The Best Belt Grinders for Knife Making for 2024

Best Belt Grinders for Knife Making - Top Picks, Reviews & Complete Buying Guide

The necessity of a knife was discovered in prehistoric times.

At that period, having a knife determined whether you will be alive and dead.

Nowadays, the importance of knives is not that great, but still the necessity for having a good knife has not gone away.

As you want to have a good knife, you might be in need of a belt grinder.

This is a tool designed to save you a lot of time and are meant to be used in knife making.

In order to see the characteristics of belt grinders, we are offering you a list of the best belt grinders currently available at the market.

Spoiler Alert - Check out my top choice here >>

Top Rated Belt Grinders for Knife Making

Model Rating Buy Now
JET J-4002 Disc Belt GrinderJET J-4002 Disc Belt Grinder
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Porter-Cable PCB420SA Disc-Belt GrinderPorter-Cable PCB420SA Disc-Belt Grinder
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WEN 6502 Disc SanderWEN 6502 Disc Sander
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Grizzly H6070 Belt & Disc SanderGrizzly H6070 Belt & Disc Sander
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Kalamazoo Industries 2FSM Belt GrinderKalamazoo Industries 2FSM Belt Grinder
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* Ratings are based on Editor's own opinion.

5 Best Belt Grinders for Knife Making Reviewed

#1. JET J-4002 Disc Belt Grinder

Top Pick
JET J-4002 Disc Belt Grinder
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Number one on our list is the JET J-4002.

This model is out of competition in almost all categories.

It comes with a 1” by 42” belt.

This belt is narrower than the belts in other grinders, allowing for more precise work.

The precision is very important when working with smaller objects.

As you are going to wear out the belt, the amazing thing is that the 1” by 42” belts are cheaper than competing sizes and you will spend less money on changing it.

When the changing is in question, the JET-4002 has a simple and easy belt changing and assembling, making it ideal even for the beginners.

The model boasts enough power to handle even the toughest knives, making this tool less stressed and more quiet

This is a high quality model that you would not regret buying.

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  • Easy assembly and belt changing
  • Precise belt size
  • Belts are cheap
  • Powerful
  • Quiet


  • Pricey
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#2. Porter-Cable PCB420SA Disc-Belt Grinder

Porter-Cable PCB420SA Disc-Belt Grinder
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The second one on our list, but also worth considering is the Porter-Cable PCB420SA.

When the power is in question, it can be said that it is quite powerful and almost equal to the JETmodel.

Furthermore, it possesses a cast iron base which is there to reduce vibrations.

Now, there has to be something which keeps it out of the top position.

The first thing is that it uses a 4” by 36” belt which is not good enough if you are planning to work with smaller or more delicate knives.

The narrower belt results with more precise work.

Other great features are that this belt grinder does come with a dust bag and the ease of changing out the belt is amazing.

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  • Power
  • Dust bag
  • Belts are easily changed


  • Wide belt
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#3. WEN 6502 Disc Sander

WEN 6502 Disc Sander
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When we have the budget in mind, we cannot go for the most expensive tools.

That is why we have to mention the WEN 6502.

This is definitely the best belt grinder on our list for the money.

Its design is quite similar to the Porter-Cable, it uses the same 4” by 36” belt and has a cast iron base, but you get it at quite lower price.

The cast iron base is excellent feature as it is designed to prevent the grinder from moving around while you use it.

Getting this feature at affordable price is not frequent.

The drawbacks of the WEN 6502 are the weaker motor and slower belt.

For some users, having a weaker motor is an advantage as less mistakes canbe made, but if machine is slow you will have to spend much more time working.

If you want to save time, a higher speed and stronger motor should be your choice.

Another disadvantage is the difficulty with which the belt is changed.

It is complicated and would take up more of your time.

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  • Price
  • Construction
  • Good for beginners


  • Messy
  • Difficult belt change
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#4. Grizzly H6070 Belt & Disc Sander

Grizzly H6070 Belt & Disc Sander
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The Grizzly H6070 model would offer you enough power to get the job done.

Even though it uses 1” by 30” belt, which is good for knife making, there are drawbacks which put it on the forth position on our list.

One of them is the underpowered motor which is not in line with the price, there is not the cast metal body, causing the tool to be lighter and vibrate more.

It would also make the precision work more difficult.

Additionally, it is a very loud model for a grinder of its size and some pieces are made from cheap plastic which can easily break.

Among so many weaknesses, we have to mention that it is difficult to change out both the belt and the disc on this model.

Our suggestion is to find better value elsewhere.

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  • Fast assembly
  • Good power


  • Cheap
  • Belt is not easily changeable
  • Noise
  • Vibration
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#5. Kalamazoo Industries 2FSM Belt Grinder

Kalamazoo Industries 2FSM Belt Grinder
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The last on our list is the Kalamazoo Industries 2FSM, even though it has one of the best motors.

But, too much strength is not good, as there is a higher potential to wear down knives faster.

The stronger and faster models require far more care than other machines.

There are additional drawbacks of this model, such as difficult setup and belt changing.

Being that the motor is of high-quality, it is expected that the rest of the parts are quality as well, but this is not the case with this model.

Quite contrary, the parts are not as durable as those within other units on this list.

Another disadvantage is that the 2FSM is also quite expensive.

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  • Motor


  • Not easily setup
  • Too powerful
  • Cheap parts
  • Pricey
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Belt Grinders for Knife Making: The Ultimate Buying Guide

Now that you got familiar with the possible advantages and disadvantages of belt grinders, we believe that you can get the idea which one is the best for you.

In case you still have some doubts, we are offering additional information related to the things to consider before purchasing the perfect belt grinder for your knife making needs.Belt Grinder

How to determine which model is the best for me?

In order to help you find the ideal belt grinder for your needs, we made this list.

You can get familiar with a number of factors that make the best belt grinders for knife making different from one another.

This can be achieved if you know what the right features are and how they are affecting the usefulness of belt grinders.

You got the idea from the above mentioned descriptions that the size of belt has some important role.

The narrower belts would give you more control when working with small objects.

Working on larger objects made of wood, would require you to get the model with a wider belt.

So, you will have to know what kind of projects you are going to use the grinder for and then be more careful when choosing the ideal one.

Furthermore, speed is very important, as well.

You should choose a belt grinder that runs at the right speed with the right power.

A cheap model can cause that your belt grinder cannot perform some tasks.

If a grinder is slow, working on projects will take longer, there would be more load on the motor and belt will wear them down faster.

All these result in costing you more money even though your initial investment was not high.

On the other hand, motors with too much power may be unable to finish projects with very much finesse.

A material which the model is built with determines its durability, and the stronger materials result in long lasting tools.

Most frequently, cheap parts break, making the machine useless.

Why is the ease of assembly important?

People who are not experienced with belt grinders would consider ease of assembly and operation the vital characteristic of a belt grinder.

The ideal choice for them is the model that is easy to assemble.

Spending too much time on assembling causes less time spent learning the craft which is not what you expect from your belt grinder.

In the majority of cases, the easier assembling is followed by the easier replacement of the belt.

People who are using the belt grinder a lot are aware that they have to change the belt frequently, so making an investment in more complicated models would lead to frustration and waste of time.

Spend a little extra money to save yourself a lot of trouble is sometimes suggested and this is the case with belt grinders.

What about value?

If you want to be satisfied with your final decision, it is important to assess the value in belt grinders.

This can be tricky, especially of you add knife making into the mix.

The more expensive models have higher values, but if you are not planning to use your belt grinder a lot, investing in a more expensive model is not such a wise decision.

The durability is important to those who are planning to work a lot with their belt grinder and purchasing one that will last over a longer period of time is a clever choice.

Make sure to do a purchase that gives you the best value relative to the money spent.Belt Grinders

What should I know about the cleaning up?

Many people would not have this in mind, but cleaning up the tool can be troublesome and time consuming.

That is why you should think whether the tool is easy or difficult to clean up.

After the usage of belt grinders, the shavings are the results and having a clean shop or work area, as well as being healthy are quite significant.

When it comes to belt grinders, the shavings frequently get inside the moving parts within a belt grinder.

That way its efficiency is reduced and it can cause the tool to stop working altogether. The better quality grinders have a way of cleaning up after themselves, having anintegration with a shop vac, but its effectiveness and ease of use would vary a lot.

The more frequent work with wood, makes this feature more important as getting a hard to clean belt grinder would decrease its lifespan and increase your frustration.


The last thing we can do is to go through all the above mentioned models and summarize the article.

Again, we suggest buying our top pick, as the Jet J-4002 is definitely the best of the best belt grinders.

There is everything a belt grinder should have for knife making, is easy-to-use.

While the Porter-Cable PCB420SA is an excellent grinder, with only one drawback – its belt size.

If you think about your budget, than buying the WEN 6502, as its quality matches its affordable price.

The Grizzly H6070 and the Kalamazoo Industries 2FSM are the last two on our list and these are models whose disadvantages exceed its advantages.

We hope that our article was beneficial to you to find the belt grinder that is right for your knife making needs.

I hope you liked my article about Belt Grinders for Knife Making, if so, please share or comment.

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