Hercules Planer vs Dewalt Planer [2023]

When it comes to woodworking, having the right tools can make all the difference in the quality and efficiency of your projects. Two popular choices in the market are the Harbor Freight Hercules Planer and the Dewalt Planer. Both promise to deliver excellent results, but let’s take a closer look at their features and specifications to help you make an informed decision.

Hercules Planer vs Dewalt Planer Comparison

To help you visualize the key differences between the two planers, here’s a side-by-side comparison table:

FeatureHarbor Freight Hercules PlanerDewalt Planer
Motor Power15 Amp15 Amp, 20,000 RPM
Cutterhead Speed9700 RPM10,000 RPM
Maximum Cutting Thickness6 inches6 inches
Cutting Width12-1/2 inches12-1/2 inches
Material Removal GaugeYesYes
Four-Column Carriage LockYesYes
Infeed and Outfeed Tables33-1/2 inches33-1/2 inches
Material SupportYesYes
Turret Depth StopYesYes
Dust Port Attachments2-1/2 inch and 4-inchDust Hood
Warranty Coverage90-day from the date of purchaseThree-Year Limited Warranty
Hercules Planer vs Dewalt Planer

Overview of the Harbor Freight Hercules Planer

The Hercules Planer is equipped with a powerful 15 amp motor that ensures faster and smoother cuts even in hardwood materials. Its standout feature is the 3-knife cutterhead that delivers an impressive 96 cuts per inch, resulting in a smooth and professional finish. This cutterhead also stays sharp longer than standard planers, reducing the need for frequent blade replacements.


  • Cutting Width: 12-1/2 inches
  • Maximum Cutting Thickness: 6 inches
  • Depth of Cut: 1/8 inch
  • Speed (max): 9700 RPM
  • Product Dimensions: 14-1/4″L x 23-1/4″W x 21-5/8″H
  • Product Weight: 70.25 lb.
  • Power Cord Length: 8 ft.
  • Warranty: 90 days from the date of purchase
  • Price: $399

The Hercules Planer also offers convenience with its material removal gauge, ensuring consistent cut depths with every pass. It features an easy-to-use turret depth stop, allowing you to return to frequently used thickness settings effortlessly. Additionally, the 4-post carriage lock helps reduce snipe, a common issue in planers, providing better control over your workpiece.

Highlights of the Dewalt Planer

Now, let’s shift our focus to the Dewalt Planer. This benchtop planer comes with a 15 amp, 20,000 RPM motor, which handles larger and deeper cuts in hardwoods with ease. The three-knife cutterhead offers an incredible 96 cuts per inch, ensuring one of the finest finishes among portable planers. The disposable, reversible knives add to its appeal by providing 30% more knife life and making knife changes fast and straightforward.


  • Cutting Width: 12-1/2 inches
  • Depth of Cut: Not specified (approximately 1/8 inch)
  • Speed (max): 10,000 RPM
  • Product Dimensions: 24″L x 17″W x 21″H
  • Item Weight: 80 pounds
  • Power Source: Corded Electric (120-240 Volts)
  • Warranty: Three-Year Limited Warranty
  • Price: $489

The Dewalt Planer boasts an impressive feature – the four-column carriage lock, which significantly reduces the movement causing snipe. This means fewer imperfections on the ends of your boards, resulting in smoother and more professional results. The planer also comes with extra-long infeed and outfeed tables that provide a generous 33-1/2 inches of material support, making it ideal for handling longer workpieces with stability and precision.

Side By Side Comparison: Hercules vs Dewalt Planer

Cutting Performance:

Both planers offer similar cutting widths, making them suitable for various woodworking projects. The Hercules Planer stands out with its 3-knife cutterhead, delivering 96 cuts per inch, while the Dewalt Planer offers a slightly higher cutter-head speed at 10,000 RPM. The difference in the number of cuts per inch might not be substantial, but it does contribute to smoother finishes on your workpieces.

Motor Power:

Both planers come with powerful 15 amp motors, ensuring efficient material removal and smooth cuts even in hardwoods. The Hercules Planer specifies a motor speed of 9700 RPM, while the Dewalt Planer boasts a motor speed of 20,000 RPM. This higher speed in the Dewalt planer might offer a slight advantage in handling deeper cuts in denser wood species.

Snipe Reduction:

Snipe can be a common issue with planers, but both the Hercules and Dewalt planers address this problem effectively. The 4-post carriage lock in the Hercules Planer and the four-column carriage lock in the Dewalt Planer help minimize snipe, ensuring more precise and consistent results.

Knife Life and Replacement:

The Dewalt Planer stands out here with its disposable, reversible knives that offer 30% more knife life compared to standard planer blades. This feature not only saves time but also reduces expenses in the long run.

Price and Warranty:

The Hercules Planer comes at a more budget-friendly price of $399, backed by a 90-day warranty. On the other hand, the Dewalt Planer is priced at $489 but offers a more generous Three-Year Limited Warranty.

In conclusion, both the Harbor Freight Hercules Planer and the Dewalt Planer are excellent choices for woodworking enthusiasts and professionals alike. The Hercules Planer appeals with its affordability and 3-knife cutterhead, while the Dewalt Planer impresses with its higher motor speed and longer-lasting knives. Consider your budget, specific woodworking needs, and the features that matter most to you when making your decision. Happy woodworking!