The Dewalt planer hasn't been updated in a long time and for good reason. The DeWalt DW735X is a workhorse that is dependable and built to last. While it does have a high price tag on the planer, it's for good reason.
DeWalt is a Power Tool Manufacturing giant, producing a wide range of tools for trades of all kinds. Recently they have announced quite a few tools directed towards woodworkers and carpenters, but their classics remain well loved in the community. A while back I took a look at the DeWalt Scroll Saw, a tool that fits in a unique niche in the woodworking tool world as providing performance you couldn’t match within its price range. This Planer is an incredibly popular tool from DeWalt, and with good reason. Let’s take a closer look at this tool in the DeWalt Planer Review.
DeWalt Planer Review Overview
Planers are a staple in any woodshop. Most woodworkers will invest in one at some point as they begin to advance into more complex production. One of the major costs for woodworkers is materials, in fact I would say this is the biggest investment most woodworkers make on a consistent basis. Being able to mill your own materials can cut those costs drastically though. Two tools are generally needed for this, a Planer, and a Jointer. These tools easily pay for themselves in savings alone, but they are also convenient to have.
The DeWalt Planer is a truly unique machine. Generally portable planers come in a lunch box style, like the Ridgid Planer. These are great tools, but often professional woodworkers find their needs quickly outgrow them and seek the next step up in Planers. On the other side of the spectrum are the truly industrial Planers. Not only do these take up a significant amount of space, but they are also incredibly costly, generally running several thousand dollars. So, what happens when neither option is quite right? Well, that my friends is where this DeWalt Planer comes into play.
DeWalt Planer Review Features
DeWalt’s Planer offers a 20,000 RPM Motor with a 10000 RPM Cutter head speed. The 15 Amp Motor offers enough power to effectively plane wider pieces of wood without bogging down.
This planer can remove up to 1/8 of an inch at a time. Maximum wood width is 13 inches, and 6 inches deep.
This planer offers two speed selections for ultimate customization. Users can select between 96 or 179 cuts per inch depending on whether they want a dimensional cut, or a finishing cut.
The three knife cutter head has upgraded blades for a longer usable life. The top of the machine is removed using an attached wrench to access the blades for maintenance.
The larger base sets the DeWalt apart from other planers in its class, featuring a 19-3/4-inch aluminum base, allowing twice the support of standard ten-inch bases on lunchbox style planers.
The depth stop is a standout feature on the DeWalt Planer, the large turret style stop provides an accurate way to use common material thicknesses with ease.
The thickness scale provides an accurate depth measurement right off the bat, with extra definition for easy visibility. The set screw is east to adjust as well, something important for long term accuracy.
The chip ejector uses a fan to assist in removing chips from the carriage and allows for connection to dust extractors.
DeWalt Planer Review Performance
I tested this Planer on everything from softwoods like Pine to hardwoods like IPE, Mesquite, Maple, Walnut and Zebrawood. It is truly missing nothing from its ability to perform no matter what you throw at it. I loved having two settings to give you the best performance for the type of planning you needed, the dimensional planing provides 79 cuts per inch and worked well at achieving an initial thickness for the bulk of planing needs. The finishing setting though, was a huge addition to this planer. It provides a beautiful finish on wood that simply can’t be beat and something woodworkers of all levels will appreciate.
When comparing other Planers in this class, this Planer is no lightweight. Weighing in at 92 pounds this Planer is designed for serious work. Without a doubt you have a few select features that truly stand out from the crowd. One such feature is the actual base, where the wood actually contacts the cutter head to remove material. DeWalt opted for a larger base, at 19-3/4 inches compared to most Planers having only ten inches of base contact. In my opinion this is largely what allows the DeWalt to perform at the level it does and gives it a distinct edge over other models on the market.
The automatic carriage lock engages the wood when inserted for reduced instances of snipe. While snipe is present to some degree in every planer, I did feel this feature made a significant reduction in it over other planers I have used. As well, I think by design this combined with the large table makes a big difference in adding stability to keep snipe at a minimum. For tips on further reducing snipe, be sure to check out our suggestions on How To Reduce Planer Snipe.
Additionally, the chip ejection on this Planer is also well designed. While some debris will still remain on the table, the vast majority is quickly and powerfully ejected. In fact, that would be one piece of advice, unless you want quite a mess, be sure to connect to a vacuum or dust collection to this planer as it is designed to do.
The material removal gauge was a great addition to this planer as well. This is important as removing too much material at once will reduce the quality of the finish, but also can damage the planer over time. This gives you a visual of what the planer will remove in that pass, making adjustments an option when needed. The depth stop was also more effective and secure than most other depth stops as well. The ability to turn the large knob to quickly set a desired thickness for consistent results
Adjustments and maintenance are both simple on this Planer too. The adjustment knob has a smooth feel and consistent depth change with each revolution. While often planers have some give to them, the DeWalt was very stable once a depth is set. I appreciated being able to easily adjust the thickness scale as well, so that with use you have the ability to recalibrate by adjusting the screws. It was also very easy to read with visibility being a priority in its design. To replace blades, you simply use the included tool to remove the screws in the top of the tool, then remove its top. The blades are right there with easy access to remove and replace when needed.
DeWalt Planer Review Value
The DeWalt DW735X runs right at 599.00 at The Home Depot. This planer also includes the infeed and outfeed tables, as well as an extra set of blades. I think the DeWalt Planer is an exceptional value, offering exceptional performance and a unique design that doesn’t occupy too large of a footprint. Essentially for both professional woodworkers who do not need the capacity of extra-large planers and hobbyists, this Planer is a great value for its performance and feature set.
DeWalt Planer Review Final Thoughts
DeWalt makes exceptional tools, and the Planer is by no means an exception. This model from DeWalt gives a user everything they could need and then some. The footprint allows even small shops to have a planer outside an entry level lunchbox model. The adjustments are accurate and incredible, giving the user ultimate control and stability over the tool. Additionally, the option to switch between a dimensional cut and a finishing cut makes all the difference in ensuring it will give you the finish you need.
The DeWalt Planer is nothing short of a shining performer. Much like the DeWalt Scroll Saw, this tool is a Woodworkers dream, providing incredible performance without taking up a huge footprint in the shop or breaking the bank. As well this Planer is priced incredibly well for the performance it offers, something you wouldn’t find from other Planers in its class. All in all, there is truly nothing negative to say about this planer. It is easy to use and adjust, performs exceptionally, and has a strong feature set. The cut quality and performance are incredible and for a wide range of users, this Planer is a perfect workhouse to have in your shop.