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 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 purchased this Lie Nielsen router plane for £140.82 (inc VAT £168.98*) in February 2018 which is available in the US and also the UK from Axminster.

*Price checked 17/9/21

Note: We ordered the Lie Nielsen router plane on back-order as it was out of stock and it took 6 weeks to arrive.

Relevant Guides:

  • Sharpening a Router Plane

  • Using a Router Plane

  • Buying a Router Plane

Further Reading

To read more on router planes, we recommend the following from Paul’s blog:

Buying Good Tools Cheap- Router Plane

Tool Review- Veritas Router Plane

Tightening Tool for a Veritas Router Plane

Veritas Router Plane


  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?


    • Izzy BergerTeam Member 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,

  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. Byron Stephen Wiseman 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,

  4. Byron Stephen Wiseman 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”

    Thank You,

  5. Byron Stephen Wiseman 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,

    • Izzy BergerTeam Member 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.


  6. Ange Holmes on 25 March 2019 at 6:15 pm

    What are the best size/type of blades to start with? I am looking at getting the Veritas plane and there are many options for blades…

    • Izzy BergerTeam Member on 27 March 2019 at 3:08 pm

      Hi Ange,

      Paul suggests getting what he considers as the most practical size ⅜ “ – ½ “ and then add smaller blades as needed.

      Kind Regards,

  7. Larry Christensen on 17 June 2019 at 8:53 pm

    Sorry for being late with my question. I bought a LN router plane after watching and listening to Pauls videos. Can you tell me the type and thickness of the wooden plate Paul mounts to his router plane.

    • Izzy BergerTeam Member on 24 June 2019 at 12:45 pm

      Hi Larry,

      It is ⅜” thick, 2” longer than the plane base (1” either side) and the same width front to back as the plane base.

      Kind Regards,

  8. Jeff Kemper on 6 February 2020 at 7:55 pm

    The LN Router comes in open throat format and closed throat format and I am curious about Paul’s experience with regard to this, especially given that there isn’t a difference in price.


    • Izzy BergerTeam Member on 10 February 2020 at 3:06 pm

      Hi Jeff,

      I passed your question on to Paul and he says:

      I would say definitely go for the open throat because if you have a lot of stopped housing dadoes to do, you can use the open throat for that and it prevents damage to the fore edge of the housing dado. If you want continuous sole, as in the closed throat, you can simply add a wooden sole which most people do anyway because that prevents the metal from marring the wood.

      Kind Regards,

  9. Brent Powers on 12 May 2020 at 8:37 pm

    Has Paul per chance looked at the chinese planes from (I have no affiliation with them, whatsoever)? They look nicely machined, and a bit less expensive. They also have a Preston style plane

    • Izzy BergerTeam Member on 14 May 2020 at 3:27 pm


      Paul says:
      Without having them and using them, I can’t pass a comment.

      Kind Regards,

  10. Rob Churchill on 30 March 2021 at 5:21 pm

    There are three Preston router planes on ebay right now – going for £360, £550, and £630. Think I’ll pass! The Stanley/Record planes go for about £100 if complete and in good nick, but the little Stanley 722’s can be had for well under £50. I’m wondering how useful they are for general work?

    • Izzy BergerTeam Member on 30 June 2021 at 9:57 am

      Hi Rob,

      Paul says:
      The little ones work just fine but eventually you will want a full sized version I think.


  11. Larry Burns on 19 August 2021 at 2:29 am

    What router does Paul use in the Tenoned Miter video? I have a Stanley 71, but am looking for something more along the lines of rectangular in footprint rather than triangular like the 71. Paul has several of them hanging in the background, and uses one in the video.

    Thank you so kindly!

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