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Do your prices include or exclude VAT?

Good news, the prices shown include UK VAT at 20%. Looking for ex-VAT prices? Products in your shopping basket and on invoices will have a full breakdown. Alternatively we're always happy to send quotations to suit your particular requirements.


How much is delivery? How long will delivery take?

Delivery to UK mainland addresses is free for all orders over £30. For orders under £30, postage is is charged at £3.99. This excludes orders for stands and spare parts. Find more details about prices and delivery times on the Delivery page.


I'm located overseas, how much will postage be?

We'd be happy to quote you for shipping anywhere in the world - just contact us with your delivery address and what you would like to order and we'll get back to you as soon as possible with the price.


What sort of guarantee is included with your products?

All of our products have a warranty for 12 months from the point of delivery. You can find more information about your warranty on the Terms & Conditions page.


Do you have a showroom?

Yes - we pride ourselves in being much more than just a mail order business. We've always had a showroom where our customers can see our products in the flesh and ask any questions they might have. It's open throughout the year, you're welcome to visit. Find more details on the Showroom page.


What's the difference between an imperial and a metric lathe?

The leadscrews and dials will be configured towards either metric or imperial. Warco variable speed lathes from the WM 180 upwards can be used for both metric and imperial thread cutting - so a metric machine will be able to cut imperial threads and vice versa. The Mini Lathe can be used to cut both types of threads with an additional threading kit.


How do I decide between a metric or imperial lathe / milling machine?

Most customers have a preference and are familiar with one system, in which case we recommend to stay with whichever is most familiar to you. 

For example, if you think in pre-decimalisation terms and prefer inches, imperial would probably suit you best. If you're more used to centimetres and millimetres, or are using the machine for education or training, metric would be the logical choice.

If you have a machine with DRO, it will be fully geared up for either - you have the option of switching between both. On variable speed lathes, thread cutting in both metric and imperial denominations is possible as standard. The only exceptions to this are our smallest two lathes - the WM 150 and Mini Lathe (above answer has a few more details on the threading kit solution to overcome this on Mini Lathes).


How do I choose between a belt drive, variable speed or gear head lathe / milling machine?

This really is a matter of personal choice. Changing speeds on a fully enclosed gear headstock is easy, just move the appropriate levers. Speed change on variable speed machines is similarly straightforward. Variable speed machines will often have high and low speed ranges, to maximise torque within a given speed. Changing between these two settings involves a single belt change. Once in a particular range the speeds are infinitely controllable with an ultra convenient dial.

There are more belt changes on non variable speed  "pure" belt drive machines machines, which can be a little more involved. Some customers prefer the idea of one of these belt drive machine on the basis that should the machine become overloaded for any reason, the belt will slip. Belt drive machines have fewer electrical components - there's no PCB for example. They will often be familiar to those who have experience using traditional Myford or Bridgeport type machines. 

Gear headstock lathes are often familiar to those coming from an industrial background. These tend to be  more expensive.

Some example lathes for each speed control type

  • Belt drive lathe - WM 240B.
  • Variable speed lathes - WM 180, 240, 250, 250V, 280V, 290V.
  • Gear head lathes - GH550, GH1236, GH1322, GH1330, GH1440.

And example milling machines

  • Belt drive mills - Major, WM 16B and VMC.
  • Variable speed mills - WM 14, WM 16, WM 18, Super Major Vario, VMC Vario, WM 20.
  • Gear head mills - GH 18, Major GH, GH Universal, Super Major.


Do your lathes or milling machines have metal gears or plastic gears?

Every Warco lathe sold today that uses gears has metal gears throughout.

Every Warco milling machine that uses gears from the WM18 upwards has metal gears throughout.

The WM12, WM14 and WM16 are all metal gears with one exception - there is a single helical fibre gear which acts as a failsafe. During normal use, this gear will last indefinitely, but if the machine is used beyond its limits and an operator has a dig in, the fibre gear is designed to give way. When the machine is misused to the point that a gear would break, the failsafe prevents all the other metal gears from being stripped at the same time. The failsafe gear is inexpensive to buy, straightforward to replace and readily available from Warco spares.


Do you have any ex-demo or second hand machines available?

Warco Open Days are always the best opportunity to buy any used or ex-demo machinery, we save the vast majority of second hand stock for this event. From time to time we will have a selection of used machines available for general purchase. If there's used machinery available at the moment, it will be listed on the Used Machinery page.


I placed an order, when will my payment be taken?

For online orders, payment is automatically taken when you place your order, and at exhibitions we will have card terminals. In other cases for example orders placed over the phone, we process payment prior to despatch. Once we have order clearance from the warehouse, payment is then taken to proceed with delivery. Find more details on the Payments page.


How will my machine be delivered?

This varies according to the size of the machine - for more information see the Delivery page.


I ordered a machine, will I get prior notice about the scheduled day of delivery?

Yes. For carrier deliveries, once the machine has been despatched, the delivery company will contact you to arrange a suitable date prior to delivery taking place. For delivery using our own transport, the date will have been pre-arranged. Either way you will have plenty of notice before the machine arrives. Find more details on the Delivery page.


How do I lift a lathe or milling machine (for example onto a stand or bench)?

We recommend using an engine hoist for moving machinery. Here are the steps we suggest:

  • For milling machines: Sling hoist under throat of machine, where head bolts onto column (just behind the chuck). When taking the weight, the machine will tend to dip due to the weight at the front. To counteract this, use a length of rope secured to the casting behind the crossfeed hand wheel. Pass the rope through the lifting hook and pull on the hook to level the machine.
  • For lathes: Pass an endless sling under two points - the chuck and the tailstock casting, ensuring that the tailstock is locked into position.


Will the lathe or milling machine delivered be of the same high standard displayed at an exhibition?

Exhibition machines never receive any special preparation, they are standard stock taken from our showroom. Delivered machine tools are of exactly the same quality and finish.


I've downloaded a product PDF or have a copy of your brochure, and have spotted a difference with a measurement on the product page on your site. Which is correct?

The specification on the product page on is always the most up to date version, as the PDF or brochure reflect a particular moment in time - when the brochure was printed. Although product specifications can change from time to time, the details on the product pages on are always kept up to date with any changes. 


Lathe or milling machine problems: How to solve either of the following issues?
(a) My recently delivered machine won't start.

(b) My mill runs only when the start button is pressed - when the button is released, the machine stops. 

There is an open circuit on the machine preventing the contactors connecting, which is a result of an open switch to the chuck guard or belt / gear cover. As a safety feature, Warco machines are fitted with interlocked chuck guards and micro-switched belt / gear covers. This means that if you close the chuck guard and ensure all covers are closed, the machine will run normally. Remember to also check that emergency stop switch is disengaged.

Checklist summary:

  • Close the chuck guard.
  • Make sure the belt / gear cover is properly closed.
  • Disengage the emergency stop switch.

If you still have a problem contact us - we're here to help. All of our machines are run and thoroughly tested before they are despatched to ensure everything works 100%, so we will be able to quickly resolve any issue you might encounter.


Can I cut wood on a metal lathe?

It's possible with the right tools, but remember that metal lathes are only designed for cutting metal. The dust and debris created by cutting wood can cause problems with mechanicals, for example if dust is sucked in by the fan, the motor can become clogged. If you are going down this route, dust extraction is highly recommended. The better solution is to use a dedicated wood lathe for woodturning which are designed to deal with generated dust as standard.


I bought a backplate and it will not fit my lathe collet chuck, what next?

Backplates are supplied machined to fit to the appropriate lathe spindle. We offer various types of lathe collet chucks or alternative lathe chucks, so the backplate needs to be machined in order to suit your particular application. To ensure absolute accuracy it is necessary to machine a suitable spigot on the backplate to match the register in the back of the chuck. Due to the various chuck PCDs it is also necessary to drill and possibly tap the backplate to accept whichever chuck is being mounted. So simply machine it to fit.


What does X, Y or Z axis mean (eg with power feeds)?

X = longitudinal, Y = cross (or front to back), Z = knee (vertical) travel


What are the main differences between the Major GH and GH Universal Milling machine?

Both machines share the same base. The GH Universal mill has a dovetail column which ensures datum during elevation and descent. The GH Universal has power feed to the quill.


What's the difference between the GH Universal and Super Major Milling Machines?

The key difference is that Super Major is powered on the head for both elevation and descent. Both machines have power on the spindle. The Super Major also includes the additional stand and power feed, whereas for the GH Universal those are optional extras. The broad capacities of both machines are largely the same, with both machines based on the same head and table.


What was the difference between the Mini Lathe and Super Mini Lathe?

The key difference was that the Super Mini Lathe is slightly larger - with 350mm between centres vs 300mm on the basic machine. The Super Mini Lathe also has the addition of a digital rev counter. The regular (non-Super) Mini Lathe is now discontinued.


What's the difference between the New Super Mini Lathe and previous Super Mini Lathe?

To differentiate, the New Super Mini Lathe is the version sold from late 2017 onwards, with item numbers 4900 / 4901 (metric / imperial respectively). The newer machine is an improved and revamped machine with upgrades including metal gears throughout. The previous version - item numbers 4800-350 / 4820-350 - for its final revision sold from late 2016 onwards, had metal headstock gears, but did use plastic change gears. The newest machine has metal gears for both. The new machine has a larger 100mm chuck as standard - its predecessor had a smaller 80mm chuck. The new version also benefits from a brushless motor, whereas before the motor was brushed. The latest Super Mini also has metal hand wheels throughout. Overall capacity and dimensions of both versions are broadly the same. 


What's the difference between the WM 250 and WM 250V?

The WM 250V is powered by an AC inverter drive motor, and the WM 250 uses a DC motor. The WM 250V also has a powered cross feed, whereas the WM 250 has a manual cross feed - both machines have powered longitudinal feeds. Otherwise, overall dimensions and capacities of the two machines are broadly the same.


What was the difference between the WM 250V and WM 250VF (or WM 280V vs WM 280VF etc)?

The VF machines had a DC motor and were controlled by PCB. The V machines (WM 250V, WM 280V and WM 290V) are the new upgraded replacements and are powered by an AC motor, which eliminates dependency on a PCB for speed control. The AC motor system has advantages including improved performance, speed range and quieter running. The VF machines are now discontinued. You can find more details about the benefits of this change on the corresponding product pages in our Lathes section.


I have a question that isn't answered here, what now?

Contact us - we're here to help.