If you haven’t seen a wood lathe at work, you don’t know what you are missing in terms of convenience. This machine saves a lot of time for the woodworkers when they’re working on their projects.
Now, if you are interested in buying a lathe, then we have just the thing to offer that will make the decision making easier.
We wanted to find the best wood lathe under 500 dollars, and with that intention, we set out to do some research. Once we were done, we reviewed these extraordinary products.
If you want to save a few bucks and get a great tool at the same time, you ought to check out this review article. So, read on to find out about that tool you’ve been looking for.
Best Wood Lathe Under 500 Dollars (2020)
These tools we are going to talk about come with plenty of benefits. We will focus on these to help you with the buying decision.
#1. Jet JWL-1015 Wood Working Lathe
Jet has been doing it for a while, making extraordinary wood lathes. And it’s one of the best wood lathe brands out there.
Now, the model we are about to review seems to be on a new level in terms of quality of construction. You would be amazed at the efficiency of this tool. Though the device is a bit heavy, you will find it to be nicely compact.
So, we are talking about a lathe that will be suitable for a small-sized workbench. And it will be perfectly stable during work, thanks to the additional weight it comes with. Now, what about the motor of this unit? Glad you asked, it’s one of the most powerful ones. Yes, you can work on the toughest of projects with it.
I loved the way this machine comes with a speed controlling feature. It’s the belt tension system I’m talking about. They’ve been brilliant with it. You don’t get to see such an impressive range of RPM in too many machines out there. 60-3600 RPM is what we are dealing with over here.
So, this is the best option for you if you are looking for an inexpensive wood lathe.
- Comes with a very high turning capacity
- Outrageous power of the motor; 1HP
- Incredibly wide range of speed; 60-3600 RPM
- The swiftest transition of direction makes it fun to work with
- Has a compact size for fitting the smallest of workbenches
#2. Mophorn 10 x 18 Inch Wood Lathe
The unit we want to talk about now also comes with an incredibly powerful motor. There are quite a few classy features introduced in it. Of which, I liked the digital speed reading in particular. If you struggle with keeping track of the speed of the device, you will be very pleased with this feature.
Yes, you will be in complete control of the device by knowing the amount of power it’s running with accurately. Moreover, they’ve introduced a swing over bed in it to offer you some amazing experiences. This remarkable feature makes it the best value wood lathe on our list.
I was also impressed with the distance the tool comes with between its centers. It’s perfect for several types of woods. And the fact that the feet have rubber on them makes it a very cool device. There won’t be tripping over or anything like that, thanks to such design. Yeah, it will be perfectly stable.
Now, it’s not the lightest of units out there. However, you will find it easy to store and work with, rest assured. So, it will make a great choice for anyone who wants to buy a nicely affordable wood lathe.
- The incredible power of the motor for doing tough tasks
- There’s an impressive speed range for versatility
- Digital speed readings make it easy to choose the perfect speed
- Unlike many other devices, it’s quite portable
- Rubber feet under the base for stability
#3. Grizzly H8259 Bench-Top Wood Lathe, 10-Inch
Let’s talk about an amazingly affordable product. You will have to appreciate the fact that it comes with so many wonderful features. Yes, considering the price range, these are too brilliant. I also liked the swing it has. Yes, a 10-inch diameter seems very perfect for a device like this.
Another thing I found cool is the distance between centers. With such a distance, you will have no problem whatsoever to get the job done, especially if it’s a small project. Therefore, it’s the best mini lathe for the money.
The model will make a great choice for beginners. For, it’s one of the most convenient devices out there. See, as a novice, you don’t go around buying a tool that comes with a fancy operation and scary price tag. So, a tool like this will help you in developing a career in woodturning.
Now, the machine comes with another outstanding feature. And that is the 5-spindle speed setting. It will offer you better control over the speed of the device. So, it’s an amazingly lowbudget wood lathe you should consider buying.
- Astonishingly cheap considering the features and build quality
- Incredibly lightweight thus facilitates easy portability
- 5-spindle speed setting for complete control over the speed
- Outstanding 10-inch swing offers flexibility
- The distance between the centers is perfect for most of the tasks
#4. Grizzly Industrial T25920-12″ x 18″ Variable-Speed Benchtop Wood Lathe
If you are into variable speed settings, you will love the cheap wood lathe we are about to review. They’ve done a great job with the speed range, which is 600-3800 RPM. So, whatever the task is, this tool will be up for it. Moreover, you get to choose the size of your device according to your job requirements.
The unit comes with versatility to offer. You can do a lot of things with it, such as cups, bowls, etc. What’s more, there’s a digital spindle speed indicator in place to make things easier for you. Also, you will find the tool rest to do its job nicely. That is, storing all the necessary tools you need during work.
I would recommend this lathe for anyone who’s looking for the best lathe for bowl turning. Yes, it will be an incredible entry-level machine for such a purpose, thanks to the variable speed settings and indicators we mentioned. And it will be worth the money, no doubt.
Now, there’s one thing I wasn’t cool with. It’s the fact that the machine won’t get along with any extension other than those made by this brand.
- Variable speed setting; versatility on a new level
- Different size options for a wide variety of tasks
- Digital spindle speed indicator for easy monitoring of speed
- An efficient tool rest will provide comfortable storage
- Comes with a very powerful motor, a ¾ HP one
#5. WEN 34027 12-Inch by 16-Inch Variable Speed Multi-Directional Cast Iron Wood Lathe
Wen is another renowned brand that makes its lathes nice and strong. This particular model got our attention with those incredible features anyone would want in their device. Woodturning is going to be fun if you own a tool as efficient as this.
Now, the most impressive feature for me was the variable speed setting. You will have no problem finding the speed you are looking for with such a range. We are talking about 500-2500 RPM over here. And that’s why it’s the best wood lathe for beginners for having such a speed range.
Now, they’ve introduced a digital speed display in it to make your job easier. What’s more, the tool will get along with a bunch of accessories, thanks to the tailstock and spindle it features. Besides, our product comes with a lot of accessories.
You will find a faceplate among them, which I found to be cool. Also, there’s a nice toolrest in place to make the storage easy.
- Impressive faceplate for the best performance
- A variable speed setting; a range of 500-2500 RPM
- Digital speed display for extra convenience
- The tool rest will store the tool in the nicest of manners
- The wonderful design of the handwheel makes it easy to operate
Buying Guide of Choosing Top Wood Lathe
Before you make a decision, read our buying guide. it will help you to find the ideal pick for you.
The Type of Project
You should assess the requirement the particular type of project has. If it asks for a high-end device, then that’s what you need to buy. On the other hand, if it’s a home project, a mini lathe will do.
Now, the products we’ve reviewed can deal with a wide variety of tasks. You will be fine with them with most woodturning projects. However, you shouldn’t buy a mini lathe if you are a professional who deals with serious applications.
Mini lathes come with a benefit for the users. That is, they are nicely portable. And that’s something a large device won’t be. So, if you have to move the tool around a lot, you shouldn’t go for a too heavy one.
You need to buy a unit that will fit nicely within the space you can afford. See, not every worker owns a fancy workshop. So, the lathe shouldn’t take up all the space inside the workshop, leaving no space available for other necessary tools.
Now, the market can provide you with plenty of options that are differently sized. So, if you own a modest workshop, there’s no need to worry. You will find an awesome product very easily that will suit the workshop.
You need to look at the RPM of a device. For, it will decide how fast you are going to be done with your work. Do not go for a product that comes with a too low RPM, unless you want to be miserable from working for endless hours. And there are too many excellent options out there in this regard.
Also, check if the device comes with a variable speed setting. For, this feature will let you customize the speed as you wish.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to keep my tools sharp all the time while using the lathe?
Yes, that would be awesome if you can do it. For, sharp tools will make sure that the pieces produced during woodturning are of high quality.
What’s with the speed thing that is so important?
This probably is the most important thing for workers when it comes to their lathe. A device usually has a wide range of speeds. You need to choose the speed you are comfortable with while working. If you are a beginner, keep the speed at low. And then you can increase it gradually.
Do I have to buy different lathes for different types of woods?
No, that’s not the case with lathes. They are compatible with any type of wood as long as it’s not too tough.
How careful one should be during work?
A device like this can be risky to use at times if you don’t know how to use it properly. So, the first thing you should do is go through the instructions carefully. Also, you need to wear protective gear while working.
What are the benefits of using a wood lathe?
The device will save you time while working on the wood pieces. And it makes them smooth like nothing else. And if the piece is curved, it will make it easy for you to work on it.
I hope our article helped find you the best wood lathe under 500. However, if you haven’t made your mind yet, let us recommend the most wonderful product among these. It’s the Jet JWL-1015 Wood Working Lathe that you want to consider buying if you want to have the best working experiences. It’s efficient and easy to use.