What's the Difference Between a Jointer and a Planer
A jointer and a planer are both woodworking machines used to prepare and shape wood, but they serve different purposes and perform different tasks in the woodworking process. Here’s a break down of the differences between the two:
A jointer is primarily used to flatten one face of a board and create a straight edge along its length. It’s used to prepare the surface of rough lumber before moving on to other woodworking processes.
A jointer has a rotating cutter head with knives that remove material from the wood’s surface. The infeed table and outfeed table are adjustable, allowing you to control the depth of cut and achieve a flat surface
After using a jointer, you’ll have one flat face and one straight edge on the board. This makes it easier to run the flat face against the fence of other tools like a table saw or planer.
A planer is used to create boards with consistent thickness throughout their length. It takes rough or uneven lumber and produces smooth, parallel surfaces on both sides of the board.
- A planer features a set of rotating blades that remove material from the top surface of the board as it passes through the machine. The thickness is adjusted using the planer’s controls.
After using a planer, you’ll have a board with uniform thickness. This is crucial for various woodworking projects where consistent thickness is necessary, such as creating flat panels for furniture.
In summary, a jointer is used to flatten and straighten one face and one edge of a board, while a planer is used to achieve a consistent thickness on a board’s entire surface. These two machines are often used in conjunction: you would typically use a jointer first to create a flat reference face and edge, and then use a planer to achieve uniform thickness on the entire board.