|Review by PurpLev||posted 07-22-2012 02:45 AM||4227 views||6 times favorited||12 comments|
I got my VS grinder a while back after getting my lathe to sharpen my HSS bits and for the longest time was plain disappointed by how long and how hard it was to shape and sharpen those bits, and always considered replacing the factory supplied wheels with after market replacements…
I should have done that much sooner!
There are many alternatives out there, and I ended up going for the blue and white aluminum oxide wheels from CGW (at the moment of this writing sold by wholesale tool company at wttool.com). I was looking at the equivalent Norton wheels and since I have a 6” grinder (should have gone for the 8” but then again I was trying to minimize expenses as always) and the 6” wheels are not as easy to find for the grits I was looking for and all from 1 supplier (getting from multiple suppliers ends up doubling shipping) I ended up going with a different brand since WWT had everything that I needed in 1 place, and it was by far cheaper than any WW related site offering similar wheels (I think at half the cost).
Shipping (CGW and WTTOOL)
I read on amazon and other places where other brands of wheels were purchased from that the wheels were shipped loose inside a box that was too large causing the wheel to shift and move about in the box which ends up being chipped. CGW packs their wheels individually in a tight box which protects the wheel (see pic #2), more than that, WTTOOL packed 3 wheels in a protected wrapper and packed that tight in a larger box with added cushions to even better protect the shippment – BRAVO!!! I was pleasantly surprised.
while the website does not specify this (unknowingly as to why…) the wheels come with telescoping bushing to fit the 1-1/4” bored wheels on grinders with shafts of 1” / 3/4” AND 1/2” (mine) diameter – since wwtool did not mention this on the product page, I was planning on making those myself, but did not mind NOT having to do that at all.
vibration and turning
I am not sure if it’s the bushing or the wheels themselves, but they added significant vibration to the grinder as compared to the factory supplied wheels. I may try to replace the bushings, and/or readjust the wheel prior to locking it again to see if this can be eliminated completely. After truing the wheels the vibration reduced, but not gone completely. I may need to true them a bit more which might do the trick as well. they seem to only start vibrating when I’m running the grinder at full speed (VS) so for now I’m running it at 80/90% which takes the vibration out. (-1 point in the score here)
this is where I was blown away. compared to factory wheels, these wheels cut FAST! I got 36x and 60x for roughing (blue wheels) and 120x for finishing (white). I figured If the 60x cuts fast enough, I won’t be using the 36x unless I must. compared to the 36x factory wheel, this 60x blue wheel cuts WAY faster (I am guesstimating x10 faster) – and more importantly – WAY cooler. whereas with the factory wheel I’d have to dip in water every 1 second, these can cut for a good 10 seconds before it gets too hot to hold – significantly better!
I was able to shape the HSS bit seen in pic#3 in a matter of about 1 minute, whereas with the factory wheels it would take me 10-15 minutes to get it done from a square blank. major improvement.
These wheels cut fast, cut cool, and I was able to get the 3 wheels for what other WW places would charge you for just 1. regardless, these are a major improvement over factory wheels, and I would highly recommend getting those factory wheels replaced sooner than later (and if you don’t care – I have 2 factory wheels for you that I will never use)
-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.