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 £142*.

buying a router plane

*Prices correct as of September 2019

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

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

12 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

  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 Berger 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,
      Izzy

  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 Berger 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,
      Izzy

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