Whether you’re a handyman or not, having a set of quality tools at your disposal is a must. In today’s industry, the right tools are often more important than knowledge about certain processes. Working
on huge chunks of wood outside? Use a chainsaw. Cutting through a door frame? Use a jamb saw (click here for examples). If you want to work with metal, you must have proper tools and one of the most important is the mini metal lathe.
We know that there are tons of them on the market, so we decided to make your life easier by reducing a plethora of lathes to only a small roster of them.
This article is about the best metal lathes in 2020, so if you’re looking for your new mini-lathe, we suggest that you stay with us.
Best Mini Metal Lathes of 2020
1. Erie Tools Benchtop Mini Metal Lathe
The best mini metal lathe under one grand is Erie Tools Benchtop Mini Metal Lathe. If you take a look at Amazon, you can see that it has more than 20 positive reviews, and it’s not strange, given its awesome features. The reason we’ve decided on this one is its durability, functionality, and ease of use. Although it offers various features, it’s amazing how simple it is to use, even for those who use the lathe for the first time. This lathe allows you to cut, turn, and drill metal, wood, and plastic, with the staggering flexibility and precision. Thanks to its robust, yet sturdy design, this lathe is going to complete the required task with ease. The motor on this lathe has 2500 RPM, making it very fast for a product like this.
If you find yourself wondering how to use certain features, Erie Tools included an easy-to-read manual that will explain everything to you. For added convenience, there’s a thread indicator that helps to turn screw threads from12 to 52 TPI, imperial or metric. All in all, if you want the most quality mini metal lathe, this is the one to get.
2. Mophorn Small Metal Lathe
Mophorn Small Metal Lathe is a product that offers amazing value for its price. Although it looks similar to the previous one, there are some differences, the first one being the manufacturer. In 2020, this lathe saw a significant price drop, so it’s the right time to get it. As for the ease of use, it’s one of the best mini-lathes for beginners, that offers a fine balance between functionality and the price. Feature-wise, this mini metal lathe can do everything other lathes on the list can do but there’s a small caveat that you might want to hear. As seen from the reviews, some users complained about its motor, to be precise, its unreliability. When the motor works, this lathe is one of the best but when it doesn’t, every feature is obsolete.
We doubt every Mophorn mini metal lathe is like that. Maybe some users got the defective model, hence the motor was broken. Either way, this is one of the best mini metal lathes in 2019.
3. Grizzly G8688 Mini Metal Lathe
Coming from Grizzly Industrial, G8688 Mini Metal Lathe represents a quality product that will drill the metal and wood with the strength of a grizzly. Although the manufacturer isn’t the most popular, those who used its product know how good they can be. First of all, this metal lathe can be proud of its amazing build quality and durable materials used in its production. As such, it’s a bit heavier than the rest of the lathes on this list but this isn’t a downside. It can take on almost anything you throw at it; thus, we often call it a powerhouse – because it is! The caveat with this lathe is that it’s great for more advanced users and not so great for beginners. If you know what you’re doing, you won’t need any other lathe except this one.
But, if you’re a beginner, the learning curve is a bit steep. This isn’t necessarily a downside but just a warning if you’re a beginner. Other than that, the design is excellent (and a bit sophisticated), the functionality is top-notch, and we can only thank Grizzly Industrial for this product.
4. Shop Fox M1015 Metal Lathe
Shop Fox is a manufacturer many of you don’t know about but in this case, it’s not important. This is because M1015 Metal Lathe is a very good mini lathe for beginners and more advanced users. The reviews about this lathe are very divided – some say it barely works, some say it’s excellent. From our experiences, this mini lathe is more than great for basic and non-basic work. For example, due to its 2000 RPM spindle speed, you can polish mirrors, aside from just turning and drilling metal. Design-wise, this lathe looks refined and polished, with the main caveat being its size.
The truth be told, this mini metal lathe is quite small, even for a mini variant, so if you want to use bigger pieces of metal, wood, glass or plastic, you shouldn’t buy this one.
5. BestEquip Mini Metal Lathe
Finally, we heave BestEquip Mini Metal Lathe that’s the cheapest on the list. While the functionality is intact, BestEquip had to cut corners somewhere and it’s the build quality. Somehow, the build quality of this mini metal lathe is inferior, compared to other lathes on the list. It isn’t as sturdy and durable. However, we must give props where the props are due, and that’s the manufacturer’s customer support that always fixes the problems in a short time. Other than that, it’s very easy to use and works very well, although it lacks stability. If you want to spend less money, that’s what you get.
With these metal lathes, you can expand your possibilities further. Being able to make something yours is a great feeling. Given the affordability and overall quality of the lathes we’ve mentioned, you can buy whatever suits you. Be sure to read online reviews before making a purchase, so you don’t have to spend a fortune.