JET JWL-1221VS Review: 12″x21″ Variable-Speed Wood Lathe

JET JWL-1221VS Review

The JET JWL-1221VS Variable Speed Wood Lathe is a fantastic tool for those looking to make their own custom wood pieces.

The wood lathe features variable speed control and can be used on many different types of wood. For beginners, this lathe is an excellent place to start your journey into the world of handcrafted furniture or other projects that require a lathe.

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Why You Should Buy The JET JWL-1221VS

The JET JWL-1221VS Variable Speed Wood Lathe offers a variety of features that make it perfect for beginners. It has variable speed control, so you can start off slow and ramp up your speeds as you become more comfortable with the tool. The lathe also comes with an assortment of accessories which allow for a wide range of projects.

JET JWL-1221VS 12"x21" Variable-Speed Wood Lathe (719200)

This lathe is excellent for small to medium-sized projects and can be used on both soft and hardwoods depending on the desired outcome. It has a lot of great features which make it easy to get started with turning wood into furniture or other beautiful works. No need for complex machinery in order to create them.

The 24 integrated indexing positions allow for a variety of different cuts, and the lathe comes with multiple accessories including chisels, sandpaper, wrenches, and more. 

The controls and DRO are other features that you will enjoy. Seein the RPM in the digital readout is a handy feature that should not be missed when turning wood.

Check out our article about the best wood lathe for beginners if you want to see more wood lathes.

JET JWL-1221VS Review

Dimensions and weight

The cast iron bed is durable and reliable. The weight of 129.8 lbs also gives an advantage to the machine’s stability. This reduces vibrations and increases your accuracy while working.

The best thing about the JET JWL-1221VS 12″x21″ Variable-Speed Wood Lathe is that it’s relatively compact and has ample turning space.

It also requires a small room for the setup, which is another bonus since many lathes require an enormous work area.

Forward to reverse function is quite smooth

If you are used to older lathes you know how difficult and clunky is to reverse when turning wood. 

JET JWL-1221VS will remove any bad experiences you may have had with a seamless transition from forward to reverse. One use for this particular feature is tapping a drilled hole in a workpiece.

Conveniently-located controls and DRO

The controls and DRO are located to the right of the lathe. One of the best features of this lathe is that the control module is located at the end of the machine. This ensures that you’re not close to a spinning piece if an emergency occurs, giving you more range to step back and assess what needs to be done next.

The variable speed option is controlled via a knob, which notifies you of any changes in pace. Not only does the digital RPM readout tells you at what speed you are currently working, but it also has an easy-to-use sliding switch for forwards and backward.

JET JWL-1221VS 12"x21" Variable-Speed Wood Lathe (719200)

24 Integrated Indexing Positions

The Jet Wood Lathe is a great tool for woodworkers. It has 24 indexing positions that make it super easy to get the perfect angle every time you need it. Not only can you make patterned cuts, but the accuracy is also improved.

Variable Speed

The JET Lathe has ranges of speeds at 60 to 3600 RPM, which JET states are “optimally designed speed ranges” for their users.

You can change the speed on this variable-speed lathe through a rotating knob, which adjusts how quickly or sluggishly the blade spins. When adjusting the speed of your lathe, you’ll be able to monitor it with a digital control system. 

Lowering the speed of this wood lathe will allow you to work on smaller projects. The lathe still offers enough torque even at lower speeds.

On-board Storage

The JET Wood Lathe features onboard storage. There’s a metal tray with four compartments. You can use this for holding your lathe chisels and other tools you bring along to work.


  • The power of this tool will not disappoint you, as it’s able to be adjusted from 60 RPM all the way up to 3600 RPM. This allows for more fine-tuning on delicate projects and offers enough torque to work on larger projects.
  • The lathe has a digital control system, which allows you to monitor your project without having to constantly look at the machine itself.  
  • The lathe is also equipped with an onboard storage compartment, so it can hold your tools and chisels. This helps to keep the work area more organized. 
  • This wood lathe is that it’s compatible with most other accessories available for sale in stores today. This makes it easier to find parts when you need them.


  • One of the most expensive of its class. 
  • Users noted some quality control issues.

Conclusion Of The JET JWL-1221VS Review

The JET Wood Lathe is an excellent option for those who are looking to get a new lathe.

This machine has variable speed control, which means you can adjust the speed of your piece as it spins around on the rotating axis. Whether you’re making furniture or other projects requiring a lathe, this one will work well in most cases. 

This lathe makes it easy for beginners like yourself to get started in the world of woodturning. It’s also perfect if you want something with more power than a hobbyist might need. 

It also comes with all of the necessary tools needed to make quick work out of any project.

Thank you for reading our JET JWL-1221VS Review article.