Wen 3420 Benchtop Wood Lathe Review

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In Brief: Wen 3420 Lathe Review

The Wen 3420 Lathe features a 2-amp motor capable of putting out variable speeds ranging from 750 to 3200 rotations per minute (rpm). The adjustable speed allows for the working of various sizes and species of wood. Its relatively compact size allows for easy movement throughout a smaller workspace for optimal usage.

Wen produces a number of different tools for a variety of different uses. They have been in business since 1951, becoming a trusting name in a wide range of power tools and equipment.

Wen tools are primarily made in China, though the stocks and parts all come from factories in either California or Illinois.

Wen has become a trusted name in the power tool industry and their 3420 lathes are one of the prime examples why.

Key Specifications of the Wen 3420 Lathe

WEN 3420 8' by 12' Variable Speed Benchtop Wood Lathe

The variable speed is one of the most important features on the Wen 3420 Lathe.

It can produce speeds starting at 750 RPM and going all the way up to 3200 RPM. With the variable speeds, it is capable of a far wider range of lathe productions.

The Wen 3420 Lathe is capable of handling workpieces up to 12 inches long and 8 inches wide, allowing for a wider range of woodworking.

Even better, the soft start motor helps to keep both you and the lathe safer while protecting the machine from damage as well.

A 5-inch faceplate also comes standard with this lathe, making it easier to turn things like cups, bowls, and other non-spindle workpieces.

The versatility level of the Wen 3420 Lathe is off the charts.

Read the long list of Wen 3420 Lathe specs here :

Model Number/ Name3420
Ideal ForWood
Current (amps)2
Speed (rpm)750 to 3200
Distance between centers (in)12
Spindle thread (in)1”-8
Overall dimensions26 x 10 x 12
Weight (lbs)45
Other FeaturesTailstock Taper, Spindle Taper

Top Features to Look For

WEN 3420 8" by 12" Variable Speed Benchtop Wood Lathe

Here are just a few of the features on the Wen 3420 Lathe that help it stand out from the rest of the competition.

5-Inch Faceplate

While the Wen 3420 Lathe is primarily made for handling wood products, it can also be used for other non-spindle workpieces like bowls and cups.

Bring out your creativity when you use the Wen 3420 Lathe.

Soft Start Motor

The soft start motor is in place to help keep both you and the machine protected.

Safety is of the utmost importance when working with power tools and keeping the lathe protected means not having to buy another machine sooner rather than later.

2-Amp Motor

The Wen 3420 Lathe has a 2-amp motor, a tailstock taper, and a MT1 spindle with a pair of interchangeable work rests.

This provides greater versatility in what you can do and how efficiently you can do it.


Power and Performance

The Wen 3420 Lathe delivers 120-volts thanks to the 2A motor.

This means a variable speed setting ranging from 750 RPM to 3200 RPM for the perfect level of speed based on your current lathing needs.

The motor is also of the soft start variety.

This means that it won’t jump up to maximum power right on start-up, providing an extra measure of safety for both you and the machine.

Ease of Use

WEN 3420 8" by 12" Variable Speed Benchtop Wood Lathe

The Wen 3420 Lathe is a compact option that can be moved from place to place relatively easily.

Even better, it has a wide range of cutting speeds and can handle sizes up to 8” x 12” for optimal versatility.

It is ergonomically designed so that users can handle the various components with just one hand.

One of the worst things about a lathe is when both hands are required to perform one task. The Wen 3420 Lathe makes it easier to make adjustments with one hand.


Ease of Maintenance, Repairs, and Warranty

Maintaining the Wen 3420 Lathe is as easy as blowing out the debris and giving it a quick wipe down. Cleanliness is an important part of the process and will go a long way towards extending the life of the lathe.

Components should be replaced every year or two to ensure that there are no breaks, leading to other damage in the lathe.


Wen offers a two-year limited warranty on all of their products.

The warranty is meant to protect against manufacturer defects or defects in the material or workmanship. More importantly, it covers most repairs and parts for the life of the warranty.

If you have any questions or concerns about the warranty, be sure to check out Wen’s warranty page for more.

Price of the Wen 3420

At just over $150, the Wen 3420 Lathe is as cost-effective an option as just about any lathe out there.

It is the perfect late for chess pieces, pens, and smaller workpieces and can be easily moved throughout the workshop. Most of all, it delivers quality without the need for breaking the bank.


Pros and cons of the Wen 3420

Here are some of the pros and cons of the Wen 3420 Lathe :


  • Affordable
  • Compact
  • Versatile
  • Variable Speed


  • Primarily for Wood
  • Small in size


Who Should Buy the Wen 3420 ?

Craftsmen/woodworkers that are looking to get the most out of their space will love the compact size of the Wen 3420 Lathe.

It delivers efficiency and versatility to woodworking operations and can be easily moved throughout the workspace.

The variable speeds also allow for greater precision in woodworking endeavors.

For craftsmen that are looking to broaden their woodworking capabilities without taking up a lot of space in their workshop, the Wen 3420 Lathe is a great option to go with.

Our Recommendation

There are larger, more powerful lathes on the market, but it is tough to match the versatility that the Wen 3420 delivers.

Not every craftsman has the space to accommodate large pieces of equipment and the Wen 3420 is compact enough to get the job done without compromising that space or breaking the bank.


Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About Karen Taylor

Karen is an expert woodworker. He has been working as a professional in the domain for more than 12 years now. She has experience of working on a variety of power and other tools while working on her projects.

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