Angle Grinders ?

Page 1 of 2  

What are some of the common uses for an angle grinder to the average do-it-yourselfer?
Is is good for use to sharpen mower blades ?
I see they commonly have 4 1/4 inch and 7 inch sizes. Is there any common reason why one is generally better than the other ?
Thanks for any comments or advice !!
--James--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
James Nipper wrote:

Smoothing sharp or rough edges on metal things.
Cutting off rusted or rounded off nuts and bolts.
Cutting and/or shaping a few ceramic tiles (Using a "masonry" disk.)
Cutting almost any hard material in a place where you can't fit other tools.

Works for me...

"Generally" no. U figger that one out...
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia

(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Tim the Toolman Taylor may need the 7" grinder, but few people do! The smaller grinder is much easier to handle. I would not get a larger one unless you plan on opening a welding shop! Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
the big grinders will wear you out pretty fast. Unless you're welding ships or something, I'd go with the 4 incher. The good quality ones with high amp motors have plenty of power.
bill

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
These are all super replies, and I thank you all very much !! I am sure the 4 inch one will be fine for me. They sure seem like a handy tool to have in an average home workshop !
Thanks again !!
--james--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Get a diamond blade for one and you can do quick cuts on tile too.
charles
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I needed to cut up an old hospital bed frame and some other old steel stuff to fit into a trash barrel and Home Deppot had a sale on angle grinders and were out of stock I bought their bottom dollar 4 or 4.5 angle grinder on recommendation of the sales clerk who picked out the cut wheels too .. Real helpful knowledgeable guy, knew all about angle grinders.
He wasn't there when I went back an hour or so later to buy a dozen or so of these quickly exploding cutting blades and I found a skinny one that lasts darn near forever, cuts lickity split too. Figured out he had sold me grinding wheels and boy are they dangerous when used to cut through hard stuff at high rpm. Might want to be careful with those things until you figure them out !

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

While an angle grinder is handy for some things I would not use one for sharpening a lawn mower. For this task I would suggest a bench grinder. This would be much easier to get a good edge and you need to balance the blade after sharpening anyway, (Or risk buggering up your bearing or shaft on the motor.) so sharpening the blade on the mower is not really a good option.
If you did want to sharpen a mower blade with an angle grinder, secure the blade in a vise and try to maintain the proper angle on the grind. Or just rough it in and finish with a file.
--

Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I have been sharpening mower blades with a 4-1/2" angle grinder for years. Clamp the blade in a vice and go for it. When I am done the blade looks like it was done on a machine. With very little practice you can do a very nice job sharpening a mower blade with an angle grinder. Remember, we are gutting grass here, this is not some high tech sharpening job. No need for a razor blade edge, after ten minutes in the grass the blade is some what dull already. Get a blade balancer and you are set. Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

CAVEAT (caps intentional)
Caveat means warning!
I have welded since 1974. One of the most hazardous tools I have ever seen is a right angle grinder. And I mean ANY angle grinder, even a small die grinder. A lot of them spin in the 14,000 rpm range, and any time you get something spinning that fast a lot can happen.
Materials can fly off. Either particles of the wheel, pieces of metal that are removed, pieces of wire brush, lots of nasty things flying at a high velocity.
The tool can "kick", that is, if you put the wheel onto the workpiece at the wrong angle or direction, the tool can fly back at you with incredible force. Or, the workpiece can go flying the other direction.
These little boogers are as nasty as a badger, and anyone who knows what a badger is like understands that statement. For those who don't know what a badger is, imagine wrestling with a chain saw. They will eat you up and spit out small pieces. You will lose ....... it will win. EVERY time.
If you are new to operating one of these, pay very strict attention to how you place the wheel on the work, particularly when using wire brush wheels, as they tend to grab more than a solid wheel. Imagine you are holding the tool with the wheel down, and the wheel is a clock. The end of the tool with the cord coming out of it is toward you. The end with the wheel is away from you. Almost all of the work should take place between 11:30 position and 12:30 position where you want to touch the work. When the revolving part of the tool contacts the workpiece in any other part of the clock, the likelihood of a kick increases. As your experience and skill goes up and you get the hang of it, you can to to the other positions of the clock, but start there. Understand what causes a kick or what causes the workpiece to be spit out, and adjust your contact point accordingly.
Use the handle provided until you learn the behavior of this little beast. It is advisable but not necessary to use gloves, and I like light ones where I can hold the grinder tightly. EYE PROTECTION IS A MUST. If you use the wire brushes, you will normally be picking pieces of wire out of your face and other exposed body parts. PROTECT YOUR EYES AT ALL TIMES. I'll say that again. PROTECT YOUR EYES AT ALL TIMES.
The angle grinder can do amazing things. It can also cut off a finger in a flash before you really master the thing. It can catch your clothing, and wind you up in a ball in an instant. I have had scores of incidents in hundreds of hours of using this tool, none of them really major. Bruises, some lost hide, but nothing really bad. I have heard some really really bad stories, though, and believe every one of them. These are nasty mean little bastards, and they don't fight fair.
This thing has a learning curve, so go slow.
Steve
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Excellent post !!! I would add that if you get the grinder caught and it jumps........stop it and check to see if the disk cracked or if a chunk is missing. If it is cracked or missing a piece......take it off and THROW IT AWAY !!! Install a new disk and try again.
--
JerryD(upstateNY)

One of the most hazardous tools I have ever seen is a right angle grinder.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

And thank YOU for your VERY good post on a most important point I totally missed. Angle grinders have a lot of things to consider.
I buy my small grinding wheels at HF. The ones they have for 99 cents work as good for me as those expensive Makita ones. But when it comes to wire wheels, I spend the bucks and get Makitas.
IMPORTANT- The older and more worn a wire wheel is, the more wire shards it spits out. When the wires get worn about half down on a cup knot brush, toss it. When the wires get about a third worn down on a straight wire brush, toss it. I have pulled more wires out of my face, hands, arms, and shirt than I can count. I have even found them embedded in tarps and drywall close to where I was working.
As an added caveat to your post, I like to lay my grinder on its back or side, and not down on the wheel. They are easy to crack, and the pieces go flying.
Thanks, Jerry.
Steve
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
This is a great follow up on the hazards. I purchased an angle grinder a few months ago. Although I do not use it frequently, I do find it valuable, especially for cut off work. However, I do consider it one of my more dangerous power hand tools, and always use it with a "think twice" respect. Your post does a great job of bringing out some of the hazards I have already recognized, and a couple I have not.Thanks!

Gary Dyrkacz snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net Radio Control Aircraft/Paintball Physics/Paintball for 40+ http://home.attbi.com/~dyrgcmn /
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
They are great for starting small surprise fires. :-)

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

That it does, and a very appropriate warning as well. But I'm glad I didn't read it before I first used an angle grinder as a kid. :) Would've probably scared me so bad I never would have! I had watched the mechanic sharpen the blades on my 6ft john deere belly mower a couple of times, and then one time he was busy so he asked if I thought I could do it. I've always been quick to learn, so I said sure. He told me where he kept his 11" grinder, pointed out some goggles, and let me go. I noticed later he was keeping a pretty good eye out. Thanks Matt! You taught me a lot. (That pneumatic grease gun sure spoiled me. :)
In a way, other than wearing me out, I think the big, huge grinder was safer than the little 4" I have now. The 11" had enough weight it wasn't going to go flying around, and the spinning parts were heavy enough that they didn't want to stop with a little nick (3 x 26" blades on that belly mower tended to be like cutting grass with the sharp edge of a baseball bat... except for the first hour or two after sharpening).
sdb
Warning left intact:

--
Wanted: Omnibook 800 & accessories, cheap, working or not
sdbuse1 on mailhost bigfoot.com
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

there is probably a better tool for sharpening mower blades

more detail can be accessed with a smaller diameter grinding wheel
a larger grinding wheel (on an angle grinder with higher amp rating/more powerful motor) would cover more area faster than a smaller grinding wheel
those with higher amp ratings generally should be able to drive a larger grinding wheel (higher amp rating = more powerful motor)
a 4" grinder has draws enough amps to run a 4" grinding wheel, but not enough to run a 7" grinding wheel properly over time
a 7" grinder can run a 7" grinding wheel, or if it can be attached, a 4" grinding wheel

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Belt sander quick and easy.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The two or three times I've used an angle grinder, the one was to remove wood from the bottom of a door. I know a jack plane was the right tool. I do have one, and used it. but it doesn't plane the end grain very well. A belt sander is the correct tool, bu I don't own one. So, the angle grinder came out of the box. Use light pressure, adn keep the wheel moving, cause otherwise it smokes.
The other was when I was trying to get my trailer to hitch to the ball on the van. Well, the safety cables wouldn't go into the holes in the bumper. too small of hooks. So, I used the angle grinder to remove some metal.
I plan to use the angle grinder some time next summer. My church has a girls camp, which has a barn. The barn has several posts with big bolts sticking through. The plan is to crank down the bolts good and tight. Take the excess bolt off with a sawzall, and then smooth it out with Mr. Angle Grinder.
I think I paid $15 for mine from Harbor Fright, and worth every penny.
--

Christopher A. Young
This space intentionally left blank
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.