Record Power – a return to UK manufacturing

As most woodworkers and woodturners know, Record Power is a world-renowned UK brand, with historic roots planted firmly in Sheffield. In recent years, the company has focused on developing and expanding its UK-based manufacturing capacity, beginning with the acquisition of the CamVac brand of dust extraction machines back in 2014. Since taking on CamVac, Record has improved and streamlined its manufacturing processes as well as ramping up production capacity, resulting in the worldwide sale of these machines in their many thousands.


Heating a spindle roughing gouge prior to shaping


A spindle roughing gouge ready for pressing into shape


Rigorous quality control procedures are followed


Tools are tested to ensure the correct levels of hardness

Expanded production department
Recent significant investment in 2020 facilitated further expansion of the production department – now the largest in the company – which afforded Record the ability to competitively manufacture a much wider range of products with greater control in terms of quality and cost. The company’s range of modern CNC machinery, semi-automatic finishing technology, grinding stations, plasma cutting machinery and more, allows for increased flexibility and capacity when it comes to producing a wide range of products to exact specifications. All of this is meaningless, however, without the right people and Record is proud to employ some exceptionally talented engineers, designers and operators, all of whom help to turn their ambitious plans into reality.

New turning tool range
Record is also proud to now feature the prestigious ‘Made in Sheffield’ mark across its range of turning tools as well as CamVac dust extractors, and look forward to applying it to a growing number of lines in the future. Turning tools are the latest product to be made by Record in its own UK-based factory. Despite many years of first-hand experience making turning tools in Meadow Street, Sheffield, as part of the old group of companies prior to 2003, this range has involved several years of development before reaching the market.

For what is such a simple looking tool, there's a lot to consider. Record began by reviewing the strengths and weaknesses of the original Sheffield-made range and identified areas that could be improved. These were then benchmarked against those from other UK manufacturers, while thoroughly assessing the strengths and weaknesses of their offerings. This led to an initial set of prototypes, which were then rolled out to be tested in a number of different countries by local professional woodturners, keen woodturning enthusiasts, as well as experienced specialist woodturning retailers.

After many months of assessing various handle shapes, sizes and tool profiles, the designs that met a key set of objectives were finally unveiled. The requirements included full-size tools, which were professionally specified while still being safe and simple to use, even for first time turners. Record’s tools feature generously-sized beech handles, which feel good in the hand while offering plenty of fine control as well as strong support for heavy cuts. The fluted tools have been refined to afford the best clearance for smooth, easy cuts, and all profiles are chosen as the safest general-purpose grind for any level of user, with maximum ease of resharpening.


All bowl gouges are ground by hand


Polishing a spindle gouge flute


Polishing the outside blade profile

Meeting the brief
However good the quality or potential of any turning tool, it will only operate at its best when properly sharpened – an area that many users find the most difficult to master. With this in mind, these new tools are manufactured according to fully professional specifications and sizes – including having the same steel and heat treatment as most of the UK competition. The profiles are simple to use, sharpen straight out of the wallet and a series of online videos show how to do this as simply and cost effectively as possible – freehand with a basic grinder. Record’s priority was to provide the best quality, performance and value possible within the normal price range of the UK-made market, while ensuring the tools were as safe to use and easy to resharpen from new as possible. They believe that brief has been met.


Spindle gouges ready to be fitted with handles


A rack of turning tools, ready for packaging and sending to stockists around the world


Modern CNC machining in progress

An increase in UK manufacturing
The company’s increase in UK manufacturing is part of a long-term initiative to expand the portfolio of unique and exclusive products, which now includes turning tools, CamVac extractors, the SC series of four high-quality woodturning chucks and jaws, as well as the highly regarded range of Coronet lathes, comprising the Herald, Envoy and Regent. This range is now exported to over 30 countries, allowing Record to expand significantly across the globe while also creating local jobs and making a positive contribution to the UK’s manufacturing industry.


Plasma cutting a CamVac extractor drum


MIG welding in progress


Preparing CamVac motors for installation

Record Power: Over 100 years of experience, knowledge, support & experience
Record Power has a long and impressive history. Established in Sheffield, the heart of the UK’s steel industry, and stretching back over 100 years, the company has an enviable reputation for creating high quality tools through many years of experience and unparalleled knowledge in manufacturing and design. The company’s head office and distribution centre is now based in the heart of the UK at Barlborough, a few short miles from Sheffield and very close to junction 30 of the M1.

From this base, design and manufacture of a growing number of Record Power and CamVac products takes place and the in-house quality control department ensures these standards remain consistently high. Some staff have been with the company for up to 40 years, ensuring they still retain and pass on their in-depth knowledge and expertise when it comes to hand and machine tool manufacturing and use. This gives Record the distinct advantage of being able to continue to design, develop and source a comprehensive and wide ranging selection of premium quality products to meet the needs of discerning woodworkers.

In addition to UK-made machinery, the company works with carefully selected partners from across the globe to ensure that only the best quality products possible are supplied and distributed. Although UK-based, these ranges are exported to more than 30 countries worldwide

To find out more about Record Power products and machines, visit