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Dewalt DW734 12-1/2" Portable Planer
12-1/2" planer. For squaring up rough lumber, reducing board size, and smoothing surfaces. 4-column design with head lock along with large infeed/outfeed tables (32-3/4") minimize snipe. Turret depth stop for accurate and repeatable cuts. Calibrated depth adjustment crank. Magnified depth scale for easy reading. Material removal scale indicates amount of material to be removed. Planes up to 12-1/2" wide and 1/8" deep in single pass. Accepts 1/8" through 6" thick stock. Feed rate: 26 FPM. 15A, 10,000 RPM. Weight: 80 lb. Included: Dust hood.
For squaring up rough lumber, reducing board size, and smoothing surfaces
4-column design with head lock along with large infeed/outfeed tables (32-3/4") minimize snipe
Turret depth stop for accurate and repeatable cuts
Calibrated depth adjustment crank
|Average Customer Rating:
|| based on 130 reviews|
Average Customer Review:
( 130 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
178 of 185 found the following review helpful:
Great planer for small shop.Sep 21, 2003
I was one of the first to get the DW734 from Amazon. Other than the 3-knife head (with 2-sided disposable blades instead of resharpenable) and some styling details, the 734 planer appears to be identical to the previous model, the 733. I haven't been able to get any detailed info on changes between the two models from any source I researched.
It was set up right on the money out of the box except that the cut depth gage is off by around 1/128" (not enough to matter). I was pleased that it came with a dust hood (4"), something not listed in any of the info I was able to get before the purchase.
The cut is silky smooth--unless you look very closely in bright light on a darker wood surface (like walnut) you can't see any blade marks at all.
The machine functions very well--easy to set up, the controls operate very smoothly and precisely, and each of the features works as expected without needless fiddling. The dust hood, even though only 4", clears chips and dust very efficiently. The only time any chips escaped was when I tried to take 1/8" off of a 6" board (a no-no according to the owner manual), and then I got a little puff of shavings out the feed end. (My setup is a Jet DC1100CK 1 1/2 HP dust collector connected via a 6" shop duct system, blast gate, 6" flex pipe and a reducer to the 734's 4" dust port.)
I did have problems with a little snipe when attempting to take more than 1/32 inch in a pass--I may be able to adjust this out of the planer, but I often make two passes anyway: one to thickness and one to surface.
I was surprised to have several small nicks in the blades after planing perhaps 8-10 bf of scrap (carefully inspected/cleaned beforehand), probably due to contaminants in/on the boards. In one case a small knot apparently made a nick. This was disappointing as the planer only comes with 1 set of knives and a new set is fairly expensive. Two passes at the same thickness setting makes the nick traces all but vanish, but this means passing the wood thru the planer 3 times to avoid snipe and nick traces. Perhaps the nicks were a result of embedded sand or silica in the particular scraps used, not something that will happen on a regular basis. (Although my Jet jointer didn't take any nicks when I jointed the same scraps.)
It appears to have the same fit and finish as the more expensive the Delta 2-speed, but the 734 is lighter and more portable. But I'm told the Delta unit is less prone to snipe. I chose the 734 over the 733 because of its disposable knives (I don't have a very trustworthy sharpening service near me) and because of the 3-knife head, which should save me some sanding. If those things aren't important to you, the older 733 might be a better value, while supplies last.
Based on my short experience, I'd recommend the 734. I withheld 1 star because of the snipe and nick problems.
110 of 113 found the following review helpful:
Disappointing start, but a wonderful machineDec 09, 2004
By J. Sander
I purchased this machine about six months ago after being extremely impressed with my neighbor's DeWalt DW733 planer.
After just a few uses with some Pine boards, I felt that something wasn't quite right. After calling DeWalt and explaining the problem best I could, they were stumped and suggested I take it to my local DeWalt service center, which happened to be just a few miles from my house. After a week or two, the said they had found nothing wrong with it. After testing it upon return, I could definitely tell that something had been fixed, tightened, adjusted, whatever. It worked great for a very short time after that on Pine and Cypress boards, but more problems began developing. Dull blades seemed to be the culprit, so I attempted to flip them. But guess what -- one of the blades had already been flipped! I replaced all the blades with new ones and the difference in performance is incredible. It is now the wonderful machine that impressed me so much at my neighbor's. But I'm puzzled as to why my blades needed replacing after very little usage on soft lumber.
Quality control seemed to have skipped my machine for some reason, but now that the bugs are gone (I hope), this is a great planer. I'd give it 5 stars, but I'm giving it 4 for the bugs I had to deal with. One other quality control problem: the data sticker on my machine says it's a DW735 13" Thickness Planer! The folks at DeWalt sure were shocked and confused at that big oversight.
By the way, buy or build a stand for this machine. I built a 2-tool, flip-top stand for about $50. Unless you always have a helper handy, you can forget about moving it on a regular basis. Besides, the vibration tends to move the machine if not bolted down.
Lastly, buy hearing protection. Unless you're already deaf, you'll need it.
UPDATE: After about a year of use, this planer continues to be a wonderful machine. However, be warned that the blades dull very quickly. My neighbor owns the DW733 model and he is still on his original set of blades after 2-3 years of use while I'm on #3 after one year of use. We both generally plan the same stuff at the same frequency of usage using only a 1/64" cut with each feed. With replacement blades at $50 a set, this can get very expensive.
75 of 78 found the following review helpful:
Feedback on Amazon and on first few uses of planerSep 03, 2004
First, a little praise for Amazon. $25.00 discount, free shipping, and free set of spare knives (didn't even know these were included.), resulted in a delivered price of [...]. That's the best deal in town, especially when you consider the free [...] knives.
Now, the planer. It's heavy. Really heavy. But that's a good thing. It took only 10 minutes to set up, read the manual, and make my first sawdust. Initial results were excellent. Glass-smooth surfaces on White Oak, Poplar, and Red Oak. Minimum snipe limited to ends of board. No snipe detected elsewhere.
Nice fit & finish. Decent manual. Good ergonomics. Plenty powerful.
So far, highly recommended. I'll update after a few hundred board feet.
UPDATE - 2 Years Later
I'm still very pleased. I've put in excess of 1000 bf through the planer now. It hasn't missed a beat. Unbelieveably, I'm still on my first set of knives. They are a little nicked now due to some hard maple I put through it a few weeks ago, but I'm not yet sufficiently motivated to change them. This machine has served me well, and shows no signs of slowing down. It still ranks 5 stars.
UPDATE - 1 Week since Last Update
I broke down and turned the knives over. I cut myself in the process. Clumsy! A few cuts after freshening the knives made it obvious that I should have done this some time ago. The planer performs like new. Still 5 stars.
Update - At 4 Years
Still 5 stars. I turn or replace the knives every 6 months or so. The knives don't like Hard Maple, but all other species do fine (including Walnut & Oak). The results delivered by this planer are excellent.
Update - At 6 Years
Still going strong. Just added a Wixey digital readout that I got from Amazon. Still 5 stars.
65 of 69 found the following review helpful:
Kudos to DewaltJan 09, 2004
By J. Williams
Hats off to Dewalt on this one. I purchased this planer about mid Dec. (3 weeks ago) I have use it several times, mostly on 3/4" maple with a few other matrls. thrown in. It has performed wonderfully. The dust collection shute is a big plus and works fairly well with my heavy duty shop vac. I suspect it will work even better with a good dust collector of 500 or more cfm.(My next purchase)
The three blade system leaves a VERY smooth surface (mimimum sanding with fine sand paper for a stainable finish) Most of the wood I have ran is not more than 7" wide and at 1/16 depth of cut. The unit is capable of more buy why heat the blades.
Snipe has been virtually none. A very small amount of snipe occured when I went for a deeper cut on a 7" wide maple board.
The depth of cut gauge on the infeed side is about the best idea ever, (other manufacturers take note) and the preset finish cut depth can be somewhat handy as well.
The two handles on the top outside of the planer make it very easy to move around my garage, into the pickup, or on to the elevated bench where I keep it out of the way when not in use.
If i had any complaint it would be this...If the dust shute had a quick disconnect or latch type attatchment, it would be handy so that the outfeed table could fold up for storage without having to break out any tools. A minor inconvenience that has no effect at all on performance.
If your'e looking for a portable garage/jobsite planer, this one is up to the task. You will be pleased with the results.
P.S. I haven't had to change the blades yet, however, I did open up the unit and did a "mock" blade change to become familiar with it...very easy to do requiring no special knowledge or tools..Good job Dewalt.
33 of 35 found the following review helpful:
Excellent toolJun 23, 2004
I bought this planer a month ago from a local home center. I was disappointed to see it made in Taiwan, but little can be done since most are anyway. It took almost no time to set up, and I was planing some Zebrawood right away. Zebrawood is a notoriously difficult wood to plane, but this machine did a superb job. No snipe or problems in 11 BF of lumber. I've planed 2 BF of Purpleheart, 17 BF of Black Walnut, 7 BF of White Oak, and some small amounts of other hard and soft woods. The knives are still sharp and doing a fine job. The depth adjustment is very easy to use, and accurate. The turret stop can be set for 3/4", 1/2", 1/4", 1/8" settings for repetitive thickness planing in different boards. This is a very nice feature. The dust collection works well, but don't expect 100% of the chips to be collected as some do find their way out. I have it hooked up to a ShopVac and the system works well for me. Changing the knives is easy, and the overall fit and finish of the machine is quite good. The important thing to remember is to never take more than 1/32" off at a time. Shallow passes take more time, but they don't load the motor or knives as much and the finish quality is better. Also, allow the tool (and knives) to rest/cool after several minutes of use. This planer isn't designed for cabinet shops and shouldn't be left on for long periods of time. Use rollers to support long pieces of lumber as this will make it less likely for the board or machine to be damaged. Overall, I am very happy with my purchase. I have used this machine heavily in the past month and will continue to put it to use. I am confident it will hold up as I've had good experience with DeWalt. I highly recommend this tool.
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