How to work correctly and safely with a grinder

Recommendation points

Angle grinders or grinders are widespread due to their simplicity and versatility, but their misuse often leads to injury and other unpleasant consequences. From the article you will learn about the rules of operation of angle grinders and methods of working with this tool.

The main and unconditional guarantee of high-quality work with angle grinders is a serviceable and reliable tool that is not allowed to be used when:

  1. Damage to the power cord.
  2. The presence of extraneous noise when working in the engine and gearbox.
  3. Visible damage to the hull.
  4. Faulty interlocked start button.

How to work correctly with a grinder

All other subtleties of use relate to safety measures and techniques for working with the tool.

Choosing the right discs

Wheels for angle grinders have a diameter of 125, 180 or 230 mm, for a certain standard size of the tool. Depending on the material to be processed and the nature of the processing, the following types of discs are distinguished:

  1. Abrasive discs with reinforcement up to 0.5 mm thick are used for cutting, the type of material being processed is indicated in the circle marking.
  2. Abrasive discs with a thickness of more than 0.5 mm are used for cleaning and rough grinding of the surface.
  3. Wire scrapers are used to remove rust, paint and other contaminants from surfaces. There are discs with wire bristles and spiral beads, the latter are stiffer and have a longer service life.
  4. Diamond-edged metal discs are used for cutting concrete, tiles or stone. It is advisable to use perforated discs for more efficient removal of dust from the cut.
  5. Flap sanding discs are used for fine surface sanding.
  6. Felt and foam discs are used for glossing and polishing.

How to work correctly with a grinder

Many people make a typical mistake, completing the grinder with circular discs with victorious teeth for cutting wood. These discs are intended for circular saws, it is strictly forbidden to put them on angle grinders.

Each circle for a grinder is marked with a nominal working speed. It is not allowed to exceed this value, for example, by installing used discs 230 mm on smaller angle grinders. Reducing the rated speed is allowed, but this way the disc wears out much faster.

Workplace preparation

All work with angle grinders is recommended, if possible, in the open air in order to avoid dusty rooms and restriction of operator movements. The place for work must be at least 20 meters away from sources of potential ignition.

It is important to have sufficient space around in case of tool interruptions, jerks and jams. All workpieces to be processed must either be heavy so that they do not move during operation, or be fixed to stationary objects using a vice or clamps.

How to work correctly with a grinder

You need to keep a supply of the power cord with you, at least 1.5-2 meters. When working in closed rooms, position yourself so that you can stand firmly on your feet, or, kneeling down, be able to turn at least 60 ° in both directions, without reaching for the workpiece with the tool. It is forbidden to work with angle grinders in a prone position.

About personal protective equipment

If the safety precautions are observed, the angle grinder is not capable of causing serious injuries, however, an involuntary reaction of the operator to painful sensations is possible when sparks hit open parts of the body. Also, during prolonged work, vibration and noise exposure reduces alertness and sharpness of tactile sensations, which can lead to a weakening of the grip and pulling the instrument out of the hands.

How to work correctly with a grinder

Since the grinder requires maximum concentration to work, harmful influences and distractions are compensated for with the following protective equipment:

  1. Protective cover. Its use is mandatory and, of course, it is forbidden to remove the casing for work, for example, with disks of a larger diameter than provided. A rupture of the disc with the casing installed leads to the ejection of particles in the lateral direction, in addition, the casing prevents uncontrolled spread of sparks.
  2. Protective glasses. When working with a grinder, eye injuries account for more than 2/3 of the total number of injuries, therefore, protection of the eyes is also required. For this purpose, semi-open plexiglass glasses with a reinforced upper frame are used..
  3. Protective gloves. The hands must be protected from both possible sparks and vibration during prolonged work. In addition, the cutting edge of the parts is very hot, while wearing gloves, you can not worry about accidental burns.
  4. Earplugs. The noise impact of the grinder is quite high and leads to severe fatigue. It is recommended to protect your hearing with noise canceling headphones during prolonged use..
  5. Closed shoes. Most of the sparks during operation hit the lower body, the discomfort of a large hot particle in the shoe can reduce the concentration, which will lead to loss of control of the tool.

How to work correctly with a grinder

How to avoid the trouble of sparks

Numerous cases of ignition of synthetic trousers are known when a sheaf of sparks hits them, therefore, working with angle grinders is allowed only in cotton overalls.

Typically, when working, the operator lets sparks between the legs, often using a canvas apron attached to the lower back to catch the flow. It is recommended to always touch the part to be cut with the upper front of the blade so that the sparks fly to the floor. In other cases, it is necessary to work together with an assistant who will limit the spread of sparks with a wet burlap.

The most sensitive to sparks are materials such as plastic, glass, enamel and varnished surfaces, thin and synthetic fabrics.

Techniques for cutting and grinding

When installing or replacing the disc, lock the gearbox with the button on the housing and tear off the fastening nut. Some discs must only be installed in the indicated direction of rotation. After installing the disc, the nut does not need to be tightly clamped, just tighten well by hand.

How to work correctly with a grinder

When cutting, it is very important to properly secure the part so that the cut end hangs freely and does not pinch the blade when cutting. To do this, the part is laid on a small ledge and pressed down with the right foot. The rotating disc is brought to the mark with a smooth movement and a small incision is made 1–2 mm deep. Then you can increase the pressure and speed up the cut..

When grinding or polishing, no additional force is required, the tool’s own weight is sufficient. It is only required to observe the recommended angle of inclination and carry out processing only in one direction, or in a circle.

How to work correctly with a grinder

Cutting discs cannot be used for cleaning and grinding metal, although this rule can be avoided within reasonable limits. For example, it makes no sense to change a disc just to remove a chamfer from a cut or remove small traces of scale.

In general, a general recommendation can be given to novice operators: gain confidence and do not violate the rules of safe work. Despite the slightly menacing appearance, the angle grinder is a fairly practical, easy-to-use tool..

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Comments: 1
  1. Juniper

    Can someone please share some tips on how to use a grinder safely and effectively without risking any accidents or injuries? I’m not very experienced with this tool and want to make sure I’m doing things right. Any advice or guidelines would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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