What’s a Hand Planer? This is a tool that everyone has seen in many a workshop, maybe even seen in use, but a lot of people probably wouldn’t know exactly what these are. That’s okay, it’s a wood crafting tool that’s somewhat specialized. A hand planer is a device with two grips and an angled blade that traces along the surface of a piece of wood.
This is a very ancient tool, one used since the bronze age, though obviously it’s become more sophisticated and better-built over time. It’s used mainly to even out the surfaces of pieces of wood, to carve delicate arches or concave traces into it, to round square shapes and eliminate splintering or rough grain.
This is how smooth countertops and table tops were created by hand back in the day, and how any smooth wooden surface that hasn’t been machined is created, generally. Hand planets, modernly, are used for more precise, short-burst work on wood projects, as power planers are much more common for larger tasks. However, if you do a lot of elaborate wood craft projects, you will almost certainly encounter a point where you need the precision and controlled burst that can be provided by a hand planer.
This is a safe piece of equipment generally speaking, and one that’s had millennia of refinement put into it, offering a lot of choice for quality models.