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Investing in a good-quality angle grinder will prove valuable for anyone. It’s just one of the most versatile tools in the shed and it can power through almost that you may want to cut and just meant for a wide variety of applications.
So, can you use an angle grinder to cut metal? Sure, that and many more. In this article, we will discuss all things that you need to know about angle grinders and how they can help make your next project a reality. So get ready to cut, polish, or sharpen!
What is an angle grinder?
An angle grinder is also referred to as a side or disc grinder and its primary function is to polish or grind through a variety of materials. Due to its power and versatility, it is utilized for cutting through almost all materials that you can think of or use in DIY projects and construction.
Wood, metal, tile, stucco, pavers, you name it. It’s also used for routing mortar and can sand, sharpen, or polish other important tools for you. Here’s a list of what it can be used for or the materials that it can grind or cut through:
- Steel, iron, and all sorts of metals
- Brick, concrete, and stone
- Metal roof cladding
- Corrugated iron
- Steel sheathing
- Building tiles
- Rebar in concrete
- Garden tools
So, there’s no wonder why DIYers and professional contractors alike always love to have their angle grinder at hand, right? Plus, with a wire brush, angle grinders are also utilized to remove paint, clean rust, and sand wood.
How does it work?
Angle grinders may be powered by either petrol or compressed air and they come in a corded and cordless variety. Angle grinders are also sold in multiple sizes with larger ones, of course, utilized for more demanding work.
But, the most popular sizing option of them all would be both the 4 inches and 4 ½ inch model. They are just so handy, easy to wield, and can be used for most jobs you will ever have to do. Just take note though that investing in good quality angle grinder or trusted brands is highly recommended if you want your money’s worth.
Its ability to handle different wheels or accessories is what makes it truly a versatile power tool.
How to properly cut through metal with an angle grinder?
For seasoned contractors cutting through metal with an angle grinder may be as easy as pie but if you’re not quite used to the process just yet then we advise that you take caution and be methodical with your approach.
1. First of all, gather everything that you’d need.
Make sure that you have an accessible power source with your power cord being long enough for the task at hand and if you’re using a cordless variety that the batteries are charged to an optimum capacity.
Make sure that you have the right metal disc for the job or your angle grinder wheel for cutting metal. Use earmuffs and make sure that you have a support tool like a c-clamp to utilize.
2. Additional safety tools
Make sure you have your eye goggles, safety boots, tight-fitting clothes, gloves, and make sure that your working area and floors are clear of any obstacles.
3. Cut the right way
Before cutting your piece of metal, you should always make a mark of your intended cut. While cutting away, always securely hold your tool with both hands, and also, never hold the material with either of your hands either.
And, don’t just change directions suddenly when cutting through your metal piece.
4. Smoothen your cut
The initial cut that you are going to make may be rough on the edges after finishing. So, change your metal disc into something that you can use to smoothen those edges. Like we said, versatile!
The disc and the material
Here’s a quick comparison table of which disc would be right to use on a variety of materials that you are going to cut through. This is given that you are using a 4 ½ inch grinder with a diamond cutoff blade which is a popular choice for DIYers and pro-contractors alike.
|1 to 1.66 mm iron-free disc||Mild steel or stainless steel|
|0.8 or 1.0 mm disc||Thinner sheet metal (and similar materials)|
|1.6 to 2.5 mm disc||For heavier steel like structural steel or rebar|
Please do take note that depending on the size of the disc that you are going to utilized there may be some discoloration as you use a thinner-sized disc due to lesser heat transfer. Also, when cutting aluminum, make sure to use a saw lubricant to reduce the chances of chipping and extend the lifespan of your disc.
Let’s discuss the kinds of attachments that you may use with your angle grinder so you’d know the extent of their versatility.
Discs are what you utilized primarily for all that grinding. Disc eventually gets worn out until they are no longer viable for use. They come in 1/32 and ½ inch in thickness, anything larger than that is called a wheel.
Pads are perfect for polishing or finishing jobs. Smooth out your surfaces with them.
These angle grinder wheels for cutting metal are thicker attachments. You may buy a flapper wheel, solid abrasive wheel, or polishing wheels depending on your intended usage.
And then you may also use cutters which are primarily used for cutting out holes in materials. They are also known as core drills.
There you have it, one of the most versatile power tools that you may employ for your upcoming projects. Angle grinder will make your life easier and your tasks faster to accomplish.
No doubt, that they are valuable tools to keep and they are not that expensive either and gives great value back for your money. So learn how to utilize it properly, maximize its potential, and as always, work with caution.
Stay safe and keep on grinding!