The 10 Best Bench Grinders

Updated January 19, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

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We spent 44 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Look after your tools and your tools will look after you. These bench grinders are ideal for sharpening lathes, drill bits, ax heads, and chisels. They can also roughly shape metal prior to welding or fitting, and clean or polish workpieces. We've included budget models for the home DIYer as well as commercial-quality units for professionals. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best bench grinder on Amazon.

10. Rikon Power Tools 80-805

The Rikon Power Tools 80-805 comes with two aluminum oxide wheels, one at 60 grit and one at 120 grit. It is a low-speed model that spins at only 1,750 RPM when not under load, which makes it ideal for sharpening tools and light grinding.
  • easy for beginners to use
  • wobbles a little when spinning
  • wheels create a lot of dust
Brand RIKON Power Tools
Model 80-805
Weight 36.9 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. Skil 3380-01

The Skil 3380-01 has a bright, integrated LED work light above each wheel to increase visibility, allowing you to get the job done even in poorly lit working conditions. It also features an adjustable tool rest for accurate grinds.
  • can be used on wood
  • removable wheel guards
  • seems a bit under-powered
Brand Skil
Model 3380-01
Weight 20.9 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

8. Sunex 5002A

The Sunex 5002A grinds even hard metals with ease while its protective spark guard and adjustable eye shields help keep the operator safe when in the midst of serious work. Its power switch is prominently located for ease of use.
  • rubber feet help minimize vibrations
  • well-spaced mounting holes
  • flexible tool rests are flimsy
Brand Sunex
Model 5002A
Weight 38.2 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

7. Wen 4276

The Wen 4276 is a compact and lightweight unit, coming in at just 16 pounds, which makes it convenient if you need to move it around your workshop often. Its 2.1-amp motor works the grinding wheels up to a rotation speed of 3,450 RPM.
  • ideal for deburring rough edges
  • gets up to speed quickly
  • not suitable for commercial use
Brand WEN
Model 4276
Weight 20.3 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. DeWalt DW758

The DeWalt DW758 is powerful enough for daily professional use, but affordable enough that it's a great choice for hobbyists, too. Its rear exhaust ports help keep your work clean and smooth without interfering with the process.
  • cast-iron motor housing
  • precision-machined tool rests
  • vibrates a lot during use
Model DW758
Weight 36.9 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. Metabo DS 200

Despite its high power, the Metabo DS 200 offers both low noise and low vibrations in its operation, handling the toughest jobs with ease and without the unpleasant whine of many models. It's a pricey, but reliable, professional-grade tool.
  • allows for quick disc changes
  • high-performance induction motor
  • feels extremely well-built
Brand Metabo
Model DS 200
Weight 39.8 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

4. Craftsman 9-21154

The Craftsman 9-21154 puts the power in your hands with speed controls and an adjustable tool rest for precise grinding of all sorts of implements. At over 30 pounds, it's a heavy, but stable, unit perfect for both home users and commercial shops.
  • patented bit sharpening attachment
  • handheld wheel dresser
  • attached gooseneck work light
Brand Craftsman
Model 9-21154
Weight 32.9 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

3. Baldor 662R

The Baldor 662R is powered by a 115-volt, single-phase, 1/3 horsepower motor that gets the wheel spinning up to 3,600 RPM. It is an industrial-duty tool that complies with all OSHA standards and comes with a three-year warranty.
  • very large spark guards
  • adjustable tool rests
  • includes one wheel and a wire brush
Brand Baldor
Model 662R
Weight 31.3 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. PowerTec BG600

The powerful motor of the PowerTec BG600 helps it maintain speeds through even heavy applications, so you get a smooth grind every time. Its heavy steel base reduces vibrations and maintains stability in the majority of situations.
  • built-in coolant tray
  • magnifier in the safety shields
  • good balance of price and quality
Model BG600
Weight 23.3 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

1. Jet JBG-8A

The Jet JBG-8A is an industrial grade model that comes with durable cast iron wheel guards and prelubricated, enclosed ball bearings. The adjustable spark guards will help you stay safe as you grind down almost any type of material.
  • dust collection ports
  • can handle heavy grinding needs
  • toggle switch guards
Brand Jet
Model 577102
Weight 58.8 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

What Is A Bench Grinder?

A bench grinder is a portable version of larger, industrial grade grinding machines found in many machinist and metal working shops. They spin at high speeds to remove material, which can be anything from wood to metal, by abrasion. Since they are using abrasion, there is a lot of friction and they generally produce a lot of heat. Because of this, you may see operators using gloves when using one, especially if working with highly conductive metals.

Most bench grinders have two wheels with varying grain sizes. This allows one to be used for removal of a large amount of material, while the other can be used for smooth finishing work. Grinding wheels can be made from a variety of materials, with each type being best suited for a certain type of application. The most commonly seen grinding wheels are made from either silicone carbide or aluminum oxide. Bench grinders also allow for the installation of fiber and wire wheels designed buffing and polishing.

Since bench grinders are relatively small and lightweight, it is often necessary to mount them to a table or bench of some kind, hence the name bench grinders. Otherwise the vibrations may cause them to move around while you work. They are usually mounted by bolting them to a surface through pre-drilled holes in the base.

How and what you use a bench grinder for will depend on the size, grain, and type of wheel you have installed. Some of the most common uses include sharpening blades and metal hand tools, rough shaping metal work, and roughing up metal surfaces before welding. They can also be used for removing burrs and casting, or polishing and buffing items.

Choosing The Right Bench Grinder

There are four main things you should consider when picking the right bench grinder for you: power, precision, durability, and cost. Buying one that is cheap, but breaks after a couple of uses is just as much of a waste of money as buying one incredibly overpowered for your needs.

First ask yourself what you will be using the bench grinder for the majority of the time. If you plan on grinding tough metals or need to grind large areas quickly, one with a bigger motor will be a good bet. The larger the motor, the more power your grinder will have and the quicker you'll be able to get the job done.

If you are new to using a bench grinder, you may feel more comfortable with a slow speed model as there is less chance of over-grinding an object. They also make models with dual speed options or adjustable speed controls. These kinds are usually more expensive, but can be invaluable to a beginner or somebody who often works on different kinds of materials.

Since bench grinders operate at high speeds and you put strain on them as you grind down materials, it is important to buy one from a well known company that makes quality tools like DeWALT, JET, or Metabo. If you go with a low-quality China-made model that costs considerably less, you may find that the motor burns out after just a few months.

Wheel size plays a big factor in how you can use your bench grinder and how quickly it gets the job done. For home workshop use, bench grinder wheels range in size from 3 to 8 inches. Ideally it's best to go with one between 6 and 8 inches unless you know you will only be using it on very small objects that don't need heavy grinding.

Other features you may want in a bench grinder include an integrated work light, an adjustable tool rest, adjustable eye guards, a soft start function, and a vibration resistant base. These will help you safely use a bench grinder.

Choosing The Right Grinding Wheel

After finding the best bench grinder for your needs, you'll need to be sure to purchase the right type and grit wheel. Understanding all the differences between grinding wheels can get very confusing, but luckily you don't need to know everything. There are a few things that anybody picking a grinding wheel needs to know though.

First is what type of wheel material is right for the job you are doing. A silicone carbide blade is highly abrasive and ideal for working with stone, brass, and aluminum. An aluminum oxide wheel is best for grinding steel, steel alloys, and other ferrous metals. They can also be used for woodworking or other softer materials that might crumble if you put too much pressure on them while grinding.

The next thing to understand is grit size. Bench grinding wheels generally range from 16 to 120 grit, with the higher the number, the finer the grit. They are often labeled as coarse (16 to 24 grit), medium (36 to 60 grit), and fine (80 to 120 grit). If you want to remove a lot of material quickly and the worked object can be left with a rough finish, use a coarse grit wheel. If you need to work slowly and precisely and want a smooth almost polished finish, go with a fine grit wheel.

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Last updated on January 19, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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