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  • Looking For An Angle Grinder Suggestion

    It seems that a hand held angle grinder is a MUST when fabricating or fitting metal for welding. I have a bench grinder but that will only go so far.

    I see a wide swing on pricing from $10 (harbor freight) to over $150 for an angle grinder. What makes the big difference between models?

    Another question - tight corners. How do you clean painted metal in a tight corner? I'm welding "L" brakets together and would like to get a nice shiney surface before welding. Do you use a wire brush or a special grinding tip?

    Thanks

    -Allen
    ----------------------
    HH120
    Allen May

  • #2
    Hf has decent air angle die grinders when mated with a 3m roloc discs work great for tight areas. As for electric hand grinders I have two hilti 4.5s they are great dont buy a hf model unless thats all you can afford. The discs from there are ok but the grinders have no power and dont last all that long. I work 1/2 mile from one of their stores and consider most of their power tools disposible. I buy alot of their tools that arent critical to strenght or tolerences. I would recommend a dewalt or hilti or if you go craftsman get industrial!! If your gonna spend any money on it go ahead and spend a little more and trust me you get what you pay for.

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    • #3
      Allen,

      I have several 4-1/2 inch grinders out at the same time. One with a wheel, one with a sanding pad, and the last with a wire brush. Although I also use cup type brushes, I like the twisted tuft wheel brushes best because they are pretty aggresive and fit into tight angles. Here is a link to what I mean: http://www.millrose.com/twisted_tuft_wheel.htm

      I think this will do what you want. Try searching for discussions on grinders; there have been a lot of threads recently. Or just wait a little, as everyone seems to like to talk grinders...

      Regards,
      Bill C
      "The more I learn about welding the more I find there is to learn..."

      Comment


      • #4
        I have 2 Firestorm 4 1/2" grinders. I bought 1 and liked it so much I bought another. They hold up well, as I have knocked one off the welding table several times. You can bog them down, but it is much harder then with a HF model.

        They are in the $50 range and Lowes and will greatly out due any lightweight grinder I have used.
        Rick in Arkansas
        www.spider-webdesign.net
        www.ironsidewelding.com

        Comment


        • #5
          I second slimpickens advice on the Harbor Freight grinders. I have 2 HF electric grinders that I used to use only for crappy dirty jobs saving the wear and tear on my Metabo. Well since the Metabo is down for the count (just buzzes and won't turn after I loaned it out) I have been using the HF's. Then for Christmas the inlaws gave me a Milwaukee (model 6154-20) 4 1/2" grinder, and here is my opinion on it. I think it is about as gutless as the HF's even though the advertised amperage is 12 amps. I guess the only thing it has going for it is that it is a variable speed. If I had known what it is like and I did not already use it I would return it and get another Metabo, or maybe even a Dewalt. I feel the HF's are ok for putzing around with, but if I only had one grinder and had to depend on it, it would be something of better quality than the HF's.....or for that matter the Milwaukee's too.

          Comment


          • #6
            HF angle grinders have very, very sloppy gearboxes. What you get from that is lots of noise and it'll have a tendency to jump on you when you go from free spinning to a pressure state (like when you're trying to be precise, it'll act as a jackhammer - literally! Every time you touch the work, you have to take out the slop, so light pressure makes the wheel jump). They're really only good for cutoff wheels, and at times I wish I had my wheel on another grinder for that task too - but it was 15 bucks and not a big loss if I do replace it with a better unit later.

            Expect to spend 50-130 on a decent to great 4.5" with a larger motor.

            Comment


            • #7
              Dw28402

              I got mine at AOC (Texas based welding supply) for $82.95 plus tax. Sale ends 1/7/06. See this thread:

              Comment


              • #8
                My Dewalt and Bosch seem to be real tough. I also have two Harbor Freights that seem ok for flap disc but I don't think they would last grinding.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm a hobbyist restoring a car, and my $10 HF grinder has been an essential tool. Mine works fantastic- flaps, cut off, grinding, wire brush cup- it doesn't quit. It is loud and vibrates a lot though. I've never tried another brand of grinder.

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                  • #10
                    I have used up a bunch of little grinders over the years and I would suggest the Bosch as a very good deal. Tough little grinders.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      if you want one of the best ergonomically desinged, powerful and reliable grinders, look at Hitachi. I'm all for north american made (when reasonable), but Hitachi has proven to me to be one of the best power tool manufacturers in our market, so it gets my vote. Now, I also keep a 5" and a 7" in the cheap $40 HF type of grinders for backups, but the 7/9" Hitachis are the real power-horses of my grinder selection.
                      Proud owner of Bushwacker Mobile Welding
                      Pictures

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                      • #12
                        Coal, how's that utility box coming? Haven't seen any updates in a while.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Search this forum for "best angle grinder". Here are a couple of threads: http://www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/...=angle+grinder
                          and http://www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/...=angle+grinder

                          Northern used to have a Metabo cheap, but you can still get one at allprotools.com
                          --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

                          Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.
                          -------------------------

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by umayxa3
                            It seems that a hand held angle grinder is a MUST when fabricating or fitting metal for welding. I have a bench grinder but that will only go so far.

                            I see a wide swing on pricing from $10 (harbor freight) to over $150 for an angle grinder. What makes the big difference between models?

                            Another question - tight corners. How do you clean painted metal in a tight corner? I'm welding "L" brakets together and would like to get a nice shiney surface before welding. Do you use a wire brush or a special grinding tip?

                            Thanks

                            -Allen
                            I've been using two $25 4.5" angle grinders...electric....for about 1 year now.....they still work like new

                            They have been used allot too...i have been bringing them to my welding class and everyone seems to like them because they use them all the time

                            The only time I've had one break down was when my mom ran one over with the car

                            As for those tight corners, get yourself an electric or air die grinder...the 1/4" types

                            they work much better than a dremel
                            i should get one myself...the underside my my welding table needs grinding but the way i set it up just doesn't work for my grinder
                            Last edited by moody2.0; 01-01-2006, 04:08 PM.
                            Dave

                            Welcome to Sonic Orb Studios:
                            http://sonicorbstudios.squarespace.com/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My three Metabo W7-115's are the best yet. $50 to $75 new in box on eBay for the ones I have.
                              Barry Milton
                              ____________________________

                              HTP Invertig 201
                              HTP MIG2400

                              Trailblazer 302, Spoolmatic 30A, Suitcase 12RC
                              Clarke Hotshot

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