A good metal smoothing plane costs around $350 these days, while the cost of a wooden smoother is essentially the price of a stout blade at $50, plus about $20 for a piece of dense exotic wood. There are several key features that come together to make a smoothing plane work well. Vibration is something to be avoided. We do this by selecting a dense hardwood such as Jatoba, maple, or, if you want to make the plane more interesting, try cocobolo or bocote. All of these dense woods do a good job of reducing vibration.
In this article luthier Ted Brown shows you how easy it is to make your own heirloom smoothing plane.