BEST BENCH GRINDERS | NOVEMBER 2017
Featuring two interchangeable, spinning wheels, bench grinders are primarily used for sharpening other tools in your tool box. However, you can also use bench grinders for a variety of other applications. Bench grinders are essential for woodwork, and you can use them to level joints and smooth out rough areas. They are also used in painting by helping you prepare areas to receive paint. Ultimately, if you need anything sharpened, smoothed out, roughed up or cut, a bench grinder is a good tool to have in your arsenal. Our team reviewed the best bench grinders on the market today, evaluating key factors that are important to look at before making the purchase. Don’t forget to check out our buying guide, which evaluates and lists the important features and prices you should consider while researching different bench grinders on the market. Read more about our methodology.
The DEWALT DW756 is ReviewLab's Top Pick for bench grinders because of its reliability and powerful features. With a motor that provides nearly a full horsepower of grinding power, along with a variety of additional safety features, this versatile bench grinder is the perfect fit for hobbyists and professionals alike.Read full review.
The POWERTEC BGSS801 is a slow-speed bench grinder that features 8-inch wheels. This bench grinder is perfect for projects that require a finer touch because it spins at a slow speed and doesn't produce as much heat. With impressive safety features, including a lockable switch, the POWERTEC BGSS801 is a great choice for homes that have small children.Read full review.
The TruePower 199 is a budget bench grinder that gives you more versatility without emptying your wallet. You can easily customize the type of work you do with this bench grinder with its variable speed options and attachable flexible shaft, which gives you greater access to tight spots. It's also incredibly light and compact, meaning you can take it with you wherever you go.Read full review.
The WEN 4276 is a budget bench grinder with plenty of features and accessories that make it a great choice for professionals and household DIYers alike. With a flexible light that attaches directly to the body of the grinder and a variety of safety and convenience features, this bench grinder is a versatile option. It's also incredibly compact and portable, meaning you can easily transport it.Read full review.
Bench Grinders BUYING GUIDE
Motor power is one of the most important considerations to take into account when purchasing a bench grinder. However, the level or power you purchase depends on the type of work you want to do with your bench grinder. Bench grinders with more horsepower are more capable of tackling tough jobs for longer periods of time. Higher horsepower models also tend to last longer overall. Most models feature with a quarter or half horsepower motor, and this speed is adequate for most users. If you need more power, most 8-inch bench grinders feature more powerful motors. For even more power, consider purchasing an industrial bench grinder.
The types and varieties of wheels you can use with your bench grinder is another important consideration in your decision. Think about the types of projects you want to perform with your bench grinder and consider whether the model you choose is compatible with the types of wheels needed for that project. A bench grinder is no use to you if you can’t use the right wheels. Most people who purchase bench grinders use fine grit, wire brush, coarse and buffing wheels, all of which cover the needs of most projects.
Sharpening tools and other projects that require bench grinders can involve a lot of moving parts and dangerous situations. Safety should be an essential priority for anyone looking to buy one of these tools. Consider the type of safety features your bench grinder provides. Things like spark guards and eye shields are safety features that can protect your from bodily harm while using your bench grinder. While some bench grinders offer safety in the form of additional attachments, it’s much safer to buy a bench grinder with built-in safety features.
Most bench grinders on the market offer a slew of different features that aren’t consistent among all the models. These additional features provide a greater experience in some way and how important some of these are depends entirely on your personal preferences. Things like tool trays, mounting holes, anti-vibration features and water cooling trays all provide an extra level of convenience and functionality to the bench grinder you buy. If these features are important to you, consider purchasing one with more additional features, but be aware that you might pay a premium for them.
For under $50, you can buy a budget bench grinder. These bench grinders typically offer quarter horsepower motors and 6-inch wheels, if not smaller. Bench grinders in this price range are perfect for beginners and hobbyists. In the $50-$100 range, you can buy a bench grinder that offers most of the features you’ll need. These units are usually more powerful than budget models and tend to offer more additional features. For more than $100, you can buy a premium bench grinder. If you’re looking for an industrial bench grinder, you’ll most likely pay more than $100. These premium models offer more attachments and safety features than most other bench grinders on the market.
FULL product reviews
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The DEWAT DW756 is a sturdy bench grinder that features an incredibly powerful motor. With such a powerful motor and durable build, you can expect to be able to tackle tough jobs and experience a much longer lifespan with this bench grinder. This model also features integrated safety features that help protect you better during your projects. Because of these features and the reliability of this bench grinder, it’s easy to see why it’s ReviewLab’s Top Pick.
Why We Recommend It
- Powerful motor. The DEWALT DW756 features a 5/8 horsepower induction motor that is capable of producing 3,450 RPMs of power. Many users are surprised at the amount of power this bench grinder can provide, especially for a 6-inch model. With such a powerful motor, you can easily tackle tough jobs that would leave many other bench grinders in the dust.
- Integrated safety features. This bench grinder features integrates safety features in the form of eye shields and spark deflectors for both wheels. While these safety features do require a little bit of assembly, they provide an extra-durable layer of protection so you don’t get injured by a stray spark or broken piece of material while using the unit. Users are happy that these safety features are included with the DEWALT DW756.
- Anti-vibration, rubber base mounts. When it comes to support and stability, you should always mount your bench grinder. Mounting the unit directly provides the most stability and support, and this grinder features handy rubber base mounts that prevent excess vibration during use. Many users appreciate this feature, especially during tougher jobs.
- Incredibly durable design. The DEWALT DW756 features an incredibly sturdy and durable cast-iron base. This hardy base is perfect for use in rough and tough workshops, and many users are impressed with how well this bench grinder holds up during prolonged, tough use.
- Difficult assembly. Many users report that the assembly process was difficult, especially consider the less-than-helpful instructions that are included in the box.
The POWERTEC BGSS801 is a unique, 8-inch bench grinder that features a slow-speed motor perfect for smaller, more precise applications. This slow-speed motor means you don’t have to worry about high levels of heat during grinding and sharpening projects. The bench grinder also features a variety of safety features designed to better protect you and prevent the machine from powering on accidentally. These features and more are why ReviewLab chose the POWERTEC BGSS801 as the runner up Top Pick.
Why We Recommend It
- Unique slow speed design. The POWERTEC BGSS801 features a unique, slow speed motor. While it still provides a healthy amount of power with its ½ horsepower motor, this bench grinder spins at a slow speed of 1725 RPMs. This doesn’t mean that the grinder is underpowered. Instead, it spins at a speed perfect for delicate jobs that require more precision. Many users report surprise at how quiet the motor was overall, as well, due to its slow speed design.
- Designed to produce less heat. The unique, slow-speed motor is also designed to produce the least amount of heat possible during grinding. This allows you to more easily sharpen tools and use them soon after without having to wait for them to cool down. This also allows you to grind more sensitive materials. Users are most impressed with this feature, as it allows them to get back to work sooner.
- Durable steel design. The body of the POWERTEC BGSS801 is made from a durable, heavy-gauge steel. This durability lends to the overall lifespan of this bench grinder. The steel base also helps reduce vibrations during use, which many users confirm in their reviews.
- Locking power switch and other safety features. Another unique feature on this bench grinder is its locking power switch. This safety feature prevents you and other people—like children—from turning on the device. Many users report being surprised at this feature, which is something they don’t see in bench grinders very often. The POWERTEC grinder also features additional safety features like such as eye shields and spark deflectors.
- Not enough power for heavy grinding. While the slow-speed motor is good for delicate jobs, it doesn’t pack enough punch for heavy-duty applications.
The TruePower 199 is a small, compact and portable bench grinder that works perfectly for smaller applications like sharpening knives or other small tools. With this budget bench grinder, you also get variable speed options, along with an incredibly handy flexible shaft attachment for getting into hard-to-reach places. If you’re looking for a small bench grinder that doesn’t break the bank, look no further than the TruePower 199. Of all the bench grinders we reviewed, this model provides the most bang for your buck.
Why We Recommend It
- Variable speed options. The TruePower 199’s best-selling feature is its variable speed options. With speeds ranging from 0 to 10,000 RPMs, you can adjust the settings in whatever way you like for customized application. Users are pleased with the variety in speeds available to them with this bench grinder.
- Perfect for small applications. With 3-inch grinding wheels, this bench grinder is smaller than most on the market. This small size makes this the perfect bench grinder for small projects, like sharpening knives. Many users report purchasing the units just for its size and use in smaller applications.
- Flexible shaft included. The TruePower 199 features a unique additional accessory in the form of a flexible shaft attachment. This 31-inch flexible shaft attaches directly to the bench grinder and its tip spins, giving you access to grind hard-to-reach places. Users are especially happy with this feature, because it gives them more flexibility in how they use this bench grinder.
- Compact and extra portable. This budget bench grinder measures in at only 11 inches wide by 7 inches tall and weighs in at only seven pounds. This small size lends more portability to the bench grinder, meaning you can move it around your workshop or transport it to different job sites more easily.
- Not very powerful. The TruePower 199 doesn’t feature a very powerful motor, meaning you can’t put much pressure on the wheels during use.
The WEN 4276 is a powerful and quiet bench grinder that features a variety of features that are both convenient and useful in a wide range of applications. Especially helpful is the attached flexible light, which gives you more visibility in poorly-lit environments. With these features and the bench grinder’s price tag, this makes a great choice for anyone looking for a budget option that can handle the majority of projects thrown at it.
Why We Recommend It
- Powerful and quiet. The WEN 4276 features a powerful 2.1-amp motor which is powerful enough to handle most jobs. With this kind of power, the wheels spin at a speed of up to 3450 RPMs. Users also report that the motor is incredibly quiet, making for a more pleasant user experience overall.
- Incredibly handy light included. This budget bench grinder features a flexible work light that’s attached directly to its sturdy body. You can easily adjust the work like to the angle and position you want for best visibility. Users report really liking this feature, because it allows them to use the bench grinder more precisely, even in poorly-lit environments.
- Lightweight and portable. Weighing in at only 16 pounds, the WEN 4276 is a lightweight and portable bench grinder. With this added portability, you aren’t constricted to using this unit solely in a single space.
- Adjustable tool rests. This bench grinder also features adjustable tool rests, giving you greater flexibility in the size of tools you and sharpen with it, as well as support blades and bits. Many users report using the adjustable tool rests often, and are pleased with how well they help up with extended periods of use.
- Hard to mount. Many users report having difficulty mounting the WEN 4276 because the bolt holes are in an inconvenient location that requires some disassembly to reach.
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Best 6" Bench Grinder
6-inch bench grinders are the standard choice for most people who need or want to purchase a bench grinder. These models feature 6-inch wheels and spin at what is considered standard speeds, which is perfect for home improvement projects and smaller tasks. 6-inch bench grinders spin at around 3400 to 3600 RPMs, a sufficient-enough speed for sharpening home tools and smoothing edges in DIY projects. If you’re looking for a bench grinder that can handle most projects, a 6-inch bench grinder will most likely fit the bill.
The SKIL 3380-01 is a 6-inch bench grinder that features a powerful motor and a variety of other features that help you sharpen, grind and buff in the best way possible. With integrated LED lights above each grinding wheel, you get more visibility, even in dim workspaces. You can also customize your grinding experience with adjustable tool rests and avoid excessive vibration with the built-in rubber feet. If you’re looking for a sturdy and reliable 6-inch bench grinder, the SKIL 3380-01 is the choice for you.
Why We Recommend It
- Powerful motor. The SKIL 3380-01 features a powerful 2.1-amp motor that spins the grinding wheels at an impressive 3,450 RPMs. This is more than enough power for the average bench grinder user who wants to sharpen their tools and have a tool for buffing and other projects. Many users report being pleased with this level of power.
- Built-in LED lights. Perhaps one of the handiest features this 6-inch bench grinder features are the LED lights built directly into the unit, directly above each grinding wheel. These integrated LED lights provide more vision during use, whether in poorly- or well-lit environments, according to many users who have used this model.
- Adjustable tool rests. With adjustable tool rests, you can better customize the SKIL 3380-01 to the way you want to use it. This also allows you to sharpen and grind larger objects without having to worry about limited space. Many users also find that having adjustable tool rests increases the accuracy of their work.
- Increased stability. The SKIL 3380-01 also provides more stability via the rubber feet on the base of the grinder. After mounting your bench grinder, these rubber feet provide a sink for vibrations, and many users are pleasantly surprised at how stable the bench grinder remains during use.
- Assembly is a little confusing. Some users report having difficult with assembling this bench grinder, even with the included instructions.
Best 8" Bench Grinder
8-inch bench grinders feature wider grinding wheels than the standard 6-inch models. With a wider wheel base, these bench grinders use the same amount of power, but spin faster, making them perfect for jobs that require more effort. Professionals tend to use 8-inch bench grinders more often. The wheels on these models last longer and are more efficient overall than their smaller counterparts. If you want something that doesn’t require nearly as many wheel changes and that can handle heavy-duty jobs, you may want to consider an 8-inch bench grinder.
The DEWALT DW758 is a powerful 8-inch bench grinder that boasts a high horsepower and RPM speed rating. It’s also incredibly sturdy with a cast iron base and aluminum tool rests that can be adjusted. These features make this bench grinder a hard option to pass up. With these features, integrated safety options and a proprietary overload protection feature, the DEWALT DW758 makes a great choice for anyone looking to purchase an 8-inch bench grinder.
Why We Recommend It
- Incredibly powerful motor. The DEWALT DW758 features an incredibly powerful motor, which clocks in around ¾ horsepower to help you get through even the toughest grinding jobs. With this amount of horsepower, you can expect spinning speeds of up to 3,600 RPMs, which is more than enough for most users. In fact, many users rave about the power backing this machine, stating it’s one of the grinder’s best features.
- Overload protection. When working on heavy-duty jobs, you can be sure this 8-inch bench grinder will avoid overloads with DEWALT’s proprietary Overload Protection feature. Many users are surprised at how well this bench grinder can handle tough projects, and are grateful that they aren’t constantly worried about overloads, which can be dangerous and inconvenient.
- Rugged and durable. With an industrial cast iron base, this bench grinder is incredibly rugged and durable. If you put your tools through a beating, you’ll definitely want to consider purchasing this model for an extended lifespan. Many users rave about how this bench grinder can take a hit without any problems at all.
- Adjustable aluminum tool rests. The tool rests on the DEWALT DW758 are made from aluminum, making them more durable and sturdy. They’re also adjustable, giving you greater flexibility in what tools and objects you can sharpen and grind.
- Hard to swap wheels. Many users report that it’s much harder to swap out the wheels than it should be. If you’re someone who constantly needs to swap grinding wheels, you may want to consider another model.
Best Industrial Bench Grinder
Industrial bench grinders offer more power and more flexibility than any other bench grinder on the market. If you’re looking for something that will last forever for sharpening your tools and helping with other renovation projects, you might want to consider an industrial bench grinder. If you purchase an industrial bench grinder, you will also likely receive a wider wheel base for greater speed and efficiency. Industrial bench grinders also tend to feature heavy duty motors that can withstand extended periods of heavy-duty use.
The Jet 578008 is an incredibly durable and heavy-duty industrial bench grinder. With a beast of a motor and super-sturdy design, this bench grinder is sure to last you for a long time, even through prolonged, extensive projects. The Jet 578008 also features extra safety features in the form of a lockable power switch, making this a good unit to install in busy work places. If you’re in the market for a reliable industrial bench grinder, you’ll definitely want to check out the Jet 578008.
Why We Recommend It
- Heavy duty, powerful motor. The biggest feature to address on the Jet 578008 is its monster motor. Boasting a remarkable 1 HP motor, this industrial bench grinder can handle heavy-duty grinding jobs that other bench grinders can’t even dream about touching. May users who bought this model are super impressed at how much power this machine provides.
- Incredibly durable. Industrial bench grinders should be able to survive in an industrial environment, and this bench grinder lives up to the expectation. Users report that this stout bench grinder is tougher than many of the other grinders they’ve owned, and they foresee theirs lasting for a long time. This durability goes all the way to sealed bearings for maintenance-free grinding over longer periods of time.
- Lockable power switch. On top of the built-in eye shields and spark deflectors, the Jet 578008 features a lockable power switch, which prevents the machine from being accidentally powered on. This adds an additional layer of safety, which is helpful in busy workshops.
- Super reliable mounting. Since you’ll be grinding heavy-duty materials with this industrial bench grinder, you can rest assured knowing that the mounting materials included in the package are super reliable. Many users, having mounted previous bench grinders, are happy that this grinder included heavy-duty mounting plates.
- Lights only available as an accessory. If you want added visibility, you may be disappointed to learn that the Jet 578008 doesn’t come with integrated lights. However, you can purchase an attachable light, if you so choose.
Best Variable Speed Bench Grinder
Variable speed bench grinders offer a unique foot up on the competition by allowing you to adjust the speed at which the wheels spin on the unit. This variable speed gives you more flexibility in the way you sharpen tools and otherwise use the bench grinder. With greater control over bench grinder speed, you can perform both heavy duty and precision tasks with ease. This feature can also prolong the life of your bench grinder, since you’ll be only be using the motor power that you need for each job you do.
The Porter Cable PCB525BG is a capable and reliable bench grinder that features variable speed options for greater versatility. By adjusting the dial on the front of the machine, you can use a variety of different speeds for different projects, as needed. This variable speed bench grinder also features enhanced safety and a built-in lamp for greater illumination when you need it. If you’re looking for a good variable speed bench grinder, this is a hard model to beat.
Why We Recommend It
- Variable speed options. As a variable speed bench grinder, the biggest selling point behind the Porter Cable PCB525BG is that it allows you to adjust the speed based on what kind of project you’re working on. Many users are pleased with this feature and how easy it is to change the speed of the grinding wheels by simply adjusting the speed dial on the front of the machine.
- Durable build. This variable speed bench grinder features a sturdy cast iron base. While this sturdy build allows for a longer lifespan, it also helps stabilize the overall machine and decreases the amount of vibration experienced during use. In fact, many users report surprise at not experiencing any vibration at all while they use their bench grinders.
- Lockable power switch. With a lockable power switch, you can add an additional level of safety to your workshop. Once the power switch is locked, no one can bump the machine and accidentally turn it on. Most users really appreciate this feature, especially if they have kids or pets at home.
- Built-in illumination. The Porter Cable PCB525BG also features an incredibly handy light built directly into the machine. This light is flexible and adjustable, giving you more opportunity to customize your workspace based on the job you’re doing.
- Wheel dresser included. This bench grinder also features an additional accessory tool, a wheel dresser. This wheel dresser cleans and reshapes the grinding wheels after use so everything stays balanced. Users are especially happy this accessor is included with the Porter Cable PCB525BG.
- Small tool rests. Many users complain that the included tool rests on the Porter Cable PCB525BG are too small.