Though wood lathes are simplistic tools, finding the best wood lathe for your project can be troublesome as there are a large number of wood lathes on the market. It requires research and time. However, if you are looking for a wood lathe for small projects, like making pens or wooden toys, then the Shop Fox W1836 Bench Top Wood Lathe is perfect for you.
Wood lathes are long and bulky power tools, which require plenty of room. But the Shop Fox W1836 is designed in such a way that it will perch on top of a bench or tabletop easily. Weighing just 85.4 pounds, the dimensions of this equipment are 38.5×15.5×7 inches. It’s size is 12” x 15”.
Tip: Manufacturers give the dimensions of a wood lathe as diameter by length of the largest piece of wood that it can turn. So a wood lathe that is 12×36 inches is going to turn a wood piece that is 12” in diameter and 36” in length.
Lathes offer two ways to turn wood: with manual adjustments or with an electric drive. Manual adjustment of the pulleys to determine the rotations per minute will result in an accurate speed drive, but this kind of adjustment needs lots of time and skill. If you are a beginner, you should invest your money in a wood lathe that comes with electronic speed adjustment. The best part about the W1836 is that it features a variable speed motor that offers two spindle speed ranges: 500-800 RPM and 1000-3800 RPM at 3/4 HP. Basically this wood lathe is inexpensive and easy to use as you can change speeds without changing belts. It has a digital RPM readout that shows your current speed adjustment, which ensures that you don’t make a mistake while turning wood with it.
It is essential for the accessories of the power tool you have purchased to be available in the market. Fortunately the manufacturer of this wood lathe offers accessories that you may purchase on the market right away. There is an option to increase the capacity of this wood lathe by adding D4562 Bed Extension for a very low price. If you will add this extension, the Shop Fox W1836 will be able to handle wood pieces up to 38”.
This wood lathe has a heavy-duty cast iron construction with rubber feet. This mini wood lathe makes turning easy and simple.
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Standout features: Economical, two spindle motor speed, cast iron construction
As compared to the Shop Fox W1704 (that comes with MT#1 spur center and MT#1 live center), the Shop Fox W1836 includes an MT#2 live center.
The reason the Shop Fox W1836 is one of the best wood lathes in the market is that it is perfect for beginners and fairly simple to operate.
Tip: Before you buy a wood lathe, check its height – the center of the spindle should be at your elbows when you stand with your arms relaxed at the side.