Choosing an angle grinder part 1

If you work with metal, especially if you weld, there is one tool that is an absolute necessity. That tool is an angle grinder. They come in several different sizes, shapes, brands, and colors, but they all do basically the same thing-they spin some type of disc at a high rpm. The difference is how well
and how safely they do it. Before you buy a grinder, there are a few things that you should take into consideration when buying a small-(6″ or less), angle grinder. Some of the more important things are:

  • What size motor (amperage)
  • What are you going to do with it  
  • What size wheel
  • What features should it have
  • Recommendations

A warning of sorts. A grinder is a very dangerous tool. An abrasive disc, or cut-off wheel spinning at 10000 rpms takes almost no time to slice through you. They can cut you to the bone, or worse, in the blink of an eye. Because of this, safety should be your first priority. One thing you should always do when operating a grinder is wear DOUBLE EYE PROTECTION – safety glasses or goggles AND a face shield. Even when I use both, there are times when I still get pieces of metal or grinding wheel in my eyes.

Also, make sure you have no exposed skin. Wear at the minimum long sleeve shirts. It’s even better to have a burn jacket or leathers. Flying pieces of red-hot metal and grinding wheel hurt when they embed themselves in you. Finally, always wear a minimum of leather gloves. I’ve accidentally touched or brushed my fingers against the wheel numerous times. When you use a grinder a lot, as some of us do, this happens. I hate to preach but you can’t slack off on safety when using a grinder. They’re dangerous and they’ll hurt you before you even know it.

Click here for part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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