Bench grinders save a lot of time when it comes to sanding, grinding, or sharpening. Bench grinders are a must-have tool for anyone with a love for crafting and building things.
Based on requirements, they come in various sizes and prices. This can make it confusing for someone looking to buy their first bench. If you are someone looking for answers to the most common questions regarding bench grinders, then you are in the right place.
So how much do bench grinders cost? Bench grinders start from $50 and can go upto $3000. This huge price difference is because of different sizes and specifications for each model, as well as the different grits provided according to the work it is required for.
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Types of Bench Grinders
Bench grinders are broadly divided into four categories based on the type of work you intend to use them for.
- Automotive Bench Grinder
- Woodworking bench grinder
- Standard Variable Speed Bench Grinder
- Portable bench grinder
In this article, I discuss these different types of grinders. I have also provided you with a list of the best bench grinders that are available right now.
It consists of models for those on a budget as well as high-end models that provide the best performance. The detailed review of every product will keep you informed and help you understand if a given product meets your requirements and budget.
Automotive Bench Grinder
Automotive bench grinders are a popular choice amongst professionals who work regularly with steel and metal workpieces. It is used commonly in the automobile industry to strip rust from nuts and bolts and polish steel and chrome parts such as the engine and doors.
The main advantage of this type of bench grinder is that it requires minimal adjustments before usage. This allows you to perform repetitive tasks efficiently, saving a lot of time in the process.
These models offer good stability and balance to ensure improved accuracy and precision in professional applications. They can spin at speeds of upto 3,500 RPM, making them suitable for grinding and shaping metal tools and workpieces.
Woodworking Bench Grinder
Woodworking bench grinders are slower than automotive grinders. They are used mainly to sharpen tools made of tempered steel, which are more susceptible to damage due to the heat produced by grinders with high wheel speeds.
These grinders are also used when working with wooden workpieces. The advantage of such grinders includes the lower speed of the wheel (1,750 RPM), which allows you to work with improved precision while doing work like dovetail joints and so on.
It also results in lower heat levels which makes it suitable to use while cutting and smoothing materials that are susceptible to heat damage.
Standard Variable Speed Bench Grinder
Standard variable speed bench grinders are the most popular choice for those looking for a versatile machine.
It allows you to control the exact speed of the machine depending on your requirements, while also giving users the opportunity to change wheels for different jobs.
These machines are great for those who perform a wide variety of tasks that involve grinding. The higher speeds help in quick material removal, which is useful in cutting and cleaning.
The slower speeds increase the precision and provide a smoother finish. As a result, an entire job can be completed using this type of bench grinder.
Portable bench grinder
Portable bench grinders are the ideal models for professionals who move often from one job site to the other.
These grinders are lightweight and compact, making them easy to transport and carry. These models also allow users to make quick adjustments, making it a useful machine to have on the road.
However, the downside of such models is reduced stability and balance. This is because the previous types of bench grinders mentioned are heavier and are usually mounted to a workbench.
The portable models have rubber feet that dampen vibrations but tend to move around more. The smaller size also means a smaller motor, which may not be sufficient to perform grinding and cutting operations on tougher materials.
Best Bench Grinders
Bench grinders are amongst the most useful and important power tools in a workshop. They are versatile products that give users the ability to perform a wide variety of tasks on a variety of materials.
Their versatility and affordability make them a must-have for most professional contractors and handymen looking to make the most of their time. Bench grinders utilize a grinding wheel made of an abrasive material that spins at high speeds to complete processes like grinding and sharpening tools.
This makes it effective against workpieces made of tough materials like metal and wood. They are also used to shape metals and make rough cuts, helping save time in the process.
Listed below are the top bench grinders that I would recommend for users looking to purchase a new one. It includes a variety of products that offer different features and fit different budgets.
I hope that you will find the perfect product for you that meets all of your requirements and helps you make a wise investment.
RYOBI GIDDS2-3554576 Bench Grinder (Best Affordable Bench Grinder)
If you are looking for a product that does not burn a hole in your wallet, then look no further than the Ryobi GIDDS2-3554576 Bench Grinder. This well-designed product from Ryobi offers a number of features that can be helpful to amateur users looking to learn their way around a bench grinder.
It is powered by a 2.1 amp motor that is capable of handling common materials with ease. The steel base provides a solid foundation that keeps the machine rooted to the workbench in heavy-duty applications.
Features like the spark protectors with a magnifying glass as well as the LED lights, which are battery-powered, help improve the visibility of the workpieces to a large extent. This gives beginners the perfect chance to learn and improve on their skills.
It does lack the power that you may want if you are looking to expand the range of materials you plan on working with in the future.
You may also be disappointed by the number of vibrations from the machine, with the lack of mounting pins compounding the problem. Overall, this machine is the ideal buy for those looking for an inexpensive model that provides a decent set of features.
If you are looking to learn processes like grinding and sharpening softer metals and steel grades, then this product will meet your expectations.
- Spark protectors with a magnifying glass for improved precision
- LED lighting for improved visibility of workpieces
- Adjustable work rests for improved precision
- An affordable option for beginners
- 3-year limited manufacturer warranty
- Lacks the power for tougher materials
- Reports of high vibrations lack mounting pins
- Plastic build hampers performance in demanding situations
DEWALT DW758 Bench Grinder (Best Overall)
The Dewalt DW758 Bench Grinder makes it to this list for being the best overall product in my opinion. Manufactured by Dewalt, an established name in the power tools industry, this model adheres to the high quality offered in the products offered by them.
The motor has a powerful ¾ HP motor that is capable of spinning the wheels to a maximum speed of 3,600 RPM. It also has a cast iron base to ensure improved stability and weight distribution across the workbench.
In addition to this, this bench grinder has a number of safety features that help protect the user while operating the machine.
Clear spark protectors protect the eyes from sparks and debris. It also has rear exhaust ports that help cool the machine down faster and evacuate debris quickly.
It lacks the fit and finish that more expensive models in the market tend to have. The lack of an LED light can also be noted, with similarly priced models from other brands offering users similar features to improve the user experience.
Despite being on the expensive side, this machine offers great value for money for users looking for a versatile bench grinder. The motor is more than capable of handling different types of wheels, allowing you to use it for a variety of materials.
- Cast iron base for improved stability
- Powerful motor for faster material removal
- Dual aluminum tool rests for improved precision
- 3-year limited manufacturer warranty and 1-year free service
- Noisy operation while running
- Lacks LED light
- Mounting inserts are difficult to access
Delta Power Tools 23-197 8-Inch Variable Speed Bench Grinder (Best Variable Speed)
The Delta Power Tools Variable Speed Bench Grinder is my pick when it comes to variable speed machines. This product gives you the flexibility to perform a variety of grinding and cutting operations, giving you the option to choose between precision and quick material removal.
It has a powerful 5 amp motor that makes it capable of dealing with most materials, including harder metals. It also has a variable speed dial that spins the wheel at speeds between 2000 and 3400 RPM.
This allows you to choose the right speed to get the job done, improving the precision and accuracy of your work. This is further complemented by the cast iron base, which improves stability.
Additional features include tool rests, with the left side having a drill bit milled into it. This allows users to maintain the correct angle at the tip for correct usage.
It also has eye spark shields to protect you from sparks that are produced while grinding and sharpening. A water tray is also provided to cool the workpiece after you have completed working on it.
Speaking about drawbacks, the machine is susceptible to a high level of vibrations and wheel wobble when taken out of the box. The tool rest adjustment mechanism also feels imprecise, affecting the accuracy of your work. Many users also reported the speed dial module causing issues.
If you are looking to use multiple wheels for a number of processes like buffing, sharpening, and so on, then this is the right model for you. It offers great value for money and increased functionality, making it an ideal all-in-one bench grinder for most requirements.
- Powerful 5 amp motor with variable speed from 2000 RPM – 3400 RPM
- Tool rest with a milled drill bit for improved accuracy
- LED work light
- Spark shield protectors and water tray included
- 5-year warranty provided by the manufacturer
- Many reported issues with the PWM module for variable speed dial
- Inaccurate tool mechanism adjustment
- Vibrations and wheel wobble reported by many users
Jet JBG-8W Bench Grinder with Wire Wheel (Best Professional Grinder)
The last product on my list of the best bench grinders is the Jet JBG-8W Bench Grinder with Wire Wheel.
This model is perfect for professionals looking for a machine that meets their professional requirements, making it perfect for workshops that process a high amount of material on a daily basis.
The ½ HP motor provides a strong output, allowing you to complete tasks like sharpening and polishing with ease. It has a maximum speed of 3450 RPM, enabling stock removal in large quantities. It also has heavy-duty construction and cast-iron frames to improve the stability of the machine.
Other features include large eye shields that can be adjusted quickly to ensure you view the piece while protecting your eyes from sparks.
The cast iron wheel guards and dust chutes help contain debris from a shattering grinding wheel. The aluminum oxide grinding wheel as well as a wire brush gives users the chance to perform a variety of tasks that include cleaning and grinding.
On the flip side, the safety guards on the device restrict the angle with which you can grind your tools. While removing the guards solves the problem, it puts the user at risk of injury in case of an accident.
Overall, the model is perfect for professionals looking for a bench grinder that is capable of dealing with heavy-duty work on a daily basis. It may be too expensive for someone with basic household requirements, but can be a real bargain for handymen and professional workshops.
- Heavy-duty frame and motor for powerful performance
- Eyeshields, cast iron wheel guards, and dust chutes for safe operation
- 2-year manufacturer warranty
- Safety guards restrict the angle of grinding
Important things to know before buying a bench grinder
- Power of the motor
Bench grinders have a power rating between 150W and 600W. While the higher power ratings are provided in grinders used in professional applications, the lower ratings are sufficient if you plan on using the machine to grind basic tools like chisels and drill bits.
The ideal power rating of your motor should be between 300W and 400W. This allows you to do most procedures like sharpening and cleaning on tougher tools like knives and blades.
- Size of the bench grinder
Bench grinders come in sizes from 4” all the way to 8”. 8” bench grinders are used mainly in professional applications. They spin at slower speeds, thus allowing you to use wire brushes and buffing wheels with such models.
4” grinders are not very popular as they are too small and have very limited applications. The most common products are the 6” grinders. With a speed of 3000 RPM – 3500 RPM, they are sufficient for most household and DIY applications.
The grit of the wheel is the size of the abrasive grains on the wheel. Coarse grit wheels have a lower grit value. These wheels are suitable for faster removal of material if you are okay with a rough finish. They also work well on softer materials like soft steel and aluminum.
Fine grit wheels have a higher grit value. These wheels ensure a better finish, providing improved precision. They are better suited to brittle materials like glass and tool steel, which are susceptible to shattering.
- Abrasive material
The material of the wheel plays an important role in deciding which materials can be grind using the bench grinder.
Silicon carbide and ceramic aluminum oxide wheels are used in softer metal applications, with the latter providing cooler cutting action and self-sharpening grains.
Aluminum oxide wheels are used for metals that have high tensile strength. Zirconia alumina can be used in applications that require rapid removal of material from the workpiece.
Have a fixed budget that works well for you. There are plenty of models available in the market for a given price point.
In that range, most models come with similar basic features. Do your research and find the product that suits your requirements without exceeding your planned budget.
Established brands like Dewalt, Ryobi, and Jet provide better customer experience, thanks to their well-established service networks.
These companies have strict quality checks and use high-end materials to ensure their products offer the best experience to customers.
They also offer a good warranty and prompt customer service, allowing you to resolve issues and maintain your bench grinder.
Should I get a 6-inch or 8-inch bench grinder? The 8-inch bench grinders are mostly suited for professional use. If you have a requirement for processes like buffing and grinding in your daily activities, then you can choose the 8-inch models. If you need a bench grinder for basic operations, a 6-inch model will meet your requirements.