Best Wood Lathe for the Money (Compare and Specifications)

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Table of Contents:

  1. Best Wood Lathes
  2. Best Wood Lathe for Beginners
    1. WEN 340356 Amp Best Variable Speed Wood Lathe
    2. WEN 3424T
  3. Best Wood Lathe for the Money
    1. Jet JET JWL-1015VS Variable-Speed Woodworking Lathe
    2. Rockler Excelsior 5-Speed Mini Lathe
  4. Top Rated Wood Lathes Chart Table
    1. Grizzly Industrial T25920-12″ x 18″ Wood Lathe
    2. RIKON Power Tools VSR MIDI Wood Lathe 
    3. SHOP FOX W1704 1/3-Horsepower Wood Lathe
    4. Grizzly G0766 22″ x 42″ Best Wood Lathe
    5. Powermatic 3520C, 20″ x 35″ Wood Lathe, 2HP, 220V 1Ph (1353001) (best wood lathe for turning large bowls)
    6. JET JWL-1015VS Variable-Speed Woodworking Lathe
    7. Rockler Excelsior 5-Speed Mini Lathe
  5. Best Professional Wood Lathes
    1. Grizzly G0766 22″ x 42″ Variable-Speed Wood Lathe
    2. Laguna Tools Revo Lathe 
  6. Buying Guide
  7. Conclusion
  8. Faq’s

Best Wood Lathes 

Opting for a wood lathe is an individual experience. One lathe doesn’t befit all. You must correspond your rotating requirements and long-term designs with your budget, workspace available, and other effects that are individualised to you. 

I’ll give you the best wood lathes according to their different classifications. Electing a wood lathe appropriately for the best value is critical; we’ve covered you for that. We’ve tested multiple products and created a list of the best wood lathes.

Best Wood Lathe for the Beginners

WEN 340356 Amp Best Variable Speed Wood Lathe

This creature of a lathe features MT2 spindle and tailstock tapers to tightly grip your workpieces, along with an 8-step device rest for chisel and device mounting during operation. The simple-to-operation switch fixing system makes adjustments to both the device rest and the tailstock simple and exact. 

The WEN Wood Lathe similarly includes a boost centre, live centre, a flat twisting, a knockout rod, 4 hex pulls( 3, 4, 5, and 12 mm), an onboard supplemental holder, and a 4-point faceplate for turning bowls, mugs and different workpieces.

Adjustable speed controller dial with digital readout, setting exact RPM is about as effortless as it gets. also, a directional switch allows you to effortlessly switch directions for fine sanding. A 4-inch look scale provides another support for big bowls and plates, and the on-board option box provides all the wrenches demanded to fix it.

I was especially impressed with WEN’s instruction textbook, which features clear and brief directions on lathe assemblage and operation, with tons of useful figures. 

Considering the range of designs this lathe can handle, its user-friendly system, and its good price label, this WEN machine is a no-brainer for nonprofessional users.


  • Type Midi
  • Speed 250- 3550 RPM
  • Power 1HP
  • Swing 14 in.
  • DBC 20 in.
  • Item Weight                137.8 pounds
  • Product confines 38 x11.8 x22.6 elevation
  • Item model number 34035
  • Style 14 by 20 in. ( Variable Speed)
  • Power Source AC

WEN 3424T Wood Lathe

The WEN 12 Inch by 18- Inch 5- Speed Wood Lathe. With 5 distinct operating speeds, you’ll be able to revolve workpieces at 520, 900, 1400, 2150, or 3400 revolutions per nanosecond. The 4.5 A motor provides maximum rope while the cast-iron 70-pound figure prevents walking and vibrating during operation. 

This creature of a lathe features an MT2 spindle and tailstock taper to tightly hold your workpieces, along with a7-7/8- inch tool rest for chisel and tool support during operation. The easy-to-use switch fixing system makes adaptations to both the device rest and the tailstock simple and exact. 

The WEN Wood Lathe also includes a headstock boost centre, a tailstock mug centre, a flat twist, a knockout rod, 2 hex wrenches( 3 mm and 5 mm), a supplemental holder, and a a3-1/8 inch faceplate for turning bowls, mugs and different non-spindle workpieces.


  • Description 12″ x 18″ 5- Speed Benchtop Wood Lathe
  • Speed Range 520 to 3,400 RPM
  • Motor Size 2 Amps4.5 Amps
  • Spindle Size MT2
  • Tool Rest Length 7-7/8 Inches
  • Throat Size 12 Inches
  • Maximum Workpiece Length 18 Inches
  • Model Number 3424T

Best Wood Lathe for the Money

Jet JET JWL-1015VS Variable-Speed Woodworking Lathe

The JET JWL- 1015, 10 x 15 Wood Lathe, is a good entry-position motor that’s perfect for beginners and professionals. Its compact size makes it perfect for those who have a restricted place. The motor is easy to set up and learn started right down.

 The adjustment handles are nice with the spring-loaded lever to get them out of the way, and the tailstock moves and adjusts smoothly. The motor runs smooth and quiet, and the machine has a nice weight to keep it in place, yet light enough to move around fairly easily if need be. 

Some customers have found that the lathe is not capable of even the most limited, medium-sized work. You have to use medium speeds to reduce material to the size you want, and the machine will not cut, plane, peel or scrape without bogging down or stopping altogether. 

Some have reported that the motor appeared to be underpowered. Overall, the JET JWL-1015 Wood Lathe seems to be a popular choice for those who are new to turning or who have limited space. 


  • JET JWL-1015VS, 10″ x 15″ EVS Woodworking Lathe (719110
  • Material ‎ Cast Iron
  • Power Source ‎AC
  • Voltage ‎ 115 Volts
  • Horsepower ‎ 0.5
  • Electricals 1/2HP, Single Phase
  • Swing Over Bed (in.) 10
  • Distance Between Centers (in.) 15.5
  • Spindle Thread 1″ x 8 TPI
  • Tapers MT2
  • Spindle Speeds (rpm) 600-3600, 300-1750, 200-1050
  • Overall Dimension (LxWxH) (in.) 35 x 18.1 x 14.56
  • Net Weight (lbs.) 72.6

Rockler Excelsior 5-Speed Mini Lathe

Shopping for a wood lathe on a budget can be catchy, and any money saved can double-quick and become inapplicable if perfection and performance are compromised. Despite its low price, this mini lathe is surely not “ low ”, featuring the general figure quality of the assigned Rockler brand, and a heavy-duty cast iron base for strength and continuity.

It doesn’t have all the bells and swishes of a high-cost appliance, but this machine’s continuity, associated with a ½ HP motor, 10-inch slack, and 18-inch DBC, is a great establishment for an entry-level accessory.

The main drawback of this motor is it’s like a quick low-speed medium of 760RPM. However, this could be a lower issue.


  • Brand Rockler
  • Weight 80.5 lbs
  • Distance Between Centers 18”
  • Maximum Turning Periphery 10”
  • Motor Wattage 370W
  • Motor Horsepower 1/2 HP
  • Primary Material Solid Cast Iron
  • Tool Rest Length 6”
  • Face Plate Periphery 3”
  • Speed Range 760- 3200 RPM
  • Spindle Taper MT2
  • Spindle Threading 1” x 8 TPI

Top Rated Wood Lathes Chart Table

Swing (Inches)
Variable Speed
Special Features
Grizzly Industrial T25920-12″ x 18″ Wood Lathe
12″ Yes Compact size, variable-speed control Compact and versatile Limited swing and bed length
RIKON Power Tools VSR MIDI Lathe 
MIDI Yes Variable-speed control, suitable for various projects suitable for mid-sized projects May be too small for larger projects
SHOP FOX W1704 1/3-Horsepower Benchtop Lathe
8″ No Compact benchtop design, 1/3 HP motor Affordable, suitable for beginners Limited power and swing
Grizzly G0766 22″ x 42″ Variable-Speed Lathe
22″ Yes Large swing, variable speed control Powerful and large capacity Heavy and may require dedicated space
Powermatic 3520C, 20″ x 35″ Wood Lathe, 2HP, 220V 1Ph (1353001)
20″ No Powerful motor, suitable for large bowls – High-quality construction, ideal for professional use Expensive, heavy and may require substantial power
Jet JET JWL-1015VS Variable-Speed Woodworking Lathe
10″ Yes Variable-speed control, compact design Variable speed enhances versatility Limited swing and bed length
Rockler Excelsior 5-Speed Mini Lathe
10″ Yes 5-speed settings, mini lathe for smaller projects Portable and suitable for small projects Limited power and not suitable for larger pieces


Best Professional Wood Lathes

Grizzly G0766 22″ x 42″ Variable-Speed (Best Wood Lathe for Turning large bowls)

Are you planning to turn large bowls and other large-circumference strategies? also, you’ll need a good wood lathe that you can use. One option is to test out the Grizzly G0766. It’s bottleneck- plugged with all the features and functionalities that you’ll need for your systems.

With a 3 HP 3- 3-phase machine, you can serve nearly anything with it. There’s a weighty-duty cast iron bed to manage tons of burden without effects. The utmost strength is what you can hope for from this machine. You can also move the headstock anywhere you need to which adds up a lot of inflexibility to your systems.

also, there are plenty of strands to manufacture use of as well as concurrence which is why professionals suggest this as a must-have. The reinforcement from Grizzly is also topnotch which is why clients don’t have any problems when they need to reach out if they’ve concerns with the motor.


  • Swing over Bed: 22″
  • Distance Between Centers: 42″
  • Horsepower: 3 HP
  • Voltage: 220V
  • Phase: Single
  • Swing over Toolrest: 15″
  • Speeds: 60-3500 RPM
  • Spindle Size: 1-1/4″ X 8 TPI RH

Laguna Tools Revo Lathe 110v 1.5HP 18″/36″


  • Brand Laguna Tools
  • Model Name Revo Lathe
  • Speed 1725 RPM
  • Voltage 110 Volts
  • Horsepower 1.5
  • Speed 50 – 3500 RPM
  • Swing 18 in.
  • DBC 36 in.
  • Weight 427 lb

Buying Guide

Buying a wood lathe can be a significant investment, and choosing the right one depends on various factors such as your skill level, the type of projects you plan to undertake, and your budget. Here’s a buying guide to help you find the best wood lathe for your needs:

Type of Wood Lathe:

Benchtop Lathes: Ideal for small workshops or hobbyists with limited space. They are portable and can be mounted on a sturdy workbench.

Mini Lathes: Smaller and more lightweight, suitable for small projects and beginners.

Full-Size Lathes: Heavier and more powerful, capable of handling larger projects. Suitable for professional woodturners.

Motor Power:

Consider the motor power in horsepower (HP). Higher horsepower generally allows you to work with larger and harder materials. A range of 1/2 HP to 2 HP is common for wood lathes.

Swing Capacity:

The swing capacity is the maximum diameter of a workpiece that can be accommodated by the lathe. Choose a lathe with a swing capacity that suits the size of the projects you plan to work on.

Distance Between Centers

This refers to the maximum distance of raw material that can be twisted on the lathe. Consider the length of the systems you intend to accept and choose a lathe with an acceptable distance between centres.

Variable Speed Control

A lathe with variable speed control allows you to fit the speed to befit different turning tasks. Different wood categories and design types may need other speeds.

Construction and Figure Quality

Look for a lathe with a sturdy and durable construction. Cast iron beds are common and give stability. The overall figure quality will impact the lathe’s performance and life.

Tool Rest and Tailstock

Check the quality and strength of the device rest and tailstock. Ensure they’re fluently flexible and lock securely in place.

Ease of Operation

Consider features like ergonomic controls, ease of tool changes, and availability of adaptation points. A user-friendly lathe can improve your overall skills.

Fresh Features

Some lathes come with fresh features like digital readouts, indexing capabilities, and assembled- lighting. Charge whether these features are important for your specific requirements.

Brand and wood lathe Reviews

Research and read reviews of other wood lathe brands and models. Consider the repute of the manufacturer and the adventures of different users.


Set a realistic budget grounded on your conditions. While it’s tempting to go for the cheapest option, investing in a quality lathe can save you headaches in the lengthy direction.

Guarantee and client Support

Check the bond offered by the manufacturer and the availability of client support. A good guarantee provides peace of mind, and responsive client support can be precious in case of issues.


Opting for the best wood lathe requires a thoughtful assessment of your specific requirements, preferences, and budget. Whether you are a nonprofessional or a professional woodturner, the right lathe can significantly impact the quality and effectiveness of your systems. Consider factors such as the type of lathe, motor power, swing capacity, the distance between centres, variable speed control, construction quality, ease of operation, fresh features, brand character, and client reviews.


What size wood lathe is best for a freshman?

For beginners, a mini or benchtop wood lathe with a swing capacity of around 10 to 12 height and a length between centres of 15 to 20 inches is frequently suitable. These lower lathes are easier to handle, need lower space, and are generally more affordable. They’re ideal for learning introductory turning methodologies and bearing small to medium-sized systems.

What features should I prioritize for professional woodturning projects?

Professional woodturners should prioritize a full-size lathe with an important motor( around 1 HP or further), a substantial swing capacity( at least 16 elevations), and generous spacing between centers( over 30 elevations). Variable speed controller, a hardy structure with cast iron factors, and improved features like digital readouts or indexing goods can improve effectiveness and perfection. also, dependable client support and a good bond are pivotal for professional users.

Andrew Reed
Andrew Reed

Andrew Reed: 10-year lathe expert and founder of a renowned lathe blog, sharing invaluable insights and techniques with enthusiasts and professionals alike.

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