Latest Warco brochure

We have just published an all new edition of the Warco brochure. Packed full of metalworking machinery, tools and accessories, it also includes all our latest products.

It’s now bigger than ever, running to more than 150+ full colour pages.

To all of you who have requested a copy in advance of publication, thanks! If you haven’t already received it, it will be winging its way to you very soon.

We can send a printed copy of anywhere in the UK for free.

If you’d like one, just head over to the contact form over at warco.co.uk/contact and let us know the address to send it to.

The latest Warco metal working catalogue

How to fit DRO to a milling machine

One frequently asked question we’ve found when it comes to our new glass optical digital readout systems relates to how to fit them. And it’s a good question, as these we started offering the new lower cost systems with customer fitment in mind.

In the past, we’ve tended to fit these systems in our own workshop for customers, and this is something we’re still happy to offer – our engineers have many years of experience fitting these systems so we’ll always be on hand to help.

The advantage of buying one of these systems for self-fitting is the saving on the labour cost of having it done professionally by us. And believe it or not, it can often be a rewarding experience.

Each system we supply comes with both a DRO operation manual and a separate installation manual showing what goes where and how to install. To accompany those instructions – because pictures can often be more useful than words – we’ve posted some mill fitment photos in more detail below.

These photos show as an example an install we’ve completed on a milling machine, in this case a WM14/ WM16. The same principles will apply to larger sized mills too.

Warco WM16 with DRO
The front of the mill, showing the counter location.

DRO scale on milling table
The location of the longitudinal travel scale on the rear of the mill table.

Mill DRO - cross travel scale
A closer look at the cross traverse scale mounted to the machine. We use bright mild steel to support the scale overhang.

Cross traverse viewed from the back of milling machine.
The cross scale viewed from the rear. Here you can see the supports supplied as part of the fitting kit with our system.

DRO mill mounting bracket.
And here’s where we locate the mounting bracket for the DRO counter.

These images are a general guide to fitting locations, and you might find you have a different method that suits your needs in some other way. A general purpose bracket is provided as part of the kit, designed for modification depending on application, so it’s worth noting it may vary in appearance from the one shown above. The counter bracket location is less critical than the scales, you can afford to be more freestyle here.

These images should be a handy starting point in combination with the fitting instruction guide that comes included with our systems. And as ever if you have any further questions, feel free to get in touch – we’re always happy to help.

Further reading:

How to fit DRO to a lathe

Following on from our post about installing DRO to a milling machine, we wanted to share some pointers on how to do something similar with a lathe. We’ve shared some example images below to help show how to fit DRO, these show where we’ve mounted the glass optical digital readout scales to a Warco WM 250V. Also shown in these examples is a WM 290V – the same principles will apply to machines in a range of different sizes.

Cross slide DRO on lathe
Showing the scale for the cross travel. This is after we have drilled and tapped the necessary holes and mounted it into position.
DRO lathe cross travel
Another view of the cross travel scale fitted to the lathe.
Warco WM 290V
A view from the front with scales fitted. Here a WM 290V is shown (note the milling attachment at the rear).
Glass optical scale - view from rear on Warco lathe
View from the back of the lathe showing the longitudinal scale. Note we’ve removed the machine’s rear splash guard for better fitting access.
DRO scale - view from back of lathe
Another view from the back, showing the scale mounted after drilling and tapping in the appropriate places.
Warco WM290V DRO
And here’s another example of that same axis with the splash guard refitted – here on a WM 290V lathe. Note on this lathe there’s a milling attachment in place; the narrow section design of the scales means with that even with the milling column mounted, movement is still unrestricted.
Warco WM250 Lathe with DRO
Finally, there is the mounting of the counter. Positioning of this is less critical than the scales, so you are free to locate it wherever is most convenient. We’ve gone with the headstock end as it makes the most sense for readability, shown in this example on a WM 250. Supplied general purpose fitment bracket is intended for modification depending on your specific application.
DRO Warco WM 250V
The end result of a fully configured WM 250V with 2 axis DRO. The visible cables would usually be tucked neatly out of view – we have them on the swarf tray here for convenience as this is a display model.
DRO manual
Warco DRO systems come with the above installation manual, illustrated throughout with step by steps. 

With any luck, with the manual to hand alongside these example images, you should be well equipped for completing the satisfying job of your own installation. Anything we missed, or something you’re still not sure about? Let us know in the comments below!

See also:

Warco brochure

We’ve just released the latest Warco metalworking catalogue.

Warco catalogue

With 100+ colour pages of machinery and tools, it’s a handy way to see our range in one place.

Warco brochure

If you have already requested a copy, thanks! It will be with you shortly. If you don’t think you’re on the list and would like one, we will be happy to post you one for free – just send us a message with your address details here: warco.co.uk/contact.

Warco DRO for lathes and milling machines

We’ve noticed more and more people keen to fit glass optical digital readout systems to their machines, but found existing systems too expensive to justify, especially for home workshop and small scale engineering businesses.

With that in mind, we introduced an all new glass optical system specifically designed for metalworking lathes and mills at an affordable price.

This system has the added advantage of using small section scales, so where space is tight on smaller machines like the WM 14 / 16 mills or WM 240 / 250 lathes, there is still no space issue.

Because this system is sold for self fitting, there’s a big saving. Each counter two comprehensive manuals – 1x operation instructions and 1x guide to fitting. You can read more about the counter shown above here.

If you aren’t using coolant on your machine and don’t require a waterproof system, even cheaper options than this exist.

9494-latest-no-box

This digital readout counter in combination with the corresponding scales is a cheap alternative to the more professional level systems. You can find these here.

Find the full range of digital readout systems at warco.co.uk/dro.

Warco WM 180 lathe unboxing video

We recently received some requests for a video of our WM 180 lathe, so with that in mind it was lucky a customer of ours shared with us footage of him taking one out of the box.

Warco WM 180 lathe. The compact design means it’s favoured by customers using one for smaller scale projects such as model engineering or general home workshop metalworking.

We thought it was a pretty good introduction to the machine, especially if you haven’t seen one in person yet. It’s only a few minutes long, you can check it out below.



We’re very fond of this machine. We first introduced it 20 years ago now as an entry level option and it’s fair to say it has long been amongst most popular small bench top lathes.

We regularly hear back positive reviews from our customers about WM 180s they bought from us over a decade ago still going strong today.

Ideally suited to smaller scale engineering projects, the compact size means it’s most often bought by folks using one as part of a home workshop such as model engineers and hobby metalworkers.

You can find the specs in full here: Warco WM 180 lathe.

Shown above is a newer addition to our range – the WM 180 offered with a 2 axis digital readout (DRO) system installed

Last updated: September 2021


More recent posts:

Warco Christmas gift ideas

Update: We hope you all had a great holiday period. Our Christmas promotion was a great success so thanks for your support. Original post below.

It’s that time of year again.

Selection of gift ideas from Warco
Selection of gift ideas from Warco

If you’re looking for something for that difficult to buy for engineer this Christmas, or you just want to treat yourself, the above items are all very popular with our customers at the moment and we think they represent great value for money.

You can find all these items in our special Warco Christmas gift section online, or buy any time during office hours from the Warco showroom, where technical help is always on hand. Wishing all of you a very happy Christmas.

New Warco metalworking brochure

We’ve released an all new brochure featuring all our metalworking products. From bandsaws to lathes, milling machines to sheet metal folders, drilling machines to grinders, they’re all included.  Also featured is our full ranges of milling and lathe tools, accessories and much more.  The brochure has nearly 100 full colour pages and full specifications of each item, and includes all our latest products.

New Warco brochure

You can download a full copy of it on warco.co.uk, or if you’d prefer a printed copy to flick through, just contact us with your details and we’ll pop one to you in the post, totally free of charge if you have a UK address.  And of course details of our entire range is available at warco.co.uk.

Introducing all new Warco lathes

Update: Since this was originally posted the Warco GH1232 has now been superseded by the GH1236 – which now offers even higher specification including increased distance between centres. The Warco 250VF has evolved into an upgraded version called WM 250V – which now has an inverter drive. For the most up to date specification on these and all of our lathes, see warco.co.uk.

Original archived post below.


This has shaped up to be a particularly busy year at Warco so far. We’ve revamped our product range, have a raft of new products on the way and perhaps some of the most significant changes have been the additions to our lathe lineup.

Warco Lathes for Sale
The revamped Warco lathe lineup

This year so far has seen a total of five new metal lathes joining our range – a mixture of new and improved specifications on existing machines, as well as all new machines that now fill in the gaps in our metalworking range. From smallest to largest, here’s a run down of the all new additions to our range. (See our next forthcoming blog post for a full introduction to one of the new machines we’re most excited about – the Super Mini Lathe.)

WM 240B Lathe

Warco 240B Lathe

For years now we’ve noticed increasing demand for a compact belt drive lathe, finding that many of our customers prefer the more straightforward belt driven mechanism for their metal turning needs. With that in mind, the WM 240B is our answer to all of those requests.  Based on our popular existing variable speed machine, the regular WM 240, the new WM 240B still features exceptional Warco quality as standard, comes with a large range of standard equipment, full 12 month guarantee and as many features including a hardened and ground double vee bedway. The key difference with the 240B is that speed selection is by belt change, which we’ve found to be in high demand as an alternative to more the more commonly seen variable speed.

WM 250VF

Warco WM 250VF Lathe

The WM 250 has been a long term favourite with hobbyists / model engineers and professionals alike – particularly those in the market for a relatively compact machine with no compromise on rigidity, accuracy and robustness. We considered the difficult question of how the WM 250 could be in any way improved upon as part of a revamped range, and found an answer with the addition of a power cross feed. The WM 250VF has a high level of power and flexibility, with the added bonus of this all new power cross feed, which we supply fitted to the machine – so as always with our machinery, once it arrives simply power it up and away you go. You can rest assured our team of engineers will have already set up and tested the machine before it gets to you. Overall then, an extremely versatile machine, the 250VF also features a powerful motor, huge torque in the low speed range, and at this price point offers superb accuracy, precision and build quality.

GH1232

Warco GH1232 Lathe

We’re introducing the GH1232 with the all new addition of a digital readout counter as standard. This gear head lead still features induction hardened and ground bedways, a high tensile cast iron bed and the high levels of quality that ensured its long term popularity with industry, tool shops and schools/colleges alike. As an upgrade to the previous specification, now each one has the bonus of a coolant system too – as well as a huge range of standard equipment, providing everything needed to get started with professional level turning on an extremely robust and high precision heavy duty machine.

How to buy?

View these machines along with our complete range of metal lathes for sale in our online shop, where you can also find full specifications and dimensions of each one. If you’re interested in any of these lathes but find they’ve already sold out, that just means we’re expecting a new batch soon to meet demand, so stay tuned.

And if you like, you can always place a pre-order to ensure you’re towards the front of the queue when we restock,  with no payment in advance required – simply call us on 01428 682929.

Alternatively, when an item’s in stock you can always simply order securely online. Whichever way you choose to buy, remember we don’t believe in hidden charges – all Warco machine prices include UK mainland delivery and VAT at 20%.