Cutting slabs - follow-up.

So I went out and bought the cheapest 9" grinder I could find, a Clarke one from Machine Mart. 32 iirc. Used it for the first time today. It cut, or, not really cut, scored, around half inch deep, 15 slabs. Then it stopped. And wouldnt restart. It is going back when I go past there - any idea if they are OK with returns? I've got the receipt and whatever it came with, but no box.
I wouldnt mind if I was ramming it into the slabs, but I wasnt, I was very lightly running it along, doing multiple runs to cut down. maybe that was the problem, the motor running 'too' long. Anyway, Screwfix will be getting a visit soon to get the Dewalt one on offer at 70. Alan.
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On 2007-07-12 17:36:46 +0100, alan@darkroom.+.com (A.Lee) said:

What a surprise.

Doesn't matter. The thing isn't fit for purpose. This equates to a total refund plus some compensation for the cost of doing the return. On a 35 transaction, something like 5 in cash or vouchers would be reasonable.

That would be a much better proposition. There is a wide range of choice in quality 230mm angle grinders in the 70-80 bracket.
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Andy Hall wrote:

Ah, that's music to Andy's ears :-)

Any 9" grinder should sail through 15 slabs. Sounds like it's naff but, if it's your first grinder, check there isn't a reset button, and that the disc hadn't worked loose

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No, I've just been out to the van, and it stinks of burnt electrics from the grinder. It was doing quite well before it stopped, it vibrated a lot at first, but after 3 or 4 slabs it seemed to smooth out a lot, and was doing OK. Even by cheap tool standards, this one is pretty shit - I was taking it easy with it, no cutting so hard that it was slowing the motor down. Alan.
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On 2007-07-12 22:01:16 +0100, alan@darkroom.+.com (A.Lee) said:

There was somebody who had the smaller version of one of these a while back where the motor caught on fire and burned his jeans and almost his gonads.
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Andy Hall wrote:

Got a feeling that was Ferm rather than a Clarke, but same principle....
Angle grinders can get quite hot mind you - especially when you fill them with masonry dust, so if you have not got one with a motor rated for continuous running then you probably don't want to be cutting for more than 10 mins at a time without a rest to let it cool.
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Cheers,

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Same factory?

So it's back to the crappy motors issue then isn't it.....
The poor mechanical performance of cheap routers in terms of results out vs. electric power in is well known - e.g. the 2000W models that deliver substantally less than a 1600W quality product.
All of that lost energy has to go somewhere. I'm surprised that the suppliers haven't claimed that the products keep the user's hands warm in winter.
I would say that a 230mm that can't deliver continuous operation or close to it isn't fit for purpose.
One might buy a 115-125mm model to do small work that likely is in short bursts, but a 230mm one is pretty much going to be destined for heavy work like paving and the like and implicit in that is longer periods of running.
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Andy Hall wrote:

probably not, I think Ferm are manufactured in Holland,

Well either that, or cooling arrangements, or probably (in this case) a defective grinder in the first place.

The mechanical output of even decent tools will often be a little over half the electrical input power, so a 2kW grinder will probably need to dissipate at about 1kW in order to keep cool. That is quite a rate of loss.
DeWalt usually publish both figures for their tools which makes for interesting reading sometimes:
http://www.dewalt.co.uk/powertools/productdetails/catno/D28490 /

It could at least make the tea!

Much depends on the nature of the work. Cutting most masonry items will usually by its nature be an intermittent operation, unless you are cutting a long run of slabs in situ. You are probably at most risk of overheating it when grinding or wire brushing etc.

It is probably worth mentioning that the grinder in this case was probably just faulty in the first place. Another example of the same might well cope fine, since the endurance of this one seems unrealistically poor even for a budget one. Grinders do have the advantage of getting fan cooling at near full speed for all of their operation.
If you look at the Axminster budget (white) grinders, they get designated as "trade" (as opposed to "industrial" for the branded ones) which suggests reasonably intensive use ought to be acceptable.
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The marketing organisation is...

Poor outcome whichever

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Or the user not reading the instructions and using something continuously that isn't rated for it.
MBQ
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On 2007-07-13 10:40:28 +0100, " snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com"

Then it comes back to fitness for purpose. If the thing is going to overheat, it should in any case have some kind of cutout that resets when it cools
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said:

<snip>
No, it comes down to reading the instructions, if the tool is used correctly it works, abuse it and you should expect it to fail - just how many 'user scenarios' should the designer take into consideration, any tool will fail if abused.
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That's all very well and of course one should read the instructions. Equally, would there have been anything on the outside of the box before purchase pointing out that the product can only be run in short bursts? Doesn't seem likely.
It is reasonable for a user and a designer to assume that a large angle grinder would be used for cutting a lot of paving slabs, possibly in quick succession.
It is further reasonable for a customer to assume that if a product can potentially have an overheating issue that it should protect itself and not become irreparable damaged.
It isn't as if these are corner cases - they are the main purpose for purchase.
One wouldn't buy one of these for denistry for example, unless one were a vet at the zoo. Those might be considered to be unreasonable "user scenarios". Using it for its main intended purpose is not.
The reality is that it has been engineered down to a price on the hope that the user will hardly use the thing. The supplier has been caught out and should pay.
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<snipped>

Whilst you are correct that the tool has been engineered down to a price, you're well and truly wrong that either the supplier or manufacturer should pay for the customer abusing the tool - a refund should be given on the unused tool if, upon getting the tool home and reading the instructions [1], the tool is not fit for the intended use but if the purchaser ignores the instructions why the f**k should someone else pay for their stupidity?!
[1] assuming that it's not clear from the outside of the box.
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The customer is not abusing the tool.
If you're going to run that line of argument, you might as well say that if one buys a car and it says in the small print of the instructions not to start the engine and one does, then that's abusing it.
In the context of the instructions, it would be,
In the context of expected reasonable use, that would be as much of a nonsense as saying that an angle grinder can't be used for the reasonably expected purpose of cutting slabs to make a drive or patio in a normal project.

The manufacturer is misrepresenting the fitness for purpose of the tool. If I buy a car, I don't expect to find a comment that I can't start the engine. If I buy an angle grinder, then I expect it to be able to do a proper job and to have a running time suitable for a typical project in which it would be used.
As an absolute minimum, I would expect it not to overheat and break if it gets too warm.
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How about if you buy a car, refuse to read the manual and don't have it serviced every 5k miles like it says in the manual? Thats abuse.
If the manual says don't run the tool for more than 10 minutes in every 30 minutes and you run it for 5 hours then that is abuse whatever you say.

Do you disregard the maintence info in the manual too?

I expect it to break if it gets too warm.. after all that would be the definition of too warm wouldn't it?
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dennis@home wrote:

<significant non relevant snip>
I beg your pardon, you are more anti-deluvian than me!
I bought my wife a new Peugeot earlier this year. The guidebook advised a first service at 20,000 miles ( yes, miles). The car is full of electronic gubbins, one of which says that the first service is at 12,000 miles (or 2 years).
I checked with Peugeot UK who advise that go with what the car tells you. No service from purchase until 2 years or in our case 12,000 miles!
I had incredible difficulty believing this, expecting the first service to be at 1,500 or at best 5,000 miles!
Seems things have changed.
If I could just get to the Stannah! ;)
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<snip>
Its a made up example. 8-)
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On 2007-07-14 23:50:22 +0100, "dennis@home"

How about if you have a car and it says in the manual in the small print after you have bought it that you can only drive it for ten minutes and than you have to stop by the side of the road to let it cool down for half an hour?
That wouldn't really be tenable on the part of the manufacturer would it? The expectation of the customer is to be able to drive it all day apart from filling it and him with fuel.
One doesn't even see Skodas parked by the side of the motorway for this purpose.
Even more to the point, if one had bought such a car and the engine irrevocably broke after a day, even when the car was driven within the speed limit and in the right gear, then it would be reasonable to expect a replacement.
The point is about expected use for the type of tool. An angle grinder should be able to run for more than 10 mins in 30, instructions or no instructions. That is not to say that one shouldn't follow the instructions, but that this is not a reasonable pattern of use.
Certainly, if the reason for this is that the motor will overheat, then there should be a thermal cutout to prevent damage. It is perfectly possible to do this. The reason why it isn't is that it adds to the manufacturing cost. This only compounds the felony in terms of the product's lack of fitness for purpose.

Of course not. That is a different issue. Maintenance is part of the normal expectation of the care of a tool. Presumably the manufacturer has a complete range of spares in order to facilitate this.

Then you have a low expectation. I would expect it to protect itself. It is perfectly easy and reasonable to achieve that. The issue is cost.
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Your second swipe at Skoda recently, and a particularly bad example of the "you get what you pay for" argument I would have thought
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