People who have purchased bench grinders often complain about a similar problem which is the wobbling of the product when used. Since such poses danger, understanding the basics of bench grinders is very important. Also, to resolve the problem, people should know how to balance bench grinder wheels properly.
What is a Bench Grinder?
A bench grinder is a highly versatile tool that has a set of wheels on each end. The wheels are usually made of stone, and in order to differentiate one wheel from the other, manufacturers regularly incorporate specific grit levels.
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Depending on the manufacturer from which you’ve purchased this item, each bench grinder runs at a specific RPM. More often than not, a higher RPM enhances the effectiveness of this particular tool.
When it comes to a bench grinder, not every person is familiar with its workability. Some of you might not even recognize a grinder. However, if you’re a professional woodworker or even a serious DIY user who wants to keep his tools useful for an extended duration of time, this is where a bench grinder comes handy in many ways.
As a Sharpening Tool
First of all, you can use this product for grinding all blades which tend to become dull with the passage of time. It includes, but isn’t limited to, your kitchen knives, lawn mower blades, and other such cutting tools. In fact, there is no limit on the type of tools which you can sharpen with the bench grinder.
If you’re a woodworker who carries a set of tools in his or her everyday kit, you can use the bench grinder for sharpening every single one of those devices. All you’ve to do is to select a proper grit level, along with an efficient RPM, and it will do the rest. As a result, it can help you save a handful of time and money which you might have to spend for purchasing a new set of tools.
As a Shaping and Polishing Tool
For all those professional contractors who tend to work with a number of different tools on a consistent basis, they can use the bench grinders for shaping metals, and they can also use it as a bench polisher.
What are the Dangers of Wobbling Bench Grinders?
A vibrating grinder can turn out to be a dangerous tool in a number of different ways. First of all, it will affect your work efficacy as you just cannot use a wobbling tool for ensuring a flawless performance. Even though you can always use it for sharpening or grinding, it just cannot achieve the same level of perfection which you can attain from a stationary grinder.
Second, it can also put your personal safety at risk while reducing the overall lifespan of this product. This is due to the reason that when a grinder wobbles, it can damage the bearings and other such components in its interior.
Reasons for Wobbling
If your bench grinder is wobbling, it can happen due to some different reasons. It might be due to the poorly attached bushings, or it can also occur due to the poor quality of the equipment. Another thing, which can make this product vibrate is the undersized arbor which isn’t capable of holding the wheels.
In order to determine the actual reason of vibration, take off the wheel from the grinder. Attach the wheel with a firm twine in such a way that the thread passes through the center of the wheel.
Afterward, take out a non-metallic object and tap it with the wheel. If you hear a bell-like sound, it means that your grinding wheel is running in a fine form. You just have to balance them, and they can work perfectly.
How to Balance Bench Grinder Wheels?
For this method, you’re going to need the following:
- Chalk or colored pencils
- Balancing Weights
Take out the grinding wheel and slide it through the sleeve. Rotate the wheel with the help of your hands to ensure that it can move freely on the sleeve without any hindrance. This is due to the reason that with regular usage, grinding wheels tend to expand. So, if there isn’t enough space on the sleeve, it might prevent the wheel from spinning naturally.
Afterward, attach the wheel firmly to the spindle by tightening the flanges in such a way that you could easily open them again. Then, rotate the wheel once again to check out whether it still wobbles or if the tightening of flanges has reduced vibrations to a certain extent.
Once you’ve determined the extent of vibrations, take off the wheel from the sleeve assembly. Replace it with the balancing arbor and place both on the balancing stand.
Take off the weights which are placed on the sleeve before spinning it smoothly. Allow the sleeve to rotate naturally. Once it stops at a particular point, take out the chalk and use it to mark the exact spot which is facing upwards at that point.
Take the weights, which were removed from the sleeve, before attaching them gently to the flanges. At this point, connect these weights in such a way that they are properly aligned with the chalk mark. Tighten these flanges, but not too tightly.
Use your hands to rotate the wheels to such a position until the chalk mark reaches the one o’clock position. Similarly, adjust the balancing weights in such a way that they should be appropriately aligned with the chalk mark.
Take out a screwdriver or any other tool to tighten the flanges securely since you aren’t going to unscrew them anymore.
Finally, take off the arbor before sliding the grinding wheel through the sleeve. Afterward, rotate the wheel with your own hands to make sure that the vibrations have been appropriately removed.
The importance of knowing how to balance bench grinder wheels is not questionable. Not only will a stable stationary tool make your job easier, but it will also ensure that everyone can use the grinder without worrying about their safety. It is also the best way to extend the life of the product. Hence, it is imperative that you do it on a consistent basis.