Smoothing plane

Smoothing plane
A modern, iron bodied, No. 4 smoothing plane

A smoothing plane or smooth plane is a type of bench plane used in woodworking. The smoothing plane is typically the last plane used on a wood surface - when used properly, the finish it gives will be far superior to that made by sandpaper or scrapers. The smooth finish is the result of planing the wood off in strips, rather than by successive buffing and scratching.

The smoothing plane is typically 8 to 10 inches long. The throat may be adjusted to a tight opening so as to allow only a very fine shaving and to reduce tearout of the grain to a minimum. The smooth plane is held with both hands.[1] The iron of the smoothing plane is generally sharpened straight across or with a slightly arched cutting edge (or at least with rounded corners) to prevent unsightly grooves from being gouged in the wood surface when it is planed.


  1. Hand Planes Reprint from Handwork In Wood by William Noyes
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