most popular hand planes on Amazon, listing the pros and cons for each product. 

Table of Contents show

Comparison Table

PRODUCT FEATURES LATEST PRICE
1. WEN 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer
  • Weight: 6 lbs
  • Motor: 120 V, 60 Hz
  • 6-amp motor provides up to 34,000 cuts per minute
  • 16 positive stops enable cutting depth from 0 to 1/8 inches
  • Make rabbets up to 7/10 inch in size (rabbeting guide included)
  • Comes with a dust b
Check Price
2. Makita KP0810 Electric Hand Planer
  • Size: 11.42 x 6.61 x 6.93 inches
  • Weight: 7.3 pounds
  • Two-blade cutter head with 16, 000 RPM
  • Chip ejection can be directed to either side of the tool for convenience
  • Adjust depth in 0.1mm increments
  • No-load speed of 16,000 RPM
  • die-cast aluminum housing
  • Planer comes with blade gauge assembly, socket wrench, guide rule, depth guide, and blade set
Check Price
3. Bosch PL1632 6.5 Amp Hand Planer
  • High-quality blade
  • Power switch options for Continuous Use
  • Lightweight and easy to control
  • Guide fence prevents marring the door face
Check Price
4. Dewalt DW680K
  • High-speed, durable blade
  • Can adjust the depth of cutting
  • Easy to chamfer edges, make bevel channels, or make rabbets
  • Kit includes other accessories for more value for money
Check Price
5. DEWALT DCP580B 20V MAX Brushless Planer (Tool Only)
  • Considered one of the best cordless hand planers available
  • Capable of 32,000 cuts per minute
  • Can adjust the depth of the cut
  • Durable and high quality
Check Price
6.Stanley 12-220 Block Plane
  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Good quality for its price range
  • Good product warranty
Check Price
7. GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane
  • Alloy steel cutters
  • Fully adjustable for depth of cut
  • Machine-polished cast iron body
  • Dual wood handles
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty
Check Price
8. KAKURI Woodworking Japanese Block Plane
  • Size: 1.6 × 5.9 ×2.1 inches
  • Weight: 9.4 pounds
  • The blade is made of high-quality Japanese steel
  • English language instruction manual included
Check Price
9. Zenhausern Trade Mini Hand Planer (3-1/2 inch)
  • Size: 6.3 inches in total length, 4.3-inch blade
  • The rust-resistant blade is made of 04 stainless steel, and the surface is made of 65 manganese steel
  • Adjustable design lets you change the depth and alignment of the cutter
  • Ergonomic handle
Check Price

Get the “Plane” Facts: find the best hand planer for your needs and budget.

Our Best Hand Planer Reviews and Comparisons

1. WEN 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

This is one of the best hand planers for professional woodworkers and carpenters or serious hobbyists who want to take their work to the next level. It can quickly smooth out joints, uneven boards, crooked edges, and any chips and splinters.  In fact, it can do 34,000 cuts per minute—we don’t know if we should call this a hand plane, or a hand jet.

Along with speed, you get precision. It has 16 positive stops, which you can adjust in small increments of 1/128 inches. It even has a chamfer groove on the base plate, and the parallel fence bracket helps you make straight cuts each time. Your work just got easier, faster, and more accurate! 

In one Amazon review, a novice woodworker who often made mistakes with other tools said that this helped him get perfectly smooth and even results.

The multi-directional dust chute lets you select where it ejects loose sawdust, and you can mount the dust bag to either side. However, the bag is very small and needs to be emptied often to prevent clogging.

FEATURES

  • Weight: 6 lbs
  • Motor: 120 V, 60 Hz
  • 6-amp motor provides up to 34,000 cuts per minute
  • 16 positive stops enable cutting depth from 0 to 1/8 inches
  • Make rabbets up to 7/10 inch in size (rabbeting guide included)
  • Comes with a dust bag, a kickstand, and a parallel fence bracket
  • two-year warranty

What We Like About The WEN 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer

One word: power. The combination of its sharp blade, versatile settings, and speed is ideal for both professionals. But even novice workers may want to invest in this—because, with those features, you’re guaranteed to get great results each time. Besides, you really can’t argue with a 4.5/5 Amazon rating and nearly 3,000 reviews!

What We Don’t Like About The WEN 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer

Nearly all the reviews mention that the dust bag is too small to be effective. The planer generates a lot of dust, so you need to clear it out often. Some users just end up removing the bag and “letting the chips fly.”

PROS

  • The sharp blade can cut through all kinds of wood
  • Very fast
  • Adjustable stops and other features allow very precise planning
  • Convenient clean-up
  • Ideal for professional or industrial use

CONS

  • The thickness level can’t be locked, so you have to be careful not to accidentally move it while you work
  • Dust chute is small and tends to clog easily

2. Makita KP0810 Electric Hand Planer

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

This powerful hand planer has very sharp double-edge carbide blades that can cut up to 3-1/4 inches wide, and 5/32″ deep in just one pass.

It’s also designed for convenient handling. Just turn the adjustment knob to adjust the depth by 0.1 mm increments. There are on and off buttons on each side of the handle, and you can set the direction of the chip ejection. You can even choose from different chamfering groove options ranging from 1.4 mm to 4 mm.

It’s not cheap, but consider it an investment. It will last through years of frequent and heavy-duty use. The planer head drum is encased in strong die-cast aluminum casting, with all ball-bearing construction.

FEATURES

  • Size: 11.42 x 6.61 x 6.93 inches
  • Weight: 7.3 pounds
  • Two-blade cutter head with 16, 000 RPM
  • Chip ejection can be directed to either side of the tool for convenience
  • Adjust depth in 0.1mm increments
  • No-load speed of 16,000 RPM
  • die-cast aluminum housing
  • Planer comes with blade gauge assembly, socket wrench, guide rule, depth guide, and blade set

What We Like About The MAKIT KP0810 Hand Planer

Hand planer reviews also say that it’s lighter than other products that offer the same features. It’s just 7.3 pounds, and you can comfortably control it with its rubberized front and rear handles. It also has good balance, and will let you keep a straight line without any trouble at all—even if you’re new to woodworking!

The blades are very sharp and very strong; users say that they didn’t have to replace them until after several years.

What We Don’t Like About The MAKITA KP0810 Hand Planer

However, you’ll have chips flying everywhere—users say it can throw it as far as five feet—so you need to invest in a vacuum attachment and protect your eyes with goggles. It can be noisy, too, so get ear protection.

Unfortunately, Makita accessories can be hard to find and the official website isn’t exactly user-friendly. Another user complained that it is difficult to find hoses that can adapt to it.

PROS

  • Light and easy to maneuver
  • Good balance
  • Convenient control buttons
  • Sharp and durable blades

CONS

  • Noisy
  • Messy – you may spend more time cleaning up chips and shavings than actually planing
  • Difficult to find accessories and replacement parts

3. Bosch PL1632 6.5 Amp Hand Planer

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

Hand planer reviews gave this product a solid 4.6/5, with one user saying: “I’ve tried many tools, but this is a powerhouse!’”

Pros like to use this for doors and uneven planks. Its powerful 6.5 AMP motor can rotate the cutter head at a whopping 16500 RPM.  It can work with any type of wood, and the counterbalance design always makes sure that the blade is always at the ideal cutting angle. For accuracy, the front and rear shoes are precision-machined together, and there’s a special groove for chamfering. The dual-mounted fence also makes it very easy to plane door edges.  

Like other Bosch tools, the hand planer has a lock-off button to prevent accidents, and a lock-on feature for steady, continuous operation. The grip is ergonomically designed to prevent fatigue and is encased with soft rubber for extra comfort. Between uses, you can set on a spring-loaded stand that protects the blades and your material. For easier clean-up, you can attach the dust port to a large shavings bag.

FEATURES

  • Weight: 6.3 pounds
  • Size: 15.25 x 7 x 7.5 inches
  • 6.5 AMPS and 16,500 RPM speed
  • Reversible micro grain carbide blade lasts up to 30% longer than standard carbide blades
  • Adjustable depth, with separate inch and metric scales
  • Dual-Mount Guide Fence prevents marring of door face
  • No-mar plastic overshoe for fence
  • Planer comes with a shavings bag, blade wrench, and spring-loaded stand
  • Ergonomically designed handle

What We Like About The  BOSCH PL1632 Hand Planer

Users are right—it is a powerhouse, thanks to its speed and the sharpness of its blade. You can work quickly and precisely, even on hardwoods.

It also has features that are particularly useful for carpenters and woodworkers. For example, the guide fence makes it easier to plane doors, and the Lock-On feature enables continuous planning with just one flip of a button.

It’s small and light, and ideal for carrying to off-site jobs or anything that doesn’t fit into other planers. One hand planer review called it “the best portable hand planer in the market.”

What We Don’t Like About The  BOSCH PL1632 Hand Planer

While users were generally happy with the planer’s performance, they didn’t like how the aluminum surface would get scratched easily – even from just wood! The dust bag also tends to get loose and send wood shavings spilling all over the place. In some cases, the dust chute would get completely clogged up.

Some professionals also say that it’s best for light use. You can bring it on the job, but for really hard or heavy-duty jobs they still prefer to get a more powerful model.

PROS

  • High-quality blade
  • Power switch options for Continuous Use
  • Lightweight and easy to control
  • Guide fence prevents marring the door face

CONS

  • Dust bag does not fit well
  • The surface is prone to scratches
  • Can’t be used for most heavy-duty projects

4. Dewalt DW680K

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

This hand planer is slightly cheaper than other electric planers of its size and capacity, but still got a high Amazon rating of 4.6/5. Its 7.0 AMP motor delivers a cutter speed of 15,000 RPM. It can work on even very hardwood and gives very smooth results with little effort. 

The reversible carbide blades can be switched around when the edge gets dull and can be resharpened too. You also have the option to buy accessory high-speed steel blades for straight edging, or other woodworking needs.

Get power and precision. Just twist the Calibrated Depth Adjustment Knob to your desired depth. The specially machined shoe also ensures that you get perfect rabbets each time, while front guides are handy for chamfering edges or bevel channels.

FEATURES

  • Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Size: 15.8 x 11.4 x 9.8 inches
  • 7.0 AMP Motor and 15,000 RPM speed
  • Adjustable depth of cut up to 3/32″
  • Poly-V belt lasts longer than other types of belt
  • 3 chamfer grooves
  • Accepts both high speed and reversible carbide blades
  • Hand planer comes with an edge guide, metal carrying kit, and 2 reversible carbide blades

What We Like About The DEWALT DW680K

This product combines power and convenient features with value for money. While it’s the same price (or even slightly cheaper) than similar models from other brands, it comes with a carrying kit and extra blades.  We also liked how it accepts different kinds of blades, for greater flexibility of use.

What We Don’t Like About The DEWALT DW680K

Unlike other electric hand planers, this doesn’t come with a dust bag. You’ll have to buy it as a separate accessory, which can add to the cost of the product. (On the other hand, hand planer reviews often say that the dust bags of other models are rarely effective, so they may not even have a stronger advantage over the Dewalt.)

PROS

  • High-speed, durable blade
  • Can adjust the depth of cutting
  • Easy to chamfer edges, make bevel channels, or make rabbets
  • Kit includes other accessories for more value for money

CONS

  • Heavier than other tools of the same capacity
  • Can only cut rabbits up to 1/8 inch
  • Does not come with a dust collector

5. DEWALT DCP580B 20V MAX Brushless Planer (Tool Only)

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

While you’re looking at the Dewalt range, you may want to check one of the most popular hand planers in the industry: the DEWALT DCP580B. It’s often named by architects, wood craftsmen, carpenters, and other pros in their list of tools they can’t live without,  namely because it’s one of the most powerful cordless hand planers today.  

It’s expensive, especially when you consider that you need to buy the battery and charger separately. But many people are willing to pay extra for its sheer performance and convenience. 

The brushless motor can give you 32,000 cuts per minute, and slice off up to 2 mm of material in just one stroke. Even if you’re working quickly, you still get straight lines because of the precision-machined front and back aluminum shoes. Speed and power – we’re all for it.

Many of its features – an adjustable depth of cut, fence guides, kickstand – are par for the course for hand planers of this price range. But the biggest winning feature is that it’s cordless, which gives you more flexibility of how and where you can use it.

FEATURES

  • Brushless motor capable of 32,000 cuts per minute
  • Calibrated depth adjustment up to 5/64″ (about 2 mm)
  • No-load speed of 15000 rpm
  • Poly-V drive belt is more durable than other belts
  • Planer comes with a guide fence, wrench, and kickstand that protects the blade and your work surface
  • Battery and charger not included

What We Like About The DEWALT DCP580B

This baby is fast and efficient, with hand planers even describing how it leaves wood “smooth, soft and with almost a glassy finish.” It doesn’t have a deep depth of cut as corded planers, but many people are willing to take a few extra swipes at the material to make up for its convenience of being cordless.

The exhaust tube is easy to hook to a vacuum, which works more efficiently than other tools that come with their own dust bags.

What We Don’t Like About The DEWALT DCP580B

While it’s one of the most powerful cordless hand planers, it still won’t match the power, speed, or cutting depth of a corded tool. That’s something to consider if that’s your primary shopping criteria.

And, of course, convenience does come at a price: it’s expensive, and you’ll need to spend even more for a battery and charger. If you don’t necessarily need a cordless hand planer, you may want to spend your money on a more powerful tool.

PROS

  • Considered one of the best cordless hand planers available
  • Capable of 32,000 cuts per minute
  • Can adjust the depth of the cut
  • Durable and high quality

CONS

  • High price
  • Limited power and depth of cutting compared to corded hand planers

 6. Stanley 12-220 Block Plane

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

Stanley is known for quality products, and this is their “basic” general-purpose plane. It’s sharp and has a sturdy cast-iron base that’s coated with epoxy to protect it from rust and corrosion. Even at an undeniably cheap price, this plane is high-quality and built to last.

Not surprisingly, this is one of Amazon’s best selling home improvement tools, and is actually the #1 in block planes. Amazon hand plane reviews gave it 4.4 stars. It’s ideal for crafts and light woodworking, and even pros with more powerful tools like to use it for quick jobs like trimming doors. 

The cutter has a 21° angle, which is actually perfect for cross-grain. You can manually adjust the blade for cutting depth and alignment.

FEATURES

  • Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Size: 7.7 x 4.4 x 2.1 inches
  • Machined sides
  • Manually adjustable cutter
  • Cast-iron base with rust-resistant epoxy coating
  • Limited lifetime warranty

What We Like About The STANLEY 12-220 Block Plane

Who said you had to pay a lot of money for a durable hand plane? This is very sturdy and comes with a good product warranty too. It doesn’t come with a lot of the features of the premium tools, but it works well. 

People say it’s a good “entry-level” tool if you’re not yet ready to spring for an expensive brand. Others buy it to bring to offsite work—it’s reliable, but you won’t feel bad if it gets lost.

What We Don’t Like About The STANLEY 12-220 Block Plane

You can’t really use it out of the box. You need to flatten the base or sole with sandpaper, and you have to sharpen the blade and set it up. You can find the tutorial videos on Youtube, so it’s pretty easy—just tedious.

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Good quality for its price range
  • Good product warranty

CONS

  • The blade and base needs to be finetuned before use
  • The blade adjustment knob can be stiff

7. GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

This is a great hand planer for flattening and thinning out wooden planks and surfaces. The alloy steel cutters have been hardened and tempered to make them sharper and more durable. It also has two wooden handles for a steadier grip and more control.

You can manually adjust the edge of the plane—both laterally or to deepen the cut. It’s quite easy to use, even if it’s your first time to work with a hand planer.

FEATURES

  • Alloy steel cutters
  • Fully adjustable for depth of cut
  • Machine-polished cast iron body
  • Dual wood handles
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty

What We Like About The GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane

Many hand planer reviews say that it’s a very durable product, especially when you consider its price. It costs as much as getting a replacement blade of the bigger brands – that’s how affordable it is! But if you spend enough time sharpening the GreatNeck’s blade and preparing its base, it can perform as well as other hand planers that are twice its price.

What We Don’t Like About The GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane

Just like other “budget” hand planers, you will need to spend some time preparing the blade and base. There are video tutorials that can help beginners, but prepare to get sandpaper and sweat it out for a while.  

PROS

  • Good quality at an affordable price
  • Cast iron body is sturdy and durable
  • Steel cutters are very sharp, as long as they are sharpened well
  • Good product warranty

CONS

  • Blade and base needs to be sharpened and finetuned before use
  • May not be able to handle some kinds of wood

8. KAKURI Woodworking Japanese Block Plane

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

The Kakuri pull plane is one of the highest-rated mini wood planers on Amazon, getting about 4.3/5 stars and about 800 reviews.

Unlike “Western” hand planes, the traditional Japanese pull plane works by pulling the plane towards you instead of pushing it downwards. It requires less energy, and you tend to apply force more evenly. The sharp blade also shaves wood very thinly, for very precise results and a really smooth finish.  

Kakuri is a well-trusted Japanese brand, made by craftsmen for craftsmen. They have been making carpentry tools for over 70 years, and every item—hand planes, chisels, tools—are handmade.  It has a razor-sharp blade, which can even be used on some types of hardwood. 

The wooden body is very durable but lightweight.

You can use this wood planer with one hand, and then adjust the depth by hitting it with a chisel. This is great for shaping wood, chamfering the corners, situations where you need to plane wood at an angle.  

FEATURES

  • Size: 1.6 × 5.9 ×2.1 inches
  • Weight: 9.4 pounds
  • The blade is made of high-quality Japanese steel
  • English language instruction manual included

What We Like About The Kakuri Woodworking Japanese Block Plane 

This is a great manual wood planer for people who want to do detailed work on relatively smaller projects. It can also appeal to the “Zen” mindset of working slowly and consciously on your craft, especially since the tool itself was handmade and draws on centuries of tradition.

What We Don’t Like About Kakuri Woodworking Japanese Block Plane 

Don’t get this if you need a hand planer that is fast, accurate, and easy to use. You will need some experience and skill to know how to adjust the depth, and you may find it too tiring or too slow for very large woodworking projects.

PROS

  • High quality at an affordable price
  • Ideal for detailed work
  • Does not require batteries
  • Light and can be used with one hand
  • Sharp blade

CONS

  • Difficult to adjust if you are a beginner carpenter
  • Takes longer to use, since you need to fit it properly
  • Can’t be used on some kinds of hardwood

9. Zenhausern Trade Mini Hand Planer (3-1/2 inch)

PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTS 

If you will only use a hand planer occasionally and don’t want anything too big or too expensive, then try this mini planer. It won’t crowd up your work area and is easy for even beginners to use. We like how it fits comfortably in your hand and is easy to maneuver. While it’s impractical for large surfaces, you can use it for smaller woodcraft projects like shelves or boxes.

The blade is about 4.3 inches and is made of 304 stainless steel. It resists rust and is fairly strong. It isn’t as sharp or as durable as more premium hand planers, and can’t really be used to flatten out very uneven boards, but you can use it for detailed shaping and finishing. 

FEATURES 

  • Size: 6.3 inches in total length, 4.3-inch blade
  • The rust-resistant blade is made of 04 stainless steel, and the surface is made of 65 manganese steel
  • Adjustable design lets you change the depth and alignment of the cutter
  • Ergonomic handle  

What We Like About  Zenhausern Trade Mini Hand Planer

This is a small, stylish-looking, and very affordable hand plane suited for small and simple woodwork projects. It’s ideal for someone who won’t use it often but may need it for crafts or simple home repairs or DIY projects. It also makes it a great gift! 

What We Don’t Like About Zenhausern Trade Mini Hand Planer

This is not sturdy or sharp enough for frequent or heavy-duty use. While you can adjust the angle and height of the blade through the nut and bolt, it’s imprecise.  

PROS

  • The price (and the stylish red color) makes it a perfect gift for crafters and weekend DIYers
  • Ergonomic handle design won’t strain the hands
  • Light and easy to carry
  • Ideal for small work areas
  • Very affordable price

CONS

  • Too small to use with large craft projects
  • Can’t be used to correct very uneven boards
  • Not as durable as other brands

Final Verdict

These are some of the best hand planers you can buy. But what kind of tool should you get? It depends on the kind of work you need to do. For professional work, you can’t go wrong with the WEN 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer or the Bosch PL1632 6.5 Amp Hand Planer. If convenience is important to you, consider the cordless Dewalt.

Unfortunately, power does come at a price — and in some cases, that price is over $100. That may make sense if you’re doing this professionally, or if this is a very serious passion and hobby that you’re willing to invest in. But for weekend crafters or simple home renovations, you can budget to buy more essential tools or materials.

But if you will only use the hand planer occasionally, or for very small projects, a manual hand planer will do the job. They’re more affordable, smaller, and easier for even beginners to use. You can get a good one for as low as $50, and you never have to worry about batteries. 

Well, those are the “plane” facts — find the best product for your needs.

0/5 (0 Reviews)
Author

Timberland Enthusiast Jan 1977 – Present Columbia, South Carolina Since graduating from law school I have worked in various capacities within the real estate, timber management, lumber production and pine straw harvesting markets in South Carolina. Newmark Grubb Wilson Kibler May 2016 – Dec 2020 Columbia, South Carolina Det Bowers joined Newmark Grubb Wilson Kibler in May of 2016. Prior to joining Wilson Kibler, Mr. Bowers served as a licensed attorney practicing in Federal, State and Municipal Courts. Other business involvements have included real estate development, retail development and operations, agribusiness, forestry products, outdoor advertising and insurance.

Write A Comment