The 5 Best Planer Molders That Will Change Your Approach to Projects

Last Updated on August 28, 2022 by Barry Gray

If you are new to the idea of using a planer molder, then allow me to introduce you to them. You see, a planer molder is a wonderful tool capable of cutting large boards to some precise measurements.

You will immediately see how this could benefit various projects, as the precision you can achieve with these machines is outstanding. However, I don’t want to leave you in the lurch by just saying these are great machines and letting you choose your own.

Instead, I’m going to use my extensive woodworking experience and knowledge of tools to guide you through five of the best planer molders on the market right now. Also, I will give you some handy tips on how to better understand what to look for when choosing a planer molder.

After all of this, I am confident you will feel as if you are in a position to choose the best one for your needs.

working with planer molder

How I Created My List

I’ve spent a lot of time checking out the different options before creating my list. I wanted to ensure I covered all the bases with the different models, and I believe I have been able to do precisely that.

Each machine has been checked to see if it’s easy to use and also if it’s robust. Accuracy and precision is another crucial component. After all, that’s at the root of why you would use this machine in the first place.

I’ve also checked out what other users have said about their experiences. I feel that gives you the most accurate representation of what it’s like to own one of these machines before you head on out there and spend your money.

So, with all that in mind, let’s check out the planer molders that made it to my list.

Best Overall Planer Molder – Shop Fox W1812

  • Power: 2 HP
  • Speed: 7,000 RPM
  • Maximum Width: 7”
  • Maximum Cut Depth: 3/4”
  • Maximum Planing Thickness: 6”

Shop Fox has worked hard to establish itself as a respected name, and the W1812 is another example of how good they are at designing machines for your workshop. This model comes with a 2 HP motor capable of turning those cutting blades at a rate of 7000 RPM. 

You should know that this model comes with a thinner maximum cutting width than others, but I still find it sufficient at 7”. Also, I like the feed speed options with this model ranging from 0 to 18 FPM. I feel that offers you so much control and is the perfect speed for people new to this type of machine.

In addition, if you feel worried about dust, this model comes with a large dust port measuring some 4” that allows you to quickly attach your own dust collection system. I find it is then capable of catching more dust than other models as a result.

For maintenance, then you have little to worry about. This machine is extremely robust; even changing the blades takes little effort. I hate when a machine is designed so that updating or maintaining it is difficult, but that’s certainly not the case here.

Overall, I find this Shop Fox model a breeze to use. You can even purchase a separate elliptical jig if you wish to make specific moldings, further increasing the number of reasons why this is a wonderful machine to own.


  • The gentle feed speed is excellent for people new to this machine
  • It has a powerful motor leading to pristine cuts
  • The dust collection port is substantial, leading to bigger collection systems being used
  • Changing the knives and maintaining the machine is very easy
  • It feels incredibly robust and rigid


  • The cutting width does reduce the ability to work on some projects

Best Low-Noise Planer Molder – JET JPM – 13CS

  • Power: 1 1/2 HP
  • Speed: 4,500 RPM
  • Maximum Width: 13”
  • Maximum Cut Depth: ⅛”
  • Maximum Planing Thickness: 6 1/8”

One of the problems people often find with different machines is noise. If that’s of concern to you, then the JET JPM-13CS could prove invaluable. I find this one of the quietest planer molder machines on the market, and it also comes with less vibration.

You still get a powerful 1 ½ HP motor, so don’t think you miss out in that area. It also still reaches speeds of up to 4,500 RPM for the cutter head, producing smooth cuts, and I love how it still functions as it should, but without all the noise.

The cutter is a three-knife design that makes a difference to the end result. It also comes with a slow feed rate, giving you so much control over stock to help get those moldings just perfect.

I also noticed that adjusting this machine was straightforward. That included changing the knives, and I always love a machine that doesn’t make life difficult in this area.

The molding cutter head also comes with over 40 molding cutter sets, giving you ample opportunity to play around and generate different finishes.

Finally, the casters are fully lockable, giving you a sense of absolute stability with this machine. It certainly won’t be going anywhere when in use, allowing you to use a bit more pressure without stressing about it.

Overall, the fact that this model by JET can do everything and not destroy your ears is a real bonus, and that’s why I’ve had to include it in my list.


  • It is quieter and has less vibration than most models
  • It’s still powerful and cuts well
  • It’s straightforward to adjust and change this model
  • It has a slow feed speed making it easier to maintain control
  • The base is robust and rigid


  • It is quite big and bulky, so space may become an issue

Best Heavy Duty Planer Molder – Grizzly G0815

  • Power: 3 HP
  • Speed: 5,000 RPM
  • Maximum Width: 15”
  • Maximum Cut Depth: ⅛”
  • Maximum Planing Thickness: 6”

Grizzly has this ability to produce machines best suited for heavy-duty use, and if you want to own a planer molder capable of dealing with heavy projects, then I suggest checking out their G0815 model.

It comes with what appears to be their standard 3 HP of power that then rotates those cutting blades at an impressive 5000 RPM. It also offers you two different feed speeds at both 16 and 30 FPM, and I like that the two speeds are completely different. I feel it allows me to speed through specific projects where absolute precision is perhaps just not so necessary.

I should also mention the ease with which this model can be adjusted. It uses handwheel adjustments to allow you to get that exact height that you need, and it’s something that works well. 

Overall, I see this machine as a powerful planer molder that can churn through all types of wood without breaking a sweat. This could be the perfect model for you if you want something that just performs and requires little maintenance.


  • It is powerful with a 3 HP motor
  • It’s effortless to adjust the height
  • It has two feed speeds for better control
  • It’s a heavy-duty machine 


  • This machine is not for beginners

Best Benchtop Planer Molder – JET JWP-13BT

  • Power: 2 HP
  • Speed: 10,000 RPM
  • Maximum Width: 13”
  • Maximum Cut Depth: ⅛”
  • Maximum Planing Thickness: 6”

If you feel floor space is an issue, then going with a benchtop version is a possibility. For me, the best benchtop model has to be the JET JWP-13BT.

First, it has a massive 2 HP motor that turns the cutting head at a crazy 10,000RPM. Not only that, but it also has a very decent feed rate of 18 and 26 FPM. I feel this is fast enough to feel you are getting the job done without it coming across as if you are really losing control.

Oh, not every planer molder will even come with more than one feed speed option. I like the option of choosing depending on what I’m doing, so that’s another huge bonus for this model.

But with any version, the cutting dimensions must be one thing you look at, and this one is pretty impressive, considering you are looking at a benchtop version. It has a maximum planing thickness of 6”, and that’s thick. Add in a cut depth of 1.8” and a width of 13”, and you can see how this model is capable of helping you out with various projects.

However, one thing I do like about this model is the way it produces such smooth cuts every single time. Other users report being impressed with the end result, and the fact it doesn’t take forever to work through even long stock is another huge bonus.

Overall, what you get here with this planer molder is a machine with a powerful motor resulting in clean and smooth cuts. It can deal with reasonably sized planks and deliver results in no time.


  • Having two feed speeds is impressive
  • The blades do an excellent job of smoothing everything out
  • The cutting width and depth should cover most projects
  • It’s on a strong and sturdy base giving real solidity
  • The benchtop version takes up little space.


  • There can occasionally be some snipe on the boards

Best Planer Molder with Stand – Grizzly G1021Z

  • Power: 3 HP
  • Speed: 5,000 RPM
  • Maximum Width: 15”
  • Maximum Cut Depth: ⅛”
  • Maximum Planing Thickness: 6”

If you have enough space in your workshop for a planer molder that comes complete with a stand, I would suggest checking out the Grizzly G1021Z. With a huge 3 HP pushing the cutting heads to a speed of 5,000 RPM, this machine has way more power than you would probably ever need.

I do like how it gives you a slightly wider cutting width than other machines on the market, with this one measuring in at 15”. The planing thickness and cutting depth are standard, but with so many machines only giving you 13” of a width, those extra 2” could make a significant difference. It also comes with 16 and 20 FPM feeding speeds, allowing you to judge how much control you want.

But for me, some additional features make this model stand out. For example, it locks in place, preventing the machine from moving around when in use. That leads to a better end result without any wrong cuts. 

Plus, it also comes with thermal overload protection designed to ensure you don’t simply burn everything out. However, if this is engaged, it does stop things smoothly, so it won’t surprise you.

Overall, I feel this is a sturdy machine offering you absolute control over both the feed and cutting speed. It’s easy to use and delivers stunning results.


  • It has two different feed speeds available
  • It allows up to a maximum width of 15”
  • It locks down to prevent movement for safer use
  • The thermal overload protection does protect the motor
  • It is exceptionally powerful


  • It is very heavy at 540lbs

How to Choose a Planer Molder

work done planer molder

Before I describe the key components to look out for with a planer molder, let me take you through why you may want to own one in the first place.

A planer molder will prove highly useful for several different projects. Thanks to its ability to cut wood to specific thicknesses, you can make things such as window frames, door frames, baseboards, and many other things.


Power is directly linked to how well the machine cuts, so you want to ensure you own a model delivering anywhere from 1 ½ HP and upwards. But that’s not the only important part related to power.

You always want to ensure the model you own delivers power consistently. You don’t want surges, as that leads to inferior end results. It becomes significantly smoother to operate by providing constant power, and that’s what you should be aiming for.

Feed Rate

The feed rate is the speed at which the stock passes through the machine. Some machines will have just one feed rate, while others will either offer two different rates or allow you to vary.

I would certainly opt for a machine with more than one feed rate. There are just times when you need to go a bit slower due to what you hope to produce. However, a faster feed rate can work if you plan on going for a simple cut where precision and accuracy are not quite as important.

The Cutterhead Speed

When I’m talking about speed, I’m referring to the cutter head speed. You don’t want to go below 4000 RPM, or things simply take too long, and there’s a chance of the cutter head effectively ripping at the stock.

You want to ensure the cutter head cuts fast and consistently. It simply means you get that smooth result in the end.

Dust Collection

Most of these machines will come with dust collection ports rather than a dust collection system built into the machine. That means you require a separate dust collection system which you can plug into these machines.

Most will come with a 4” port, which will be more than enough for most dust collection options. However, the quantity of dust it will collect does depend on that separate collection system rather than this particular machine.


The knives included in the cutter head will break and need to be changed over time, so you want to own a model that doesn’t make your life complicated when it comes to changing them. That’s where you want to be in a position to make changes as quickly as possible.

The main concerns regarding these machines are the points mentioned above. Additional things to consider include the variety of molding cutting sets that work with it and how easy it is to produce those different end results, depending on your requirements.

However, I’m confident that each model I’ve listed above will more than meet your needs.

Overall Conclusion

Planer molders can completely transform how you tackle cutting wood for projects such as baseboards or window frames. These machines take up less space than you expect, and their results are astonishing.

In next to no time, you can trim down stock to whatever size you want, and thanks to the easy guiding systems, you know everything will be perfect. 

What I love about these machines is that you don’t require extensive experience to operate them. They are so easy to use that only a basic introduction to how they work is needed.

While the five models listed above are clearly not the only five on the market, I believe they represent the best for very different reasons. I’m sure one will fit in with your own needs or requirements, so just think carefully about what you plan on doing to ensure you choose the right one for you.

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Barry Gray

Hi, I’m Barry. I’ve loved woodworking and bringing things back to life for more years than I care to remember. I hope my passion for tools comes across loud and clear in everything you read here on The Tool Square.

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