Wood has always been one of the most precious elements for almost all civilizations. Even in the modern era where concrete has taken over, wood is still popular when it comes to making furniture. In order to create different furniture, people use various tools and one of those tools is a planer. So what is a Planer? Well, as we said, it’s a tool. You can use planers to shave wood from the surface of the wood. In order to make perfect furniture, this is an important tool to have.
Uses of planers
So what is the job of a planer? What can you do with it?
To be honest, it’s no rocket science. You can easily guess what it can do. If you want to make a rough surface smooth or reduce the thickness of the wood, then this is the tool that can help you out.
Types of planers
There are so many different types of planers. Depending on the power source or Production material, there are so many different types of planers. So we are not going to discuss all of them. We will talk about some of the most popular and used ones.
According to power source, there are two types of planers- Manual Planer and Electric Planer
Manual planers are just simple planers where you need the force of your hand to do the job.
There are different types of manual planers out there. Let’s talk about them for a bit-
- Hand Planers
Among many manual planers, there are hand planers which are probably the oldest ones out there. These tools have sharpened metal blade, attached to a steady body. Using it can be a bit difficult because you need to use a lot of force to make the rough surface smooth.
You also have spokeshaves that have two handles. These are easier to use because you can put more muscle force behind them. These are useful if you need to work with chair legs, arrows, or bows
- Edged wood hand planers
If you are a DIY enthusiast, then this is the tool for you. It’s a small yet effective tool. The main body of this tool is made of wood and in the center, it has a hole. Here you’ll see a steel blade that does all the work.
- Surform Plane
This tool is extremely useful and popular too. It kind of looks like a food grater. People usually use it to reduce the thickness of the wood. You can also use it to shape the edge
Just by hearing the name, you can guess that it is run by electricity which means you won’t have to use your muscle power that much. As a result, working with it is extremely easy.
Just like manual planers, There are many different types of electric planers. So let’s discuss more-
- Handheld Planer
Handheld planers are extremely useful if you want to work on big projects. Basically, it’s similar to a hand planer. The only difference is that it has been modernized.
- Benchtop Planer
Also known as a portable thickness planer, a benchtop planer is one of the most popular electric planers out there. For professionals, this is a must-have tool and you need to have the skill to use it. With a benchtop planer, you can trim uneven wood reduce its thickness and make it useable. But what makes it great is its convenience. Of all the electric planers, this is probably the easiest tool to use.
- Molding Planer
Molding planer is perfect if you want to create a beautiful design on wood. More often than not it is used on hardwood. it’s not necessarily a heavy-duty machine but it does the job.
- Stationary Planer
If you are a full-time professional who needs to work with different types of wood every day, then this is the planer for you. It’s a heavy-duty machine and usually, you’ll need a large space to keep it.
So these are some of the different types of planers. There are a lot of other planers that we have not talked about. In fact, it’s not really possible to talk about all of them. So we just talked about some of the most popular ones.
Do You need a planer?
If you have no interest in woodworking projects, then why should you even bother to buy a planer? It will be a big waste. So don’t buy something if you have no desire to use it regularly. if you are a DIY guy, then it won’t be a bad idea to have one. But don’t go for the most expensive one. Just buy something simple and affordable. Lastly, if you are a professional, then you must have one.
Is a planer “ABSOLUTELY” necessary for a professional?
Well, you actually can replace a planer. There are tools that can do the job of a planer. For example, you can use a table saw. It’s a good tool if you need to plane a big board. You can also use a router.
Having said that none of these tools will be as efficient as the planer. Yeah sure, they will get the job done but that won’t be the most professional way to do it. The surface won’t be perfectly smooth. You may need to use sandpaper to do the rest of the work. Eventually, you may get what you want but you’ll need to put in a lot of effort.
At the end of the day, it’s difficult to replace a planer.
So these are some of the things you need to know about a planer. Every woodworking project needs some basic tools and a planer is one of them. At the end of the day, a good planer is essential for any woodworking project. So make sure to spend a decent amount of money on it.