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Angle Grinders: How to Choose the Best One

Struggling to understand which angle grinder you require for the task in hand? SGS Engineering have put together this guide to help you choose which angle grinder to buy.

You’ve heard how versatile and useful an angle grinder can be around the home, and now you’ve got to decide which angle grinder you should buy. There’s loads of information out there and literally thousands of power tools to choose from - sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start! Every substantial toolbox should contain at least one, but the question is which angle grinder do I need? Look no further; this comprehensive buyer’s guide has been put together with the sole purpose to give you all the information you’ll need to make an informed decision about your purchase.

angle grinders

Why Buy An Angle Grinder?

why buy an angle grinder

You’ll see angle grinders on construction sites, in auto garages, metal working shops, or anywhere someone might want cut, remove or smooth excess material. Whether you’re a tradesman or a keen home DIY-ist, an angle grinder is the go-to tool for someone serious about grinding, cutting or polishing.

An electric grinder is one of the most versatile power tools in any arsenal and works via the use of a rapidly rotating gear head and interchangeable abrasive wheels. Depending of the head you have mounted, you can cut, polish, sand and grind a huge array of materials. Common projects that you might want to use a grinder for include cutting metal rods, bolts and sheet materials, trimming stone and ceramic tiles, or removing paint and rust from metals.

This is just the beginning of the tasks an angle grinder can tackle: from, sharpening a blunt tool to polishing your car - with the right abrasive head, the possibilities are basically endless. There are thousands of disc and wheel accessories on the market, but the common ones include abrasive grinding discs, cut-off discs, grinding stones, polishing pads, sanding discs, and wire brush wheels.

Do you want to know a little more about what you can do with an angle grinder? We’ve put together a collection of handy How-To guides, detailing step-by-step instructions for some important DIY task. Take a look here.

What to Look Out for and Useful Terms

As with many power tools, there’s a plenty of jargon and unfamiliar terms associated with angle grinders. Although the specifications of all the various grinders vary hugely, there’s a couple of useful terms and features that will help you sift through the options and pick exactly the right solution for you. So here are the things to look out for when you’re shopping:

Disc/ head/ wheel

angle grinder head

These three terms are used interchangeably, when referring to angle grinders. Grinder’s come in lots of different disc sizes, but the most common sizes are 115mm (4 ½”) and 230mm (9”). You can purchase different discs/heads/wheels depending on the task you want to complete - just make sure they're the right size for your grinder!


Wattage

wattage

The higher the wattage of the power tool the more power it’ll have available to use. Grinders with larger discs/wheels will need a higher wattage. Expressed as Watts or W.

Spindle lock

spindle lock

A spindle locking mechanism makes for super quick accessory removal and replacement by preventing the wheel spindle from rotating. The system does however feature a metal nut, designed to avoid any risk of the system locking whilst the tool is running.

Auxiliary handle

auxiliary handle

Sometimes simply called a side handle, this useful feature can normally be mounted on the left or right of the tool for left and right handed operators. Some grinders such as the Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless 115mm Angle Grinder, have a 3 position handle for more manoeuvrability.

So, regardless of whether you’ll be cutting, grinding, sharpening, sanding, cleaning or polishing, we’re sure we’ll have something in the SGS range of angle grinders for you. Find out more about our grinders bellow.

Choosing the Right Tool

ryobi and milwaukee angle grinder

The bigger the grinder wheel, the more power the grinder will need, so if you’re looking for a grinder with a 228mm head, keep an eye out for a higher wattage tool. A larger tool means you’ll be able to quickly cover a larger surface area, so if you’re going to be mainly cutting out mortar, or working with sheet materials and slabs.

A smaller 115mm angle grinder means a more versatile power tool. With a smaller cutting disc you get a greater level of precision, so if you’re wanting to be able to trim tiles to shape, sharpen blades, or cut and grind more intricate stone and metalwork projects, we’d suggest a 115mm grinder. These smaller tools tend to be more lightweight and a little easier to wield, regardless of your level of experience.

Milwaukee M18CAG115XPDB-0 18V Fuel Braking Grinder With Fixtec Nut & FREE Case

milwaulee angle grinder
  • Cutting depth (mm) - 28
  • Disc diameter (mm) - 115
  • No load speed (rpm) - 8500
  • Vibration grinding [m|s²] - 2.11
  • Voltage (V) - 18
  • Spindle size - M14
  • Switch type - Paddle switch
  • 3 Year Warranty

The Milwaukee M18CAG115XPDB-0 fuel grinder paddle switch is ideal to use for cutting with 1mm disc and surface conditioning with flap wheels. The grinder has a powerful brushless motor which enables you to effectively grind, cut and prep with superior stall torque and the grinder has 2x more run time which helps to increase productivity. 

Kielder KWT-007-06 18V Professional Heavy-Duty 115mm Angle Grinder

kielder angle grinder
  • Max Wheel Diameter - 115mm / 4-1/2”
  • No Load Speed - 8700rpm
  • Weight (with battery) - 2.4kg
  • Motor - Digital Brushless
  • Vibration - 3.5m/s 2
  • Voltage - 18V
  • 3 Year Warranty
  • M14 Spindle Thread

Powered by a digital brushless motor, this 18v Li-ion Angle Grinder can be used for an array of grinding & cutting applications. The shaped ergonomic soft-grip handle provides comfortable continuous operation and the reverse fit battery helps to maintain a balanced feel, as well as prevent restriction in use. Advise to use with Kielder 4.0Ah TYPE18 Li-Ion battery for optimum performance and run-time.

Milwaukee M18FLAG230XPDB-C Large 228mm Angle Grinder Kit with Case

228mm angle grinder
  • Voltage - 18V
  • Battery System - M18
  • Wheel Diameter - 9"/228mm
  • Spindle - 5/8"-11
  • RPM - 6600
  • Overload Protection
  • Electronic Clutch
  • Line Lock-Out

Introducing The Milwaukee FUEL Large 228mm Angle Grinder - the world's first 18v LAG delivering the power of a 15A corded large angle grinder,. This tool is up to 2LBS lighter and has 9" / 228mm grinding capacity. Providing high performance, advanced ergonomics & legendary durability, this grinder is designed to complete the toughest grinding, surface preparation, and cutting applications with any 9" accessory. The POWERSTATE Brushless Motor provides 6,600 RPM and higher speeds under load for corded grinding/cutting performance.

Ryobi R18AG7-0 18V ONE+ Cordless Brushless Angle Grinder

ryobi angle grinder
  • 10, 000Rpm
  • 125mm cutting disc
  • 3-point auxiliary handle 
  • 3 year warranty
  • E-control for constant cutting speed
  • Product weight - 2.8kg

Part of the one+ system of over 70 tools for the home and garden, the Ryobi R18AG7-0 brushless angle grinder provides corded-like performance with the freedom of cordless. With a no load speed of 10, 000Rpm and a 125mm cutting disc, this angle grinder is ideal for cutting as well as grinding. The brushless motor provides more power and run-time per charge, and lasts up to 10x as long as standard brushed motors. The Tool-less accessory change makes switching discs simpler, with a tool-free guard for safety, and 3-point auxiliary handle for control. The brushless motor provides more power and more run-time, while lasting longer than standard brushed motors. 

Milwaukee HD18AG115-0 18V Li-ion Cordless 115mm (4 ½") Angle Grinder 

cordless angle grinder
  • No load speed (rpm) - 9000
  • Spindle size - M 14
  • Cutting depth (mm) - 28
  • Disc diameter (mm) - 115
  • Voltage (V) - 18
  • Full metal gear case
  • Multi position side handle
  • 3 Year Warranty

The Milwaukee HD18AG115-0 cordless grinder has a powerful 4 pole motor delivering maximum power to weight ratio. The angle grinder is compact with its reduced gearbox height. The gearbox is all metal which increases tool life. The angle grinder provides the user with ease of use with the paddle switch and multi position handle. 


Cordless and Comfortable

115mm angle grinder
  • 115mm (4 1/2") cutting wheel diameter
  • 3-position auxiliary handle
  • 18V
  • Product Weight - 2.8kg
  • 3 Year Warranty

Sometimes you can’t beat the convenience of a completely cordless power tool - and angle grinders are no exception. When you don’t have to worry about long trailing cables you can really focus of the job in hand. Ideal for light to medium grinding and cutting tasks, the 18V Cordless Angle Grinder has a simple design to maximise its efficiency. Ryobi products are renowned for their usability and comfort; some of the features you can expect are GripZone overmoulding, 3-position auxiliary handle, tool-less disc change and super quick charging.

The Air Powered Option

air angle grinder
  • Comfortable rubber grip
  • Easy to use, reliable and tough
  • 20,000 RPM free speed
  • Operating pressure of 90 PSI
  • Ultra lightweight

We couldn’t have a complete buying guide without talking about air powered alternatives. The SGS 3" Air Cut Off Saw has a massive no-load speed of up to 20,000rpm and is ideal for precise, high quality finishes. Air tools have less moving components, meaning you can expect a longer life than electric power tools.

Still not sure which angle grinder to choose?

power saws

As well as designing our own range of tools, SGS engineering works closely with various suppliers to ensure we only stock the very best. Our in house experts are always on hand for buying advice and to provide bespoke care, regardless of the application. Whether you’re just starting out on a new hobby or you have complicated commercial requirements, we’ve got the in-house experts to help.

Call SGS on 01332 576 850 or fill out our contact form today. For all the purchasing advice and support you need.

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