The angle grinder is a tool that is commonly used for both domestic and professional uses for the purpose of cutting, sanding, grinding, polishing, sharpening and chamfering. It is in all respects a very useful and versatile device, which can be used for a wide variety of jobs: for this reason, it cannot be missing from the equipment of DIY and DIY enthusiasts. The grinder is made up of an electric motor capable of driving rotating components which, in turn, are connected to particular discs, of many different types depending on the use. By activating the switch the mechanism that turns these discs at high speeds (up to 100 meters per second of angular speed) is activated, thus allowing the operations described above to be carried out. The grinder is also equipped with a "casing", also known as a "parabola", which serves to protect the user from any splinters and sparks produced by the rotation of the discs. The name of this tool derives from "emery", a material that has always been used due to its powerful natural abrasive properties. The first electric grinders were built around the early twentieth century, but they were rather bulky models; to see the birth of today's light and easy to handle grinders, we had to wait until after the Second World War. Currently the grinders that can be found on the market are characterized by a reduced weight, which generally does not exceed 2.5 kilograms, and by a power ranging from a few hundred Watts up to 1400-1800W and more. Typically, the rotation speed of the discs is around 8000-10000 revolutions per minute. There are both grinders that work by connecting them to the power socket and models for hobby use, battery-powered and also useful for professionals who work outdoors.
What is it for
The angle grinder is a tool suitable for example for cutting iron or stainless steel, very resistant materials and for which particular reinforced hard disks are needed. This tool is also suitable for cutting a wide range of materials commonly used in construction such as tiles, stone blocks, but also granite, brick or marble slabs. When carrying out welding work it is easy for burrs or drips to remain between the metal parts, and the angle grinder is the right tool for removing these residues. Thanks to the grinder it is also possible to polish different types of surfaces, for example metal ones, while eliminating any layers of rust that cover them. Sheets of metal, gates and iron artefacts can be brought back to life with the use of an angle grinder. Grinders can also be used to polish wood or parquet, using special discs. The angle grinder is also very useful when dealing with blunt blades or blades that no longer cut, such as those of lawnmowers or gardening shears; thanks to these tools it is possible to sharpen the blades in a few minutes and without effort.
Which discs to use
Angle grinders come with interchangeable discs, each made for a different purpose. For example, if you want to sand a surface lightly, you need to use cloth-type discs, which are "softer" than the abrasive discs used for deep sanding. If the grinder is used for cutting, many different discs can be found on the market, typically diamond-coated or made with compounds suitable for cutting the most disparate materials such as iron, wood, plastic, tiles, bricks, marble and so on. There are also universal discs, suitable for various uses and therefore ideal for those who do not use the angle grinder very often or do not intend to invest in purchasing a large set of discs. On the market you can find discs in three different formats: 115, 125 and 230 millimeters in diameter, which can obviously only be mounted on grinders that support the same diameter of discs. As regards the hobby and DIY sector, small grinders are usually used (115 and 125 mm), while the larger ones are mostly used by professionals also due to their higher cost.
From a safety point of view, the angle grinder is a tool equipped with various protection devices, but which still must be used with care. There is a guard on the device that protects against sparks and splinters, but it is good practice to always wear a pair of sturdy gloves, a mask and a pair of work glasses. A mask and glasses are also essential to prevent the large quantities of dust produced by the grinder from irritating the upper airways but above all the eyes. During use it is advisable to wear sturdy work clothes, avoiding any synthetic garment that could catch fire following accidental contact with sparks. When using the angle grinder in closed places, for example inside a garage, it is good practice to use protective anti-noise headphones or earplugs. In the long run, in fact, you can suffer permanent damage to your hearing. Due to the very high rotation speeds, grinder discs tend to overheat quickly, therefore touching them must be avoided, even after the tool has been turned off. Furthermore, some discs, and in particular canvas ones, are marketed with an expiry date: never use expired discs, because they could break during rotation and cause damage to things or people. To protect the user's safety, the grinders are equipped with special locking systems that prevent the device from starting to work when it is reconnected to the power after having been unplugged from the socket with the switch in the "on" position. This safety device is also very useful when, due to a sudden blackout, the power is interrupted.
Where to buy
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