G for Grinding

This month we focus on grinding safety. Our definition of grinding includes high speed dry bench grinders, low speed wet grinders, belt linishers and disc grinders.

Nearly half of all accidents involving abrasive wheels are due to an unsafe system of work or operator error. Particular injuries result from wheel breakage or contact with a running wheel. As a first-aider I remember attending a colleague with a broken leg after a grinder wheel had parted at speed and a portion had hit him on the shin.

Even if we use other methods for sharpening our turning tools we will invariably use a bench grinder for some jobs e.g. sharpening drill bits.

The sparks produced from grinding are easily capable of causing a fire - a stream of sparks when grinding metal created a big hole in one of my favourite sweaters.

The action of grinding can produce considerable heat in an item being sharpened and care is required to avoid burns when handling tools.

LEARNING POINT  - Careful use of grinding equipment is essential to avoid harm

  to you, your friends or your workshop.

 Trevor Branton