Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane 2020 – Honest Review

In this article we’ll review the Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane and see which one comes out on top!

Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane
Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane
Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane
Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane
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Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane
Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane
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Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane
Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane

A bench plane becomes an essential element when you are performing woodwork. There can be different bench plane options among which you can choose. Two of the most used ones are the Jack Plan and Smoothing Plane. A Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane can help in understanding the difference between the two. This can also explain that in which activity which plane is used. 

Overview

If you are engaged in woodwork, you will require a bench plane for varied activities. There are diverse options for bench planes available, and you need to know which one suits your requirement the best. Here are a review and comparison of the two most essential plane options you require for your work. 

What is Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane?

The Jack Plane is considered the most critical plane, as it is also the jack of all trades. Maybe this is the reason it has also been named a Jack Plane. It can do most of the planes, such as smoothing planes, the jointer planes, and the fore planes. This is mostly used for different tasks, and this makes a must-have plane for all the woodworking professionals. If you have this plane, you might be able to do several tasks with it. 

When to Use Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane?

Are you cutting down the size of wood so that you can work upon it? You can use this plane to size down your wood piece. Before you use a smoothing plane, you should use a jack plane to offer a much smoother surface to the wood.  The Jack Plane is also an excellent option for removing the higher points from the wood. As it is longer than the Smoothing plane, it offers a straight edge. Altogether, you can use this plane to prepare the wood so that you can use other planes on it for the final touch-ups. 

Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane

Stanley 12-137 No.62 Low Angle Jack Plane
  • Base and frog cast as one for accuracy
  • Patented lateral adjustment locking feature
  • Cherry wood handle and knob for comfort with solid brass adjustments for smooth operation
  • Iron casting for weight and durability
  • Mouth adjustment for different types of wood
Pros
  • This lightweight and durable plane can offer a much more refined edge.
  • The knob and the handle offer a much comfortable grip.
  • The classic looking machine also offers excellent performance. 
Cons
  • The tool’s con is that it may take much time in assembling it before you start working with it.
Stanley-12-137-No.62-Low-Angle-Jack-Plane

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What is Smoothing Plane?

As the name recommends, a smoothing plane is something that offers smoothness to the woodwork. Usually, this plane is used at the end when all the essential tasks are done. Thus, when talking about Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane, this can be said that a Jack Plane is used in the starting or the work while a smoothing plane is used at the end.  The smoothing plane is available in different sizes to use the right one to smoother the proper object. Hence, you should have this plane of different sizes if you are a professional woodworker. 

When to Use Smoothing Plane?

As mentioned earlier, a smoothing plane is used only at the end of the task. The purpose of a smoothing plane is to provide smoothness to the wood surface. Hence, it is used only after all the other essential tasks of shaping and building it. You can use different smoothing planes to work on various items, such as a smaller 3 for smaller items. On the other hand, you can use size 4 for furniture and other similar items. The larger sized planes can be heavier obviously than the smaller ones. This can also cause tears on a delicate surface. So, you should also choose the right size based on the delicateness of the surface. 

Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane

Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane
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Stanley 12-136 No. 4 Smoothing Bench Plane
  • Base and frog cast as one for accuracy
  • Patented lateral adjustment locking feature
  • Cherry wood handle and knob for comfort with solid brass adjustments for smooth operation
  • Iron casting for weight and durability
  • Mouth adjustment for different types of wood
Pros
  • It is highly durable for various smoothing tasks.
  • It comes with an elegant wood handle for grip.
  • You can regulate the mouth of the plane for better performance.
Cons
  • It does not have a flat sole and blade.
  • It is too heavy.
  • The blade may get chipped quite faster.  
Stanley-12-136 No-4-Smoothing-Bench-Plane

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Main Differences Between Jack Plane and Smoothing Plane

When you go for Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane, there are many points to go for while purchasing. 

  • The Jack Plane is used since the starting of the woodwork in various tasks along with other planes. The smoothing plane is used for the smoothing purpose at the end of the task when the item is complete. 
  • The Jack Plane can be used for various purposes, such as resizing or reshaping the wood and many others. The sole purpose of a smoothing plane is to provide smoothness to the wood surface. 
  • The cutting edge of a Jack Plane is rounded, while the cutting-edge shape of a Smoothing Plane is that of a crown. 

Conclusion and Recommendation

So, to have proper woodwork, both types of bench planes are required. The detailed Jack Plane vs. Smoothing Plane clarifies how they differ in terms of the basic task. So, choosing the right plane will depend upon your requirement. Also, if you are a professional woodworker, you may even need both of them.  

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