A bench grinder is a versatile machine that is capable of a lot of functions, making it a valuable tool in any work place. Craftsmen will be quick to assert that a bench grinder is primarily a sharpening machine but in reality it is able to accomplish more than just sharpening metal objects. The unique feature of the bench grinder are the removable wheels that make it able to adapt quickly for the task at hand.
Grinders will usually come with a coarse wheel for bulk grinding and have smoother wheels for finishing most surfaces. The power of the motor and the speed settings all have to be taken into consideration when using a bench grinder. Bench grinders with more powerful motors are more capable of doing tough jobs as opposed to entry level grinders. The speed setting is also important as allowing the motor to operate at slower speeds will make it easy to accomplish fine grinding jobs.
A bench grinder could also be used to smooth rough metal surfaces and to buff flat surfaces to a brilliant shine. These tasks could easily be done with less effort by changing the wheels that are appropriate for the specific job at hand such as wire brush wheels and buffer wheels.
Bench Grinder Techniques and Uses
Remember to wear proper safety equipment when handling power tools. The use of goggles and appropriate gloves is cheap insurance against any malfunctions or unexpected events that may happen when handling a power tool.
- Attach a silicone carbide wheel to the bench grinder to sharpen metal tools with relative ease. Operate the grinder at high or low speeds depending on the thickness of the tool and slowly place the tip of the tool on the rotating wheel at a angle. Rub the tip and the sides of the tool on the rotating wheel for a more even and sharp consistency. A silicon carbide wheel could also be used to smooth the edges of metal pipes after cutting.
- Attach a fiber wheel to remove various burrs, indentations or rust in metal. A used fiber or wire wheel could be used to efficiently clean the spark plugs of your vehicle, better than using sandpaper and cleaner sprays. Use a slow speed when removing rust and dirt to prevent excess grinding on the surface.
- Using an aluminum oxide wheel is best for sharpening blades and grinding hard metal surfaces.
- By simply attaching a buffing wheel, the bench grinder can be used to buff or polish a metal work piece. Applying wax or polish to the wheel before turning the grinder on will make the job easier and more efficient. Hold the metal piece against the rotating wheel utilizing a slow speed.
When using a bench grinder, remember to hold the piece firmly when grinding against the wheel. It would also be advised to rotate the piece as it touches the wheel for a more even grind. When changing wheels, be careful not to over tighten the lock nut as the tightening torque will be increased as the wheel rotates in normal operation.