6 Angle Grinder Uses All DIYers Should Know. Small grinder tool

Get started on your next project with a versatile angle grinder that can be used for grinding, polishing, sharpening, cutting, and more.

By Timothy Dale | Published May 14, 2021 5:31 PM

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Angle grinders are a versatile power tool with a rapidly rotating disc that cuts, grinds, polishes, sharpens, and cleans a wide variety of difficult materials, including iron, copper, brass, brick, tile, stone, or mortar. The tool rotates the discs with a high amount of torque and an average operating speed of about 12,000 revolutions per minute (rpm), and some have variable speeds that can operate as low as 2,800 rpm. By changing the speed and the disc, you can alternate between grinding through metal and polishing metal, so it’s important to make sure the angle grinder is appropriately equipped for each project’s goal before starting.

These tools can operate on a battery or they can be directly connected through a power cord to provide a constant supply of electricity to the motor. Cordless grinders are a great option for short projects or specific cutting or grinding tasks. If you need to use the grinder for more than an hour, it may be better to invest in a corded angle grinder. Whichever type is chosen, users should always make sure they are wearing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) including a mask, safety glasses, work gloves, and earplugs.

Grinding and Polishing Metal

The primary purpose of an angle grinder is to grind metal. It achieves this with the use of abrasive grinding discs that come in a range of materials, like aluminum, carbide, and diamond-tipped discs. Attach a grinding disc and turn on the grinder to start the disc spinning rapidly. Press the abrasive disc to the target metal to flatten, smooth, or completely remove pieces from the metal.

At a lower speed setting, a smoothing or polishing wheel can improve the finish of the metal and enhance the color. Smoothing involves removing a fine layer from the metal to leaving a clean finish behind. Polishing wheels are made of soft materials, like cotton, and they actually add a layer of polish to get a mirror-like finish on smooth metal surfaces. If the speed isn’t adjustable, then a smoothing or polishing wheel may remove too much of the surface. Also, keep in mind that both smoothing and polishing take more time and patience than grinding.

Cutting Metal

The rapidly rotating disc on an angle grinder doesn’t just smooth, polish, and grind away metal, it can also be used for cutting through metal. This is a common use for plumbers who are working with galvanized iron or lead pipes. Welders frequently cut pieces of metal to clean up projects or prepare a piece of metal to serve as a match.

Change out the abrasive grinding disc for a cut-off disc. Cut-off discs come in different thicknesses, but they are thinner than grinding discs. The thin size makes it easier for the spinning disc to cut through metal because it needs to remove less material than if you were using a thicker grinding disc. However, the thin size also means that cutting discs are more vulnerable to bending and breaking. Avoid breaking the cut-off disc by allowing the grinder to cut through the metal at a moderate pace instead of trying to force it through at a faster speed.

Cleaning Metal

Remove paint, rust, and lacquer from metal surfaces with the help of an angle grinder. Equip a plastic stripping disc or a metal cleaning wheel to take off chipped and peeling layers without damaging the metal underneath. Plastic stripping discs are a good option for removing paint, lacquer, and similar coatings that aren’t fused to the metal. These discs are made with nylon webbed material and silicon carbide to provide enough abrasion to lift these coatings away from the metal.

If you need to take off rust, then a metal cleaning wheel is a better choice. Metal cleaning wheels are made with a series of metal wires twisted through each other to create an effective rust-removal wheel. When this wheel is rapidly spinning and it comes in contact with the metal surface, it scrapes away surface rust to expose the clean metal. These wheels can sometimes shoot small pieces of broken wire, so always wear appropriate PPE.

Sharpening Tools

Angle grinders also can be used to sharpen other tools, like restoring the edge to lawn mower blades, axes, or chisels. Equip the angle grinder with an abrasive grinding disc and ensure that the blade of the tool is properly secured in a vise so that you can FOCUS on controlling and steadying the movement of the grinder.

When sharpening tools with a grinder, it’s important to orient the grinding disc with the angle on the blade so that the sharpened blade has the same angled cut. Altering the cutting angle can significantly reduce the effectiveness of the tool and may actually ruin the blade. A grinder is good for quickly sharpening your tools, but consider using a sharpening stone afterward to add a more precise edge to the blade before putting the tools away.

Cutting Tile, Stone, Other Masonry Materials

While angle grinders are primarily used when working with copper, iron, steel, lead, and other metals, they also can be used to cut through tough masonry materials, including tile, stone, and brick. Switch out the metal cut-off disc for a masonry cutting wheel and cut straight through these difficult materials. The precision of an angle grinder makes it useful for cutting custom angles in tile to help with bathroom shower repairs, making a garden pathway from brick or stone, or replacing broken pieces of a backyard fire pit.

These cutting wheels are made to withstand a significant amount of strain, so they aren’t as fragile as metal cutting discs. However, they are still susceptible to chipping or breaking when the grinder is forced through the material. The risk of chipping and breaking increases with older used cutting wheels, so be sure to regularly replace the masonry cutting wheel for smooth clean cuts.

Removing Mortar

Leaks, drafts, and recurring insect infestations can be fixed by replacing the mortar on the exterior of a home. However, getting the mortar out without damaging the bricks isn’t easy without the use of an angle grinder. Get a thick abrasive grinding disc that can handle soft masonry work or use a masonry cutting wheel to begin chipping away at the lines of mortar between the bricks.

The narrow disc doesn’t have any issue fitting in these gaps and with careful control, most of the mortar can be completely removed without touching the brick. Then you just need to fill the mortar joints with new mortar to significantly reduce heat loss and potentially reduce your energy bills. Just be sure to have a face shield or safety glasses and other suitable PPE to keep yourself safe while you work.

Best Angle Grinders as of 2023

Angle grinders are among the essential tools that can be found in any respectable metalworking workshop. These handheld power tools can be used to grind, polish, cut, buff, sharpen and clean various materials, including metal, wood, tile, and stone.

Much like any other power tool, angle grinders aren’t created equal.

Some are designed for heavy-duty cutting and grinding work, while others, particularly the smaller versions, are best suited for light grinding and simple DIY projects.

And with many angle grinders on the market claiming to handle all sorts of projects, finding the perfect one for your needs can be tricky.

Luckily for you, we can help with that! We evaluated angle grinders based on power, reliability, versatility and ease of use to create this guide. We’ve also included a handy buyer’s guide to help you make a more informed buying decision.

What Is an Angle Grinder?

An angle grinder is a handheld device with a rotating disc used to grind, polish, sharpen, or cut a variety of materials. They are available as corded or battery-powered cordless units.

What Is the Best Wattage for Angle Grinder?

Generally, the angle grinder’s wattage ranges from 500 to 2,500 watts.

The right grinder for your projects should have adequate wattage or else the work done will be lacking in quality. Here’s a breakdown of the various wattage you need for different activities.

  • For polishing – 500 watts
  • For grinding – 1,000 watts
  • For cutting through light materials – 1.500 watts
  • For cutting through heavy materials, like strong metals – 2,500 watts

If you’re planning on using your grinder regularly and extensively, it’s advisable to choose one with a higher wattage of at least 800 watts.

What to Look for When Buying an Angle Grinder

Consider a few things before picking the right grinder for your needs. The best grinders have unique features, different power sources, and some are best suited for specific jobs. Let’s take a look at the things to consider before buying an angle grinder for your projects.

Disc Size

An angle grinder’s disc size is indicative of its power and overall capacity. The larger discs are commonly used for more demanding work to produce a smooth finish in less time and thus indicate a more powerful tool.

For most DIY projects, a 4, 4.5, or 5-inch disc will suffice. Smaller discs are best suited for FOCUS jobs that require lots of precision. Larger discs may be more powerful than their smaller counterparts but perform poorly on more precise projects. However, a larger disc is the best suited for the job if you need to cut thick metal.

Power Source

Most angle grinders you’ll find on the market today are battery-powered.

However, you may also find corded or even compressed air options if you do your homework well. It’s important to pay attention to the grinder’s power source before committing to buy.

Cordless grinders are more expensive because they can reach spaces that their corded counterparts can’t. However, they are also limited by the battery power. If a battery dies when you’re working, you may have to pause your work for several hours as you wait for it to charge.

Corded tools can run for an extended period as you remain near a power source. However, they can also be limited by the length of the cord. They are also limited by your ability to find a power source. None of the options is better than the other. It will all come down to where you will be using the unit.


The grinder’s speed is also an important factor to consider.

The average grinder’s speed typically ranges between 5,000 and 10,000 revolutions per minute (RPM), though some top-end machines may go over 10,000 RPM.

A higher RPM model can cut through materials faster than a lower RPM model. Higher speeds will quickly translate to better results in the hands of a skilled artisan. However, in the hands of an unskilled person, even a higher RPM model may not produce the desired results.

The solution is to choose an angle grinder with variable speeds. With an adjustable speed grinder, you can adjust the speed to suit the task you’re working on.


Wattage indicates a grinder’s efficiency.

In most cases, more powerful units will have greater speeds. A motor with high wattage should withstand heavy use, excessive friction, and other forms of operational stress better than the less powerful units.


Last, you’ll want to factor in price, especially if you’re on a tight budget. The cost of angle grinders varies widely, ranging from 25 to 700, with some top-of-the-range models costing as much as 1,000.

But you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a good angle grinder. You can find an excellent corded grinder for under 100.

We compiled this list of the best angle grinders taking the factors above into consideration as well as using the latest customer sentiment data and suggestions from our community of metallurgists:


DeWALT is not new to power tools, angle grinders included. Founded in 1922, the company has been manufacturing grinders since 1967, making it one of the big names in the field.

Their 20V MAX, DC413B angle grinder is an excellent product that combines performance with speed. The cool thing about this cordless angle grinder is that it features the DeWALT E-Clutch technology, which senses the tool’s motion and reduces the mortar torque to a manageable level.

This model also has a kickback brake, designed to stop the grinder when a stall, pinch, or bind-up occurs during operation. Additional technologies include soft start and kickback brakes that manage the grinder’s speed, preventing it from reaching high speeds at once.

As for portability and ergonomics, this unit scores a mark due to its compact design, weight, and excellent vibration control. This 20V unit has a 9,000 RPM, which allows it to cut through materials faster.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2 inch
  • Max speed: 9,000 RPM
  • Battery: 20V
  • Weight: 3.75 pounds
  • Additional features: Soft start, kickback breaks, DeWALT’s E-Clutch system

The DeWALT DCG413B is an excellent angle grinder for commercial and DIY projects. At a price of 167, the unit is reasonably priced for its features.

  • Brushless motor of the angle grinder requires no brush changes.
  • DeWALT grinder’s brake stops wheel in 2 seconds or less on average
  • Kickback Brake engages when a pinch, stall, or bind-up event is sensed and the electronic brake engages with maximum force to quickly stop the wheel, reduce the movement of the metal grinder and shut the grinder off.
  • Features E-Switch Protection. When the ON/OFF trigger switch has a no-volt release function. In the event of a power outage or other unexpected shut down, the trigger switch will need to be cycled (turned off and then on) to restart tool.
  • Two stage trigger requires two actions to activate tool.

Bosch 1375A Corded 4-1/2 Inch Angle Grinder

Borsch makes all kinds of home and industrial appliances, power tools, and angle grinders. Their 1375A Corded Angle Grinder is an excellent choice for those on a tight budget.

Weighing only 3.5 pounds, the 1375A corded grinder is small and lightweight. And its compact size doesn’t get in the way of performance. The unit is equipped with a powerful 6.0 AMP motor, capable of producing 11,000 no-load RPM for professional grinding applications.

Its versatility is also remarkable. Although the 1375A is small, it can easily cut through masonry projects. This unit is ideal for metal workers, plumbers, vehicle fabricators, and other professionals who use grinders regularly.

angle, grinder, uses, diyers, know

Additionally, the unit features an ergonomic design that provides a firm grip and outstanding user comfort. It’s designed with a sealed switch to prevent dust and unwanted materials from entering the switch mechanism.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2 inch
  • Max speed: 11,000 RPM
  • Weight: 3.75 pounds
  • 6.0 AMP motor
  • Ergonomic shape
  • Epoxy-coated design for added durability

The Borsch 1475A Corded Angle Grinder is a compact yet powerful tool for professionals and DIYers. And for 59, this unit gives you the best bang for your buck.

  • COMPACT: weighing only 3.75 pounds, the grinder is compact and ideal for metal workers, vehicle fabricators, plumbers and other professionals who use grinders on a daily basis
  • POWER: features a powerful 6.0 AMP motor to produce 11,000 no load rpm for professional cutting and grinding applications; the efficient motor was designed with an extremely small field diameter, letting the user grind or cut with ease
  • COMFORT: offers a 2-position side auxiliary handle specifically designed to angle to a natural position for maximum operator comfort; the top handle of the angle grinder is also ergonomically designed
  • CONVENIENT: features Bosch’s Service Minder Brush System to eliminate guesswork and stops the tool when preventative maintenance is required; A 5/8 inches to 11 inch spindle works with a wide array of sizes, mounting the most popular accessories
  • DURABLE: features an epoxy coated design to protect the tool from abrasive debris; also designed with a sealed switch to keep dust and debris from entering the switch mechanism


The DeWALT 20V MAX is another excellent angle grinder ideal for professionals who want a powerful grinder without sacrificing much on price.

The DC405B comes equipped with a powerful brushless motor capable of producing 9,000 RPM for professional grinding applications. It uses the highly rated 20V brushless motor for excellent power and features DeWALT grinder brakes that stop the wheel in 2 seconds.

As a part of DeWALT’s Perform and Protect line of products, the DC405B is equipped with Kickback Brakes that stop the wheel when a stall, pinch, or bind-up is detected. There’s also a power loss reset feature that prevents accidental restart in the event of power disruption if the tool is left in the “ON” position.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2 inch
  • Max speed: 9,000 RPM
  • Wattage: 850 watts
  • Power source: Battery powered
  • Weight: 3.75 pounds
  • Additional features: Kickback breaks, power loss reset, powerful brushless motor

With a 4.7-star rating from over six hundred satisfied customers on Amazon, the DC405B is truly an exceptional product. And for 156, the item is on par with other products in its class.

  • Brushless motor of the angle grinder requires no brush changes.
  • DeWALT grinder’s brake stops wheel in 2 seconds or less on average
  • Kickback Brake engages when a pinch, stall, or bind-up event is sensed and the electronic brake engages with maximum force to quickly stop the wheel, reduce the movement of the metal grinder and shut the grinder off.
  • Power Loss Reset prevents accidental restarts following a power disruption when the tool is left in the “on” position.

Milwaukee 2680-20 M18 18V 4-1/2 Inch Cordless Grinder

Milwaukee is a brand that requires no introduction, and its cordless grinder is an excellent option to consider for your home and commercial projects.

The Milwaukee 2680 cordless grinder boasts a 4-pole motor capable of pushing 10,000 RPM, that’s excellent for most users. A Li-Ion battery with a voltage rating of 18V powers this unit. This grinder comes loaded with features that make it ideal for a variety of jobs.

Milwaukee has included a rubber textured handle and a 3-position plastic handle that gives you maximum control with the tool. On top of that, it comes with a wheel guard that can be adjusted to suit various applications requiring different cutting angles.

According to the manufacturer, the M18 is the only grinder on the market that offers the user a paddle switch for comfort and ease of use when operating in various positions.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2 inch
  • Max speed: 10,000 RPM
  • Power source: Corded electric
  • Voltage: 18 Volts
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Additional features: paddle switch, tool free guard, 3-position side handle

The Milwaukee 2680 is an excellent angle grinder suitable for various applications thanks to its powerful motor and an array of features. And for 79, the tool will give you the best value for the money.

  • PADDLE SWITCH: You can activate this grinder easily, even when you’re wearing thick work gloves, thanks to the paddle switch design
  • DEBRIS BAFFLES: An “L” shape molding near the grinding wheel picks up debris and prevents it from clogging up the tool’s internal components
  • TOOL-FREE GUARD: The guard is easily adjustable. All it takes is the push of a button, and you can have the guard adjusted for a variety of cutting applications at different angles
  • 3-POSITION SIDE HANDLE: Work with maximum stability with the help of the plastic handle, included in this kit
  • M18 COMPATIBLE: This Milwaukee power tool works with M18 18v lithium ion Milwaukee batteries. Compatible models include the 48-11-1860, 48-11-1850, 48-11-1828, and 48-11-1815, 48-11-1840, 48-11-1820

DeWALT Angle Grinder Tool (DWE43116)

The DeWALT DWE43116 is a high-performance hand grinder best suited for heavy-duty tasks of commercial nature. Powered by a 13-am motor, the DWE43116 can cut through metals and other materials faster and with ease.

The all-powerful 13.0-amp motor can produce 9,000 no-load RPM for professional grinding applications.

Additionally, the unit is equipped with DeWALT’s Dust Ejection Technology that ejects debris and dust particles that enter through the air intake vents. Customers on Amazon love its ease of use, good torque, and small form factor.

And with a 4.8-star rating from over seven hundred satisfied customers, you can be confident you’re buying a quality and powerful product.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2 to 6-inch
  • Max speed: 9,000 RPM
  • Power source: Corded electric
  • Wattage: 1,700 watts
  • Weight: 5.7 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Additional features: powerful 13-amp motor, dust ejection system technology

The DeWALT DWE43116 is a beast of a grinder that has won the hearts of many due to its power and sheer performance. And for 129, the unit is competitively priced for its features.

  • Angle grinder has 9,000 RPM Rating
  • DeWALT angle grinder comes with 13-amp motor
  • Dust Ejection System of the metal grinder provides durability by ejecting damaging dust and debris particles that enter through the air intake vents.

Milwaukee 2485-20 M12 Angle Grinder

The Milwaukee 2485-20 M12 Angle Grinder is a force to be reckoned with in the angle grinder’s space. This grinder offers up to 0.3 HP, making it 20% more powerful than most angle grinders. Milwaukee says this product can deliver better, sustained performance than pneumatic die grinders.

Better still, the M12 angle grinder can push out anywhere between 0 and 24,500 RPM, making it one of the most powerful angle grinders on the planet.

Besides its sheer performance, the other impressive thing about the M12 is the package into which the company has managed to cram all that power. The M12 die grinder is only 4.5″ and weighs only 1.2 pounds.

Key Features

  • Disc size: 4-1/2
  • Max speed: 24,500 RPM
  • Power source: Cordless
  • Voltage: 12 Volts
  • Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • 2″ Accessories POWERSTATE Brushless Motor Technology

The Milwaukee 2485-20 is the most powerful angle grinder on our list and is capable of delivering better, sustained performance than pneumatic die grinders. For 157, the product is in the upper price bracket, which is expected of a product with such features.

  • The MILWAUKEE 1/4″ M12 FUEL Right Angle Die Grinder is the first cordless right angle die grinder that delivers the performance and size and speed professional service mechanics demand.
  • The die grinder delivers 20% more power than pneumatic competition and features the Milwaukee POWERSTATE Brushless Motor Technology.
  • The cordless die grinder provides users with up to.3 HP performance, best-in-class size to help fit in tight places, and offers users greater mobility and access.
  • 20% Power Than Pneumatic0.3 HP Motor Output4-MODE RPM CONTROLGreater Mobility and Access
  • Optimum performance with 2″ AccessoriesPOWERSTATE Brushless Motor Technology

Wrapping Up

Finding the best angle grinder for your project can be daunting, considering the flood of options out there. We hope this guide will help you cut through the noise and find the best angle grinder.

The 8 Best Angle Grinders of 2023

Michelle Ullman is a home decor expert and product reviewer for home and garden products. She has been writing about home decor for over 10 years for publications like BobVila.com and Better Homes Gardens, among others.

Johnathan C. Brewer II is a licensed general contractor specializing in kitchen, bath remodels, and general construction with two decades of professional experience.

Angle grinders are handheld power tools that, depending on the blade or attachment used, can grind, buff, polish, cut, sharpen, and clean a wide variety of materials, including wood, metal, tile, and stone. Deane Biermeier, a licensed carpenter and general carpenter advises, “Angle grinders are highly versatile tools if you get the right one for your needs. The best for most DIYers are 4 1/2-inch disc models. Look for high torque, wattage (or voltage for battery operated ones), and variable speeds if you want top-notch results. These features make an angle grinder the most suited for common uses.”

We evaluated angle grinders based on power, versatility, reliability, and ease of use.

Best Overall

Makita XAG04Z 4-1/2-Inch Cordless Angle Grinder

  • Brushless motor for longer run time
  • Automatically adjusts speed and torque for optimal performance
  • Excellent performance

For a top-rated, intuitive angle grinder that will serve you well, no matter how you use it, one of your best options is the Makita XAG04Z cordless angle grinder. This mid-priced tool is powered by an 18-volt battery (which is sold separately), so you won’t be limited by a power cord, yet it still delivers big in terms of power and speed. It accepts 4 1/2-inch or 5-inch blades and attachments, and weighs just 5.6 pounds, so it won’t tire you out, even on a lengthy work session. It has rubberized handles to help minimize vibration to your hands and wrists.

This angle grinder makes quick work of grinding, cutting, and sanding various materials, such as concrete, tile, pipes, and more. It features automatic speed-change technology, which adjusts the speed and torque during operation for optimized performance, no matter what you’re working on. The tool’s brushless motor is electronically controlled to prolong battery life, lasting up to 50 percent longer per charge.

This high-quality tool is well balanced and lightweight, yet it delivers impressive power that’s perfect for tackling just about any job, like cutting curves in cement backer boards.

Price at time of publish: 106

Power Source: 18-volt battery | Disc Size: 4.5 or 5-inch | Max. Speed: 8,500 rpm

Best Budget

Metabo HPT G12SR4M 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder

  • Keeping power switch depressed is a bit tricky
  • Noisy
  • No variable speed control

You could easily spend a couple hundred dollars on a high-end angle grinder and all of its attachments, but if you’re just starting out with this tool, you may be better off with a budget option, such as the Metabo HPT (formerly Hitachi) G12SR4M 6.2-Amp 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder. This grinder has a top no-load speed of 10,000 rpm but does not have variable speed control capabilities.

This powerful angle grinder comes with five abrasive discs, as well as a storage case. The tool is compact and lightweight at just 4 pounds, which is great for control and versatility. Its unique side handle makes it comfortable for both right- and left-hand users, and it delivers impressive overload durability, increasing its reliability and lifespan. You can use this angle grinder on various metals, such as steel, bronze, or aluminum, as well as on slate, brick, and more. It’s especially handy for cutting and removing bricks.

Price at time of publish: 49

Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 4.5-inch | Max. Speed: 10,000 rpm

Best Cordless

DeWALT DCG412B Cordless 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder

  • Well designed for easy use and handling
  • Two-position side handle
  • Powerful performance

Cordless angle grinders are often beneficial, as they’re more portable and versatile, since you’re not restricted by a power cord. For a high-end cordless angle grinder, you can’t go wrong with the DeWALT DCG412B, which can use either a 4 1/2-inch or a 5-inch grinding wheel. This is a lightweight, versatile, and powerful angle grinder that you can use for a variety of applications, such as sharpening other tools like an axe, chisel, or lawn mower.

The downside of this product is that the batteries and chargers are sold separately, but you definitely won’t be disappointed with the performance of this cordless tool. This grinder is perfect for a wide range of applications, including construction, maintenance, and even automotive work. It features a quick-change wheel release that allows you to switch discs without any tools, and the 8,000-rpm motor provides all the power you need for cutting and grinding a variety of materials. The handle can be adjusted in two different positions to suit your needs best.

Price at time of publish: 139

Power Source: 20-volt battery | Disc Size: 4.5-inch or 5-inch | Max. Speed: 8,000 rpm

Best Variable Speed

Bosch GWS13-50VS Variable Speed Angle Grinder

Most angle grinders operate at just one speed, but if you’re looking for a more versatile tool, you may want a variable speed angle grinder such as this one from Bosch. The Bosch GWS13-50VS is an 13-amp corded angle grinder that comes with a 5-inch grinding wheel, but it can also use 4.5-inch wheels. This is a highly-rated product that can operate between 2,800 and 11,500 rpm, making it suitable for a variety of applications, both professional or around the house tackling repairs or DIY projects.

This tool also has a variety of other features that give it more power and more control than other options. For instance, it features a two-position vibration-control handle for your comfort, as well as directed airflow that blows dust away from vital components in order to extend the life of the tool. It also has up to two more amps of power than previous generations.

Price at time of publish: 159

Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 5-inch | Max. Speed: 11,500 rpm

Best for Concrete

DeWALT DWE402 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder

With the right disc attachment, angle grinders are even powerful enough to cut through concrete. If you’re looking for a tool to help you grind down or slice through this tough material, you may want to opt for the DeWALT DWE402, which has an 11-amp motor and a 4 1/2-inch grinding wheel. It’s designed to be comfortable and easy to grip, even on long work sessions.

This tool excels in terms of power-to-size ratio, delivering 11,000 rpm, yet only weighing around 6 pounds. It has a two-position side handle for a comfortable grip, and its dust-ejection system helps to ensure that particles do not enter the tool and compromise its lifespan. This is the grinder to choose if you want to make quick work of concrete surfaces, grind down floors, or deeply score sidewalks with ease. Use the grinder to level off an uneven garage floor or do similar tasks. Of course, you can also use it for other common angle grinder projects, such as grinding, buffing, or cleaning wood and other materials.

Price at time of publish: 129

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Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 4.5-inch | Max. Speed: 11,000 rpm

Best for Wood Carving

King Arthur’s Tools MERLIN2 Angle Grinder Universal Carving Set

  • Perfect for woodworking or other small, detailed projects
  • Variable speed
  • Includes six discs

Many woodworkers use angle grinders to rough-sand their creations, but you shouldn’t use a standard grinder for more delicate applications when carving or carrying out other craft-related woodworking tasks. Instead, it’s best to get a tool that’s specially designed for use on wood, such as the King Arthur’s Tools MERLIN2 Universal Carving Set, which has a mini 2-inch grinding wheel. While more expensive than some other options, this set comes with everything you need to create intricate details and smooth finishes on wood surfaces, as well as most other non-metal materials, including plastic, rubber, fiberglass, and bone.

The mini angle grinder uses just one amp of power, saving you energy, and the kit comes with six accessories, including course, medium, and fine sanding discs. The grinder has a high-capacity fan and air vents that allow it to stay cool and be used for longer woodworking sessions. Plus, the textured, ergonomic design gives you better comfort and control.

Price at time of publish: 303

Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 2-inch | Max. Speed: 13,000 rpm

Best for Home Projects

Makita 9557PBX1 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder

If you need an angle grinder to tackle projects around the house, it’s hard to go wrong with the affordable Makita 9557PBX1 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder. While it only has a 7.5-amp motor and a small barrel grip, that doesn’t stop it from doing a great job on a variety of home projects, such as cleaning tools and removing rust, buffing metal and other materials, smoothing rough edges, grinding down metal, or cutting tile. Its top no-load speed is 11,000 rpm.

In addition to the tool, this set comes with five grinding wheels, as well as a metal tool case to store everything in — a perfect addition to your home workshop. The extra-large paddle grip and ergonomically designed barrel make the tool easy to control and comfortable to work with, even when your projects go long. Plus, the tool is designed to protect the motor from dust and debris, which extends the life and improves the performance of the grinder.

Price at time of publish: 97

Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 4.5-inch | Max. Speed: 11,000 rpm

Best 7-Inch

Makita GA7021 7-Inch Angle Grinder

When tackling a big project that requires a lot of muscle, sometimes a smaller angle grinder just won’t cut it. That’s when you’ll appreciate the power and size of the Makita GA7021 7-Inch Angle Grinder. This powerful tool makes quick work of grinding or cutting through concrete, metal, and other tough materials. This grinder can break down an entire cast iron tub with relative ease and little mess, and it has a top no-load speed of 6,600 rpm.

The 15-amp motor runs smoothly, and the lock-on power switch makes it easy to handle the tool without hand fatigue. Like most large angle grinders, you’ll want to keep a firm grip as you work, as otherwise you might lose control. Luckily, the three-position side handle makes that easy. As you’d expect, this is a heavier angle grinder than the typical smaller version; the GA7021 is almost 19 inches long and weighs a little over 12 pounds. Still, if you have a big project, this is the angle grinder that will help you get the job done.

Price at time of publish: 155

Power Source: Corded | Disc Size: 7-inch | Max. Speed: 6,600 rpm

It’s highly versatile, it has plenty of power and speed, it doesn’t weigh too much, and it tackles a wide variety of materials. That’s why the Makita XAG04Z 4-1/2-Inch Cordless Angle Grinder is our top choice. But if you are looking for something budget-priced, and don’t mind sacrificing a little bit of versatility and advanced features, you’ll find that the Metabo HPT G12SR4 4-1/2-Inch Angle Grinder is a fine choice as well.

What to Look for In An Angle Grinder

Power Source

As with many power tools, you’ll have two basic choices when it comes to angle grinders: corded and cordless. There are also pneumatic angle grinders, but they are mostly used in professional auto shops, not by the average DIYer.

Corded angle grinders require you to remain within reach of an electrical outlet, but in return, you gain more power and can have no fears of running out of power before you finish your task. Cordless angle grinders are very versatile, particularly when working in tight quarters, but there’s a chance that the battery will run down before you are finished. You can solve that problem, however, by having two batteries so that one can be in use while the other is charging.

Thomas Hawkins, a handyman, master electrician, and owner of Electrician Apprentice HQ, expands further, advising, “The corded versus cordless debate depends upon the project. If working in a tight area where you don’t need a lot of power but need versatility, go cordless. But if you’re not restricted in your movements and especially need extra power, go corded. It all boils down to what you’re trying to accomplish.”

Disc Size

The angle grinders that are most favored by the DIY set are smaller tools that take 4 1/2-inch or occasionally 5-inch discs. These angle grinders aren’t exceptionally heavy and are small enough to get into small spaces (most are around 12 inches long) and yet large enough to have the power to tackle most typical grinding, sanding, or sharpening tasks around the home, yard, or garage. You’ll find a wide range of both corded and cordless angle grinders in this size range.

Angle grinders that take 7-inch or 9-inch discs are more powerful but also heavier and not as easy to maneuver in tight spaces. Almost all of these tools are corded. While some DIYers might have a need for these large angle grinders, particularly if they do a lot of auto repair or major remodeling projects, more commonly professionals who need the maximum in size and power choose these tools for use in cutting through concrete, steel, or similar very hard materials.


The speed of an angle grinder’s spinning disc is measure in rotations per minute (rpm). Note that the speeds stated by manufacturers are normally the maximum speeds achieved by the tool when it’s not “loaded,” i.e., actively in use grinding or sanding. Remember also that the faster the speed, the hotter the disc becomes. Never run a disc at a higher speed than its stated maximum, as the disc could shatter, potentially causing severe injury.

Smaller angle grinders generally have maximum rotations in the 5,000- to 11,000-rpm range, and many have variable speed controls so you can tailor the speed to your needs. Larger angle grinders usually have lower maximum speeds, often in the 5,000- to 8,000-rpm range.

Angle grinders are versatile tools that can perform a variety of tasks for both DIY and commercial projects. They are particularly useful if you do a lot of work with metal or masonry, including concrete, brick, or stone. You just need the right blade or attachment. As the name suggests, this is the perfect tool for grinding away burrs, imperfections, and rough edges on metal. You can also use your angle grinder to buff or polish metal, remove paint and rust, and cut straight or curved lines. When it comes to masonry, use your angle grinder to cut through concrete, brick, or stone. It’s a great tool for removing mortar from between bricks or underneath tile, and it works well to cut tiles when laying a new floor, countertop, or tub surround.

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  • Use a pencil to mark the desired cutline on the top of your paver. Flip the paver over, and mark the cutline underneath, as well.
  • Don protective gear, including safety goggles and a dust mask. Cutting pavers creates a lot of dust, and you don’t want to damage your eyes or respiratory system.
  • Set the paver on a flat, sturdy surface that isn’t slippery. If necessary, lay a rubber mat underneath the paver to prevent slipping or sliding as you work.
  • Start with a shallow cut along the marked cutline. Continue to make shallow passes with the angle grinder until the cut is around 1/2 inch deep.
  • Flip the paver over, and trace the bottom cutline with your angle grinder, making shallow cuts until you’ve reached around 1/2 inch to 1 inch deep into the paver.
  • Set the paver on a flat, raised surface so the unneeded portion of the paver hangs over the edge.
  • Tap the unneeded portion of the paver with a hammer or mallet. The paver should break along your cutline.
  • Repeat the process with the rest of your pavers.
  • First, gather up your safety equipment. Cutting metal with an angle grinder produces a lot of sparks, tiny shards of metal, and noise, so you’ll need sturdy work gloves, protective goggles, ear protection, and closed shoes. Be sure that your clothing is not loose or dangling, and that you are not standing on slippery or wet flooring.
  • Using chalk or a marker, sketch your desired cutline on the metal. You can also use an awl to scratch the line, if desired.
  • Clamp the metal piece securely to a workbench or other flat surface.
  • Turn on your angle grinder, and let it reach full speed before gently setting the blade against the metal. Hold the tool firmly with both hands.
  • Slowly work your way along the cutline. Do not force the angle grinder or abruptly change directions. Let the tool lead the way forward while you hold it securely.
  • Once you’ve finished cutting, let the tool come to a complete stop before setting it down.
  • If necessary, switch to a grinding blade, and grind away rough edges or flash along the edges of the cut metal.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article is edited and updated by Michelle Ullman, the tool expert for The Spruce. She has extensive experience not only in writing about all things related to the home, but also in carrying out various DIY projects, including landscaping, painting, flooring, wallpapering, furniture makeovers, and simple repairs.

For this roundup, she considered dozens of angle grinders, taking into account features, power, price, and brand reputation, as well as reviews from both professional and DIY buyers, and advice from Thomas Hawkins, a handyman, master electrician, and owner of Electrician Apprentice HQ, as well as Deane Biermeier, a licensed carpenter and general contractor and a member of The Spruce’s Home Improvement Review Board.

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Home » Latest Tool Reviews » Power Tools » Grinders » Porter-Cable Small Angle Grinder Review

Porter-Cable Model PC60TCTAG

4-½ Inch Slide Switch Small Angle Grinder

Porter-Cable recently introduced a new line of small angle grinders including the PC60TCTAG and PC60TAG. These 4-1/2″ Slide Switch Angle Grinders were designed for improved ergonomics, ease of use, performance and durability. They sent us Model PC60TCTAG to test and review.

Porter-Cable PC60TCTAG Features

The PC60TCTAG is the same grinder however it comes with an additional Type 1 cutting guard.

  • 11,000 RPM for high speed material removal
  • Durable 6.0 Amp motor powers through jobsite tasks with ease
  • Cast metal gear housing increases jobsite durability and tool longevity
  • Quick access to the motor brushes, which permits easy service and additional life
  • 3-position adjustable side handle allows greater control in multiple positions
  • Soft grip handle improves user comfort and control
  • Spindle lock feature allows for single wrench bit changes
  • Quick release guard provides fast and easy guard removal
  • Includes cutoff and grinding guards so that it can be used safely as a grinder or cutoff tool
  • Tool only weighs 4.1 lbs

The PC60TCTAG comes with the PC60TAG, (5) Metal Grinding Wheels, Spanner wrench, Side handle, Grinding guard, Cutoff guard, and (5) Cutting Wheels.

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Power Performance

The folks at Porter-Cable set out to design a small angle grinder with sufficient power for grinding and cutting with the benefits of a smaller, lighter tool. After using the PC60TCTAG around the shop the last couple of months I can say they did a pretty good job. The PC60TCTAG is light weight and powerful.

I tested the PC60TCTAG on several different projects including grinding welds, grinding support brackets and cutting off pieces of aluminum angle and even some rebar. It performed all of those tasks really well. It was a real pleasure working with an angle grinder that’s about 1/3 the weight of larger 7″ and 9″ angle grinders.

The 6.0 amp motor is comparable to the Makita 4-1/2″ grinder but considerably smaller than the 10 amp motor that DeWALT offers on their small angle grinders. Having said that I didn’t have any power issues with the PC60TCTAG and felt it had plenty of power for the small projects that I tend to use a small grinder for.

Tool-Free Guard Feature

As you can see in the photos above the PC60TCTAG comes with two different Tool-Free Guards. If you look closely in the image above you’ll see a clamp that holds the guard in place. To remove the guard you simple release the spring loaded lever, rotate the guard and then slide it off the tool housing. It literally take about 30 seconds to change the guard. This means you can go from cutting to grinding in less than a minute. I found no issues switching between guards and feel that it’s a great design.

Overall Impression

The PC60TCTAG Small Angle Grinder from Porter-Cable is a nicely built, light weight, comfortable tool. Having a small angle grinder is great especially for remote jobs, small tasks and detail work. Overall I’m very happy with it’s performance, features and design. If I had one small complaint it would be the lack of a storage case/bag. These small grinders are most often transported to remote job sites so a carrying bag would be really nice for keeping all the grinding wheels, the wrench, and spare guard together.

The PC60TCTAG is priced just under 50 which makes it a great value. The tool became available in February through independent dealers and select online merchants. If you’re interested in buying one online you can find it at the following link:

A bench grinder is probably not a tool you’ll use every day. However, if it’s available and set up correctly, you’ll be surprised how often it comes in handy for everything from sharpening tools to rounding over thread ends on a cutoff bolt. We’ve assembled these tips to help you get the most out of your grinder.

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Keep a Container of Water Handy

Most chisels and other cutting tools are made of tempered steel. If the steel gets too hot and turns bluish black, it’s overheated and won’t hold an edge very long. To avoid ruining the edge of a tool by overheating, keep water nearby to cool the tool. A good technique is to move the tool once across the bench grinder for no more than a few seconds. Then dip it in the water. If the steel edge does overheat and turns color, grind the edge back to good steel and start over.

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Grind Small Objects Safely

Hold small objects with locking pliers. This keeps your fingers a safe distance from the grinding wheel and protects them against burns from the hot metal. It also gives you better control over the grinding process.

Make Tool Sharpening Guides

Here’s a better way to hold tools securely while you’re grinding them—and take the guesswork out of creating the right bevel angle. It’s a short piece of 2×4 with an angled end and a 1-1/4-in. hole for a clamp. I made one for sharpening chisels and plane blades, and a few more with different angles for wood-turning tools. Large labels with the tool’s name tell you which blocks are for which tools. For a Delta grinder with a 6-in.-diameter wheel, a 5-1/2-in.-long piece of 2×4 aligns the tool to the wheel just right. For other bench grinders, you may need to adjust this length. Note: The angle you cut on the block is not the same as the tool’s bevel angle. But let’s skip the math. To determine the block angle, turn off the grinder and hold the tool’s bevel flush against the wheel. The angle of the tool shaft to the workbench is the angle to cut on the 2×4. Our thanks to Ray Caputo for this sharp accessory.

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Consider a Low-Speed Grinder for Sharpening

Unless they’re variable speed, most bench grinders run at about 3,450 rpm. If you’re careful and keep the wheel dressed (more on that in another tip), these high-speed grinders work fine. But for sharpening garden and other tools, a low-speed grinder running at 1,750 rpm is a better choice. The lower speed reduces the chance you’ll overheat the edge of your tool. Another advantage of a low-speed grinder (100 to 150) is that this type typically includes friable white grinder wheels, which do a better job of sharpening than the gray grinder wheels usually included with high-speed grinders. See how to use an angle grinder.

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Dress Wheels Frequently

Wheel dressing squares the face of the wheel, but more important, it exposes new grit for more efficient cutting. As a wheel is used, the spaces between the cutting grit can become clogged, and the grit itself dulled. A wheel in this condition can cause overheating and slows material removal. A wheel dresser like the one shown here (15 to 30) has a bar with diamond grit impregnated in it. Holding the bar against the spinning wheel cuts away the surface to expose new grit, squares the face of the wheel and rounds the wheel. To use a dressing tool like this, start the bench grinder and wait for it to reach full speed. Then press the diamond wheel dresser against the spinning wheel, holding it perpendicular to the face of the wheel. Be sure to wear a good-quality dust mask. The fine aluminum oxide dust is very bad for your lungs. Draw a pencil line on the wheel before you start to help you gauge when you’ve removed enough material from the wheel. Dress the wheel just until the pencil line disappears.

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Watch for the Sparks to Come Over the Top

When you’re sharpening a chisel or other tool, you can tell when the edge is getting sharp by watching the sparks. When the edge is blunt, the sparks are deflected downward. But as the edge gets sharper, the sparks roll over the tool and cascade down the surface facing you. When you see this start to happen, be careful about grinding much more because a thin edge is very vulnerable to overheating.

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Make an Angle Gauge

Chisels and other cutting tools work best if their edges are ground at the correct angle. You can search online to find the optimal angle for whatever tool you’re sharpening. Most wood chisels should be ground to about a 25-degree angle with a secondary micro-bevel angle of 30 degrees on the tip of the blade. An angle gauge allows you to set the tool rest at the desired angle. You can make an angle gauge from a thin piece of cardboard using an inexpensive protractor. 1. MARK THE ANGLE ON CARDBOARD Align the center mark on the protractor with the top edge of the cardboard. Then turn the protractor until the desired angle is also aligned with the top edge. Draw a line along the protractor to mark the angle. Don’t forget to label the angle. Cut along the line to create the gauge. 2. ADJUST THE TOOL REST Set the cardboard on the tool rest and adjust the angle of the tool rest until the wheel contacts the center of the angled portion of the cardboard gauge.

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Upgrade the Tool Rest

Inexpensive bench grinders have tool rests that are finicky and difficult to adjust. If you do a lot of tool sharpening or simply want a bench grinder tool rest that’s easier to adjust, consider adding a stand-alone tool rest. There are several variations, some made for specific tasks like sharpening lathe turning tools. This Veritas model has two adjustments for positioning and aligning the tool rest, and levers for easy tightening. You can also buy an attachment that holds chisels or plane irons.

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Make Your Grinder Portable

Even the most nicely organized home workshops don’t have enough bench space to devote a section to a bench grinder. A good solution is to mount your grinder to a board or small stand so you can clamp it to the bench when you need it, and store on the shelf when you don’t. The compartment on this grinder stand is a good spot to keep your dressing tool and safety glasses so they’re handy when you need them. For a fancier version, build a little drawer to fit the space under the grinder. The stand is built from two 12 x 16-in. pieces of 3/4-in. plywood separated by two 4 x 12-in. uprights. We used two 5/16-in. bolts with washers and nuts to attach the grinder, leaving enough space in front of the grinder to mount a stand-alone tool rest.

Easy-to-Clamp Mobile Base

Shazam! Fasten your bench-top tools to your workbench in seconds. Bolt 3/4-in. plywood bases on the tools and then glue and screw a wood strip along the front edge to fit into a woodworking vise. Crank this strip into a vise to lock the tool into place. If you don’t have a vise, drill a couple of clearance holes along the face of the wood strip on the base and drive screws through the strip into the edge of your workbench. Then just unscrew to remove the tool.

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Set Up a Polishing Station

A bench grinder fitted with a wire wheel on one side and a cotton buffing wheel on the other side, or buffing wheels on both sides, makes a great cleaning and polishing tool. You’ll also need a set of polishing compound sticks (14). Polishing compound sticks are color coded to indicate the grit, from coarse to very fine. To use the polishing wheel, hold the stick against the buffing wheel as it spins to transfer some polishing compound to the wheel. Then hold the object lightly against the wheel and let the compound polish the surface.

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Sharpen Your Lawn Mower Blade

Sharpening your lawn mower blade is easy with a bench grinder. Grind the tapered cutting edges with a grinder only if you see nicks in the blade. Follow the factory angle of the cutting edge. The grinder will remove nicks in the blade much faster than you can file them.

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Not All Grinding Wheels are the Same

You can use two kinds of aluminum-oxide wheels to sharpen your chisels; one is blue-gray and the other white. We used the darker-color wheel, which is harder and will keep its shape longer. The drawback, however, is that it grinds hotter than the softer, white wheel. Too much heat will weaken the steel. The soft wheel will need more frequent shaping with a dressing tool, but you’ll be less likely to burn the edge of your chisel while grinding. For best results, use a 100-grit wheel to shape your chisel blades.

Know When to Replace a Wheel

Slide the wheel over your finger and tap the wheel in four places with a screwdriver handle. All taps should sound the same. If they don’t, scrap the wheel. It’s cracked.

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