DeWalt DW735 Planer Review [Worth It??]

The DeWalt DW735 is a powerful, heavy-duty thickness planer designed for professionals and avid hobbyists who need to flatten and dimension lumber quickly and accurately. With its sturdy build, precise cutterhead, and versatile features, it’s one of the best portable planers on the market. This in-depth review covers everything you need to know about the DW735 to determine if it’s the right planer for your workshop.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Overview of the DeWalt DW735’s Design and Specifications

The DeWalt DW735 utilizes a three-knife cutterhead that rotates at 10,000 RPM to quickly remove material as boards pass beneath it. The cutterhead creates a superior finish compared to machines with fewer knives.

Two feed speed options – 96 cuts per inch (CPI) or 179 CPI – allow you to optimize cuts depending on board thickness and desired finish. The fast 179 CPI speed handles thin boards well.

With 20,000 pounds of cutting pressure, this robust 15-amp planer powers through rough lumber without hesitation. At only 92 pounds, the DW735 is hundreds of pounds lighter than stationary planers.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Key specs:

  • Max cut width: 13 inches
  • Max cut depth: 6 inches
  • Feed speed: 96 or 179 CPI
  • Cutterhead speed: 10,000 RPM
  • Number of cutterhead knives: 3
  • Max cuts per inch: 179
  • Power source: 120V, 15A motor

With a streamlined design focused on portability and power, the DW735 packs pro-level performance into a relatively compact footprint.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Cut Quality and Smoothness of Finish

The DW735’s three-knife cutterhead and precisely machined inserts leave boards with a smooth, ripple-free finish. Many portable planers utilize only two knives, which often results in visible snipe marks across the grain.

The cutterhead makes 96 or 179 cuts per inch as boards pass through, removing a maximum of 1/8″ of material in a single pass. Taking light passes with the grain minimizes tearing for a blemish-free surface.

Feeding boards through at the lower 96 CPI speed gives each knife more time to slice the wood cleanly. The fast 179 CPI works well for already dimensioned boards that won’t require heavy cuts. Paying attention to grain direction and adjusting cut depth for denser woods improves smoothness.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Snipe Reduction

Snipe – uneven cuts at the beginning and end of a board – is a common frustration with portable planers. DeWalt designed the DW735’s materials infeed and outfeed tables to minimize snipe.

The infeed table contains rollers that grip and feed the board once it makes contact. The outfeed table has an extra-long extension support that cradles the board’s trailing end. This helps prevent snipe as the last section of board exits the cutterhead.

An automatic carriage lock engages when you stop planing. This prevents the cutterhead from creating new snipe marks if a paused board moves unexpectedly.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Cutting Depth and Adjustments

A 6-inch maximum cutting depth handles dimensional lumber and wide boards with ease. The cutterhead adjusts from 0 to 1/8″ deep per pass, allowing you to fine tune cutting depth.

A large crank with a 1/16″ scale precisely sets cutting depth. One full crank rotation adjusts the depth 1/8″. You can lock the cutterhead at a specific height using the depth stop turret. This prevents accidental adjustment between cuts.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Dust Collection and Chip Removal

Planing lumber produces large quantities of chips and sawdust. The DW735’s fan-assisted chip ejection system blows chips out of the back of the machine and into a dust collection hose. A 2-1/2” port accepts standard dust collection hoses.

The fan pulls a massive volume of air through the cutterhead housing, helping reduce jams. Small access doors make it easy to clear any stray chips. Using a dust collector dramatically cuts down on cleanup time.

Cutting Capacity for Large Boards

With a 13-inch maximum cut width, the DW735 handles wide boards without issue. This saves you time compared to planing boards in multiple passes on a smaller machine.

The cutterhead housing is nearly 15″ wide, providing several additional inches for stabilizing boards. Even large 12″+ boards can ride smoothly without rocking.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Noise Levels

We measured noise levels around 85-90 decibels during operation. This ear-splitting volume makes hearing protection mandatory. It’s comparable to other 15-amp portable planers under load.

While noisy, the DW735 produces less high-pitched noise than some competing models. Much of the loudness comes from the powerful motor and fast-spinning cutterhead. Using a dust collector adds several extra decibels too.

Ease of Use On the Jobsite

DeWalt designed this planer with portability and convenience in mind. At 92 pounds, it’s light enough for one or two people to move around a job site or lift into a vehicle.

The DW735 sports a sturdy collapsible stand with wheels that makes it easy to maneuver over uneven terrain. After extending the stand, you can tip the planer upright and lock the wheels in place.

A retractable handle provides a comfortable grip for guiding the unit. It folds down when not needed to save space.

Infeed and Outfeed Tables

Polyurethane rollers on the infeed table grip lumber firmly to prevent slipping. This provides smooth, consistent feeding into the cutterhead.

Extension tables on both infeed and outfeed sides support long boards. The outfeed table extends a full 40 inches to cradle stock as it exits the cutterhead. This helps minimize snipe as the board’s trailing end leaves the cutterhead.

DeWalt DW735 Planer

Cutterhead Access and Maintenance

A quick-release cover surrounding the cutterhead allows fast access when changing knives or clearing jams. Simply rotate two threaded knobs and remove the plastic housing.

Indexable carbide inserts attach to the rotating cutterhead via a screw. You can easily rotate or replace the square inserts once they become dull. This avoids having to replace the entire knife.

DeWalt recommends checking knife sharpness after every 100-200 linear feet of planing. Keeping inserts sharp is key for smooth, accurate cuts.

Motor and Gearbox Durability

Powering the cutterhead is a heavy-duty 15 amp motor that outputs a remarkable 20,000 pounds of cutting pressure. It provides ample torque for tough woods like oak or walnut.

A triple belt drive connects the motor to the cutterhead. Two pulleys on the motor and cutterhead are larger, providing extra torque. DeWalt machines are workhorses, and the DW735’s drivetrain highlights this durability.

The gearbox easily shifts between fast and slow feed speeds by sliding a lever. Grease fittings allow lubrication to keep the gears running smoothly for years.

Thickness Planing vs Surface Planing

It’s important to note the DW735 is a thickness planer, not a surface planer:

  • Thickness planers remove material across the entire width of a board to reduce thickness. The cutterhead spans the width of the planer bed.
  • Surface planers use a narrow rotating cutter to only smooth the top face of the board.

The DW735 excels at thicknessing roughsawn lumber, taking boards from rough to smooth at your desired size. It does not flatten faces or smooth edges like a surface planer or jointer.

Dust Collection Recommendations

Planers generate huge quantities of chips and dust. Using the DW735 without dust collection will create a messy clean-up.

Ideally, use a dust collector with a minimum air flow rating of 400 CFM. This will efficiently suck chips from the ejection port and keep the machine running smoothly. Shop vacs clog quickly.

For adequate airflow, use 2-1/2″ diameter collection hoses rated for fine dust. Flexible hoses avoid sharp bends that reduce suction. Fitting a separator like a Dust Deputy before the dust collector keeps the filter clean.

Pros of the DW735 Planer

  • Powerful 15 amp motor for fast cuts
  • Two feed speed options for versatility
  • Cuts up to 13″ wide boards in one pass
  • Fan-assisted chip ejection minimizes jams
  • Three knife cutterhead leaves a smooth finish
  • Cutterhead locks to prevent snipe
  • Large crank adjusts depth 1/8″ per rotation
  • Polyurethane infeed rollers grip lumber well
  • 40″ long outfeed table minimizes snipe
  • Carbide inserts are easily rotated or replaced
  • Durable triple belt drive connects motor to cutterhead
  • Weighs only 92 lbs for a portable thickness planer

Cons of the DW735 Planer

  • High noise levels require ear protection
  • Molded plastic construction instead of metal
  • No digital thickness readout
  • Price is higher than competitors

Optional Accessories

DeWalt offers several accessories that enhance the DW735’s usefulness:

  • Thickness planer stand – Provides a dedicated cart with extra storage for the planer and accessories.
  • Replacement knives – Purchasing extra knives means you always have sharp inserts ready to swap in.
  • Infeed and outfeed tables – Extend the support for long boards.
  • Mobile base – Adds wheeled mobility.

Third party companies sell helpful add-ons like replacement chip deflectors, shelving, and dado cutting inserts too.

DW735 vs DW735X

DeWalt sells two versions of this planer – the DW735 and DW735X:

  • The DW735 comes alone with just the standard tables.
  • The DW735X includes the planer plus infeed and outfeed tables for supporting long boards.

The planers themselves are identical. The main distinction is the extension tables included with the “X” kit. These help minimize snipe but aren’t essential.

How It Compares to Other Planers

The DW735 combines power, cut quality, and portability in one package. Here’s how it stacks up to other popular portable planers:

  • Makita 2012NB – Very similar portable planer but louder and slightly less power. $100+ cheaper.
  • Ridgid R4331 – Good value planer but less refined, cheaper build.
  • Cutech 41212-CT – Underpowered, noisy, and prone to snipe but costs hundreds less.
  • Delta 22-555 – Slightly underpowered but very accurate cuts and finish.

For serious hobbyists, the DW735 hits a sweet spot between price and cutting performance. While expensive, it should provide years of smooth, accurate planing.


The DW735 comes with a 3 year limited warranty that covers manufacturing defects and workmanship issues. Standard wear items like knives, belts, and chip ejection housings are excluded.

Registering your warranty extends coverage to 90 days past the 3 year mark for free repairs on qualifying issues. As an upgrade, DeWalt offers a 3 year on-site warranty for ~$50 that dispatches technicians to you.

Drawbacks and Downsides

The DW735 has a few disadvantages to consider:

  • High noise levels necessitate hearing protection. Communicating while running is nearly impossible.
  • Plastic casing and tables instead of metal make it lighter but may impact long term durability.
  • No digital thickness readout means you must rely on the crank depth scale.
  • Price is ~$150 higher than competitors with similar specs.

While not perfect, the drawbacks are outweighed by its thoughtful design and reliable performance.

Final Recommendation

The DeWalt DW735 justifies its price tag by combining robust power and precision for superior planing results. It tackles tough woods easily thanks to an efficient cutterhead design and durable drivetrain.

For anyone needing to flatten, straighten, and dimension large volumes of lumber, the DW735 delivers consistent, snipe-free performance. The wealth of positive owner reviews confirm its durability and capabilities.

Overall, the DW735 deserves its reputation as a workhorse thickness planer that belongs in any professional’s or hobbyist’s shop. If you can afford the price premium, it’s one of the best portable planers available today.

DeWalt DW735 Key Specs

  • Motor: 15 amp, 120 volt
  • Max Cut Width: 13 inches
  • Max Cut Depth: 6 inches
  • Cutterhead Speed: 10,000 RPM
  • Feed Speed: 96 or 179 CPI
  • Cutterhead: 3 knife
  • Weight: 92 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 year limited


The DeWalt DW735 is a powerful, heavy-duty portable thickness planer designed for professional results. Though pricey, it’s built to last and creates a smooth, consistently flat surface. The three knife cutterhead, auto carriage lock, and long outfeed table reduce snipe. With fast feed speeds and a 15 amp motor, it makes quick work of dimensioning lumber. Overall an excellent, albeit loud, thickness planer.