Jack planes are often called “bench planes” or “wood smoothers,” and they have been used extensively in the woodworking industry from the Roman period. Moreover, the usage of the jack plane is found in Mesopotamian and Egyptian cultures as well.
So, isn’t it amazing and exciting at the same time to work with a tool that our so intelligent ancestors used?
Due to the advancement of technology and science, jack planes have undergone several transformations. As a result, woodworkers nowadays can choose jack planes from a plethora of configurations and specifications. That is why finding the best low-angle jack plane has become one of the hardest nuts to crack.
We provided a list of 5 low-angle jack planes in this guideline. Continue reading this guide carefully to know which factors are essentials when choosing the best-suited low angle jack plane according to your woodworking project.
Which Types of Block Plane is Effective to Cut Wood End Grains:
Shaving off the excess wood is the prime responsibility of jack planes. A variety of jack planes are available in the market, and they are manufactured for specific purposes.
Generally, bench planes’ length ranges from 9” – 22” or more. Straightening an edge will be much more comfortable using a long bench plane because longer body bridges dip and rise on the board’s surface. A bench plane is tilted 45° to the side, making it an ideal choice for squaring, trimming, smoothening a board face, and many more.
Low Angle Block Planes:
Low-angle block planes are ideal for trimming small and tight areas. But don’t assume that you can straighten boards using it. The blade in this block plane is tilted at a 12° angle.
Finishing end grains are relatively easy and comfy using low-angle block planes. Moreover, you can operate it on the one hand. This tool is also suitable for fitting shingles, shaving the fast-growing door’s corner, and finely cutting meter cuts on the trim.
Standard Block Planes:
The bed angle of the standard block plane is 20°, and thus the cutting angle becomes 45°. As a result, it becomes a more appropriate tool for face grain.
However, standard block planes are less efficient compared to low-angle jack planes.
Top 5 Best Low Angle Jack Plane Reviewed in 2021:
We crafted the list carefully, and the below low-angle jack planes are manufactured for different purposes.
1. Stanley Hand Planner, No. 62, Low Angle Jack (12-137):
The demand for efficient low angle jack planes is increasing day by day. This Stanley Hand Planner, No. 62, Low Angle Jack (12-137) is an amazing and versatile product. It is an excellent choice for removing higher points from the wood. Moreover, the fine edge and classic style allow you to handle light to medium woodworking tasks efficiently.
Durability is one of the praiseworthy features of this low-angle jack plane. Many carpenters, woodworkers, and craftsmen appreciate its efficient performance. The cherry wood handle and knob offer maximum comfortability. As a result, handling a larger woodworking project becomes effortless. In fact, it is a combo of traditional design and upgraded features.
Usability is extremely easy since the bench plane has Norris type adjustment. More importantly, you can adjust the throat plate according to the wood type. It comes with a blade of 13/16″ thick by 2″ width. Another advantage of this plane is that it is easy to change blades, allowing you to use different bevel angles for other woods. Overall, this plane performs better when working hardwood and especially end grain.
- Iron construction to give it a weight
- Versatile enough to cope with different types of wood
- Classic design with a combo of metal and wood construction
- Easy to adjust mechanism
- It offers smooth and efficient operation using the sharp blade
- Unsuitable for massive works
2. Stanley 1-12-137-62-Low Angle Sweetheart Jack Plane:
The Stanley 1-12-137-62-Low Angle Sweetheart Jack Plane comes with a classic design and rugged construction to provide long-term service. Extra thick 3/16 inch A2 steel is used to manufacture this jack plane which ensures outstanding edge retention. It is a very easy setup. Also, the jack place is flat and square out of the box.
The Cherry wood handle and the knob are the first striking feature of this low-angle jack plane. As a result, it gets a fantastic look, and at the same time, it ensures comfort to the user when working. It also features Norris type adjustment. The adjustable throat plate allows you to work with different wood types without a problem. It works great and cuts very smoothly out of the box.
The brass is polished bright, and the paint is flawless. Moreover, the iron has a near mirror polish right out of the box. Besides, the cutting blade thickness is 3/16,” and width is 2” allows you to accomplish a smoothing project with the required level of perfection. Additionally, ductile iron castings make it a lightweight and durable, low-angle jack plane. All in all, this is full of impressive features to make your woodworking task efficient.
- Built-in lateral adjustment locking feature
- It consists of a 1-piece base and frog for improved accuracy
- Made of high-quality materials
- Comfortable to work with cherry wood handle
- Versatile that you can work with a wide range of wood type
3. Caliastro Store Fully Adjustable Wood Hand Planer:
The Caliastro Store Fully Adjustable Wood Hand Planer has a unique design and is versatile enough, making it a handy assistant for a woodworker, craftsman, or carpenter. The handle and knob are made of natural wood for comfort, grip, and control. At the same time, they are smooth, well-polished, and well-crafted, giving this 14” jack plane a shiny and attractive look.
Its fully hardened cutting iron is manufactured from selected steel to take and hold a razor-sharp edge, even on the hardest wood. Moreover, chrome-plated, mirror polished wedge designed to lock and hold in place the iron blade. In fact, the wedge control knob is the best in the market. Moreover, the precisely machined fine-grained grey cast iron body gives it a smooth bottom.
Additionally, high-carbon steel is used to manufacture the 2” thick blade. The blade is extremely sharp and provides the expected result; even the razor-sharp blade offers smooth polishing on the hardest wood. You will love to know that this plane includes 2 blades: one is spare and the other one is pre-mounted. More importantly, replacing the blade is effortless, and you can do it too frequently whenever necessary. The blades can be sharpened easily too.
- Steel constructed jack plane weighs only 5.76 lbs.
- Brass adjusting nut for delicate setting
- Natural wood handle ergonomically designed for comfort
- Solid brass knob, last longer than lever design used by competitors
- It includes 1 pre-sharpened spare blade
- If it is store improperly, rust can attack due to its steel construction
4. Grizzly Industrial H7566-14” Jack Plane:
Who doesn’t love to complete a perfectly finished woodworking project? No other jack plane can offer the expected and efficient result compared to the Grizzly Industrial H7566-14” Jack Plane. The jack plane weighs only 5.5 lbs., making it much lightweight. Thus, working with it for long hours is a breeze, and more importantly, you will not feel fatigued in your hand.
The ball handle is made of nice hardwood and is well finished. Put a little time into tuning it and learning how to use it, and you will have something to hand down to children or grandchildren. The sole is perfectly flat, and no tuning is needed. It makes very fine shavings in no time. It doesn’t cost as much as the high-end planes but performs great.
This jack plane is good enough for smoothing the hardest wood precisely. More importantly, it is designed in such a way so that a carpenter, woodworker, or craftsman can use it for final finished work. The razor-sharp blade lets you accomplish multiple industrial tasks with ease. Also, the handle allows you to grip the jack plane comfortably. Moreover, it will never slip off when working for long hours.
- High-quality rosewood handle
- The iron base comes with a proper adjustability feature
- It offers an impressive fit
- Lightweight enough that you can comfortably work with it for long hours
- Suitable for final finished work
- The fitting of the blade is not that much tight
5. Stanley Hand Planer, No. 4, 14-inch (12-905):
Stanley manufactures many high-quality jack planes to make a wood smoothing project comfy. The Stanley Hand Planer, No. 4, 14-inch (12-905) features several outstanding characteristics, assisting woodworkers or carpenters to achieve the expected result. Long-lasting protection is confirmed because of the durable epoxy coating in the precision-ground sides and bottom.
The angle of the blade is fixed, but the frog is adjustable, the depth of the blade is flexible, and the skew of the blade side to side is adjustable, slightly. It is easy to skew the blade when you lock it in as well. The adjustments are easy to make, and they hold. The blade was scary sharp right out of the box. It is a lovely plane, works great, and is easy to use.
It is equipped with a lever and double-iron cutter, ensuring ultimate control, even on the extremely rough stock. Moreover, blade chatter is eliminated due to the Machined frog and cutter seatings. With this jack plane, you will be able to finish different bench-top projects quite efficiently and easily. This professional-grade jack plane is full of all extra features which are necessary to fine-tune your workpiece.
- High-impact polymer handles
- Polished and contoured grip for excellent grip
- Professional-grade jack plane offers efficient result
- The comfortable grip offers extended use without fatigue
- Durable and rugged construction for long time use
- Plastic part prevents perfect performance
How to Use a Low-angle Jack Plane?
By now, you already understand that a low-angle jack plane is used for the initial smoothening of wood pieces. In order to get the best result, it is mandatory to use it following the right procedure. Let’s look at the below points to learn how to use a long angle jack place.
- Low angle jack plane
- Sharpening oil
A low-angle jack plane’s blade is literally razor-sharp. It would be best if you remain careful when changing the blade. Don’t replace it with your bare hand.
Step 01: Sharpening the Blade:
If the low-angle jack plane is not new, the blade must be sharpened. Unscrew the blade to remove it. Apply a little amount of sharpening oil on the whetstone. The blade needs to be propped on the whetstone with the angled side down. Next, in slow circles, the blade needs to be slid. Then the blade requires to be turned upwards and slightly lighter on the whetstone keeping the flat side down.
This way, the burrs will get removed from the blade. Now, wipe off the extra oil.
Step 02: Positioning the Low Angle Jack Plane Blade:
Screw down the low-angle jack plane to lock the blade in the designated area. Remember, the sharp end needs to be extended from the jack plane’s bottom minimum of 1/64” and 1/32”.
Step 03: Securing the Work Material:
Choose a sturdy table and take the work material. Use the clamp to secure the work material on the table. Thus, the wood piece will not move under heavy pressure. For example, if you plan to shave off the side of a door, make sure to clamp it down on a secure surface such as a table leg or wall. Marring can happen if you don’t place a towel or blanket under the door.
Step 04: Start Working with the Low Angle Jack Plane:
Now, place the low-angle jack plane and push it forward. Be sure to provide enough pressure so that wood shavings start to appear. Following a decisive movement, firmly push the jack plane to cut excess or uneven wood. If you don’t do so, the wood will prevent the blade from moving.
What is the Advantage of a Low Angle Jack Plane?
Using a low-angle jack plane, a woodworker, carpenter, or craftsman will be able to finish a wide array of tasks. Trimming, fitting drawers and moldings, chamfers, etc., can easily be done with this tool.
Here we shared the advantages of a low angle jack plane; read the below bullet points intently.
- A low-angle jack plane offers decent performance in eliminating machine-milling marks and leaving a smooth wood piece. Only a few passes of the low-angle jack plane will remove the saw mark.
- Smoothening end grains is quite challenging, and a low-angle jack plane will let you do this task quite efficiently with less hassle.
- Sometimes, cabinet drawers or doors don’t get closed smoothly for their too wide construction. At this point, taking down the door or cabinet drawer is unnecessary if you use a low-angle jack plane to shave off the high spots.
- You can chamfer edges and bevels, and it is especially true with narrow and tight spaces.
Question: When would you use a low-angle plane?
Answer: A low-angle jack plane is an ideal tool for the initial smoothing of a wooden surface. The main responsibility of the low-angle plane is to prepare a wood surface for further operations. You will find various types of low-angle jack planes, such as the No. 4 / 5 or 62 that shaves off extra wood.
Question: What are the differences between low angle jack planes vs. standard?
Answer: The main difference between the low angle jack plane and the standard is in the bed angle. In a standard jack plane, the bed angle is 20°, while low angle jack planes come with a 12° bed angle.
Also, some woodworkers or carpenters expressed that a standard jack plane would be the best choice when the work is done on hard grain boards. On the other hand, a low-angle jack plane is suitable for working end grain such as trimming or squaring.
Question: What angle is a low-angle jack plane?
Answer: The bed angle of a low-angle jack plane is 12°, and the blade is honed at a 25° angle. The blade bevel of 25° is ideal for fine trimming work on end-grain softwood and some hardwoods.
In a nutshell, the best low angle jack plane offers lots of flexibility, comfortability to the user. This manual tool is easy to control and provides precision over power tools regarding smoothening wood end grains.
While selecting a low-angle jack plane, select the one that meets all the requirements of the woodworking project. As long as you choose this tool according to your preference and budget, there is no way you can get an inefficient outcome.
Now you know our list, choose the right low-angle jack plane that you need for your project.
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