what's the thinest size for a planer?

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Forum topic by KenBry posted 01-25-2012 11:24 PM 1172 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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01-25-2012 11:24 PM

I have been shopping for planers and was wondering what’s the thinest stock you can feed through the average planer? 1/2” 1/4” 1/8” ....???

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

21 replies so far

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2141 posts in 1456 days

#1 posted 01-25-2012 11:31 PM

My 12-1/2” planer says no less than 1/4” thickness.
There are ways around this though. A sled, for example.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

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#2 posted 01-25-2012 11:48 PM

I have a DW733 … can’t go further than a 1/4” without a sled. With a sled, I have gone down to 1/8”.


-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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#3 posted 01-25-2012 11:53 PM

I have a Dewalt 735 and I routinely go down to 1/8” without a sled.

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Gene Howe

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#4 posted 01-26-2012 12:06 AM

My little Delta 13” lunch box will plane 1/8 without a problem. Even so, I use a sled.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

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5386 posts in 2268 days

#5 posted 01-26-2012 12:25 AM

My Ryobi says 1/4”, I have planed down to 1/8” with a sled. Don’t want to go any thinner…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

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184 posts in 1544 days

#6 posted 01-26-2012 01:35 AM

I have a Delta 12 1/2” planer, older model, and with a false bed made out of MDF I have planed red oak to 1/16”.

-- Chief Petty Officer USN(RET) 1991-2011

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10618 posts in 2791 days

#7 posted 01-26-2012 01:42 AM

Once you get thinner than 1/8”, with or without a sled, you run the risk of the stock shattering. This is especially true of brittle wood (walnut) and any wood that has “wild” grain or defects of any type.

Just my 2¢


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

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Charles Maxwell

1046 posts in 2843 days

#8 posted 01-26-2012 02:08 AM

1/8” for dewalt 735

-- Max the "night janitor" at

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9479 posts in 1878 days

#9 posted 01-26-2012 02:54 AM

Most only go to a quarter.
I have went down as far as a sixteenth with a sled.
The thing about going thinner than a quarter though is, like someone else said, the potential of the stock shattering and slinging pieces everywhere.
The only way to reduce the risk of it is to make sure your blades are very sharp and take a minimal amount on each pass, especially once you get thinner than a quarter.

By the way, as my luck would have it, everytime I’ve had a piece shatter on me, it also chipped my blade.


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6975 posts in 1950 days

#10 posted 01-26-2012 03:11 AM

I have planed 0.19in. This was hardwood (ash) on my 13in Ridgid Planer.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

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13744 posts in 1726 days

#11 posted 01-26-2012 04:26 AM

7/64 ths with my Ridgid 3 blade planer

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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4541 posts in 2110 days

#12 posted 01-26-2012 04:55 AM

ditto on what both Gerry (The Dane) and Lew said.

If I need to get below 1/4” I use my drum sander. Note – with the drum sander I can comfortably remove about 1/200” per pass so it takes a lot of passes to remove stock. It is not a good idea to push a drum sander to take more with a pass. FYI – that is about 1/6 of a revolution on the adjustment wheel per pass.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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676 posts in 2763 days

#13 posted 01-26-2012 05:24 AM

I have planned to less than a 1/16 with my 13” Ryobi, I use double sided tape and stick the piece i want planned thin to another thicker piece and take very thin passes. Then use a scraper seperate the thin piece from the thick piece, a little solvent to remove the tape and there you go.

-- Ray

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389 posts in 2058 days

#14 posted 01-26-2012 05:42 AM

Dewalt 734 down to 1/8” maple. That was as thin as I was comfortable going without worrying about shattering.

-- Greg, Severn MD

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1874 posts in 2597 days

#15 posted 01-26-2012 06:22 AM

What Lew and Rich said. If the stock explodes you better be wearing body armor over your vital parts

-- Joe

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