9 Different Types of Hand Planes and Their Uses in 2023

The hand planes are the woodworking tools for developing wood into different shapes. They need muscle power to move the blade over the wood layer.

Like many other woodworking devices, the hand planes are using in carpentry for thousands of years.

Hand planes are available in different sizes for different operational perspectives. If you select a plane randomly, you can use it most of the time, but choosing the right length plane will give you an extra hand to complete the task much quicker with better outcomes. The key point is to choose a hand plane to suit the size of the job.

It may be a hassle for you to pick the correct tools for your job. We have a study on different types of hand planes to understand their features and using the area.

Now we will find out the perfect one or ones to kick upstairs your job faster with this article. Let’s go through on it.

The Bench Planes:

The bench planes are the key tools in the carpenter’s tools box. You will find three types of bench planes with each of their specific functions. Here we will learn to their features and usages.

Fore or Jack plane:

A fore or jack plane is the first tool to reach the wood. Its length is usually between 12′′ and 20″. For reducing the stock size, the jack plane is the best tool for woodworkers.


After the jack plane, you need a jointer for straitening the wood surface. This device typically has a length of 22′′.

Smoothing Plane: 

For finishing the overall task, you need a smoothing plane as the last tool. This type of hand plane is usually 10 inches or less in size.

Scrub Planes

Scrub planes are very lightweight and typically used to swiftly strip particles from a workpiece. This device is like a stapler, so you can only use them on smaller parts or units of your jobs.

Block Plane:

The block planes are close to the scrub group. They are versatile and designed to reduce stocks. This tool will be a handy one for the jobs something like you can’t easily handle on a workbench. Moreover, block planes will allow you to handle the device in a single hand.

Shoulder Planes

The woodworkers especially use this type of plane to cut recesses that tie two parts of the wood layer together. Shoulder planes are the flexible tools for carpenters. The carpenters get a full-width cut with the extended full-width blades of the planes. These tools are also suitable for going the right cut against the corner.

Bull Nose Planes:

You can call it the younger brother of shoulder planes. Both bullnose planes and shoulder planes are the same devices from their functions, but they are just different in sizes. Bull nose plane gives the better finishing cut like mounting tenons than shoulder planes. Some of them have rotating faces so that blades can be turned into corners. The bullnose plane’s blades are therefore significantly wider for preventing the body from attaching to the rebound surface. This helps to ensure a square and smooth cut.

Rabbet Planes:

Although the rabbet or rebate planes have a similar function to the shoulder planes, physical differences are found between them. However, there is a sharp spur of some rabbet planes, which slash through the wood fibers before the edge, to create a smooth cut over the grain.

Plough or Plow Planes:

You can use these planes for curving long slots and separates into boards like cabinet bottoms and drawers. The plough planes have flexible clamps that apply to the edge of the board to ensure that the cut is parallel to the sidestep.

These planes are typically provided with a variety of blades, each of which can cut a particular groove diameter. Moreover, used in support of a router if it is important to cut the groove accurately.

Router Planes:

The router plane looks more like a combination between a hand and a spokeshave. These are used mainly to eliminate grooves, curves, and very tiny holes. Sometimes the router plane can also be used with a fence for straight work. It provides the blade with two cutting positions. Moreover, this plane can be cut into corners with an additional position.

Japanese Planes:

A very basic and highly effective plane for the woodworkers. They have a wooden body with sharp metal blades. The wood bodies are less sensitive than metal body’s planes to mark or alter the work surface. The Japanese planes are suitable both for delicate work and heavy job. Blades are balanced using a hammer or mallet to hit them.


Now you’ve got a fairly clear picture of what’s out there, let’s pick your perfect hand planes for this time purchases. If you found this article helpful, then check our other posts to get the best tools for your project and profession.

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