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What to Consider When Buying a Grinding Wheel

If you’re looking to buy a grinding wheel for metalwork, there are several vendors you can find nowadays. But you need to pick the right one so you don’t end up wasting cash and time.

Many things should be considered when buying a grinding wheel, first of which is the material that you will use it on. This will tell you which abrasive is right for your needs. For example, for steel alloys, zirconia alumina is a good choice. If you’ll be grinding cast iron, non-ferrous metals and non-metallic materials, your best choice is a silicon carbide abrasive.

The harder and more brittle the material to be ground is, the softer the grade and the finer the grit size you’ll need. This is due to the fact that tough materials resist abrasive grains, causing them to dull quickly. With a finer grit and softer grade, the grains can break away as they turn dull, while fresh and sharp cutting points come to the surface. On the other hand, a coarser grit and harder grade are best for softer materials that are easy to penetrate.

The amount of stock that should be removed is also a factor. Due to heavier cuts and stronger penetration, coarser grits will obviously take out stock at a higher speed. But a finer grit will be more effective for softer material.

When it comes to bonds, wheels that come with vitrified bonds cut faster. If only a limited amount of stock must be removed, or if the finish requirements are higher, shellac, rubber or resin bonds are more fitting.

Another issue that impacts the choice of wheel bond is operational wheel speed. Vitrified wheels often run under 6,500 surface feet per minute. Faster speeds can break the vitrified bond. When speeds reach 6,500 to 9,500 surface feet per minute, organic bond wheels are recommended. High-speed applications normally require specially designed wheels.

In any case, operating speed should not be higher than the maximum recommended in the manual.

Next, check the area of grinding contact between the wheel and the material to be ground. A wider area of contact calls for a softer grade and a with coarser grit. Smaller areas of grinding contact needs wheels that have finer grits and harder grades to endure the greater unit pressure.

Then, take into account the grinding action severity. This is the pressure responsible for keeping the grinding wheel close to the workpiece. Certain abrasives are designed for severe grinding conditions, such as when grinding steel and steel alloys.

Finally, grinding machine horsepower should be considered. Harder grade wheels must generally be used on machines that have higher horsepower.In cases where horsepower is less than wheel diameter, experts recommend a wheel of a softer grade. The reverse is also true.
The opposite is true as well.

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