If your business regularly purchases wood that is rough or uneven, then a good planer thicknesser is an important piece of kit.
It will make the wood even without having to spend hours sanding it down or hand planing it.
A machine that is both a planer and a thicknesser is so handy when space is at a premium, as it generally is in small workshops. And buying a machine that has both functions in one provides better value for money than buying each separately.
However it’s an expensive piece of kit, usually costing above £300, so you want to ensure you get a good one.
Coming up we have product reviews of some really good planer thicknessers, and following that we have a buying guide for you which walks you through the different matters you might like to think about before making your purchase.
And that’s not all, we also have a brief section where we attempt to answer some of your most frequently asked questions.
This planer thicknesser from Silverstorm 344944 is an absolute bargain, coming in (on Amazon at least) at under £300. And from a good brand too. Silverstorm has been in business selling a range of power tools for over 90 years.
It’s a compact little machine that sits atop your work bench for use. It’s powerful though, taking 230 volts, to run it’s two reversible HSS blades, which operate at a fast 12000rpm.
The planer depth is 2mm while it’s width is 212mm. The thicknesser depth meanwhile is 3mm, on a thicknesser table that’s 270m long. The thickness height capacity comes in at 150mm, while it’s width capacity is 204mm. The cutting depth is adjustable, and the feed rate is 6m/min.
There’s a parallel adjustment width guide featured which is super handy.
We love that it has a tilting fence for beveling the wood.
There’s a handy dust extraction nozzle, so you can hook it up to any standard sized dust collector or extractor.
There’s a no-volt safety switch to prevent automatic restart after a power outage.
You also get a blade setting tool included in the price.
Absolute bargain, at under £300
Good well established brand
Compact little machine
Two reversible HSS blades
Cutting speed of 12000rpm
The planer depth is 2mm while it’s width is 212mm
Thicknesser depth is 3mm
Thicknesser table is 270m long
Thickness height capacity comes in at 120mm
Width capacity is 204mm
Cutting depth is adjustable
Feed rate is 6m/min
Parallel adjustment width guide
Tilting fence for beveling the wood
Handy dust extraction nozzle
No-volt safety switch
Blade setting tool included
Be careful reading the Amazon customer reviews as many of them are for a different product
This beauty from Ryobi 5133002859 RAP1500G is a portable thickness planer that comes with it’s own heavy-duty stand, which won’t walk or wobble. And the extension plates fold away when not in use.
This high powered planer features 2 pieces of double cutter blades. It has a maximum cutting width of 13″ (330mm), and a cutting thickness of 7-153mm. The feeding speed is 8m/min while the blade speed comes in at 9000rpm.
It’s easy to use, simply crank the handle to adjust the height of the cutter head. There’s a handy scale ruler to ensure precision and there are grooves on both sides for easy mobility.
We love that it has an Automatic Feeding Design so you don’t have to manually push the timber.
And it’s super easy to hook it up to a dust collector for easy cleanup.
Safety features include an overcurrent protector which can be tripped when the motor is overloaded and a Power-off protection electromagnetic switch.
Included in the price you get a little pack of accessories, made up of a Belt, Nuts, Foot Pads, Spare Carbon Brushes, and an Iron Dust Cover. The cover is both waterproof & dustproof.
Good heavy duty stand
Double cutter blades
Maximum cutting width of 13″ (330mm)
Cutting thickness of 7-153mm
Feeding speed is 315″/min (8m/min)
Blade speed is 9000rpm
Easy to use
Handy scale ruler
Automatic Feeding Design
Great dust collector interface
Various safety features
Pack of accessories included in price
Not many peer reviews on the Amazon page, but very much in demand on other sites
This planer thicknesser from Excel is great – perfect for a small workshop where space is at a premium.
There’s a surface planing width of 254mm (10″), which when you couple it with it’s a thicknessing capacity of 254 x 127mm (10″ x 5″), means it can tackle up to 3mm of timber per pass.
It may look small, but it’s large planer bench measures 946 by 263 mm, and it’s table size is 920 x 262mm.
It’s got a good motor, which will maximize your 240 volt power supply. The feed rate is 6m/min and it’s cutterblock speed is nice and fast, coming in at 9000rpm.
The tilting aluminum fence means you can bevel the wood with ease.
It’s easy to convert the machine from planing mode to thicknessing mode, simply remove the fence, and reposition the blade guard and chip collection hood. You can then adjust the height with the crank handle.
It’s a 2 blade cutterblock, and Re-sharpenable HSS blades are included in the price. You can also buy replacement blades if needs be.
It has a large dust extraction outlet port, coming in at 100mm diameter.
Perfect for a small workshop
Surface planing width of 254mm (10″)
Thicknessing capacity of 254 x 127mm (10″ x 5″)
Large planer bench and table size
Feed rate is 6m/min
Cutterblock speed is fast, at 8500rpm
Easy to convert from planing to thicknessing
Tilting aluminum fence
2 blade cutterblock
Resharpenable HSS blades
Large dust extraction outlet port
Some customers have been unhappy with the instruction manual
Here’s another great planer thicknesser from Lumberjack. This one has a great average customer rating on Amazon, and comes at a reasonable price.
It can handle timber up to 330mm wide and up to a maximum thickness height of 152mm, which you can feed in at 7.5m/min. Altogether you can shave off up to 2.8mm per pass. The feeding is automatic, you don’t have to manually push the wood, and it’s nice and smooth, thanks to the large fully polished table.
It has a powerful 1500W quality motor, and the 2 blades rotate at a fast 8500rpm.
The 4 Post design for allows for stable and smooth operation,
We love just how compact and portable it is, weighing just 35kg, and with it’s folding tables for easy and convenient storage.
There’s a handy dust extraction port to connect up to a dust extractor.
The safety features include a No-volt release switch which prevents uncontrolled restart after any power interruption.
When working with wood it’s important to achieve even thickness on both sides of your wood, and when you have the right equipment for that it makes your woodworking considerably easier and more productive.
Here’s a quick outline of the different things to think about when making your purchase.
Ideally you want to get a machine that maximizes full use of your power supply. So if your workshop has a 240 volt power supply (which it probably does) then you should choose a machine that can match it.
The higher the voltage, the higher the speed of the machine.
The size of wood that the machine can take is likely to be the deciding factor in what machine you go for in the end. You need to know what width of wood you’re going to be working with. In our Top 5 products, we’ve attempted to cover a variety of sizes of timber to be used.
Thicknessers can come in a variety of different widths, starting from as low as 260mm, going up to 620mm. Most machines will have working depths of 100, 230 or 300mm. In terms of inches, you’re looking at working depths of 10, 12, 16,18 and 24 inches.
The larger the surfacing table the better, especially if you expect longer pieces of wood to be used. Having a longer surfacing table can also make it easier to accurately mount machine boards leaving them straight and true.
The surface table material should be made of either cast iron to damp out vibration, or cast aluminum, as it’s both light and strong.
Combination planer thicknessers are best suited for lower capacity production, since you cannot use them as a planer and as a thicknesser at the same time.
If you have higher production capacity demands, then an independent thicknesser might be a better buy for you. To increase your production capacity further still, you might then like to think about buying feed rollers to use with your thicknesser.
If possible, try to go for a planer thicknesser with a fence that tilts, as this will enable you to easily bevel the edges of the wood. If this feature is important to you, we can recommend our Number 1 product, the Charnwood W588 8” x 5” Bench Top Planer Thicknesser, our Number 2 product, the Draper 09543 230-Volt 1,500-Watt Bench-Mounted Planer Thicknesser, and our Number 4 product, the Lumberjack PT1000 254mm Planer Thicknesser.
When it comes to other features we strongly recommend that you consider safety features to be the most important. When you have powerful motor operating dual rotating blades, safety is paramount.
Planer thicknessers often have an array of other additional useful features. This can include features that help to feed the timber better, make the machine faster, or make the thicknessing more accurate. Noise reduction slots are another additional feature, these help with the air flow to improve extraction and therefore help the machine to run more quietly.
Another such feature is that of a programmable rise and fall with LED readouts. These features can enable you to quickly position timber of different sizes, and it does away with having to do things manually, using a pointer and rule.
As a general rule the more additional features that a planer thicknesser has the more money it tends to cost. You can either set your budget and then see what features you can get for that price or you can ascertain what features you really want or need, and see what’s the lowest price you have to pay for those features.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between a planer and a thicknesser?
A planer is a machine that will make your timber straighter, and most planers you operate by hand. A thicknesser on the other hand is a machine that you pass your timber through to get your much coveted even surface.
Do I need a planer and a thicknesser?
Thicknessers are better when you are using long pieces of wood several meters long, but for creating small woodwork pieces a planer may suffice. A planer thicknesser does both jobs using just one machine.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.