Bench grinders, sometimes known as table grinders or pedestal grinders, are a handy and versatile piece of kit; often described as the ultimate ‘do-it-all tool’. It’s a type bench-mounted abrasive tool capable of shaping, sharpening, buffing, polishing, and cleaning virtually any metal or wooden object.
As more DIY buying options than ever before emerge, knowing exactly what you need can be a challenge. That’s why we’ve scoured the market in search of the best bench grinders around. We’ve also taken the time to address some common questions and concerns about these tools, so you can make an informed decision and rest assured you’re using your new tool safely.
The Best Bench Grinder
This DEWALT bench grinder is the first option to earn itself a spot on our list. DEWALT are renowned for the quality of their tools, and rightly so – their 8 bench grinder is ideal for a huge variety of tasks, from rust removal, to deburring, to cleaning. Powered by sturdy ¾ horsepower motor, this durable tool can stand up to both home and industrial applications. This power, when channeled to the plates, can run at up to 3,500 rpm.
The strong cast iron base and motor housing give the grinder’s inner workings the protection they need for a long and useful life. It’s also safe and easy to use, thanks to a tool-free adjustable guard, and built-in surge protection to prevent power overload. The grinder also features precision engineered aluminum tool rests, which let you position whatever you’re working on with ease. Like all DEWALT tools, the grinder comes with a warranty – a three year limited warranty to be exact.
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8 inch bench grinder
Features a ¾ horsepower motor
Up to 3,500 rpm
Strong cast iron base and motor housing for durability
Includes a tool-free adjustable guard and surge protector for safety
Includes a three year limited warranty
- Weight40.5 pounds
JET’s powerful 8-inch grinder features a compact design that’s nonetheless able to stand up to the demands of industrial use.
Designed with precision in mind, the grinder can perform diverse tasks with ease, thanks to its durable 1 horsepower motor. The grinder is capable of producing up to 3,450 rpm – more than enough power for even the heaviest grinding tasks. A rubber foot prevents unwanted movement, and can also be bolted down for maximum stability. A heavy-duty guarded toggle switch is another feature that makes it easy to use the grinder safety, no matter what you’re working on.
8-inch bench grinder
Suitable for industrial use
1 horsepower motor produces up to 3,450 rpm
Rubber foot prevents slippage, and can be bolted down for even greater security
Features pre-lubricated ball bearings for your convenience
High quality design features cast iron wheel guards and dust vents
Includes quick-adjust spark guards
Includes a 2 year warranty
Comes with 2 8 inch bench grinder wheels; 1 coarse, 1 fine
- Weight58.5 pounds
This sturdy design features a cast iron base, encased in vibration absorbing rubber feet. It’s safe to use too, thanks to an adjustable eye protection shield, and heat reduction features.
It’s a little less powerful than some of the other grinders on our list, with a ½ horsepower engine capable of 1,750 rpm. This revolution speed is enough to tackle any household tasks you can throw its way. It comes with 2 grinding wheels – one coarse and one fine – and a dressing tool too, so you can get started right away.
Sturdy 8 inch grinder
Features a cast iron base
Rubber feet help quell vibrations during use
½ horsepower motor can produce 1,750 rpm
Comes with 2 grinding wheels and a dressing tool
Easy to set-up
Great value for money at under $150
- Weight36.7 pounds
Porter-Cable’s sturdy and durable variable speed bench grinder can grind a wide variety of materials using a wide variety of speeds, which range from 2,000 to 3,400 rpm.
You can rest assured that the grinder will remain firmly in place while you work, thanks to a heavy duty cast iron base, which holds the machine down and helps to reduce vibration during operation. The base also includes mounting holes, making it straightforward to attach to any work bench. The grinder also features adjustable die cast aluminum tool rests, which make it easy to keep your tools securely in place while sharpening.
Variable speed bench grinder, with speeds ranging from 2,000 to 3,400 rpm
Sturdy cast iron base holds the machine in place and dulls vibrations during use
Base includes mounting holes
Features adjustable aluminum tool rests for easy sharpening
Includes an adjustable 40 Watt lamp
Comes with one coarse and one medium grinding wheel
Includes eye shields, spark guards, and a detachable quench water tray
- Weight39.9 pounds
Metabo’s 8 inch bench grinder is a force to be reckoned with. Its powerful motor can spin its grinding wheels at speeds of up to 3,570 rpm, placing among the fastest on today’s list. The grinder is sturdy enough for industrial applications as well as home use, and is cleverly designed to operate with little noise, and little vibration. This impressive quietness during operation allows for safe and comfortable use without distraction.
The grinder also features die cast aluminum protective covers, which are tough enough to protect its inner workings against whatever may fly at them. As well as being safe, it’s convenient too, boasting a bayonet lock on its protective casing that makes switching out grinding disks almost effortless.
Powerful 8 inch bench grinder
Motor can produce speeds of up to 3,570 rpm
Sturdy enough for both home and industrial applications
Designed to operate quietly and with little vibration
Features die cast aluminum protective covers
Bayonet lock on protective casing makes removing and replacing grinding wheels easy
- ModelDS 200
- Weight35.9 pounds
Chances are, you’ve already heard of WEN – the company is renowned for producing high quality tools and machines at affordable prices. Their bench grinder boasts a 2.1 Amp motor, capable of producing up to 3,450 rpm. Thanks to the flexible work lamp mounted atop the grinder, you’ll be able to see what you’re working on precisely, promoting accuracy.
The tool’s sturdy base helps with this too, by ensuring that it won’t wobble around during operation. The included eye guards add an additional layer of ocular protection as you work, while the grinder’s smooth, quiet operation allows you to work distraction-free. To get you started, the grinder also comes with two wheels included.
2.1 Amp motor can produce speeds of up to 3,450 rpm
Includes a flexible work lamp to improve work visibility
Sturdy base helps prevent vibration and movement while you work
Smooth, quiet operation
Includes one coarse and one medium grinder wheel
Lightweight, at only 16 pounds
Backed by a two year warranty
- Weight4 pounds
The first 6 inch bench grinder to make it onto our list is SKIL’s. Don’t be fooled by the smaller grinding wheels, though – this machine’s 2.1 Amp motor can produce speeds up to 3,450 rpm, making it ideal for most DIY applications.
The grinder also features built-in LED work lights over each of its wheels, allowing you to see exactly what you’re doing during use and work with absolute confidence. Its adjustable tool rest also goes a long way towards promoting accurate work, especially when deburring or sharpening tools. At its base, the machine features rubber feet that act to increase stability and reduce vibration during use. Beneath, a sturdy cast iron base means the grinder remains steady no matter what.
6 inch bench grinder
Features a 2.1 Amp motor, capable of producing revolution speeds of up to 3,450 rpm
Built-in LED lights over each wheel help users see their work accurately
Adjustable tool rest included
Cast iron base and rubber feet prevent vibrations and movement during use
Features eye shields
Includes one coarse and one medium grinding wheel
- Weight8.48 pounds
POWERTECH’s unique bench grinder is ‘cool-running’, featuring grinding wheels that spin at a relatively leisurely 1,725 rpm. This might sound slow compared to some other grinders mentioned here, but it helps to prevent tools from overheating as you work on them.
The grinder features a ½ horsepower motor, offering users a long-lasting and smooth performance. This smooth operation is aided by the machine’s heavy gauge steel base, which acts to improve stability and quell vibrations during use. Safety is also a key concern for POWERTECH, leading the to install a durable eye shield over each grinding wheel.
‘Cool-running’ bench grinder producing 1,725 rpm
Perfect for sharpening and other tool maintenance
Sturdy steel base helps quell noise and vibrations during use
Features an eyeshield over each grinding wheel for improved safety
- Weight36.3 pounds
Another name that might spring to mind as you think about powertools is Craftsman. The company are known for having over 90 years experience designing and developing quality tools that are a pleasure to use.
This craftsman bench grinder possesses a ⅕ horsepower and 2.5 Amp motor, producing speeds between 2,000 and 3,400 rpm. Users can adjust the rotational speed to find the setting that’s best for the job at hand, making it a incredibly versatile machine. Its oversized cast iron base allows for incredible stability during use, preventing movement and reducing any vibrations produced by grinding. As well as this, the grinder also features eyeshields and spark guards, adding an additional layer of protection to users.
Produced by Craftsman, drawing upon 90 years of tool-making experience
Features a ⅕ horsepower, 2.5 Amp motor
Variable speed – from 2,000 to 3,400 rpm
Oversized cast iron case for excellent stability
Features eyeshields and spark guards
Includes patented tool rests
Includes a hand-held wheel dresser
Includes a water cooling tray
- Weight30.8 pounds
Last but not least comes Sumex’s quality bench grinder. Available in both 6 inch and 8 inch options, the tool has a powerful 5 Amp motor, capable of producing rotational speeds of up to 3,450 rpm. Both size options are equipped with the same rugged cast iron base, which holds the grinder securely in place and helps to quiet vibrations during use.
To help improve accuracy, a convenient aluminum tool rest and flexible work light are also included. Meanwhile, eye shields over each grinding wheel prevent flying debris from causing any damage. The grinder includes two compatible grinding wheels (one coarse 36 grit and one medium 60 girt), along with two spark guards, so you can get to work safely as soon as it arrives.
Bench grinder available in both 6 and 8 inch options
Powerful 5 Amp motor accelerates grinding wheels to 3,450 rpm
Features a rugged cast iron base to prevent movement and vibration during use
Aluminum tool rest improves accuracy
Includes spark and eye shields
Includes one coarse and one medium grinding wheel
- Weight0.48 ounces
Best Bench Grinder Buying Guide & FAQ
These 10 bench grinders represent what we believe are the best on the market right now, and any will serve you in good stead. With so many buying options available, though, deciding exactly which one is the best option for you can be a challenge. We hope our handy guide below will help you work out what to look for in a bench grinder, and how to use one safely and effectively.
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Things to Consider When Buying a Bench Grinder
When choosing a bench grinder, we advise that you consider the following, to help you make the best decision for your needs:
- 8 inch or 6 inch?
One of the first questions on your radar should be whether to invest in a bench grinder with 6 inch, or 8 inch grinding wheels. For most home applications, 6 inch wheels are perfectly fine. However, bear in mind that these smaller models are often less powerful than their 8 inch counterparts. For certain applications, such as sharpening chisels, 8 inch grinders are a better option, since the slightly larger wheel has less curvature per inch.
- Motor Speed
Another factor to bear in mind when purchasing a bench grinder is its motor speed. Faster speeds remove material from whatever you’re grinding faster, which is great for tougher materials. If you plan on using the grinder mainly for sharpening tools, however, you may be better off with a slower revolution speed that helps prevent them from overheating without the need for a water cooling tray. If in doubt, you can always choose a grinder with adjustable speeds.
- Safety Features
Ensuring you can use a tool safely is vital, and things are no different when it comes to bench grinders. Look out for safety features such as eye shields, spark deflectors, and a sturdy metal base when selecting your grinder to help maximize your personal safety.
- What’s Included?
If you’re purchasing your first bench grinder, choosing one that includes certain useful extras could be a sound investment, to save you from having to purchase them separately. Look out for adjustable tool rests, wheel dressers, grinding wheels, and water cooling trays.
Bench Grinder Uses
As mentioned earlier, bench grinders are a really versatile piece of kit, which can be put to all sorts of uses, including:
- Sharpening tools, such as chisels and drill bits - anything made from hardened steel
- Deburring tools
- Shaping wood or metal
- Removing rust from metal objects
- Reforming knife blades for special purposes
- Cleaning or polishing workpieces
Choosing The Right Grinding Wheel
Grinding wheels are the interchangeable disks that actually come into contact with whatever is being ground. Each grinding wheel has three main characteristics to bear in mind, which, combined, determine its function:
A wheel’s abrasive grains are the parts that actually do the cutting. Aluminum oxide abrasives are suitable for most metals, as are Zirconia alumia abrasives. The latter tend to be used on tougher jobs. For softer and non-ferrous materials including rubber and stone, a silicon carbide abrasive will typically be used. More recently, ceramic aluminum oxide abrasives have been developed to tackle the most demanding grinding jobs.
- Grit Size
Grinding wheels can be coarse, medium, or fine, depending on the size of abrasive grains they use. Grit size is measured numerically, and the higher the number, the finer the grit. The coarsest wheels have grit sizes ranging from 10 - 24, while the finest range from 70 - 180. Coarser grains are used for rapid material removal, while their finer counterparts are suitable for fine finishes and brittle materials.
Another characteristic to bear in mind when choosing a grinding wheel is how strongly the abrasive grains are bonded together. Hard grade wheels have a longer life, and are best used for more powerful machines and jobs with small areas of contact. Conversely, soft grade wheels are good for removing material rapidly, jobs with large areas of contact, and for use on harder materials such as steel.
Other Types of Grinders
Bench grinders are not the only type of grinder around - many others, with slightly different functions, exist too:
Small, hand-held grinders designed to shape and polish round objects, especially pipes. They can also be used for engraving and woodworking. These grinders tend to have high rotational speeds, of 27,000 rpm or more.
- Wet Grinders
As the name suggests, wet grinders use water to cool down and lubricate the grinding wheel during use. They’re used to polish and grind tile and stone surfaces, and are available in both handheld and bench mounted designs.
- Belt Grinders
These grinders work through an abrasive belt, which is typically used to finish surfaces, deburr tools, and remove material. Different types of belt can have different effects.
- Floor Grinders
Large, walk-behind grinding machines, usually only used for industrial purposes. They look a lot like a vacuum cleaner, and are used to smooth, clean, and level concrete surfaces.
Best Bench Grinder FAQ:
Q: Does my grinder require any maintenance?
A: Like any tool, belt grinders require some maintenance to keep them in good working order:
- Check the grinder regularly for signs of wear and tear, such as loose nuts and bolts, and the positioning of the grinding wheel
- Dress grinding wheels regularly, using a dressing tool, to keep their surface even
- Remember to remove dust and debris from the grinder after every use, or it could enter the motor and create problems
- Look out for unusual vibrations during use
Q: How often should I replace my wheel?
A: This will depend on the type of wheel, how often it’s used, and what it’s used for. These wheels tend to last for a very long time, assuming you’re keeping them in good condition through regular dressing.
You don’t need to change a wheel as long as it is performing its function properly, but it will eventually wear down to an extent that renders it unusable.
Q: What safety issues might I experience using my grinder?
A: Like any tool, bench grinders are not entirely risk-free - fortunately, there is plenty you can do to keep yourself as safe as possible during use:
- Read the operating manual
Manufacturers know the risks associated with their products, and will offer advice to reduce them as much as possible
- Wear the correct protection
This entails: safety glasses with side shields, a full face shield, gloves, and work boots. Avoid loose-fitting clothing or jewelry that could become caught in the machine.
- Ensure Guards are in place
Check the eye shields and spark guards are in place prior to beginning your work.
- Check the Wheels
If you can see any hairline cracks, it’s not safe to use
- Get up to Speed - Allow the grinder to reach its operating speed before you start to work, to ensure a constant speed
- Stand to one side
When you first start the grinder, stand to the side. Defective wheels are most likely to explode upon starting.
Our Top Pick
For us, the best bench grinder on the market right now has to be DEWALT’s 8 inch option. The compact but sturdy design features just about everything you might need from a grinder: spark and eye shields, tool rests, a powerful motor, and a rugged base.
Everything adds up to a great, versatile product, capable of taking on the demands of both DIY and industrial jobs. The motor runs at 3,600 rpm, allowing for fast and effective material removal, and is encased in protective cast iron housing, ensuring it lasts and lasts. If you’re looking for a bench grinder that’s safe, durable, and effective - without breaking the bank - DEWALT definitely have you covered.