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Best grinders for stainless

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  • NoogaD
    started a topic Best grinders for stainless

    Best grinders for stainless

    It's been quite a while since I had a project worth posting on here. This is my first stainless steel project. I'm building a couple of 1/4" 304 stainless steel craftsman style columns with built-in lighting for my new entryway on my house. The project is coming along, but as you may guess, it has begun to eat my lunch.

    First, just the 25 lb spool of 308 wire was $250. That was a kick in the pants. Then, there was a lot, lot, lot of welding. I should've gotten my parts cut slightly differently so I wouldn't have had to build so much weld up to be able to sharp angle. Lesson learned. It's looking good now. Click image for larger version

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    This is the main problem I have now. Click image for larger version

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ID:	532449 My grinders are trashed. I had two 4 year old Dewalt D28110 4-1/2" grinders that burned up. The cost to fix them makes it necessary to just get new ones. I also had a 2 year old Dewalt D28402 4-1/2" grinder that stripped out it's gears and brushes. That one is salvageable with a gear from the burned up one and new brushes.

    I know I need a 7" grinder and new 4-1/2" grinders. What do you pros recommend for the extra stress required for stainless? Have you noticed better quality from Dewalt, Makita, Milwaukee, Hilti, etc? Better handling/life expectancy from a higher amperage/lower amperage? I'm not too concerned about the cost as I expect to spend $130-250/grinder because I'm not buying HF garbage.

    Another question: I have some interior fillet welds to smooth out. A couple of grinding stones used with my die grinder have just come apart on this stainless. Do burs hold up well on stainless or do I just need to plan on buying a ton of stones? (I realize I could just become a better welder, but that may not happen.)

  • NoogaD
    replied
    No, I was just using the stock Dewalt discs from Lowe's. I need some stainless specific abrasives too. Should be getting home from the rig Tuesday so I'll be back at the grind.

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  • mikeswelding
    replied
    Are you using a wheel especially designed for grinding stainless? I've done a lot of stainless jobs and have never burned up a grinder on one.

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  • NoogaD
    replied
    Thanks for the participation fellas. There's some good tips in here.

    Leave a comment:


  • Meltedmetal
    replied
    Originally posted by Country Metals View Post
    If your doing a lot of 1/2" removal on chrome carbide iron, and using a small grinder, then that is just not good common sense. Air grinders suck because they have no balls to do some real grinding, they work perfectly for finishing work though. I use them in the food industry since 90% of equipment there runs off air and is always available.
    Small is a relative term. Most of the grinding I do here is with 9 and 7 inch grinders, and 7 is mostly to use up the grinding wheels. I had a 5 hp swing grinder with 12" stones( for swing grinders that is small) but for the variety of things we do I found it impractical. As I'm sure you know both the machine and the abrasive should be matched to the job at hand. In iron I'm finishing castings from less than 1 ounce to around 350 pounds so I use a variety of grinders depending on the job at hand. I haven't used air grinders but I'm disappointed to hear that they are not very powerful. What do you have for air grinders and are they getting sufficient air supply or is that just the nature of the beast?---Meltedmetal

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  • Country Metals
    replied
    Originally posted by Meltedmetal View Post
    Your not wrong, I do want to get it done now or better still yesterday but let me clarify. Most of my grinding is in a foundry setting. I may grind 6+ hours a day on gates and risers and I hate grinding. It is noisy dirty, dirty,dangerous and I've been doing it for too long. Much of what I grind is chrome carbide iron which is very hard and work hardens as you go. Occasionally a 6" diameter riser that I first have to cut with an abrasive cut off disc(which is really hard on the grinder) and then grind down a 1/2" of riser. My collection of burnt out/destroyed grinders is from 35+ years of doing this and they don't owe me anything and yes, the right abrasive is really, really important.---Meltedmetal
    If your doing a lot of 1/2" removal on chrome carbide iron, and using a small grinder, then that is just not good common sense. Air grinders suck because they have no balls to do some real grinding, they work perfectly for finishing work though. I use them in the food industry since 90% of equipment there runs off air and is always available.

    Leave a comment:


  • Meltedmetal
    replied
    Originally posted by Fireman View Post
    Meltedmetal, If your grinding all those hours and that much metal you really need a good grinder with the least vibration possible. I would think those high end model air grinders would be the ticket for you. Oh and i sure agree with you on not liking the grinding and man if i did it as much as you i know i wouldn't like it.
    Ah, air grinders, the stuff of dreams. I expect you are right an air grinder would be good and as good as most of the high end electric grinders I've used are, I would expect air to be better. Unfortunately for me we are a very small company in two buildings separated by a public road and the main air supply is on the other side of the road from where I do the finishing. That means I would need an air compressor as well just to run the grinder. At this stage it's not likely to happen.
    I don't grind 6 hours every day but some days I do. As I've mentioned we are a very small company so I wear many hats but I think I've done my share. You know what they say "Somebody has to do it"? Around here I'm a "Somebody".Haha.---Meltedmetal

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  • Fireman
    replied
    Meltedmetal, If your grinding all those hours and that much metal you really need a good grinder with the least vibration possible. I would think those high end model air grinders would be the ticket for you. Oh and i sure agree with you on not liking the grinding and man if i did it as much as you i know i wouldn't like it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Meltedmetal
    replied
    Originally posted by Country Metals View Post

    You are probably burning up your grinders because you want to get it done now. Stainless with the chrome and nickel in it creates a heat source and hardness which makes it harder to grind down stainless.

    The better the wheel you use, the longer the grinder will last.
    Your not wrong, I do want to get it done now or better still yesterday but let me clarify. Most of my grinding is in a foundry setting. I may grind 6+ hours a day on gates and risers and I hate grinding. It is noisy dirty, dirty,dangerous and I've been doing it for too long. Much of what I grind is chrome carbide iron which is very hard and work hardens as you go. Occasionally a 6" diameter riser that I first have to cut with an abrasive cut off disc(which is really hard on the grinder) and then grind down a 1/2" of riser. My collection of burnt out/destroyed grinders is from 35+ years of doing this and they don't owe me anything and yes, the right abrasive is really, really important.---Meltedmetal

    Leave a comment:


  • Country Metals
    replied
    I work with stainless steel on a daily basis in the food industry. I have a shop and portable business. I currently have 9 w-7/w-8 Metabo grinders along with a dewalt 7". I Keep 5 at shop and 4 on truck. Last year I just totally burnt up my first grinder from a job I use to work at 13 years ago. All I do is take them apart every few months and blow out the brushes and if needed replace them.

    You are probably burning up your grinders because you want to get it done now. Stainless with the chrom and nickel in it creates a heat source and hardness which makes it harder to grind down stainless. I only use flap wheels for stainless for better cooling action and smoother finish. To sand the inside joints, you probably want a dynafile or imitation. The belts get expensive but it works like a charm.

    The better the wheel you use, the longer the grinder will last.

    Leave a comment:


  • Meltedmetal
    replied
    If you have serious grinding to do buy a serious grinder. I grind a lot mostly with 9" and 7" grinders. I haven't bought anything but 9" grinding wheels in years. When they wear an inch off the radius I knock them down to the next size machine. I used a lot of walter/metabo and I am now using Hitachi as they are a little cheaper. I have burnt/ wore out a number of them brushes,bearings,armatures,coils and gears. Sometimes I fix them and sometimes I find there is too much gone to bother. I don't bother with some of the smaller machines(5" is as small as I go) as they use a smaller diameter hole in the stones and I would need an adapter to mount my leftover wheels and I find 5" grinders take too long to get the job done. For me the most important issue is to use the proper abrasive for the job at hand. Most anything will turn a grind stone but if your using the wrong abrasive you end up either chewing up wheels for nothing or spending way too much time for nothing. My $.02. I work cheaper than some of these $.2 (twenty cent) guys. Haha.---Meltedmetal

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  • Cgotto6
    replied
    My Boschs have been going strong for over four years. Got them in a buy one get one free deal for $80. I will never throw money away on something like a metabo, I just can't justify paying so much more for something that works marginally better at best.

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  • kiwi
    replied
    Originally posted by Sberry View Post
    Maybe but we havnt burned up the orange one in 3 either.
    You are so right!!!! I use my Ridgid grinders and at times beat the hel| out of them and they are going strong. I feed them a steady diet of steel, concrete, granite and tile with no ill effects. So it's been close to five years and we have not burned up the orange. You do get what you pay for, but I like to pay as little as possible for what I get.

    Nick

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  • Sberry
    replied
    Expensive but u get what u pay for.
    Maybe but we havnt burned up the orange one in 3 either.

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  • dlonu2005
    replied
    Best grinders for stainless

    I teach welding so u can imagine what kids do to grinders. Have not had a metabo burn up in 3 years knock in wood. Expensive but u get what u pay for. Just my 2 cents

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