Coming second on my list is yet another budget planer that is trying to compete with the big boys in the face of DeWalt, Makita, and Bosch. Still, this PORTER-CABLE PC60THP 6-Amp Hand Planer offers enough functionality and convenience for any woodworking looking for a starters tool. If you are looking for something more advanced and rigid that will help you with daily heavy-duty tasks, I suggest spending a little extra and going for a premium planer, which this simply isn’t.
My Verdict: With its cast aluminum shoe, three V-shaped chamfering grooves, dual dust ports, and overmold handle and adjustment knob, this PorterCable Planer is well worth the money. It is also fairly lightweight and has a small but potent motor. The only aspects where it feels its price tag are the overall build quality and the way the motor handles harder woods and longer continuous tasks.
Overview & Features
The thing that defines this model the most is its affordability. It might not have the strongest motor or the sturdiest build but it is lightweight and really easy to adjust and cut with. Let’s start this overview with its motor…
The motor that powers the PORTER-CABLE PC60THP hand planer is a zippy 6-Amp one which puts out 16,500 RPMs. That, combined with its dual-blades creates 33,000 cuts per minute once the tool reaches its operating speed.
The motor is fairly durable and will have a long service life but tends to slow down under heavy stress and will need some time to cool off if you really want to use it for heavy-duty tasks.
The shoes are 11.5 inch ones and are made out of cast aluminum which is rare for this price point but is always a welcome addition. They are well adjusted relative to each other right from the factory.
On the front one, you have three v-shaped chamfering edges which is yet another thing you rarely (or never) see in this price class. These three grooves will make your work a lot easier and make the planer even more convenient.
Granted, this isn’t the biggest handheld planer you can get but the whole point of the PC60THP is to be practical both in its dimensions and in its weight. I’d say if it wasn’t corded, that it would’ve been the perfect planer to carry with you on different project sites. Still, the 6ft cord is somewhat limiting it.
There aren’t as many adjustments here as on other models. There are 10 positive steps controlled by the depth knob upfront which range from 0 to 1/8th of an inch. I find that the 5/64″ depth is perfect for shaving off excess material out of most wood pieces. The knob itself is easy to hold and control, especially due to the lightweight nature of the planer. The max rabbit depth here is .47 inches.
If you want to continuously use this planer for deeper depths, you should consider investing in another pair of blades since the ones that come with this model aren’t carbide and are actually very easy to wear out and not that sharp. A good pair of blades should be enough of an improvement to make this planer an excellent performer.
Design & Build Quality
Unlike models like the Dewalt DPC580B, the build quality here isn’t really spectacular. It is actually on-par with what you pay for this planer, as budget models generally suffer from poor material quality and lack of rigidity. Still, for a sub-hundred dollars tool, this manages to impress me with the feel of its buttons and adjustment knob, as well as the overmold knob and handle.
There are two dust vents on each side adding to the convenience of the tool, as both can be used for a shop vac or dust chute to be attached.
As you should know, Porter Cable is subsidiary of Black and Decker and therefore borrows a lot of the ingenuity and design features from the more expensive and premium brand, so it is a little surprising to see that it doesn’t pack the familiar Black and Decker quality.
Sadly, there aren’t any additional features here, nor there are any accessories that come with the model, which is a little disappointing but nothing out of the ordinary at this price. Budget models tend to come in as essential form as possible, and this one is no exception.
If you want to see which are the best electric hand planers on the market currently, and learn more about those tools, head over to my Buyer’s Guide. Now, let’s see some of the main pros and cons of the Porter-Cable PC60THP…
Advantages & Disadvantages
- Fairly cheap
- Cast aluminum shoes
- 3 chamfering V-shaped grooves
- 10-way adjustment knob
- Comfortable handle
- Dual side dust ports
- Excellent for smaller tasks and projects
- The motor can be felt struggling at times
- Apart from the shoes, the material quality isn’t perfect
- Can be a little hard to control when free-handing your pass
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Conclusion and Rating
To wrap things up, I’d say that the PORTER-CABLE PC60THP 6-Amp Hand Planer is one of the better deals out there if you count the value you get for your money. It is one of the lightest planers and has a good enough feel to it to make your work pleasant. If you are willing to overlook the slightly underpowered motor and somewhat cheaply made construction, you will most likely enjoy your purchase and appreciate it for what it’s worth. I gave it a four and a half out of five stars rating.