All Replies on Block plane for sticky doors?

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View Pyro's profile

Block plane for sticky doors?

by Pyro
posted 01-13-2018 10:32 PM

13 replies so far

View Woodknack's profile


13474 posts in 3233 days

#1 posted 01-13-2018 10:34 PM

You could definitely use a block plane, or a #4.

-- Rick M,

View Pyro's profile


90 posts in 1015 days

#2 posted 01-13-2018 10:50 PM

Rick can you recommend a specific plane? I’d like to keep the price down as I’m not a high end wood worker. At the same time this is something I would be using often and for a long time so I’ll spend as much as I need to. Thanks

View LesB's profile


2602 posts in 4296 days

#3 posted 01-13-2018 11:53 PM

This is one of the few places I find a hand held power planer is handy. I inherited the one I have. I see there a lot of cordless models out there to solve your “plugging it in” problem. Prices seem to run from $170 to $250 depending on brand.

-- Les B, Oregon

View Loren's profile


10596 posts in 4501 days

#4 posted 01-14-2018 12:03 AM

I concur about the electric planer. The problem
with trimming doors with a hand plane is getting
leverage to take a good cut. Electric planers
don’t put all that force on the door so it doesn’t
move on you. I’ve trimmed doors several times
with hand planes… for a few strokes it’s tolerable
but any substantial trimming would go faster
with an electric.

View bigJohninvegas's profile


802 posts in 2315 days

#5 posted 01-14-2018 12:21 AM

Loren makes a great point. What are your needs. Are you looking to trim a little for a final fit. Or are you needing to take off a 1/4’.
I have done very little door work. What little I have done, I have been able to use an old Stanley block plane.
Just needed to make a couple passes here and there.
Here is a Rockler link, but older planes found at yard sales work great. Sometimes are better tools than the modern ones. And even if you need the power plane. This will fit in your tool bag. Easy to keep with you for the quick fitting work.

-- John

View Pyro's profile


90 posts in 1015 days

#6 posted 01-14-2018 12:30 AM

Usually I need to take an 1/8th or so off. When I need to do more I expect ill need the belt sander although a battery powered planer might be a worthy replacement for that?

View Holt's profile


280 posts in 3482 days

#7 posted 01-14-2018 01:20 AM

If I went with an electric planer, I might think of spending a little extra and getting a rabbeting model. Festool and I think Triton have one. I’ve had tons of times when planning right against the wall of a rabbet would have been great. I even bought a record #10 to add to my hand plane arsenal for the next situation…

-- ...Specialization is for insects.

View diversity210's profile


8 posts in 1431 days

#8 posted 01-14-2018 01:47 AM

When ever I have to take down a door I use an electric hand plane. It is one of the very few things I use an electric hand plane for. Actually at the moment it is the only thing I can think of that I actually use it for. Id highly recommend the Makita KPO800K planer. Its a reasonably priced tool with plenty of power to take down doors and being Makita it will last you a very long time. If you dont want to have to plug anything in. You can take a look at the Makita XPK01Z which is an 18v battery operated hand plane. Though with the purchase of batteries and chargers you price can quickly rise to about 300 bucks for everything.

Id have to say for taking down doors. I would go with an electric hand plane. The one place electric hand planes excel and the only place where I actually use an electric hand plane is for trimming doors. I personally own the the Makita KPO800k. Its a great plane with plenty of power and it will last you for a very long time. If you do no want to have to plug anything in. Then take a look at the Makita XPK01Z. Its an 18v battery operated plane, but with the purchase of batteries and chargers you will quickly be in the 300 dollar range with everything.

Hand planes are a great and fast way to take down doors when you know what you are doing with them. Experience is key with a hand plane though, because if you dont know what you are doing with it. You can quickly find yourself with an uneven door. The advantages of a finely tuned hand plane though is that it will take little effort to get a door trimmed down to where you need it to be. It wont throw a mess everywhere like an electric hand plane does and any shavings will be big enough to pick up by hand. I finely tuned hand plane will also leave you with a surface that requires little to no sanding before paint or stain. If you are going to go with a hand plane. Id recommend looking at the Woodriver hand planes on woodcraft website. Specifically a #5 jack plane. It has a sole that is long enough to ride over any small peaks and valleys in the wood and they are modestly priced. A #62 low angle jack plane would be even better, but they are a bit more expensive. About the same length sole as a #5 jack plane but the #62 blade is set a lower angle which will handle end grain much better and significantly reduce the chance of tear out. Low angle planes will remove less wood one pass than something like a jack plane but when you trim a door you are usually only trimming about 3/16” at the most. A finely tuned #7 jointer plane will be the best thing for you experienced hands. It has a 22 inch sole which will almost ensure flatness, but they cost upwards of 300 bucks.

I really wouldnt recommend a #4 smoothing plane as another user mentioned though. Smoothing planes are meant for just what the name says. Smoothing. They are short planes that will ride into the small peaks and valleys in wood instead of over them like a jack plane or larger and the smaller plane will make it much easier for you to end up with an uneven door. Really take a look at the Woodriver #5 Jack Plane, or the Woodriver #62 low angle plane. Understand that the blades on these planes will require some sharpening and honing out of the box. Any hand plane in this price range will require the blade be honed and sometimes more. I know for a fact the Stanley hand planes require much more fine tuning out of the box than the woodriver planes. So you may want to stay away from those. If you want a plane that is razor sharp and ready to go out of the box. You will have to go with something like a Lie Neilson Hand plane, but those planes will cost you upwards of 500 bucks.

I know its a lot of info, but I hope it helps.

View Woodknack's profile


13474 posts in 3233 days

#9 posted 01-14-2018 02:55 AM

Their advice on an electric plane sounds like the way to go but if you do want to pick up a regular hand plane then I would grab a Stanley contractor series which is a little better than the baseline.

-- Rick M,

View sawdustdad's profile


379 posts in 1738 days

#10 posted 01-14-2018 03:35 AM

Another vote for electric hand plane. Just used my Freud last week to adjust the doors on a closet. I’ve also used it when scribing filler strips for cabinet installs. The hard maple that is used in cabinets requires excessive force with even a sharp hand plane, and it’s difficult sometimes to secure the part in the field. Power planer does not require a solid workbench, just a couple saw horses.

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Half of all boards cut to a specific length will be too short.

View waho6o9's profile


8942 posts in 3430 days

#11 posted 01-14-2018 05:01 AM

This would be a good time to gain more skills in making a plane and to learn sharpening up the blade.

It’s a work out to plane a door an 1/8” down no doubt. I used an electric planer when the hand plane
was eating up time.

Here’s some cost effective electric ones:

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 2815 days

#12 posted 01-14-2018 01:20 PM

Electric planer seems to be the consensus, and I’ve only done one door, but it was pretty easy with a hand plane. Basically just need something to keep the door in place as you plane it.

If you’re taking 1/8” off the long sides, I’d suggest a jack plane (#5) or a #4 would work ok too rather than a black plane. A vintage stanley would work. If you decide you want one check out timetestedtools or put a wanted post in the trade and swap forum. You’ll want to be able to sharpen the blade too.

View Just_Iain's profile


330 posts in 1270 days

#13 posted 01-14-2018 02:08 PM

Electric planers are certainly speedy so seem to be the choice. But if you can’t throw shavings around (i.e. a carpeted hallway or room) then the hand plane might be a good idea. Another point is can you take the door off and have a place to work?

Stanley #3 for hand plane while only slightly longer than a block plane is much better suited than a block plane. The Stanley #4 is better still but as the # gets larger, the weight goes up.

Personally I would suggest both. Makita electric for big adjustments and hand plane larger than block plane for fine tuning.

-- For those about to die, remember your bicycle helmet!

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