The true temperature at the edge of a woodworking tool can not be measured, therefore its value may be underestimated. Theroretical and experimental investigations were performed to establish the effect of cutting speed, chip thickness, tooth angle and edge wear on heat intensity and temperature distribution within the cutting tool. Finite element analysis of the temperature distribution showed that the edge surface may reach high average temperatures (400 to 600 K). In addition, due to a high amplitude cyclic temperature fluctuation, high Peak temperatures (more than 1000 °C) may develop near the edge for a very short time. Softening may occur in a less than 0,1 mm thick layer near the edge, and the duration of temperatures exceeding the softening Limit (around 600 °C) is 5 to 8 · 10^-4 within each revolution.