And how to operate it safely and efficiently
The angle grinder is an essential tool for any metal fabrication job. It is the industry workhorse tool, cutting and grinding relentlessly, at the core of every project. Given its extensive use, it is imperative to know what to look for in an angle grinder, how to use it correctly and safely and how to get the best performance out of it.
Here are six essential tips that will help you get the maximum benefit out of your angle grinder and keep you, your workers and your workplace safe.
- Ensure that your angle grinder conforms to international power output standards
A quality angle grinder that conforms to international standards, should have a power output of between 700 to 900 watts. This ensures that you achieve a superior performance while cutting and grinding. Many angle grinders in the market are of a lower power wattage, typically 500 to 680 watts. Yes, they may cost less, however this will result in less cuts per wheel, which in turn leads to an overall decrease in productivity.
- Ensure your angle grinder has an ON/OFF Paddle Switch
From a safety point of view, a PADDLE on-off switch that turns the machine off immediately when released, is the single most important thing you need to have on your angle grinder. On many regular grinders, this on/off switch is a sliding. This can be a major hazard in an emergency. Imagine a scenario where a worker is injured or has lost consciousness. This is extremely dangerous as they will not be able to manually switch off the angle grinder. The angle grinder will continue to run, posing great danger not only to the operator, but also to people in the vicinity. A paddle switch that turns the machine off immediately when it is released, will give you peace of mind and keep you and your workers safe.
- Match the wheel RPM to the grinder RPM
The RPM on the wheel should either match or be higher than the grinder RPM. A lower RPM could potentially cause the wheel to shatter. The larger the disk, the lower the maximum speed it can rotate at. A lot of accidents on the fabrication floor can be avoided with this simple check. Make sure you match your wheel to the angle grinder designed for that wheel size. Otherwise, you are looking at a potentially nasty accident.
- Never operate the grinder without the side handle or guard removed The side handle and the guard are essential safety components of the angle grinder. The side handle gives you more control over the tool in the event of kickback and torque reaction. The guard protects you from fast-flying debris and burns from sparks. When fixing the guard, adjust it so it is facing you. Check that both the handle and the guard are tightly fastened before starting every job.
- Always secure your angle grinder firmly while using it For maximum safety, ensure you are holding the grinder firmly with both hands. You should only release your hands when the grinder comes to a full stop. One hand should firmly hold the body of the grinder and the other should firmly hold the side handle. Never use your angle grinder single-handedly. If for any reason, the angle grinder gets stuck on your workpiece, it will most likely be jerked out of your hand and potentially cause a nasty accident. If for any reason the wheel gets stuck, which could happen when using a larger grinder, you should release the trigger immediately, to avoid burning out the motor. If the wheel is still spinning, wait until it comes to a complete stop, before pulling it out from the workpiece.
- Wear the right protective gear Check that your PPE is designed to withstand high heat and adequately shields you from hot sparks, high velocity spatter and loud noise. For cutting and grinding, ensure that you always wear the following PPE: Safety goggles, gloves, boots, earplugs, a dust mask and an apron.
More information on how to pick the right PPE for your job HERE …
We hope these tips will help you pick the best angle grinder for your job and get the maximum performance out of it.
All TUFF Angle grinders conform to ANSI and EN standards and are guaranteed to deliver superlative performances for your toughest cutting and grinding jobs.
To find out more about TUFF’s range of high-performance angle grinders with built-in class-leading safety features click HERE.
TUFF is a global leader in industrial fabrication and safety equipment. Our world-class products are the industry gold standard and are being used every day across the globe and across industries to help build the future. Through our innovative solutions, we help our clients get their projects done on time, on budget and safely.
For more information on how we are empowering progress for a better world visit our website https://tuff-asia.com/