RIDGID’s new version of a 13″ thickness planer, the R4330, is hitting stores as we speak. Our staff had a chance to check it out last week (one of the perks of working for a woodworking magazine), with a couple of RIDGID guys on hand to point out the new features — like the adjustments in the dust collection.
You can now attach either a four-inch or a two-and-a-half-inch hose to the dust port (a small plastic insert changes the opening size). You can also choose to flip up the bright orange plastic dust hood – almost like opening the hood of your car, but easier – to eject chips out the back of the planer.
Twelve by 14-inch infeed and outfeed tables come with the planer, and flip up to the sides for storage or portability (the planer weighs about 75 pounds). In fact, everything except the adjustment knob is practically put together for you before you take the planer out of the box (they couldn’t figure out how to make efficiently stackable boxes with a bump in the side for the knob).
The adjustment system offers three options: the Ind-I-Cut™ depth measurement system, the Repeat-a-Cut™ depth stops for producing multiple boards of the same thickness, and/or a built-in ruler on the tool that provides measurements in both the metric and the English systems. With the Repeat-a-Cut, you move an indicator level to one of eight stops between 1/8″ and 1-3/4″ to set the thickness you want; with the Ind-I-Cut, you turn the knob to reach the desired depth (each turn is approximately 1/16 of an inch, if you want to keep that in mind).
Blade change tools and storage are in a handy-dandy keeper under the extension cable, which even has a pocket for extra blades – they’re not included, but they’ll be sold separately soon, in a packet of the three that are included with the original purchase of the tool. The nifty part of the blade removal package, though, is the magnetic blade extractor tool: loosen the bolts around your blade, and then – no, don’t stick your fingers in to pull it out! Do that with the magnetic blade extractor instead! The benefits of this should be pretty obvious.
Other stats on the planer are that it’s rated at 96 cuts per inch, or 30,000 cuts per minute, wiih a 15 amp motor, running at 10,000 rpm, up to a 1/8″ depth of cut.
All of this costs $349 and is currently being stocked at Home Depot. For more information, visit www.ridgid.com.