For people who grew up in the Soviet era, lathes are associated exclusively with factories, metal processing and other characteristic phenomena of that time. However, progress does not stand still, and today you can find miniature versions of such equipment on sale, which are quite suitable for use, for example, at home. Many people buy these devices for themselves and place them in a garage or shed.
The range of such models is wide, therefore, for a user inexperienced in these matters, choosing the most suitable option for themselves will not be as easy as it might seem at first glance. We decided to help our readers in solving this problem and made a rating of the best lathes of the year. In it, we have analyzed in detail the key performance characteristics of the most popular models, and also provided some useful tips that will surely help you get the best device that can reliably last a long time for a variety of jobs.
How to choose the right lathe?
This technique is designed for processing round parts made of wood, metal, plastic and other similar materials. Using the machine, you can turn a workpiece or a full-fledged part of a round, conical or cylindrical shape. In addition, the machine allows you to trim, drill holes, and the latter can be done using not only a drill, but also a cutter, you can cut a thread on a workpiece with a die or a tap.
Structurally, the machine includes several elements: a bed (all key parts are attached to it), a spindle (the workpiece is clamped here, rotation is performed, a gearbox and other adjustment mechanisms are located right there), a tailstock (the second end of the workpiece is fixed in it, if it quite long, they install drills, taps, dies, and so on), a feed box (it transmits all movements from the caliper to the spindle) and a protective apron. Products are either horizontal or vertical. The former are used for processing small and medium-sized workpieces, for threading and other work. Vertical models are used if there is a need to turn large parts, which also differ in insignificant length.
When we chose products to include in our ranking of the best lathes, all the above points were taken into account. We tried to include far from the most expensive options in the review so that there is no severe damage to the budget of our readers. Before including the product in the top 10 best devices of this type, we carefully studied user reviews about it. You will definitely not find low-quality products in our review.
Ten of the best lathes in 2022
10. Proma DSO-1000
The device was developed by Czech engineers and is also manufactured in this country. It is best suited for processing such material and wood, regardless of its level of hardness. The maximum workpiece length is one meter. The kit includes a copier, with which you can make many duplicates of a particular product. With the help of this lathe, it is possible to perform a product with a large number of complex contours.
The equipment has everything you need for active and regular use. It is optimally suited for home or garage conditions, as well as for small production, if the company is engaged, for example, in the production of furniture. With the help of the machine, you can process workpieces of a conical or cylindrical shape, chamfer. The machine can be mounted on a workbench or placed on the floor. It is equipped with four different kinds of programs for working with different speeds of rotation.
- Quite powerful equipment – 400 W;
- You can work with parts up to a meter long;
- Adjustment of speed of rotation ranging from 850 to 1250 revolutions per minute;
- The mass of the machine is only 35 kg;
- Suitable even for small production.
- It is allowed to work with wood or with soft metals such as aluminum;
- There are few service centers throughout the country – they are only in the capitals.
Lathe Proma DSO-1000
9. JET JWL-1220
A more powerful device compared to the previous version – this figure is 660 watts here. It is very convenient and comfortable to work on this machine, but it is quite expensive. An electronic speed control is installed here, and this indicator is displayed on a special digital LCD type display. Belt transmission, three speeds are provided. The handpiece and the tailstock are fixed on the bed with the help of an eccentric, and the bed itself is made of cast iron.
The height of the spindle is such that it can process workpieces with a diameter of up to 300 mm. The kit comes with a bed extension, with which you can increase the distance between headstocks from the standard 510 mm to 1 meter. A synchronous brush type motor is installed here.
- It is very convenient to work on this machine;
- Cast bed, high power;
- You can work with wood of various kinds, mild steel;
- Extended equipment;
- During operation, it practically does not vibrate.
- Differs in high cost.
JET JWL-1220 lathe
8. Corvette 400
Domestic production, which is characterized by high power. It allows you to work even with fairly hard metals – steel, various alloys, it is quite natural that you can use the device for processing wood and plastic. The machine is distinguished by a carefully thought-out design, thanks to which it is possible to perform grinding work with a very high accuracy class. The equipment is characterized by a high degree of reliability and a long period of effective use in comparison with other similar devices. The machine should be used at an ambient temperature not lower than zero and not higher than +38 degrees, relative humidity should not exceed 80%.
If necessary, the user can independently equip the device. The design has a collector-type motor, which will last much longer compared to the brush version. The machine is equipped with a protective cover with a switch, which makes working on such a machine absolutely safe. There is a waste container, so after completing all the necessary operations, it will be much easier to remove all the garbage.
- Apparatus of domestic production;
- Service centers can be found in almost every region;
- Quite acceptable cost;
- The device works from an ordinary household power supply.
- Dimensions of workpieces to be processed should not exceed 18 cm.
Lathe Corvette 400
7. TV-9 RuStan
This device already belongs to professional products, so its cost will be appropriate. It is used for machining parts made of plastic, metals and wood. The machine itself is of domestic production, it is characterized by high power indicators – a 1 kW engine is installed here. The device is connected to a three-phase power supply, the voltage of which should be 380 V.
With the help of this machine, it will be possible to perform the entire range of turning operations. The development engineers have provided absolutely everything in the design – there is the possibility of centering the workpiece, the cartridge is reliable and quite durable, the design has a collet. It is worth noting that the design turned out to be quite heavy – its mass is as much as 230 kg, so it is unlikely that it will be possible to install it on a standard workbench, you will have to strengthen it.
- Excellent quality of absolutely all knots;
- Reliable assembly;
- Surfaces are processed with a high level of accuracy;
- Near the working area there is a lamp.
- A decent amount of equipment;
- One of the most expensive machines in our review.
Lathe TV-9 Russtan
Despite the fact that this device was developed by domestic engineers, it is made in Chinese factories from locally produced parts. This is an equipment for individual work, which can be used for direct turning, threading from the outside or from the inside of the workpiece, drilling. The design is suitable for working with metals, various kinds of polymeric materials, wood. The bed here is hardened and carefully polished, there is a protective screen. Longitudinal feed automatic type. Rotation is carried out using a high power asynchronous motor. Digital rotation indication. The kit has everything you need for threading, during operation the vibration of the machine is minimal.
The spindle speed can be adjusted from 50-1800 rpm. The machine can be connected to a standard household electrical outlet. The overall dimensions of the device are not too large – 1400x550x500 mm. They are perfect for comfortably placing a lathe in a barn or garage. The engine power is as much as 1.5 kg, but the device turned out to be quite heavy – it weighs 190 kg.
- Multifunctional machine;
- Significant range of spindle speed adjustment;
- There is an electronic indication of the rotational speed;
- In the longitudinal direction moves automatically;
- Minimum vibration;
- Wide equipment.
- Another rather heavy and expensive machine;
- Not all buyers trust the Chinese assembly of equipment.
Lathe Stalex SBL-280/700
The product functions on the basis of a reliable, carefully polished high-strength frame. It is made from high quality cast iron, resistant to physical and chemical influences. Cast iron itself has a decent mass, so it will dampen possible vibrations during operation. The design is equipped with a durable asynchronous motor, the peak power of which reaches 1.1 kW. It ensures stable and long-term operation of this device. Rotation speed control is provided by a digital display system.
The tailstock stroke is increased by 70 mm, which allows you to install a workpiece of a rather large length in the machine. Longitudinal feed here is also automatic. The device works from the mains, weighs a little less than the previous model – 120 kg with overall dimensions of 1000x590x500 mm. The machine comes with metal gears for cutting threads of various diameters.
- Able to work even with especially strong steel;
- Minimum vibration during operation;
- Reliable engine;
- Long period of operation.
- Decent mass;
- Some buyers note the significant dimensions of the device.
Lathe Stalex SBL-250/550
4. Zenitech MD 250-550 VARIO
It has a very compact overall dimensions, so such a machine is often purchased for themselves not only by home craftsmen, but also by owners of small workshops and workshops. The machine complies with absolutely all international quality standards, which is confirmed by a large number of certificates. It is made from reliable materials with a significant margin of safety. The equipment is designed, among other things, for use in particularly difficult conditions. You can work on it for a long time without interruption, without fear of wear of moving parts.
The power of the electric motor is 0.75 kW. The rotational speed here is adjustable from 50 to 2,500 rpm. The design allows you to work with significant workpieces. You can set up the machine and let the cutter do all the work assigned to it on its own.
- Great not only for a barn or home, but also for small production;
- High quality parts;
- Decent engine power;
- Large range of rotation speed adjustment;
- The device can work independently with proper configuration.
- Great price for home equipment.
Lathe Zenitech MD 250-550 VARIO
3. FDB Maschinen Turner 320X1000S
This product is more suitable not so much for home conditions as for metal processing companies, however, many craftsmen buy this device for their garage or barn. It must be remembered that this machine is equipped with a three-phase electric motor with a power of 1.1 kW, respectively, it will need to be connected to a 380 V power supply. The design weighs 650 kg – almost as much as a real industrial machine. Keep in mind that the equipment needs a lot of free space.
With its help, it is possible to ensure the highest possible accuracy of the surface treatment of the workpiece, regardless of its nature. If the machine is going to be used for mass production of certain parts, then a copy function is provided for this. Another important point is the minimum percentage of marriage.
- Very high precision of surface treatment;
- Reliable and durable engine;
- The machine does not vibrate or oscillate even under heavy load;
- There is a copy function;
- Defective products are extremely rare.
- Significant overall dimensions;
- High price;
- The need to connect to a three-phase current.
Lathe FDB Maschinen Turner 320X1000S
2. METALLMASTER MML 1830V
A product of Russian-German production, which is notable for its quite acceptable cost and compact overall dimensions. The size of the apparatus is 830x395x355 mm with a mass of 65 kg. The design is equipped with a DC collector motor, its power is not too high – only 600 watts. The machine has two stepless control ranges. The rotation speed is quite decent – from 150 to 2500 rpm, smoothly adjustable.
The largest diameter of the product that can be placed in the cam mechanism is 180 mm. The design contains metal gears and a V-belt. It is these elements that provide high-quality protection against possible overheating of the motor.
- The wide bed does not allow vibration;
- Decent equipment;
- The tailstock is equipped with a quick-clamping mechanism;
- Minimum backlash.
- The engine is quite noisy.
Lathe METALLMASTER MML 1830V
1. JET BD-920
So we got to the best lathe that can only be found on sale. He has a minimum backlash of the caliper – does not exceed 0.1 mm. Fixation of parts is tight, without the slightest gap, which is very important when working with small workpieces and soft metal products.
The machine can be used for a variety of jobs. Its engine power is 0.97 kW, it consumes only 550 watts of electricity – quite economical and ideal for home use. The longitudinal support can be fed automatically.
- Very reliable design that will last for decades;
- All elements are made of metal;
- Small power consumption;
- Minor caliper play;
- Decent engine power.
Lathe JET BD-920
In conclusion, a useful video
Our review of the best lathes is coming to its logical end. We have tried to collect as much useful information as possible for each model, so that readers can choose the most suitable model. If you still have some questions, you can always ask us in the comments to this article.