Powered Hand Tools - Planers

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What should you do before you start cutting with a planer?

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  • Wear safety glasses or goggles, or a face shield (with safety glasses or goggles), and use the appropriate hearing protection.
  • Disconnect the planer from the power supply before making any adjustments to the cutter head or blades.
  • Ensure switch is in off position before plugging in.
  • Use blades of the same weight and set at the same height.
  • Ensure that the blade-locking screws are tight.
  • Remove adjusting keys and wrenches before turning on power.
  • Support the material (stock) in a comfortable position that will allow the job to be done safely and accurately.
  • Check stock thoroughly for staples, nails, screws, or other foreign objects before using a planer.
  • Do not cut stock less than 20 cm (8 in) long or 1 cm (0.5 in) thick.
Use Proper Support for Work

What should you do while cutting with a planer?

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  • Start a cut with the infeed table (front shoe) resting firmly on the stock and with the cutter head slightly behind the edge of the stock.
  • Use two hands to operate a planer - one hand on the trigger switch and the other on a front handle.
  • Do not put your finger or any object in a deflector to clean out chips while a planer is running.
  • Disconnect the power supply when stopping to dump out chips.
  • Do not set a planer down until blades have stopped turning.
  • Stand on the side of the planer near the controls. Never stand behind stock when being fed into the planer.

  • Keep all cords clear of cutting area.
  • Do not overreach. Keep proper footing and balance.

Refer to Powered Hand Tools - Basic Safety for Electric Tools for general safety tips.

  • Fact sheet confirmed current: 2019-08-15
  • Fact sheet last revised: 2013-12-20