Buying a Router Plane

Buying a secondhand router plane isn’t always the cheapest option with these tools, it is best to check the prices of new ones too. Availability in both new and secondhand camps is often an issue for buyers.

Paul Sellers recommends the Edward Preston router plane as it has a long rectangular base, however they are often difficult to find and expensive because of collectability. He has found that the Tyzack router plane is very similar so he would also recommend this but again, this is hard to find. Paul likes these because the open frame allows clear visibility to see the work area below the router.

If you cannot find these, Paul suggests either the Stanley #71 or the Record #071, these two are almost identical. The Stanley has a nickel plating and the Record is painted dark blue, this is the main difference between them. Because of the finish and the fact that they were well made, even as a secondhand tools they should last a long time as this prevents rust. The above router planes are all only available secondhand. Be sure to check the blade for excessive rust/pitting and that there is a significant length of blade left. The best way to check this is to compare to other router planes you see listed.

For example the Veritas small router plane is highly engineered but they only started making it a few years ago so you might find secondhand routers by other makers are not much cheaper.

Paul recommends the Stanley or Record router plane secondhand if you can find one, eBay is usually the best place to find these. If you cannot find these, the Lie Nielsen is also a good new option. Paul prefers the thumb screw on the Stanley router plane compared to the Lie Nielsen knurled screw as it gives more purchase.

🇬🇧/🇺🇸We ordered this Lie Nielsen router plane which is available in the US and also the UK from Axminster for £139*.

buying a router plane

*Prices correct as of March 2019

8 Comments

  1. Steve Petka on 9 January 2019 at 4:52 pm

    This looks like an open mouth model, but I read somewhere to buy a closed mouth one. As I have to save to just buy the one, I want to make sure I buy the correct one. Should I get open or closed mouth?

    Thanks

    • Izzy Berger on 11 January 2019 at 2:40 pm

      Hi Steve,

      Paul says if you want a closed mouth you can add a wooden sole and you would have the benefit of both types. He recommends the Lee Nielsen.

      Kind Regards,
      Izzy

  2. Steve Petka on 16 January 2019 at 9:05 pm

    I have just read a few posts on Paul’s blog about the Veritas router plane, which looks easier to sharpen. Any thoughts on that vs the Lie Nielsen? Similar in price but quite a few differences.

  3. Stephen on 19 January 2019 at 10:43 pm

    Dear Lizzy,

    Will the Lie Nielsen take a wooden base or rather does it have the screw holes predrilled to accept a wood base?
    If not (doesn’t look like in the photograph of the plane) how difficult is it to drill holes?

    Or…just get the closed base model?

    Many Thanks and Kind Regards,
    stephen

  4. Stephen on 20 January 2019 at 3:56 pm

    My last on router plane questions…Is it a problem that the Lie Nielsen router plane doesn’t have a “V”
    cutter?

    Thank You,
    stephen

  5. Stephen on 24 January 2019 at 1:22 pm

    Dear Izzy,

    (Please forgive my misspelling of your name earlier!)

    Perhaps the slots I see in the photo would allow for a wooden base?

    Kind Regards,
    stephen

    • Izzy Berger on 25 January 2019 at 8:25 am

      Hi Stephen,

      Yes, you can use the fence slots to run a screw through into a wooden sole.

      Izzy

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