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4 Best Metal Lathes of 2021 [Reviews & Buying Guide]


A lathe machine is considered as a mother of all machines that you would typically use in a workshop. A few of them can even be used for working hard metals without any issues. Hence, some of the best metal lathes have been stated in this listicle which have been chosen based on these factors:

  • Size: While buying a metal lathe, it is highly important to ensure that it is large enough for working on your desired projects. To ensure this, you can simply check their size and check if it can fit your job piece. Even though most of them are 7-inch x 14-inch metal lathes, a few are larger at 11-inch x 26 inch or similar.
  • Speed: Apart from being able to fit a metal piece of your desired size, your lathe should also be powerful. For this, you can simply check the motor speed of a given metal lathe. Generally, metal lathes are rated around 2500 RPM of maximum speed which is quite good for most users.
  • Wattage: Another factor to consider while buying a metal lathe and ensuring that it is a powerful one is the wattage rating. Just like the speed rating, most metal lathes have a similar wattage rating which is around 500 watts to 550 watts.

Even though you can consider these factors while buying a metal lathe, there is more to consider. To help you out, all the various metal lathes stated here also have their major features and options explained along with a detailed allowing you to buy the best metal lathe by the time you make it to the end. You will find the complete list of such factors in our Buying Guide section of the article.

4 Best Metal Lathes of 2021

Best Metal Lathes of 2021: Reviews

1. BestEquip 7 x 14 inch Metal Lathe 

 BestEquip 7 x 14 inch Metal Lathe 

BestEquip is one of the most popular brands of tools and machines made for your workshop which also includes heavy-duty metal lathes without charging a premium for the same.

The BestEquip metal lathe machine comes at the 1st position of this list since it is the cheapest option stated here. Even at its given price tag, this metal lathe offers a decent size of 7 inch x 14 inch for working on your projects. Its motor is fairly powerful which is rated at 550 watts and includes variable speed control for ease of use and precision. Talking about precision, you will find a 4-way tool post for easily adjusting the tool head as per your needs.

Just like more premium metal lathes available out there, this one also runs at up to 2500 RPM for decent performance. A great thing about this metal lathe is that it has a self-centering 3 jaw 4-inch chuck for properly holding your workpiece with ease. Since BestEquip is a popular brand of workshop machines, you also get a 1-year long warranty with it. Although, if you want more feature-rich options, you should look for more premium models out there.

Best Features:

  • Rated size of 7-inch x 14 inch
  • Offers up to 2500 RPM motor speed
  • Comes with a warranty period of 1 year

Pros:

  • Budget-friendly metal lathe
  • High motor speed rating
  • Decent build quality and warranty

Cons:  

  • Lacks any high-end features

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2. Erie Tools 7 x 14 inch Metal Lathe

Erie Tools 7 x 14 inch Metal Lathe  

Erie Tools is primarily a brand of tools and machines that are generally known to be highly powerful and a great pick for using in your workshop.

This Erie Tools metal lathe machine comes at the 3rd position of this article because it is another high-performance option that does not charge a premium for the same. Starting with the size of this metal lathe, this is a 7-inch x 14 inch making it one of the most compact options. If you wish to use this metal lathe for making screw threads, then you will be glad to know that it has an inbuilt thread indicator that supports 12 to 52 TPI thread sizes.

While it may be a bit small, you can still use this metal lathe for heavy-duty tasks thanks to its 2500 RPM motor that can spin in either direction as per your needs. Another great thing about this metal lathe is that you get multiple handy accessories like a 5 piece carbide cutter kit, internal and external chuck jaws, 11 feed rate gears, and more in the box. You also get a 1-year long warranty along with a highly sturdy build quality with this metal lathe making it fairly reliable.

Best Features:

  • Rated size of 7-inch x 14 inch
  • Offers up to 2500 RPM motor speed
  • Comes with a warranty period of 1 year

Pros:

  • High-performance motor
  • Offers digital readout to the user
  • Great build quality for heavy-duty usage

Cons:  

  • Not ideal for large-sized projects

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3. Mophorn 7 x12 inch Metal Lathe

Mophorn 7 x12 inch Metal Lathe 

Mophorn is a fairly new brand of tools and machines like a metal lathe that you can install in your workshop for working on all sorts of metal job pieces with ease.

The Mophorn metal lathe machine is one of the most compact options available out there. To be exact, this metal lathe machine measures at 7 inch x 12 inch which is the smallest here in this listicle. As seen with various other metal lathes, this one also uses a decently powerful 550-watt motor. This is combined with nylon gears that can last for a pretty long time without much wear and tear.

Fortunately, even at its given size, you get up to 2500 RPM speeds from its motor that functions in both forward and reverse directions with multiple speed options. Apart from its 3 jaw self-centering chuck, you also get a free included lamp in the box which can come inquire handy. Other Mophorn also includes a standard 1-year long warranty which is similar to most other options.

Best Features:

  • Rated size of 7-inch x 12 inch
  • Offers up to 2500 RPM motor speed
  • Comes with a warranty period of 1 year

Pros:

  • Quite a compact metal lathe
  • Variable speed gears
  • High-performance electrical motor

Cons:  

  • Installation is not the easiest

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4. Grizzly 11 x 26 inch Bench Lathe

 Grizzly 11 x 26 inch Bench Lathe

While Grizzly and its products do not come cheap, they are a great pick if you wish to get something made for industrial and heavy-duty usage.

Grizzly’s G9972Z metal lathe machine is the most powerful option present here in this listicle. When combined with its given size of 11 inch x 26 inch, you can expect this metal lathe machine to be a great option for all sorts of heavy-duty uses. Thanks to this large size, you get a pretty high distance between centers of 26 inches. Since the bed also features swing and slice for the tool post, you can get highly precise results with ease.

While its motor may be a bit slower at 2400 RPM, you still get excellent performance from it especially considering its given size. This is possible thanks to the 1 HP motor used by this metal lathe. As this is a highly premium metal lathe, you get excellent build quality along with a 1-year long warranty with this metal lathe as well.

Best Features:

  • Rated size of 11-inch x 26 inch
  • Offers up to 2400 RPM motor speed
  • Comes with a warranty period of 1 year

Pros:

  • Perfect for heavy-duty usage
  • Quite a powerful motor
  • Ideal for large scale projects

Cons:  

  • Highly expensive metal lathe

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Buying Guide for the Best Metal Lathes

As you can expect from the name, a metal lathe is essentially a lathe machine made for working on metal job pieces.

Apart from being powerful enough for working on metal pieces, these metal lathes also support all of the functions that you would expect from a standard lathe. Therefore, a few of the best metal lathes have been explained above alongside their features and information. And if you wish to know more, here is a detailed buying guide for the best metal lathes:

Size

One of the most important factors to keep in mind while buying any kind of lathe machine is their size. This is also true for metal lathes as a larger lathe machine can be handy for working on larger metal objects with ease.

As for the options available out there, you can find a lot of 7-inch x 14-inch lathe machines with a few of them being larger at around 11-inch x 26 inch. Other than the size of your projector, the size of your workshop is also something to consider while getting a metal lathe. If you have a small and compact workshop, then you can only go with smaller metal lathes to make space for other tools and machines that you will be using in your workshop.

Speed

While getting a large-sized metal lathe is quite important, you should also check the motor speed of your metal lathe. If you are familiar with a lathe machine, then you must know that it uses a motor for rotating the chuck.

And if you wish to get a powerful lathe machine that can allow you to quickly perform your tasks, then it can be a great idea to go with a high-speed one. Fortunately, most metal lathes have a speed rating of 2500 RPM or similar for optimum performance.

Wattage

You can also check the wattage rating of your metal lathe to get an idea of its performance. While a higher wattage rating does result in a higher power consumption, it also offers a higher motor power and speed. Because most metal lathe machines have a similar speed rating, their wattage ratings are also quite similar around 500 to 550 watts depending on the model that you get.

Switch over Distance and Distance between Centers

Even though it does not affect the power of the motor, the Switch over Distance and Distance between Centers of your metal lathe can surely affect its overall performance.

Starting with SOD or Switch over Distance, it tells you about the maximum thickness or the diameter of the workpiece that your metal lathe can handle. As for the DBC, it tells you about the maximum length of the workpiece your metal lathe can handle. And as you would expect, any metal lathe with high SOD and DBC values can be a great choice for easily working on large-sized workpieces with ease.

Ease of Use Features

Even if you are going with a powerful metal lathe, you may have a poor experience while using it simply due to the features that it offers or lacks. While using any sort of tool or machine in your workshop, it is always great to have all kinds of ease of use features.

For example, you can find features like storage pockets, easy-to-use controls, included user manuals, inbuilt stands for cleanliness, and much more while buying a metal lathe. And if your metal lathe has various of these, then you are most likely going to have a great time while using one.

Warranty

Thankfully, all of them are made out of high-quality metals which is great for long-term use. You can also check the warranty included with your metal lathe. Fortunately, all of them come with a standard 1-year long warranty which should be decent when combined with their metal construction.

Conclusion

If you want to work on job pieces made out of metal, then you need to have the right kinds of tools and machines. However, if you wish to get an all-in-one machine for working on metal job pieces, then you can get one of the best metal lathes present above.

For helping you in buying the best one, these various metal lathes also have their important details and specifications explained above. You can also find a comprehensive buying guide for the best metal lathes up there. Based on all these details, here are our preferred recommendations for the best metal lathes:

  • Unlike most other metal lathes, the Grizzly G9972Z metal lathe is the perfect option for your large-sized projects. This is possible thanks to its 11-inch x 26-inch size rating. Since it is combined along with up to 2400 RPM motor speed and a 1 HP motor, you can work on most hard metals with ease using this metal lathe.
  • Those of you who are on a tight budget can go with the BestEquip metal lathe. Even at its given price tag, you get a high-speed 2500 RPM motor which has a wattage rating of 550 watts. Although, since it is a budget option, it has a size of just 7 inch x 14 inch which can be a bit small for those who wish to use their metal lathe for heavy-duty jobs.



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