A bench grinder is a wise investment for anyone who enjoys a spot of DIY around the home or fancies themselves as a bit of keen and competent handyman. Whether you’re a professional or merely enjoy tinkering and completing essential jobs yourself, there are plenty of practical applications where having access to a bench grinder will really come up trumps. From sharpening to shaping, cleaning to cutting, there’s plenty that you can use that bench grinder to help you achieve. Before you dive in though and buy the biggest, most expensive or most powerful bench grinder you can find, we recommend you read our review, and comprehensive buyers guide so that you buy the one that is right for you. They come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, from die grinders to angle grinders with the option of 6-inch and 8-inch wheels so let us help you select the right one for you. We promise, by the time you’ve read this review, you will definitely have a better handle on what the best bench grinders should feature and which one is likely to be better for you. Let’s gear up and get the motor running on this grinder round-up.
The Best Bench Grinder
Our Best Choice recommendation if you are on the hunt for an 8 inch Bench Grinder is Dewalt DW758. It just so happens to be a powerfully impressive unit that is suitable for both domestic as well as commercial applications. Operating at an impressive 3600 RPM, it’s fast, reliable and has plenty of staying power. Take good care of your Dewalt, and it will have pride of place in that workshop for many years to come. From a design perspective, it certainly looks the part and its rugged and robust machine. With its cast iron base this is a heavy duty bench grinder that won’t let you down, and we have to say, given the great consumer reviews it receives, that the Dewalt is suitable for a whole range of versatile grinding operations. With two wheels position 12.5 inches apart from each other too, you have plenty of flexibility with this grinder to work on projects both large and small and can expect to achieve smooth results every time. You can combine it with a portable workbench from our list.
Efficient and easy to use tool-free adjustable safety guard
Overload protection maintains motor longevity
Commercial style 3/4 HP motor
Dependable and sturdy cast iron base
3600 RPM, 8-inch bench grinder
- Weight7.2 ounces
It’s not all about having the fastest power tools in the shed as our next slow speed bench grinder demonstrates. The Rikon Professional is another 8-inch grinder but rather than operating at a variable speed, or delivering a high RPM like the Dewalt unit we just reviewed, this Rikon operates at 1750 RPM. In this case, though, that’s very much a good thing as it means it can do heavy lift (and by that what we really mean is metal grinding) jobs without the fear of the unit overheating. It still has a powerful 1/2HP motor which means that it’s more than adequate for successfully tackling shaping as well as sharpening jobs in your workshop. There are dual dust collection points as well as adjustable safety spark shields plus a flexible LED light. All that and the Rikon bench grinding machine has a solid cast iron base with rubber feet that both minimize vibrations and hold the unit more securely in place on your worktop. Be sure to also check out our list of the best cordless drills for more great items like this.
Durable and high-quality dual aluminum oxide wheels
Powerful but slow style 1/2HP motor
Safety features include eye shields and adjustable spark resistors
Cast iron base with rubber feet minimize vibrations and movement
1750 RPM, 8-inch bench grinder
- BrandRIKON Power Tools
- Weight37.2 pounds
Never worry about having to replace your tools again with this WEN 4280 8-inch variable speed bench grinder in your workshop. Just think about all the money that you can save over time being able to sharpen up and clean all those objects yourself? Not to mention how satisfying the process is too! This WEN 4280 model sure is mighty and can operate from 2000 to 3400 RPM and features a 5-amp variable speed motor. You might be wondering why that’s important? Well, the slower speeds are ideal for precision and tackling more delicate jobs whereas the higher speeds deliver speed and efficiency. Having both provides a greater degree of flexibility and the versatility to get a wider range of projects completed. The Wen also very conveniently features overhead LED lights which are excellent for illuminating your workplace plus it comes with a sturdy cast iron base which prevents unwanted wobbling as well as minimizing annoying vibrations when in operation. Our handy guide to the best circular saws features more great products like this.
Comes with a coarse and medium grit wheel
Sturdy and robust cast iron base
Flexible overhead lights illuminate workspace
Variable speed motor delivers 2000 to 3400 RPM
Provides quick start-up and smooth, reliable performance
- Weight41 pounds
If you or your business are looking to invest in a new industrial bench grinder to beef up the equipment you have in your workshop, then this Jet 578008 is an excellent choice with a full one horsepower of heavy duty grinding action. Jet 578008 Industrial Bench Grinder is both CSA and CUS certified and is perfect for contractors, construction workers and professional tradesmen who might need to sharpen their tools regularly. It’s powerful enough to meet professional demands yet simple enough to operate for amateurs too. It features a single dust chute, has adjustable safety shields and comes with a toggle switch safety key for your added protection. Jet also includes two 8-inch grinder wheels, one each with a fine and coarse finish. Love this product? Check out our review of the best wood axes for our top picks.
Heavy duty industrial style grinder
Built to withstand busy workshop environments
Maintenance free option
Pre-drilled base for mounting on workbench
Fie and coarse grinding wheels included
- Weight44 pounds
With its sleek design and industrial style good looks, our next best bench grinder comes from Shop Fox, and it’s their W1840 model. It’s another fine example of a quality 8-inch variable speed grinder and is powered by a 3/4 HP motor for effortless grinding results. With a 5/8 grinding wheel bore as well as up to 3600 RPM’s it delivers plenty of power and precision. Many people admire those dual aluminum oxide grinding wheels and who can blame them! The Shop Fox bench grinder is easy to use, versatile and affordable too plus it operates vibration free for smooth results and excellent user control. There are also directional LED light as well as large safety eye shields included which is great if don’t have work lights.
Durable and high-quality dual aluminum oxide wheels
Powerful 3/4 HP motor
Safety features include eye shields
Vibration free operation
Variable motor speed of 2000 – 3400 RPM
- BrandShop Fox
- Weight40 pounds
For our next review, we’re taking a look at one of the smaller style 6-inch bench grinders on offer. This is the SKIL 3380, and it utilizes a 2.1 amp motor operating up to 3450 RPM to deliver plenty of power and oomph for your big projects. Within the carefully thought out design, they’ve incorporated 2 overhead LED’s, each conveniently located over one of the two wheels. A handy feature which allows the operator to have a good clear focus of exactly what they’re working on. The SKIL 3380 also comes with an adjustable tool rest which is a great safety feature, neatly holding your tools in place when you’re grinding them. Those two wheels can be operated with either a coarse or a medium surface so that you can complete a variety of different projects. The unit is stable on your workbench thanks to rubberized feet on the base plus your purchase is also backed by a generous three years manufacturer’s warranty so you can buy with confidence. Find more great products like this by checking out our guide to the best band saws.
2.1 amp motor delivering a speed of 3450 RPM
Dual LED built-in lights illuminate work area
Both a coarse and medium wheel are fitted
Adjustable tool rest for accurate and safe grinding
Rubber feet provide base stability
- Weight8.48 pounds
If you are looking for a budget-friendly bench grinder that can operate at variable speeds, smoothly transitioning from 2000 to 3400 RPM, then we recommend you take a closer inspection of this Delta Power Tools model. Delta Power Tools 8-Inch Variable Speed Bench Grinder offers control, speed, convenience as well as versatility and can perform a range of tasks from buffing and polishing to sharpening and grinding. There are two large tool rests which enable you to perfectly and safely sharpen drill bits plus it’s been designed to feature a cast iron base which ensures minimum vibrations when in use. Other convenient additional features that Delta have thoughtfully included are a water tray to keep your workpiece cool while riding as well as directional LED light. Given the price point, there’s plenty of charm and character as well as reliability from this Delta Power Tools grinder. If you need to keep your tools handy, choose one of the best tool belts from our list.
Full-size adjustable safety shields
Powerful 5 amp induction style motor
Variable speeds from 2000 to 3400 RPM
Sturdy cast iron base reduces vibrations
Two wheel grits for coarse and fine work
- Weight45.5 pounds
Another 8-inch bench grinder up next from the brand Metabo and we’ve selected Metabo DS200 bench grinder. There’s plenty to appreciate about this machine including the fact that it emits low-level noise to match those minimal vibrations when in use. It’s reliable and robust despite being slightly more lightweight than some of the other heavier grinders we’ve been looking at. That’s a good thing if you do have projects to complete that are time-consuming as it won’t leave the operator feeling fatigued. It still has a good sized motor and operates at a high speed of 3570 RPM so it can tackle plenty of big jobs in your workshop. With simple on/off buttons conveniently color-coded red and green, it’s easy to operate and they’ve taken it one step further by raising that red off button, so it’s easy to push in an emergency situation. This is a reliable and dependable choice from a brand that you can trust with all your home DIY needs. To keep all your tools in one place check out our guide to the best tool boxes.
Low noise and vibration output
Quick and easy disc interchange
Single phase alternating motor
Simple color coded red/green off on buttons
Industrial and rugged style design and performance
- ModelDS 200
- Weight35.9 pounds
We’re taking a look at a Powertec BGS801 slow speed grinder. It’s yet again an excellent example of a high-quality 8-inch grinder and like the Rikon which we hand selected earlier in this review, operates at a slower RPM of 1725 with a 1/2 HP motor. The benefit of this being that if you are grinding tools for extended periods, it won’t overheat or cause any unnecessary damage. The fact that the unit is also made from aluminum oxide also prevents the bench grinder wheels from generating too much heat. The vibration level is reasonably minimal so it’s a good option for reducing user fatigue and it’s nice and stable thanks to a heavy steel base. For general tool sharpening and light grinding projects, this Powertec bench grinding machine offers plenty of staying power and represents excellent value for money. Don’t forget to also check our guide to the best magnetic wristbands.
Slow and cooler running 1725 RPM prevents overheating
Reliable, smooth and quiet 1/2 HP motor
White oxide construction minimize heat production
Heavy solid steel base
Wide 1-inch wheels for easy grinding operation
- Weight36.3 pounds
If you are in the market for a domestic as opposed to a heavy-duty commercial style bench grinder, then the Craftsman 921154 is worth a further look-see! It’s a smaller 6-inch version, and it comes with plenty of notable features that we think the novice DIY’er will appreciate. With is what’s known as a variable speed bench grinder which means that it can be operated at different speeds. In the case of this Craftsman model, we’re talking 2000-3400 RPM with a 1.5 HP motor. The grinder itself is easy to assemble and operate plus it’s quiet and smooth running too. It conveniently features a tool guide for each of your wheels which removes the guesswork and ensures more accurate results. There are also safety wheel guards incorporated which are easy to remove when required.
Water cooling tray is included
Variable speed bench grinder
Cast iron base ensures solid performance with minimal vibration
Spark guards and protective eye shields included
Tool guides for accurate bit sharpening
- Weight30.8 pounds
Bench Grinder Buying Guide & FAQ
Bench grinders are certainly a popular power tool and are favorite for completing a range of diverse jobs including polishing, grinding, and belt sanding and they come with a variety of different capabilities, feature, and benefits to choose from. We’ve picked out some of our key recommendations below of the aspects we suggest you consider before investing in a new bench grinder for your workshop.
Features To Look For In Bench Grinders
Motor Power-Power is, of course, essential and is denoted by the amount of Watts a machine has. The more power it has, the better and more efficient it will be at tackling more robust materials. If you also want to be able to polish and not just grind with your machine, then the more power, the better.
Speed-The speed at which your wheel rotates will determine how long it will take to sharpen and buff those tools. The higher the RPM, the faster the wheel will turn but also the more likely it is to heat up too. The average professional-grade grinder will go up to 3500 RPM with slower machines starting from 1725 RPM.
Safety Features-The key to using a bench grinder is to ensure that you do it safely and exercise the necessary precautions. There will be all kinds of debris, not to mention sparks flying around, so it’s always advisable that you opt for a bench grinder that features safety eye shields as well as protective spark guards too to protect your vision.
Anti-Vibration Features & Noise-The more powerful a machine is, the more likely it is going to be to produce noise and also to vibrate, both of which can be annoying if not disruptive. The more solid and robustly constructed your bench grinder is, especially if it features a sturdy and heavy base, the less likely it is to move and make lots of noise. On the whole though, as popular power tools go, bench grinders are among the quieter ones.
Built-in Lighting-A great additional feature as it will help to illuminate the area that you are working on and ensure that you achieve more accurate results.
Grinding Wheel diameter & Size-Before we discuss the types of wheels available, let’s quickly consider the wheel diameter required too. The larger the wheel, the larger the size of the unit itself will be and therefore the more prominent it’s footprint and workbench space required. The most common dimensions for grinding wheels are:
- 75 mm (3 inches)
- 150 mm (6 inches)
- 200 mm (8 inches)
Besides the obvious question of the physical space that you have available to house your bench grinder which will in part determine which of the above you opt to purchase, the other things to consider are the frictional heating and velocity. Functionality wise there isn’t much difference between the three, so it’s also a matter of personal preference.
Types Of Wheels:
Selecting the most appropriate grinder wheel for your needs is an important consideration, and the decision will mostly come down to the kinds of materials you intend using your grinder with. There are three main types that you could opt for; straight, cylinder and tapered.
Straight Wheel-These are popular and very commonly found across most of the professional brands. They come in various sizes and are typically used for sharpening chisels and other essential handyman tools.
Cylinder Wheel-Larger in size than the straight week, the cylinder wheel also has more limitations as it can only be practically used with vertical or horizontal style bench grinders.
Tapered Wheel-As you can probably guess from the name, this type of wheel tapers off in design towards the edges which makes it an excellent choice for when you are dealing with more dedicate DIY projects.
Safety Tips: Bench Grinder
Below we’ve listed out some of our top safety tips when using a bench grinder.
- Always wear the correct eye protection such as safety glasses, side shields or even a full face shield to protect from high velocity flying debris
- Don’t wear loose fitting clothing that could become trapped in the machine
- Ensure that you have the correct grinding wheel for the job and that it’s securely in place before you start
- Check that all the safety guards are in place before you start
- Adjust the tool rest to within 1/8 inch
- Routinely inspect your wheels for any cracks
- Never use a cracked wheel
- Stand to one side when you first start up your grinding machine
- Ensure that the RPM of the grinding wheel and the grinder are verified and matched
- Allow your grinder to get up to its regular operating speed before you commence any work
- Maintain good housekeeping and keep your work area clear and clean
- Don’t operate your grinder in an area where there are flammable materials
- Turn off your grinder when not in use and allow it to come to complete standstill
Bench Grinder FAQ
Q: What are the most common uses of Bench Grinder?
A: A Bench Grinder makes a highly popular and practical addition to a workshop and is more versatile than you might have first imagined. Of course, the clue to it’s most common use is in the name, Grinder, but there’s used in far more professions than just carpentry for example. If you’re concerned about justifying the expense of a new bench grinder, don’t be! From carpentry to flooring, painting to plumbing, that new bench grinder you’ve just invested in will soon be paying for itself. From leveling out joints to removing old paintwork, cutting out worn out plumbing pipes to dealing with rotten old grout, you can use your bench grinder for a host of shaping, sharpening, cleaning and cutting tasks around the home.
Q: Bench Grinder vs. Angle Grinder – What’s the Difference?
A: If you’re not quite sure what distinguishes a Bench Grinder from its brother the Angle Grinder, then we’re here to quickly clear up your query! First up they’re designed to look quite different. An Angle Grinder has been designed so that it can be picked up and used by hand whereas a Bench Grinder has a solid base which anchors it to a flat surface for minimum vibration when in use. Portability wise, an Angle Grinder is likely to weigh about 7 pounds whereas a good Bench Grinder will most likely weigh at least 20 pounds. Usage wise, an Angle Grinder is commonly used for cutting whereas as Bench Grinder is used for shaping and sharpening. Finally, whereas both may well come fitted with two wheels, with an Angle Grinder you can only use one wheel at a time whereas with the Bench Grinder it’s possible to use them both simultaneously.
Q: Do I need a variable speed Bench Grinder?
A: It’s not necessary to purchase a variable speed Bench Grinder, but depending upon which jobs you have planned to use it for, variable speed might come in handy, particularly if you are wanting to polish and puff rather than just shape and sharpen objects.
Q: How often should I replace my Wheel?
A: How long is a piece of string might be the answer but let’s not been flippant here! Of course, the frequency with which you are using your bench grinder is really going to be the key to how often and when your wheel will require replacing. That along with the most common materials that you are using your grinder for which will impact the level of wear and tear. Proper routine maintenance and regular visual checks are encouraged to spot those visible telltale signs that it’s time to change that wheel.
- Bench Grinder Safety, Western National Insurance