TOP 10 Best Jack Planes in 2021: Unbiased Reviews and FAQ

Best Jack PlanesManaging our time is essential in everything we do, including woodworking too.

According to that, our focus this time will be on the best jack planes, which is the most helpful tool for chamfering the corner of a board, shaving the edge of a sticking door, or straightening one that is distorted or bent.

By having a jack plane in your toolbox, you can easily smooth out the wood surfaces without damaging the wood’s exterior.

Moreover, with proper measuring and practice, your everyday woodworking job will be a breeze for you.

What is a Jack Plane Used For?

The name jack plane is associated with the saying “jack of all trades” since this can be made to offer some of the work of fore, smoothing, and jointer planes, particularly on portable pieces of work.

With this, a jack plane can be considered a general-purpose bench plane. It is being used for shaving off smaller volumes of wood to diminish a piece to the coveted size (known as ‘sizing’) and for initial smoothing.

The jack plane is longer than the smoothing plane, so it is better suited to remove the high points along the wood’s length than following any waves, giving a straighter edge.

Finally, in arranging the wood, the jack plane is used following the scrub plane and before the smoothing plane, fore plane, and jointer plane.

10 Best Jack Planes

PRODUCT

DESCRIPTION

PRICE

High-quality jack plane for professionals and beginners

STANLEY NO.4 (12-136) - EDITOR'S PICK

Valuable smoothing plane for affodable price

Perfect tool to mellow and flatten areas

Provides an amazing woodworking experience

One of the best budget jack planes

Works really great as a shooting jack plane

Decent jack plane for starters

Entry level jack plane for a good price

Budget-friendly, valuable electric hand planer for small tasks

Decent pick for first time woodworkers

1. Stanley 12-137 62-Low Angle Jack Plane

Stanley 12-137 Low Angle 62 Sweetheart Jack Plane ReviewWhen the Stanley 62-Low Angle Jack Plane came into our place, it was in a huge box with lots of packaging. There was some excess oil, so our team wiped it off after I unpacked the jack plane.

Other than that, we found it easy to assemble and use immediately.

We tried to use the low-angle jack plane without tuning up or whetting the blade, and it really is simple to use. We used it first to clean the outer surfaces on birch-faced plywood, and we did not encounter any problem.

At first, we were worried that this jack plane for smoothing is susceptible to tear out, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. We found no tear-out issues when using this jack plane for a carpenter, so we thought to ourselves, we hit the jackpot!

Sounds great, right?

With all the factors like its price, the delivery time was faster than it should be, the appearance of the jack plane is gorgeous, and the handle is very comfortable to grip. We could not ask for more.

This is definitely one of the best jack planes for woodworking (including professionals and beginners).

Key Features:

  • Malleable iron castings for their weight and stability
  • It has a one-piece base, and the frog implicitly removes chatter and increased accuracy
  • Controlled lateral adjustment locking attribute

PROS

  • It became even more impressive once sharpened
  • The blade is compact and does not shatter
  • It cuts even shaves with ease
  • The handles are actual wood
  • The bottom and sides were polished
  • Worked wonderfully on oak and poplar
  • Easy to adjust
  • The handle is very comfortable to grip
  • Unique design
  • Usable straight from the box with only trivial adjustments

CONS

  • It is quite heavy but helpful in pushing through the end grain
  • Screw feed is kind of awkward to use

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2. Stanley Hand Planer No.4 (12-136)

Stanley Hand Planer No.4 (12-136) ReviewLet’s have another Standley brand product to add to this list of 10 Best Jack Planes in 2021.

We already know how great the merchandise of STANLEY is, but let’s evaluate further the difference in their low-angle jack plane.

This time, our team decided to look first for the quality and price. First of all, Stanley hand planer No.4  is quite expensive, but on the other hand, it has a reasonable cost for its quality compared to other expensive jack planes.

The machining is accurate, and everything works as it is supposed to do.

The skew adjustment is a little tough to calibrate but not hard to manage. That is when compared to many jack planes our team worked with.

Customers like the cherry handle being comfortable and the jack plane’s adjustable throat depth.

Furthermore, the blade was finely beveled, and it only took a little fine honing to give it a razor-sharp edge.

With all of this information, a lot of customers are glad that they bought this jack plane. This can easily go to our list of best entry-level jack planes.

Key Features:

  • Adjustable throat plate
  • Norris type adjustment for ease of use
  • Cherry wood handle and knob for comfort

PROS

  • The product has a limited lifetime warranty
  • Comfortable to use
  • Easy adjustments
  • Valuable for the price

CONS

  • Lack of info ho to set the Norris adjuster
  • Control could be better

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3. Taytools 469607 Jack Smoothing Bench Hand Plane No.5

Taytools 469607 Jack Plane ReviewThis Taytools No. 5 jack plane is the perfect tool to mellow and flatten areas. It will achieve a flat and polished finish.

This jack plane for a carpenter is also ideal for cabinet makers and discerning woodworkers.

Moreover, this jack plane has an appropriate mass and weighs 5.45 pounds, so you can easily bring it to your workplace. Really comfortable!

Key Features:

  • The body and frog are built from strong, ductile cast iron
  • The sole and sides are accurately machined to within 0.003 inches over the entire portion of the sole
  • You can tune the frog forward and backward
  • The lever cap is formed from plated cast iron
  • The cap iron screws and adjusting wheels are polished brass
  • The bed angle is 45 degrees

PROS

  • The knob and tote are thoroughly sanded, oiled, shed, and hand-rubbed Sapele
  • It doesn’t require any flattening on the sole
  • Fantastic packaging
  • Can produce an amazing clean-cut
  • Udderly smooth surface
  • Easy to set-up and use

CONS

  • You still need to flatten the sole moderately

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4. WoodRiver No.4 Bench Hand Plane V3

WoodRiver No.4 Bench Hand Plane V3 ReviewNow, this WoodRive No. 4 plane is actually a really nice one to have.

Why?

Well, of course, our editors tried it first so that we can tell you and you can have a general idea.

First off, the machining is precise and clean. Who wants to have a messy surrounding while working, right?

We tried it first to prep faces for joining guitar bodies, and it was amazing.

Then, it is much quieter than a power jointer. Although they are not the same device in some regards, you can use this best jack plane early in the morning or at night and not upset anybody.

Key Features:

  • It has ductile iron castings with a fully machined frog
  • You can calibrate the frog without removing the blade
  • The sides and soles are machined square and flat
  • Its trademark Bedrock-style frog adjustment mechanism

PROS

  • Precisely milled ramp
  • Quiet to use
  • Easy and fast set up
  • Sharp and convenient to use
  • High-quality

CONS

  • Needed a little honing
  • There was a small taint in the chip breaker

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5. Taytools 469614 Smoothing Bench Hand Plane No.4

Taytools 469614 Smoothing Bench Hand Plane No.4 ReviewWe will now move to Taytools Jack Smoothing Bench Hand Plane No. 4 jack plane.

This will achieve a flat and polished finish, so we think this is the perfect tool to mellow and flatten areas.

The difference between this jack plane to number 5 (that we talked about earlier) is that it is lighter.

Taytools No. 4 hand/jack plane is only 4.11 pounds in overall weight. But of course, they have their own merit and uses, and it is upon you to decide where and how to use them.

The choice depends on your criteria.

Key Features:

  • The lever cap is formed from plated cast iron
  • The sole and sides are precisely machined to within 0.003 inches over the entire portion of the sole
  • The body and frog are built from strong, ductile cast iron
  • The adjusting wheels and cap iron screws are polished brass
  • You can tune the frog forward and backward

PROS

  • Well-balanced and ergonomic
  • Very reasonably priced
  • Shipped really fast and packed well
  • The knob is comfortable to grip
  • The cast surfaces are milled real pretty
  • The sole was perfectly flat
  • The sides were right at 90 degrees

CONS

  • The throat had a small burr
  • The cutting iron is concave

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6. GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane

GreatNeck C4 Bench-Jack Plane ReviewThis is one of the best budget jack planes we could find for you.

This jack plane offers excellent quality for a very reasonable and affordable price.

Of course, when choosing the best jack plane for money, we need to look for the cheap ones in good condition.

We do this to help us in our woodworking for a long time, making the best jack plane for wood cost-effective.

Key Features:

  • The jack plane’s cast iron body is carefully machined and refined
  • Toughened and tempered 2-inch wide steel cutter
  • It has dual wood handles for accurate planning
  • Edge is fully movable both parallel and for the depth of cut
  • It has an adjustable brass screw for blade cut

PROS

  • It comes with adjustable blades
  • Solid wood handle
  • Machined and polished body for an ultra-smooth finish
  • Cheap
  • Works well as a shooting plane
  • Very well-made

CONS

  • It would be nice if the handle is wood
  • The blade is sharp but requires honing

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7. Grizzly Industrial H7566-14 Jack Plane

Grizzly Industrial H7566-14 Jack Plane ReviewThis Grizzly industrial jack plane is commonly used for final finishing work.

The main reason is that this jack plane has a perfectly flat sole that will smooth any wood surface. It is not as expensive as other jack planes, so it added to the plus factor.

This is definitely a good one to start with if you are just getting into hand planes.

One of our editors said that this jack plane does not require more tuning than any other planes we have owned. Furthermore, it requires a lot less work than some of the planes that you will find.

To be honest, it is really nice impression, right?

We also like that the ball and tote handle is made of superior hardwood and well polished. If you put a little time into tuning and learning how to use it, this jack plane will definitely last.

Key Features:

  • Adjusting nuts
  • Cast iron bases
  • Full plane iron adjustments
  • Ground serrated sole
  • Frog and lever caps
  • Chip breakers and knurled brass
  • Rosewood handles and knobs

PROS

  • It comes with adjustable blades
  • Solid wood handle
  • Machined and polished body for an ultra-smooth finish
  • Cheap
  • Works well as a shooting plane
  • Very well-made

CONS

  • It would be nice if the handle is wood
  • The blade is sharp but requires honing

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8. Stanley Hand Planer 12-220

Stanley Hand Planer 12-220Another selection on the list that could be named best budget jack plane for 2021 is the Stanley Hand Planer 12-220.

Not only will it be light for your pocket, but the weight of the jack plane is also as light as it can get as well with only 1.9 pounds.

Editors liked this jack plane because, after the slightest tweak, it became beautifully sharp. Moreover, the adjustments are nice and smooth, so it does not hinder our work.

We do not have any issues with the soleplate, which is good. The one assigned in our team thoroughly checked it and it is surely not visibly misaligned.

Although we only used this for chamfers and end grain, this jack plane is still good to consider, especially if you are on a low budget.

Key Features:

  • Durable epoxy coating
  • Its cutter rests at a 21-degree angle
  • Its side is machined
  • The cutter is fully adjustable
  • Finger-rest in front of the plane

PROS

  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Manually adjustable
  • Nice quality
  • Easy to use and set-up

CONS

  • It does not have a chip breaker
  • Requires some effort to setup

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9. Wen 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer

Wen 6530 6-Amp Electric Hand Planer ReviewLet us move to something you can operate with the use of electricity.

This is actually kind of nice to have as it is easy to use. Just pay attention to setting up the depth.

We were a bit hesitant to buy this WEN Electric Hand Planer because of the price. We thought to ourselves that, since the price is so cheap, it might be just another piece of junk.

When we took it out of the box, a lot of plastic was used in the tools. So maybe it will not be much help to us. But after using it, we were surprised how useful this hand planer is.

This planer works great for small tasks, like if you need to trim a door edge. This is definitely not for everyday use because of its structure, but it will definitely last for a long time.

The adjustment knob is easy to modify, so that is a plus too.

Last but not least, this electric hand planner has dust bags which really helps and you don’t need to worry about purchasing an extra dust collector, especially if you are a beginner.

Key Features:

  • Depth gauge
  • Rabbeting guide
  • Chamfer groove
  • Protective kickstand
  • Parallel Fence Bracket
  • Dust bag to minimize clean-up

PROS

  • Lightweight design
  • It can make rabbets of up to 7/10 inch
  • 16 positive stops adjust the cutting depth
  • The 6-ampere motor provides up to 34,000 cuts per minute
  • Super cheap

CONS

  • Too much plastic
  • It stutters cuts sometimes

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10. Amazon Basics No.4 Bench Hand Plane 2-Inch Blade

Amazon Basics No.4 Bench Hand Plane 2-Inch BladeTo finish this list of TOP 10 Best Jack Planes in 2021, we present you with this AmazonBasics No.4 Bench Hand Plane.

Given a lot of features for an affordable price, this definitely deserves a spot on the list.

The blade of this jack plane cuts smoothly, and it is made out of steel alloy for it to be long-lasting.

It also has an impact-resistant plastic handle and cast-iron body for better composition.

Here’s the deal:

Don’t expect something incredible, but it is a decent selection if you are just about to start to do some woodworking and want to try affordable but reliable tools for the first time.

Key Features:

  • Durable steel alloy blade
  • Impact-resistant plastic handle
  • Durable cast iron body
  • Adjustable gear that allows you to get accurate results

PROS

  • Backed by an AmazonBasics 1-year limited warranty
  • The blade cuts smoothly
  • The cast-iron body is good and bulky

CONS

  • Sits quite high
  • The adjusting mechanism could be better

CHECK THE PRICE

Jack Planes for Woodworking

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Choose a Jack Plane?

There are many factors to consider when choosing a jack plane. But first, you should consider the workpiece you want to do with the hand plane. This will help so that you can pick the right length to get the best results you want. Moreover, be comfortable while working inside your workshop.

Quality and price should go hand-in-hand. Be careful about choosing expensive jack planes that do not have good quality. The same goes for low-priced ones. But if you can get a high-quality jack plane that is cheap, then that will be better.

Finally, the sole must be flat. Be sure to check, mostly all around the mouth opening and at the toe and heel

What Jack Plane is the Best For Beginners?

The two most common models of jack planes being used are No.4 and No.5. Beginners use these more often compared to other models of jack planes.

It is recommended to start with No.5 because it can be modified to act smoother.

How does Jack Plane Work?

A jack plane is usually used to dress timber down to size in preparation for truing and edge jointing. It can also be considered as a general-purpose woodworking bench plane. The first plane is normally used on uneven stock, but for rougher work, it can be prefaced by the scrub plane.

How to Adjust Jack Plane?

You should check first if the blade is sharp and is set at the correct angle. If not, the blade can be hand-honed using a bench stone or other means. After you honed the angle, turn the blade over to pull off the small burr left on the back.

It is common that wooden planes have only a wooden wedge to hold the blade in place, and the blade angle is unchangeable. The wedge is drilled in place to secure the blade, and the blade is positioned for the depth of cut.

It is essential to know the amount of wood to be excluded from each stroke because a blade set to cut too deep may take off a lot of wood and needs a lot of force. If it is set too shallow, it will require more strokes since very little material is eliminated.

If you were to adjust the blade, there should be about 1/16″ of the protruding, and the blade must be parallel with the mouth front-edge.

What is a Low Angle Jack Plane For?

The low-angle jack plane is one of the handiest and prominent planes there is. It gives you the maximum support you need in cutting edge and low angle of attack with its massive blade set bevel-up in the milled bed.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, we need to take care of our tools the same way they help us in our everyday woodworking. We should see them as tools and as convenient partners that are always there to help us.

You might try to consider checking out some sharpening tools for your hand planes for them to serve you better. The better the condition of your hand planes, the longer the time you will be able to use them.

Of course, it will still come down to how frequently you use them and how mindful you are when you use them. Always be sure to pay attention to them because there is no other person to look for them but you.

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