Best Bench Grinders of 2017 – Top Picks & Reviews

bench grindingWhen you need to shape, sharpen, cut and clean metal, you need a bench grinder! Bench grinders are essentially a horizontal motor with a wheel on each end. The wheels used can vary greatly depending on the task you wish to perform. For safety reasons, the majority of each wheel is covered by a guard, except for a small section which is exposed for use. There is also an eye shield in front of each wheel.

The reason you should get a bench grinder is because it can help you do so many things with metal such as polishing and smoothing. Because it’s so versatile, the best bench grinder can help save you so much time and effort when working with metal. What’s more, it’s a relatively inexpensive tool and doesn’t take up much space. If this sounds like something you might be interested in, you’ve come to the right place!

The Best Bench Grinders of 2017

ModelPriceDimensionsWeightRating
Metabo DS 200
Metabo DS 200
$$$$
Check Price on Amazon
13 x 13 x 18 inches36 pounds4.8/5
Our Top Pick

DEWALT DW756
DEWALT DW756
$
Check Price on Amazon
17 x 11 x 9 inches26 pounds4.4/5
Best For The Money
DEWALT DW758
DEWALT DW758
$$
Check Price on Amazon
18 x 13 x 11 inches35 pounds4.1/5
POWERTEC BGSS801
POWERTEC BGSS801
$$
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16 x 15 x 11 inches36 pounds4.2/5
JET 577102 JBG-8A
JET 577102 JBG-8A
$$$$
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13 x 24 x 13 inches60 pounds3.9/5

Deciding you want a bench grinder is one thing, choosing which bench grinder is right for you is entirely another matter! That’s why we’ve created a detailed list of bench grinder reviews to help make your decision process that little bit easier. What’s more, read beyond the reviews and you’ll find a comprehensive buyer’s guide giving you all the tips and tricks you need for your bench grinder. By the time you’ve finished reading, you’ll be an expert in bench grinders and have a much better idea of what you need!

1. Metabo DS 200 – Our Top Pick

Metabo DS 200Weighing in at 35.9 lbs, the Metabo DS 200 is a heavyweight bench grinder. Despite this, it’s still the best bench grinder on the market. This sturdy machine with aluminum protective covers is clearly of high-quality build and this, combined with the weight, is enough to reduce the vibrations that plague so many inferior bench grinders. In fact, some people don’t even bolt this unit to their bench (though bolting is recommended)! Aside from low vibration, there is also low noise. Don’t let this fool you – it may be quiet but the motor is powerful and it runs surprisingly smoothly. The 8-inch grinder runs up to 3,570 RPM. This is reflected in the fact that the grinder wheels can take a minute or two to actually come to a stop when you switch it off.

Setup is relatively quick and easy and you’ll be sharpening tools and the like in no time. A dual push on/off button is a welcome feature and the buttons are green and red to make it easier to differentiate between them. In fact, the red button is raised slightly to make it the easiest to press in case of emergency. One question some may have about this product is the high price but in reality, the quality of build and performance plus features makes the Metabo DS 200 well worth it.

Pros

  • Excellent build quality
  • Little vibration
  • Quiet yet powerful motor

Cons

  • It’s on the expensive side


2. DEWALT DW756 – Best for the Money

DEWALT DW756The DeWalt DW756 is a 6-inch bench grinder that is designed to be easy to use. The yellow and black coloring of this unit is reflective of the DeWalt brand as is the overall construction and performance. One of the most important things to look for in a bench grinder is quite obviously the motor. The DW756 has a powerful 5/8 hp induction motor that offers excellent overall performance at a high RPM of 3,450 and yet there’s little vibration. When you combine this with the very competitive price of this unit, the DW756 is, without a doubt, the best bench grinder for the money.

One thing we really like about this particular bench grinder is the ample 12.5 inches of distance between the wheels. This allows the flexibility to carry out longer, larger projects without difficulty. As you’d expect from DeWalt, the build quality is solid with the base made of cast iron and the rests of aluminum making it nice and durable. Since this unit is designed to be easy to use with solid performance, there aren’t a vast array of features to discuss but there are plenty of accessories that you can buy to expand your options. Perhaps the main criticism of this unit is that the instructions provided are lacking and can make setup and use that little bit trickier.

Pros

  • Great price
  • Powerful motor
  • Distance between wheels

Cons

  • Instructions are lacking


3. DEWALT DW758

A 3/4 hp induction motor means that the DeWalt DW758 is a nice, powerful unit for home and commercial use. One of the best things about this unit is that it is capable of running at a very DEWALT DW758impressive 3,600 RPM without any compromise in quality or consistency. Another thing we really like is that this is a bench grinder that if well-maintained, can last for years and years. Overload protection maximizes the life of the motor while the tool-free adjustable guard allows for quick guard installations as well as adjustments.

When you combine such features with the quality construction such as the rugged cast iron base, you’ve got a very durable bench grinder for all grinding operations. The DW758 has a 12.5-inch distance between the wheels allowing flexibility for both small and large applications. In the wheel guards, there are rear exhaust ports which allow for a smoother operation. While this is an 8-inch bench grinder at a competitive price, there are some flaws to keep in mind. The most common complaint is that the vibration produced by this bench grinder is excessive, causing the wheels to wobble which can make work on certain projects that little bit more difficult.

Pros

  • Impressive RPM
  • Durable

Cons

  • Excessive vibration


4. POWERTEC BGSS801

POWERTEC BGSS801It’s safe to say that the POWERTEC BGSS801 is one of the more unique bench grinders on the market. The 8-inch unit is a slow speed bench grinder. The RPM of 1725 is designed to stop tools from overheating which is something that most other units simply cannot offer. The 1/2 hp motor offers smooth and quiet operation which again, is something that is not easily found in bench grinders. Such features mean that the BGSS801 is likely to last a long time, even with regular use. Grinding with this unit is made easy thanks to the wheels which are 1 inch wide. Made from white aluminum oxide, they produce less heat than many other grinding wheels on the market.

The vibration of this bench grinder is minimal and is in fact reduced by the heavy gauge steel base which offers improved stability. While this is a fine bench grinder, it’s worth knowing that this is really for sharpening and light grinding and lacks the necessary power for heavier applications. Furthermore, some consumers have experienced problems with unbalanced wheels. Despite this, the POWERTEC BGSS801 is a great option for lighter projects and for those who are seeking a quieter bench grinder.

Pros

  • Relatively quiet
  • 1 inch wide wheels
  • Little vibration

Cons

  • Not for heavy-duty grinding
  • Some issues with unbalanced wheels


5. JET 577102 JBG-8A

JET 577102 JBG-8AYou may be surprised when you see the steep price of the JET 577102 but when you learn that it’s for industrial grade use, this makes much more sense. This 8-inch grinder makes it easy to complete a wide range of projects. One of the most important things to consider is the motor which is 1 hp and provides 3450 RPM. This is plenty of power for heavy grinding. Despite its power, it runs very smoothly and offers very little in the way of vibration which makes work that little bit easier. This minimizes movement but the unit can also be bolted down if needed. This is helped by the rubber feet on the unit. What’s more, the level of noise is surprisingly low for a bench grinder of its power.

The JET 577102 weighs 56 lbs which while not super light, is certainly not heavy for a machine of this caliber. Cast iron wheel guards and dust vents, as well as pre-lubricated and sealed ball bearings, ensure the longevity of this bench grinder. Perhaps the only real problem with this unit is that the wheels can wobble and may require adjustment. However, this is not the case with all units and it is not a major issue.

Pros

  • Very powerful
  • Nice and durable

Cons

  • Some wheel wobble


Bench Grinder Buying Guide

A bench grinder is a great choice for anyone who is doing DIY in and around the home. But did you know that there are a couple of other types of grinders which may also fit your needs?

  1. Die Grinder: A hand-held rotary power tool, a die grinder can help you grind as well as sand and polish metal. In fact, you can do the same with wood and plastic.
  2. Angle Grinder: Another hand-held power tool, the angle grinder can be used for grinding and polishing.

A die grinder is smaller than an angle grinder and is great for more intricate and detailed work. It’s also very portable. The angle grinder is a compromise between the die grinder and the bench grinder in the sense that it’s portable and also big enough to grind fairly large surfaces. While the die and angle grinders offer portability, they lack the power and versatility of the bench grinder. As such, the bench grinder is the best option for those with a good space at home for DIY such as a workshop.

Bench grinder uses

The purpose of a bench grinder may seem pretty self-explanatory. However there are a number of different uses for the bench grinder that many people don’t realize. It’s a very versatile piece of equipment that can help you in a number of ways. With it, you can not only shape and sharpen metal but you can also cut and clean it too!

Carpentry: Whether you’re building furniture or renovating your entire living room, a bench grinder can help smooth those rough areas as well as level joints.

Flooring: You can make flooring so much easier with a bench grinder. From removing grout to raising nail heads, a bench grinder can make DIY flooring quicker and easier.

Painting: If you’re preparing to paint but need to level any swell or even get rid of some old paint, a bench grinder can help. It acts like sandpaper except it’s a lot more efficient!

Plumbing: Bench grinders are great for plumbing. This is because you can do everything from cut worn out pipes to help smooth them out.

6-inch or 8-inch

Bench grinders come in a range of sizes. However the two main types of bench grinder are the 6-inch and the 8-inch. This refers to the size of the actual grinding wheels.The 6-inch is fine for anyone at home since it has enough power to carry out most DIY tasks. The 8-inch wheel is more for industrial applications often done by professionals.

Types of wheels

It’s one thing to choose a bench grinder and it’s another to choose the right type of wheel! Making the right decision can make your work quicker and easier. There are a number of things to think about when it comes to grinding wheels. First of all, you need to think about the material that needs grinding because this determines the type of wheel you should use. For example, an aluminum oxide wheel should be used for grinding steels while a silicon carbide abrasive should be selected for cast iron. Materials that are particularly hard and brittle require a softer grade of wheel with a finer grit size while softer materials work best with harder grade wheels with coarse grit. Here are a few of the wheel types you can come across:

Straight wheel: This is the most common type of wheel and it’s good for applications such as sharpening chisels. Straight wheels come in various sizes and they’re best for surface grinding.

Cylinder wheel: A hollow wheel, the cylinder wheel can only be used with horizontal or vertical bench grinders. These wheels tend to be quite large (they can be up to 12 inches wide) and help produce flat surfaces.

Tapered wheel: For grinding threads or gear teeth, a tapered wheel is appropriate. Because this wheel tapers off towards the edge it is ideal for more delicate work.

Other types of grinding wheels include saucer wheels, diamond wheels and cut-off wheels but these are specialty wheels that are very rarely needed when working in and around the home.

The 5 Steps to Buying

Buying a bench grinder can be made easier by following 5 steps: identifying your needs, deciding your budget, selecting a brand, comparing the market and finally; buying!

  1. Identify your needs
    It may sound obvious but identifying what you need a bench grinder for is the single most important thing to consider before purchase. If you buy any bench grinder you find you may find out that it’s just not suitable for you. For example, if you’re looking to sharpen then you want a machine with a lower RPM. On the other hand, you’ll want a bench grinder with a higher RPM for buffering. Should you need a bench grinder for both, you should look for one that offers variable speeds. However this may cost more.
  2. Decide your budget
    If you have a specific budget in mind, it can make the decision-making process that little bit easier. This can help you narrow down the brands you’re looking at, as well as help you decide which features are essential and which aren’t. Are you willing to sacrifice on power? Can you do without variable speeds? These are questions you need to ask yourself as you come to a decision on price. There are some good quality bench grinders available from lesser-known brands that may well offer you better value if you are on a budget.
  3. Select a reputable brand
    As you would expect, the better the brand, the more money you will end up paying. This usually equates to better quality but that’s not always the case. As mentioned before, there are some lesser-known brands with some very competitive products. However the biggest brands are usually popular for a reason. It’s not just the quality of the machine that’s important. It’s also about customer service if you have any questions or if you’re not entirely satisfied with your purchase. DeWalt and Craftsman are a couple of examples of big brands.
  4. Compare the market
    You’ve certainly made a great start in deciding which bench grinder is best for you and your needs. By checking out our detailed reviews and exploring our extensive collection of tips, the process should be quicker and easier. However there are just so many great bench grinders out there. While we highly recommend the bench grinders listed in our guide, we also encourage you to take a look at the many reviews online before coming to a decision. Be sure to check various online stores to compare prices and get the best deal possible.
  5. Time to purchase!
    You’ve finally decided on the bench grinder for you – that’s great! As you’re buying you should check what sort of warranty the product comes with (just in case!). It’s also important to check if the grinder is being sold with any accessories as this can be an extra incentive to buy one bench grinder over another. However accessories such as wheels can be bought very easily online so this is not essential. Finally, be sure to read all of the instructions well as there are a number of safety issues to keep in mind with such equipment.

Conclusion

The more expensive a tool, the more research is required in order to make the right purchase. It’s easy enough to decide on a simple hammer or spanner but a small piece of machinery such as a bench grinder takes a little bit of time. With any luck, we’ve helped you save some of that time with our reviews of bench grinders and our in-depth buying guide.

Bench grinders have come a long way and there are so many great brands and models to choose from. Remember to ask yourself what you’ll use it for, which features are most important to you and what sort of price you’re willing to pay. By doing this, you can find a high-quality product to suit your specific needs.

It doesn’t matter a great deal if you’re on a budget since there are still some great budget options out there. However if power and dual speeds and the like are important to you then you may need to open your wallet! Shop around and there’s no doubt that you’ll be able to find some very attractive deals. We wish you the best of luck in your decision!