Tungsten based W-1C and W-2B(4)C-1C (wt-%) powders synthesised by mechanical alloying (MA) for milling durations of 10, 20 and 30 h, in wet (ethanol) and dry conditions, were characterised. X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy investigations revealed Co contamination which increased with increasing milling time during wet milling. X-ray diffraction investigations revealed the presence of W and WC phases in all powders, Co3C intermetallic in the wet milled W-1C powders and W2B intermetallic phase in both wet and dry milled W-2B(4)C-1C powders. As blended and MA processed powders were consolidated into green compacts by uniaxial cold pressing at 500 MPa and solid phase sintered at 1680 degrees C under hydrogen and argon atmospheres for 1 h. X-ray diffraction investigations revealed the presence of W2C intermetallic phase in sintered composites produced from both wet and dry milled W-1C powders and the W2B intermetallic phase in sintered material from the wet milled W-2B(4)C-1C powder. Sintered composites from wet milled powders showed relative densities >91%, with the maximum density of 99.5% measured for the sintered 30 h wet milled W-2B(4)C-1C composites. Microhardness values for the wet milled W-1C and W-2B(4)C-1C composites were 2-2.5 times higher than those for dry milled composite powders. A maximum hardness value of 23.7 +/- 2.1 GPa was measured for the sintered W-2B(4)C-1C composite wet milled for 20 h.