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Planers: Which one to get? Ridgid vs Dewalt vs. others

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  • Planers: Which one to get? Ridgid vs Dewalt vs. others

    I want to buy a 12-13" planer for my husband (for Xmas), but have been totally confused by all the reviews I've read! Although he is just a hobbyist, he is a perfectionist in his woodworking and usually prefers Ridgid and DeWalt brands. Can anyone comment on their preferences, pros, cons?

  • #2
    Wow. Can you talk to my wife about getting me a bandsaw for xmas? [img]smile.gif[/img]

    Seriously, I have the Ridgid planer and a buddy of mine has a DeWalt planer. Let's just say that I'm glad I have my Ridgid planer. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    Also, it's scored well in a lot of tool reviews.

    Michael

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    • #3
      Thanks Michael. Ridgid it is. I was teetering because I had seen a magazine review that chose Delta (Ridgid & DeWalt were at the bottom), which surprised me. P.S. I am not totally ultruistic in my motives...I am happy to buy him expensive tools because I benefit in the end! He has made me some really cool stuff in the past with the other tools I bought him.

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      • #4
        The magazine article was probably referring to the new two-speed Delta, the -580. It's tricky, DeWalt and Ridgid each make only one portable planer, but Delta has had four within recent memory.

        Assuming longevity works out (you never know 'til you know, you know? ), the -580 is a very neat machine. It is a fair piece more expensive than a DeWalt (and I assume a Ridgid, I'm not up on its' price).

        Dave

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        • #5
          Dave, have you used the new Delat? The article was referring to the 580, and I have found it on the Internet for $409, only a few bucks more than the Ridgid ($397). My mate is a Tool Snob and has never mentioned Delta as one of his picks. However, he only began his tool collection a few yrs. ago and only has the Ridgid table saw, the Dewalt miter box, and some smaller Dewalt power tools. What is so special about the Delat?

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          • #6
            Wife,

            The Delta is the only portable planer available that has 2 speeds. I have an older 12 1/2" Delta with a single speed and it's a very good machine. If I hadn't already had it, I would have gone with the new 2 speed model.

            Bob R

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            • #7
              I haven't used a 580, but a friend of mine is one of the designers of it.

              The 580 has two feed speeds. This allows "fast" for most stock removal, and "slow" for less noticable (but still present) knifemarks. This is a feature that is common in stationary planers, but it is the first to have this in a portable.

              Tool brand loyalties are a little like religion. It's possible that he hates Delta. They've been around forever (even longer than Ridgid, which is a heckuva long time), a lot of people have developed strong feelings for or against. I'd be a little reluctant to recommend because of this.

              Dave

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              • #8
                OK, OK, it seems I am now leaning towards the Delta. I think the 2 speeds would fit his somewhat anal tendencies for perfection, regardless of his brand loyalty.

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                • #9
                  The 2 speed Delta is the most desired of the benchtop planers due to the 2 speeds. If you are looking at a single speed planer then the water gets very murky. I like the Rigid and Dewalt only because they are heavier than the Delta. I will be purchasing a reconditioned Dewalt from amazon for $229 ($249-$20 coupon). In the end a planed board does not know the differnce.
                  Reggie
                  Reggie

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                  • #10
                    I think it was the most recent issue of Fine Woodworking that stated the review really couldn't find too much of a difference between the speeds.

                    Michael

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                    • #11
                      I too read the review that stated that they could see no difference in the quality of the cut using both speeds on the Delta. Probably more of a marketing ploy. I personally would not get the Delta. They had a major problem with the 565 model with the nut coming loose that holds the pulley to the cutterhead and destroying the planer. My personal experience with this is that Delta offered no customer service even though it was less than a year old.(I didnt have a reciept becuase it was an xmas gift). I have the Dewalt now and its great. Either the Ridgid or the Dewalt would be my recomendation.

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                      • #12
                        I have the single speed Delta, which works fine. However, I made the mistake of helping by brother-in-law set up his Ridgid planer, and ever since wish I had gotten the Ridgid. It just seems a little sturdier (e.g. larger in/out tables), and has a few very nice features like setting the target depth and a depth of cut indicator. The dust collector is excellent for small projects, but I doubt if many vacuums could keep up with the rate any of the planers can put out chips when they are really going at it.

                        Any planer (including my Delta and Jim's Ridgid) leaves tiny blade marks on both hard and soft wood, but they are easily removed during sanding - that is such a small issue that I have never wished for the dual speed planer.

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                        • #13
                          Thanks for all the advice on the different planers. I am now trying to decide between the Ridgid and the 2-speed Delta. I was leaning towards Delta only for the 2 speeds, but since some of you say there's not much difference between the speeds, I am now thinking Ridgid, esp. after a few comments this weekend from my husband about Ridgid & Dewalt being the only tools allowed in his work space. Any more comments would be appreciated!

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                          • #14
                            Wife,
                            I agree with ba-doyn, Mike in Canada and Charlie P,
                            2 speeds on a portable planer is just a marketing
                            ploy. You really don't need it. I've been looking at planers for some time now and I'm going to buy the Ridgid for myself for Christmas. Besides, the Ridgid comes with a Lifetime Warranty! And, a great place to hang out and get/give advice! (here) [img]smile.gif[/img] .
                            John
                            Eastchester, NY
                            "He who is not just a little bit scared of his power tools, we call stubby" ~ John M Peragine

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                            • #15
                              I have sold all my Delta tools (5 of them) and am going to be replacing them with higher quality tools. I found their price to be great, but the fit and finish left a lot to be desired and found me wishing I'd bought Ridgid in the first place.

                              I had the 560 planer and was ok with it, but the problems they've had with the gearing made we want to sell before it happened to me. If it were me and I had the choice now, I'd buy the Ridgid planer. I will eventually get it, but times are tough right now and it will have to wait
                              Kelly C. Hanna<br /><a href=\"http://www.hannawoodworks.com\" target=\"_blank\">Hanna Woodworks</a>

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