Best Metal Lathe Under $1000

For most of us who love DIY projects, it is important to have the necessary tools at home. Metal Lathe is one such useful equipment to keep handy in our home workshop when the projects involve working with metal or other hard materials.

It aids in shaping, cutting, rotating, metal workpieces, and is also known as metalworking lathe. The biggest advantage of owning a metal lathe is its ability to save time and energy that goes into doing the same job manually.

In a Hurry?… Check the Comparision of Top 3 Metal Lathe

There are many types of metal lathes found in the market, and as they do not come cheap it is good to remember a few key points before investing in one.

1.) The size of your project: It is important to know how big of a metal project you are thinking of. Whether the lathe can handle your requirements depends on the size of your metal turning project. The lathe should be able to give you the power source your project needs.

2.) Workshop space: Buying a big metal lathe will do you no good if it does not fit in your home workshop space. So, measure the size of the space you have, and then that of the lathe you choose.

3.) Design and use: No matter which brand you pick for your lathe, the design, and ease of use are important. The result of your project should be more than just satisfactory. Hence, if you buy an inadequately designed lathe, it will directly impact your execution.

4.) Functions and accessories: Even though metal lathe’s all work the same, they do come with different accessories and added features. Check which one fits your need the best and pick wisely. Better the accessories, better functionality for your project.

5.) SOB and DBC: This is an important point as it will help you determine the maximum size of the metal piece the lathe can take on. SOB stands for Swing Over Bed and DBC stands for Distance Between Centers.

Below I have listed the best metal lathe’s that are under $1000 to help you decide your next purchase better.

1.) Grizzly G8688 Mini Metal Lathe

The Grizzly Mini Metal Lathe is small yet powerful, so do not let its size fool you. This lathe comes with a single-phase motor of ¾ HP that allows smooth operation for a variety of work with excellent delivery.

Perfect for beginners as well as experts. It has a metric reading dial which helps control the speed setting with ease, which starts at 0 and goes up to 2500 RPM. The DBC and SOB of this lathe are set at 12 and 7 inches, respectively.

The box comes with additional accessories like a chip pan, backsplash guard, steady rest, dead center, jaw chunk, 4-way turned post and faceplate. It may not be able to take a lot of heavy-duty work, hence, best suited for smaller projects.

2.) Erie Tools Precision Benchtop Mini Metal lathe

The Erie Tools Precision Mini Metal Lathe comes with a thread indicator and variable speed feature that can be controlled by the easy digital readout. Its speed starts from 50 RPM that goes up to 2500 RPM.

This lathe can easily take up jobs involving both small and medium metalworking. It has a single-phase motor of .53 HP with 400W. The SOB in this is set at 7 inches while the DOB ranges from 8-14 inches.

There is a reverse switch that allows one to work with both their right and left hand when needed. The box includes a chuck key, five-piece carbide tipped cutter kit, 11 feed rate gears, manual, sliders, and adapters. It works great with both metal and wood. This one tends to get loud while in use, and some of its plastic gears may need to be replaced over time. 

3.) Techtongda Precision Metal Lathe

The Techtongda Precision Metal Lather is value for money with its wide range of features. Its DBC is set at 31.5 inches and SOB at 8.3 inches making it versatile to work with numerous metalworking projects.

When connected to a standard power outlet with a 110V brushless motor and 750W it can give a powerful performance for all your metal projects. This lathe works perfectly for turning, boring, and drilling.

The speed ranges from 50 to 2500 RPM and comes with two gears that let you adjust it according to your liking and need. It is very stable due to its weight of 165lb and is also very durable. However, there is no direction rotation switch and has only a metric scale. 

4.) Mophorn Metal Lathe Precision Mini Lathe

The Mophorn Metal Lathe Precision Mini Lathe is great for working with wood, jade, and metal. It can perform various functions such as drilling, cutting, turning, and threading. Its DBC is 14 inches, and SOB is that of 7 inches.

This device serves both experts and people who take up metal projects as a hobby. It comes with an emergency switch making it high in the ranking of metal lathes with safety features. There is a speed switch as well that aids in controlling the speed that ranges from 50 to 2500 RPM. It is highly durable due to its metal gears.

The package consists of an oil can, double-headed wrench, protecting mask, chuck claw, portable toolbox, nylon gear, hexagon bar wrench, manual, chuck wrench, and shockproof foot cushions.

5.) Central Machinery Precision Mini Lathe

The Central Machinery Precision Mini Lathe’s notable features are its changeable speed control knob, automatic feed, and a micro switch chuck guard. It has a motor of ¾ HP that provides ample power for jobs that requires metal turning. It also works well for counter facing and marking brushings.

The speed is adjustable between 0 to 2500 RPM. Another positive point for this lathe is its price, making it very affordable without burning a hole in your pocket. With its variable control know you can easily transition from the automatic feed to the manual one seamlessly. It does not overheat quickly despite its high-power output. One of its biggest disadvantages is that it does have the cutting feature.

6.) Chuangsheng Mini Metal Lathe

The Chuangsheng Mini Metal Lathe is designed to work with soft metals such as copper and aluminum, both soft and hardwood, and plastic. It comes with a 3-jaw chuck that aids in the clamping of the material you are working with. 

Extremely durable as it is made of high-end materials. The motor speed varies from 0 to 2000 RPM. One of its disadvantages is its size which can be a hassle to some as it needs a relative amount of space.

Wrapping up

We did an extensive search and narrowed down to the above list of metal lathes that you should consider. Based on the kind of project you are working on, budget, and space of your workshop, pick any of the above lathes without hesitation. Always read the manual that comes in the package with these devices.

Pay extra attention to the safety instructions because if not used correctly and carefully, you can put yourself in harm’s way. It is advisable to wear protective gear on your eyes especially while working with such devices for safety concerns.

Stephen Luettgen
I have 12+ years of experience in construction, inspections, handy work, and currently working as a Construction Site Manager. In today’s day we spent a significant part of our time at workplace and a right work gear can have significant impact not only on your safety but also work quality.

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