Best Beginner Carbide Woodturning Tools Of 2021

The Best Mini Carbide Woodturning Tools For The Money

This review will be centered around the best carbide woodturning tools for the money. As a recap carbide turning tools are pretty popular these days because it takes all of the guess work out of how to present the gouges to the wood that’s being turning on the lathe.

Plus you as a wood turner you can spend more time turning with carbide tools than with HSS spindle and bowl gouges. With carbide you can turn both spindles and bowls without the hassle of buying both types of traditional wood turning gouges. So let’s get to it with the first set of carbide turning gouges.

This first section of the article will focus on mini turning tool sets for those who are strictly just going to wood turn small projects like wooden pens, bottle stoppers and Christmas tree ornaments that are made from wood.

Of course there are many more small woodturning projects that you can do but this isn’t the focus of this article. The mini carbide tools really excel at turning small projects because you have more control due to the shortness of the gouges.

On a side note if you don’t plan on turning small projects with these mini wood turning tools can come in handy for getting into small hard to reach areas that a large set of carbide turning tools just can’t.

Rockler Carbide Mini Turning Tools 3 Piece Set

The first mini carbide turning tool set that I recommend looking into is made by Rockler. I like these carbide turning tools because of the sturdiness. The handles of all three are made from solid ash which is a hardwood that gives the tools their strength.

This set is also very comfortable to use and cuts down on hand fatigue because each handle comes with molded ergonomic rubber which also helps you to maintain a better grip on the handle when woodturning.

As with all carbide turning tools the Rockler carbide turning tools come in 3 three cutting profiles. The round, square and diamond. Keep in mind that the carbide cutters are not interchangeable. Each set comes with an allen wrench to either turn the carbide cutter to another sharp side or to change it out with new one.

Complete length of the tools?Overall length is 13 1/2″
The ash handles themselves are?Length is 9 1/2″
The length of the steel shaft is?Length is 4″
Total weight of all 3 carbide tools?2.8 lbs.
How is the the customer support?Very good
what size lathe do these tools work well with?The midi size lathes or larger
Where to get replacement carbide cutter?Have to be bought through Rockler
Are they worth the money?Yes because the quality is top notch
Rockler Mini Turning Tool Set

Savannah 3 Piece Carbide Mini Turning Tool Set

The Savannah 3 piece carbide turning tool set is also a very good product to look into if you’re thinking about getting into wood turning. A few things that set these carbide tools apart is they come with their own case which is lined with foam so you have a place to store them when they’re not being use.

These mini turning tools come at a pretty reasonable price too. All 3 tools come with comfortable hand grips to help with fatigue so that more woodturning can be done without getting tired. This set also includes the allen wrench to change carbide inserts when needed.

The wooden handles are made from hardwood ash and the steel shaft is about 3/8″ across with a flat on the bottom for good presentation on the tool rest of the lathe. This set comes in 3 three profiles, the square, round and diamond shapes.

Complete length of the tools? Overall length is 13 1/8″
The ash handles themselves are?Length is 9 1/8″
The length of the steel shaft is?Length is 4″
Total weight of all 3 carbide tools?3.0 lbs.
what size lathe do these tools work well with?The midi size lathes or larger
Where to get replacement carbide cutter?Easiest and quickest place to purchase is on Amazon
Are they worth the money?Yes and they cost less than some sets like the Rockler brand
Savannah Mini Carbide Woodturning Tool Set

Mini Easy Woodturning Carbide Tools

Some of the things that make this 3 piece set of mini woodturning tools is that the wooden handles are made from maple wood, which like ash is also a hardwood. The handles are also different colors so they can be easily identified at a glance when turning wood projects.

The overall length is a little longer than some carbide wood turning tools that I’ve seen but not so long that a persons control is diminished when turning small projects like goblets or wooden bowls.

Just like the Rockler brand of wood turning tools, these will cost a little bit more than some brands but they are a rock solid product. One of the things that’s different about this set is these carbide wood turning gouges don’t have the comfortable hand grips that help prevent fatigue while woodturning.

But if you look how the handles are made, you’ll notice that each handle has 2 hand positions crafted into them which makes up for not having the hand grips.

Like all carbide tools whether they’re the small mini turning tools or the full sized ones this set comes with 3 carbide wood gouges. The rougher, the finisher and the detailer. This set includes the allen wrench to change out dull carbide inserts.

Complete length of the tools?Overall length is 16″
The maple handles themselves are? Length is 12″
The steel shaft length?Length is 4″
The total weight of all 3 mini carbide turning tools? 2.0 lbs.
what size lathe do these tools work well with?The midi size lathes or larger
Where to buy replacement carbide inserts?The most affordable place to purchase is on Amazon
Is this set worth the money?Yes because of the design and durability they should last for many years
Easy Wood Mini Carbide Woodturning Tools

Mini Carbide Woodturning Set By Simple Woodturning Tools

The company Simple Woodturning Tools offer a very nice and affordable set of mini carbide woodturning tools for those smaller woodturning projects. This particular brand of carbide tools isn’t made from wood but rather aircraft aluminum or at least just the handles.

Some of the benefits of this set are they aren’t bad in price which is great news for those who may not be able to invest a lot of money in the beginning for woodturning. Also these carbide gouges are made right here in the USA.

This set of carbide woodturning tools come with a roughing carbide gouge, detailing carbide gouge and a finishing carbide gouge. In addition to these they all come with a set of carbide inserts to get you started.

This set of carbide woodturning tools doesn’t have the benefit of ergonomic padded hand grips like some sets’ discussed here, but what it does have is stainless steel shanks that holds the carbide inserts.

The stainless steel does add weight to the woodturning tools so that most of the vibration will be absorbed down through the tool rest so that fatigue will be kept to a minimum while wood turning.

The handles are shaped through the use of a CNC machine for beauty, durability and balance. Because of this design you can be sure that you’ll get many years of woodturning on whatever lathe you have.

Each carbide turning tool is engraved differently on the square shank so identifying them at a glance makes it easy. Instead of just 1 allen wrench this particular set comes with 2 to change out or rotate the carbide inserts.

Complete length of the tools?Overall length is 12″
The aluminum handles themselves are?Length is 8″
The stainless steel shaft is?length is 4″
Outside diameter of the handles are?1-3/16″
Are allen wrenches included for the carbide inserts?Yes it comes with 2 torque wrenches
The total weight of all 3 mini carbide turning tools?2.9 lbs.
what size lathe do these tools work well with?Works well with midi and full size wood lathes
Where to buy replacement carbide inserts?Carbide inserts can be purchased on Amazon
Are they worth the money?Oh yes especially for those who are just beginning
Simple Woodturning Tools Mini Carbide Woodturning Set

Sharpening Carbide Inserts

I almost forgot about the sharpening of your carbide inserts. I see this questions asked a lot and the answer is yes carbide inserts can be sharpened but they won’t ever be factory sharp. Do they really need to be that sharp to do an good job? I don’t think so and if you can prolong the life of them you’ll end up saving money in the long and who doesn’t like to save some money when at all possible?

So what you’ll need are 2 things which are a diamond stone with two different sanding surfaces and some lapping oil. Yes these are a must to sharpen your carbide woodturning inserts the right way. The upfront cost is little pricey for the diamond stone but will pay for itself in the long run because carbide inserts can get expensive if you do a lot of woodturning. Plus these diamond stones can be used in different applications like sharpening your run of the mill chisels and wood router bits.

Sharpening Carbide Woodturning Tools Using Trend Diamond Stone

Conclusion

Of the 4 sets of mini carbide woodturning tools that are discussed here none of them are cheaply made. I always make the effort of never buying the cheapest tools on the market. I also don’t make a habit of buying the most expensive ones either. All these sets are middle of the road carbide woodturning tools that’ll keep veteran and new wood turners happy and content without breaking the old pocket book.