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Forum topic by tat2grl posted 01-04-2008 07:50 PM 1385 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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61 posts in 3764 days

01-04-2008 07:50 PM

I have the basics; table saw, power miter saw, circular saw, jigsaw, plunge router. What should be next along the lines of power? I was thinking of a power planner. Just from building my shop table I realized the need to be able to square stock. Didn’t really matter for the work table, but what I display in our home is a horse of a different color. As most of you know, I’m cleaning up Pop’s hand planner and look forward to using it, but I thought a power planner would be a good addition. Should the power planner be the next purchase? If so, what should I be looking for? Once again I humbly sit at your feet and wait to catch the pearls of wisdom :)

-- "Creativity is...seeing something that doesn't exist already. You need to find out how you can bring it into being and that way be a playmate with God."

23 replies so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4123 days

#1 posted 01-04-2008 08:01 PM

hehe :)
I think someone stated before that it depends on what type of woodworking you will be doing.
I use my planer and jointer (although i don’t know if I use them correctly) and I also love our drill press. It comes in really handy.
And of course, we couldn’t be without our bandsaw, and I’m starting to love my scrollsaw…. oh the list just keeps going and going!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 3837 days

#2 posted 01-04-2008 08:07 PM

Depends. What are the next few projects you want to do?

My planer gets a lot of use, but I’m not sure it’s a tool that everyone needs. If I were sticking to small projects, I’d just buy lumber that was already surfaced. If you do buy a planer, consider capacity (width and thickness capability), cuts per inch (more cpi = smoother), and outfeed support.

Some other possibilities: a table-mounted router, spray finishing equipment, spindle sander.

Sorry, no pearls of wisdom, but maybe some plastic beads of random thoughts!

-- -- --

View SPalm's profile


5317 posts in 3844 days

#3 posted 01-04-2008 08:13 PM

As Debbie mentioned, it depends on what you want to do. I think I remember you mentioning major pieces…

To use a power planer, you really need a jointer to go with it. The two kind of work in tandom. These would be a nice addition.

A bandsaw is kind of a favorite too.

To me, the major stand alone power tool set includes:
Table saw

Major hand held power:

(It is fun buying tools for other people)

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View blackemmons's profile


13 posts in 3797 days

#4 posted 01-04-2008 08:14 PM

Cyclone or some sort of dust collection system??

View tat2grl's profile


61 posts in 3764 days

#5 posted 01-04-2008 08:26 PM

All are great selections and are on my wish list. I was going to tackle an entertainment center but found a really nice plan from Woodcraft magazine (Dec/Jan edition) for a mission table and matching end tables. I think I should start I want to use the best wood for this project so I’m checking out the local lumber places as well as Big Orange and Big Blue. I need to check the owner’s manual to see if my router can be converted to a table router. Since I already have one hand planner I may just get a few more hand tools and use those until I decide that a power planner would better fill the need. So now I’m leaning to the bandsaw. OR just win the stinkin lottery and buy all of it at once! LOL! :)

-- "Creativity is...seeing something that doesn't exist already. You need to find out how you can bring it into being and that way be a playmate with God."

View GregS's profile


23 posts in 3836 days

#6 posted 01-04-2008 08:33 PM

Steve read my mind. I couldn’t have said it better, but I sure could have bored you by saying it with more words. ha…. All of the above advice is dead on. The addition of a jointer and planer totally changed the way I do woodworking, alowing me to fabricate pieces with little regard for what dimensions are available off the shelf. I’ve especially enjoyed the way they have allowed me to re-use wood from discarded items. (M ylatest pile of material is from a tossed out piano.) The power tool that has surprised me the most, though, in the number of times I go to it, has been the bandsaw. I am amazed at how frequently I turn to this wonderful too, which I had once thought thought I’d never need, as I couldn’t see myself cutting out lawn art in my old age.

-- GregS, Snohomish, WA ~ Some of life's greatest lessons I learned at my mother's knee; the rest I learned at other joints.

View tat2grl's profile


61 posts in 3764 days

#7 posted 01-04-2008 08:40 PM

Found a Jet horizontal/vertical 5”x6” bandsaw at This is within my price range.

-- "Creativity is...seeing something that doesn't exist already. You need to find out how you can bring it into being and that way be a playmate with God."

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4123 days

#8 posted 01-04-2008 09:35 PM

I’m laughing.. not sure what the laughter means.. perhaps embarrassment on my part.
you said that you are going to start out small… by making a table and end tables!!! My “small” was a napkin holder or something like that!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View motthunter's profile


2141 posts in 3761 days

#9 posted 01-04-2008 09:41 PM

To me the planer and jointer are essential. As for the band saw, save your money until you can get a good one that will let you re-saw. As your skills improve, this is also essential. If money is an issue (it always is), then get a 14” model that you can add a riser block to later. You then can upgrade your machine to include better guides and more tricked out stuff.

-- making sawdust....

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3837 days

#10 posted 01-04-2008 10:32 PM

Maybe jointer before planer. Square is good, and that’s what jointers do.

View tat2grl's profile


61 posts in 3764 days

#11 posted 01-04-2008 10:40 PM

Money is a very big issue. I’m figuring to save for the up for the bandsaw and use hand planes and jointers. They did it back in the day, so can I. Plus, I’ll learn alot about the feel of the wood and expand my knowledge too.

-- "Creativity is...seeing something that doesn't exist already. You need to find out how you can bring it into being and that way be a playmate with God."

View Catspaw's profile


236 posts in 3778 days

#12 posted 01-05-2008 02:25 AM

my take is a jointer next. you are probably buying 3/4” S4S anyway, so, the planer has less priority. But, if you want to make panels and such a joiner will get those peices together. (iffin I could only buy one or t’other.)

BTW. Once you get the jointer AND a planer, stop thinking in terms of 3/4”. Evrything is 3/4”. I don’t want my stuff to be just like everything else. With both you get to decide how wide AND how thick.

And of course the longer the better.

-- arborial reconfiguration specialist

View Zuki's profile


1404 posts in 4040 days

#13 posted 01-05-2008 02:50 AM

I use my table mounted router as a jointer. Saved me quite a few $$$ . . . the maxium I can joint is 1.5 inches. I actually had my planer for about 6 mo before I plugged it in. I echo Greg . . . By using these two tools I am no longer limited to 3/4” dimensions.

My next purchase will be a BS as that will allow me to resaw more efficiently. I have resawn with my TS, but it is not my favorite thing to do.

Resawing & Jointing

-- BLOG -

View ErsatzTom's profile


104 posts in 3768 days

#14 posted 01-05-2008 03:47 AM

I just faced the same decision. I opted for the planer. If you use a sled, you can surface plane (usually done on the jointer if it is wide enough) in the planer. It will never do half as good a job as a real jointer but you can use a router table or tablesaw to joint edges.

BTW, a router table doesn’t have to be fancy. I’m not sure about the mechanics of mounting a plunge router, but I threw together a rudimentary router table in one evening. I took a scrap piece of 3/4 ply, routed out a circle the size of the router base to recess the router, drilled mounting holes and a 2” hole for the bit and then just built a really simple open ended box around it to hold it up. Add a simple fence on top and you are in business. It is a pain to install the router and the fence is a little fiddly to adjust but I’ve used it a ton.

-- Tom, Southwest Florida

View Greg3G's profile


815 posts in 4048 days

#15 posted 01-05-2008 03:48 AM

Be sure and watch You may find something that fits your buget there. The next thing I would consider is a router table. I know its not a power tool but it will add a lot of versitility in what you can do. If you have a wood working show coming up near you, I would go. If you look around you can find some good deals.

I would not get a power hand planer. Learn to use a manual hand plane. Your right in the thought you will get a new feeling for the wood. You’ll feel the direction of the grain even when you can’t see it yet.

Next power tool I would invest in is a good quality random orbit sander. Stay away from the Skill, and B&D at Walmart. They don’t work well and going with a Porter Cable, Bocsh or Klingspor are not much more, but well worth the investment.

After that, a thickness planer. The Ridgid has pretty good reviews and that is what I use. I’m pretty happy with it so far.

-- Greg - Charles Town, WV

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