Tips from The ToolPost on Choosing a Woodturning Lathe

The woodturning lathe is arguably the most important piece of kit for a woodturner, whether you are a professional, a committed and competent enthusiast or a beginner. If you are in the latter group then it’s particularly important to take the time at the outset of your turning career to choose your woodturning lathe carefully to avoid potentially costly “false starts”. To help you in this process, leading woodturning tools and equipment suppliers The ToolPost ( offers its tips.


First, consider the types of woodturning projects you plan to take on. Scale is important here: if you’re planning on turning pens or small decorative pieces then the size of woodturning lathe should reflect that (for instance you could consider the tabletop lathes now available on the market). Obviously, larger turning projects such as large bowls, newel posts, portico columns, tabletops and furniture components will require an altogether sturdier lathe or one with specific workpiece capacity. Remember to size up your workspace and check that your lathe will fit. If you’re unsure about exactly what you will be turning then think big! You can of course turn smaller projects on larger lathes, but not the other way round.


Then do your research into the various brands of woodturning lathes on the market, and which brands offer which benefits. Look for a brand which is established and which has received good reviews, which has technical and sales support in your market and ensure that the lathe manufacturer offers a comprehensive range of lathe accessories available so that your lathe can grow and adapt along with your skills and ambitions.


Finally, don’t be led purely by price. This is not one of those woodturning tools where you can afford to cut corners; with woodturning lathes you very much get what you pay for. Trying to save yourself a few pounds and going for a cheaper, lower quality lathe will reveal itself to be a frustrating false economy when you soon have to upgrade your lathe in order to progress in your craft.


If in doubt, trust the range of woodturning lathes found at the online home of The ToolPost – – or in the Didcot store. Here you will find only those lathes which the experts at The ToolPost personally recommend, and those which they know to be the best quality and therefore the best value.

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