planer blades tearing foam up

I need some help to figure out why my new planer blades are tearing up the foam, i bought them from foam-ez Ive only shaped a few boards with these blades but they tear the foam as bad as the old blades. I have to slow my planner speed to almost a crawl to get a clean cut. What gives? could it be they are not adjusted right? any help would be great. I called foam ez and they said that the blades where sharpened to the clark foam angle but they were in the same package as the blades at lowes hardware. anyone bought blades from foam-ez?

What type of planer,what type of foam?


good question…did they appear sharp?

and remember,you can only travel as fast as the planer can other words,if you walk faster than the planer can cut,you will create a plowed field.

i have yet held a planer i could over run,period.

it’s not about how fast you can plane a blank,but how clean you can plane a blank.

incorporating both is the talent and experience that everyone attempts to achieve.

some make it…some don’t.

it’s not as important as building and riding your own craft,that’s the real gift.


the planer is a clark foam planer and the foam was teccel. I can over run the planer just by make 1/16 passes at a normal pace not trying to speed through it.

Some foams are more prone to tearing than others.  I've not shaped Teccel.  If blades are sharp and depth isn't too deep, slowing down may be the best way around the tearing problem.  I have shaped a few brands that take a decidedly slower approach.

I am going to pick up a few u.s. blanks this week so I guess i see, I hope its just the foam, the blank was rather old.

Any how...Herb is right, what's the hurry? Your a backyard guy..right?  On the first few passes you should beable to tell what the blank can handle.  Slow down, have a beer or two..then pick up the power tools, look out for loose clothing and small animals. 

I can tear the shit out of a US blank in no time.  I can also make dull blades cut clean.

Stay away from Seconds! US blanks are creamy dreamy and the easiest to work with.

Hopefully with better blanks you'll have better luck?

Like some of the others said slow down there is no rush. 

It's the blank, not the blades. Teccell (or however you spell it) is almost impossible to plane w/o tearing. It's made for machine use.

…it s exactly like MD say


I have been using those blanks in the last years and now I m pretty handy with them

so I know the right passes and speed

but check what Midget F say about that type of foam building



Thanks for the info guys.


It's the blank, not the blades. Teccell (or however you spell it) is almost impossible to plane w/o tearing. It's made for machine use.



^i thought so too. glad to see that come from someone else.  tnx

Has anyone else had this same problem with Biofoam blanks?  I’m using the cheapest hand planer from, so that could be the issue.

I can confirm that the Teccell blanks tear much easier than other foams.  Never had a problem with tearing on Clark Blanks but the Teccell foam is a bit spongier which I believe is the reason for tear out.  Even taking down the stringer with a razor sharp mini-plane requires alot more diligence to avoid tearing.  Otherwise it seems to be good foam.

Teccels…  production shapers hate them, airbrushers & glassers love 'em. Light rock hard foam with a super fine cell structure. I’ve seen boards made with it with no deck dents after over a year of use.  Using a volt slider can help to reduce the tearing.  Still a bitch to fine sand / groove smooth.  Surfblanks America has a foam thats a variation of Farrellys fomula that Teccels are based on which is a bit easier to shape and sand. US Blanks red formula is still king in that department, Surfblanks A running a close second. 

Us Blanks red has a tearing problem also, Josh Hall just returned from a European shaping tour and had only the red to use, said it was really tought to get tear out of and fine sand.

Surf Blanks, King Mac and the Walker “new Formula”, Ice Nine were all a bitch to plane and get clean easily, added a lot of time to the process

I may be mistaken; but I think Teccel is the Brazilian franchise for Surfblanks.  Assuming the formula is the same These blanks are much harder  than your typical US Blanks or the former Clarks.  The options are; slow it down and let the planer do the work, use a grit barrel or learn to power sand(as I do).They're great blanks and once you have dialed them in the end product is going to be as good as anything out there and better than most.  I say all this having never seen your blades of course

angle the planer toward the stringer. if you go straight like for concaves then you must slow down

Often times it isn’t the blades or the foam, its the planer shell.  Look at the blade alignment and dial the planer in to full bore.  If the plastic casing of the planer (look at the black plastic piece to the right of the blade on Hitachis) is hanging below the blade then you’re going to tear foam every time.  Took me a while to realize this was the cause, but if you grind down the plastic so that it is flush with the planing surface you should be good!

What is the proper angle to sharpen Clark/Hitachi blades to? Ive come across angles ranging from 45 to 55 degrees.