Wise Buys: Bench Grinders
Woodcraft 150780 (8")
Wheels: 60- and 120-grit aluminum oxide
This affordable, single-speed grinder doesn't offer a task light or a dressing tool, but in exchange you get high-quality, aluminum-oxide wheels meant for sharpening tools. And for what those wheels would cost as an upgrade, you could easily add a light and dressing tool, and still be money ahead. The grinder's slow speed means minimal vibration: It stayed put on my bench, even without clamping it in place.
However, I had to double-faced-tape wedges to the fixed-angle tool rests to hold my plane irons at the proper angle. Adusting the tool rests forward and back requires a wrench that you provide. Although you could mount a wire wheel or buffing pad, doing so requires removing five screws from the wheel cover. And the slow speed means jobs with these accessories will take longer.
Get it if: You touch up woodworking tool edges frequently.
Forget it if: You're not willing to work a bit to set it up.
-- Tested by Karl Ehlers, Art Director
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