Grinder advice

diverdale

Well-Known Member
My 4x36 sander is starting to show its age plus it's a pain. I'm not at all ready to get a 2x72. Looking at 1x30 and 2x42. Any advice on which to get? Also, grits to have on hand?
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
I started on a Harbor Freight 1x30. It will grind knives but you can bog it down quickly. If you go slow and do not use too much pressure it will work at a low price point. I have never used a 2x42 but I did look at some before I pulled the trigger on a Grizzly knife maker 2x72. Whichever you choose I would get the strongest motor you can afford. If you can swing it I would recommend the Grizzly. Its not perfect and you only get 2 speeds, on and WAO but it is a quantum leap above a 1x30. I think you can get those for about $580. The other good thing is it comes with a second arm so you can run a buffer, wire wheel, grinding stone, Etc. too. The Grizzly will do everything you need it to until you are ready to pull the trigger on a Wertz, KMG, Baldor or Pheer. Just my opinion. I am about to pull the trigger on a Pheer any day now.
 

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
I know a lot of beginning/newer makers go with 1 x 30 or 2 x 42 because of the cost. But honestly, there simply are not any models of those size machines that is built/intended for grinding metal. They are built/intended for hobby/occasional use on wood and other "soft" materials.

I've often said it..... my advice is to save your pennies for a time, until you can afford a 2x72" machine..... you won't be sorry. Generally people in your position will buy a "cheap" machine, then another, and another, and another...... and by the time they are frustrated enough and go after a 2x72 machine.....they've spend enough money on the "cheap" machines to have purchased 2 or 3 of the 2x72" machines.

OK, that being said, you asked about "grits to have on hand?" There in is another issue with the smaller/cheaper machines..... belt types and grits are usually very limited. For my 2x72 machines, I keep 50, 120, 220, 400, 600, and 1200 grit belts on hand.
 

diverdale

Well-Known Member
Ok...I don't love wasting time and/or money....say that I AM ready to pull the trigger on a 2x72. Prices for those seem to be kinda varied as well. I've read a bunch about them. KMG and Baldor mostly come to mind. What am I looking at price wise for a "ready to use" setup? Including motor, speed controller and whatnot.
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
The best price I have found for everything I want is Pheer grinders. I am getting a 1.5 HP with Flat Platen, tool rest, variable speed controller, small wheel holder, extra arm, and all steel small wheel kit for $1930 shipped. I have done my due diligence on researching the company and reviews and I am satisfied this is the grinder for me.
 

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
I'd say you're looking at $2K+ to get everything in a 2x72 machines that is "ready to go".

There is no "one size fits all" when it comes to attachments and accessories for a new grinder. I'd venture to say that a flat platen, 8" contact wheel, and a 3/4" wheel, with a small wheel attachment would cover most situations/needs you'll encounter. Beyond that, other attachments are there for special needs/situations, or to make certain things convenient for the user.

Here's one of the main reasons I encourage saving and buying a 2x72....... when you spend the money on a 1x30, 1x42, 2x42, etc. That money is GONE....meaning you will never recover it if you decide you want to sell. When it comes to a "name brand" 2x72, you can keep/use it for a decade, and if you decided to sell, you'd get nearly as much as you paid for it.

Having been in your shoes, I know it's a lot of money, but if you have intentions of making knives for any length of time, it will quickly pay for itself. In my opinion, NOTHING will improve your knives more, or faster than a good 2x72" grinder.
 

Heikki

Well-Known Member
I started out using a hacksaw for profiling and files for beveling the blades. I had a HF 1x30, but only used it to clean up the profile and for handle shaping. That process worked for the time it took to save up for a 2x72. The 2x72 was a huge jump in quality, learning, and time saved.

Ed is right about a name brand 2x72 holding its value. I kept my eyes open for used ones before buying mine.
 

diverdale

Well-Known Member
anyone know the approximate front-to-back measurement of a typical 2x72? I have a spot where I may be able to shoehorn one ;)
 

C. Killgore

Well-Known Member
Mine varies from about 25" to 34" depending on what attachment you're using. The small wheel attachment being the furthest out.

Now if you're talking about just the frame, all 3 of my grinders are close to 19" deep
 

diverdale

Well-Known Member
Mine varies from about 25" to 34" depending on what attachment you're using. The small wheel attachment being the furthest out.

Now if you're talking about just the frame, all 3 of my grinders are close to 19" deep
Looking for overall. Thanks for that info. They look a lot bigger in pictures. What about power? My shop runs on a single 15amp breaker.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
anyone know the approximate front-to-back measurement of a typical 2x72? I have a spot where I may be able to shoehorn one ;)
Be sure you allow for plenty of room at the front of the grinder. Obviously you need room to maneuver but I'm thinking if you store other items in that location when you aren't working, such as a car. Our car's passenger side mirror housing has several deep scratches because I forgot to take the platen arm out of the frame when I pulled the car in. You'll be hearing stridently from your significant other if you don't. o_O
 

diverdale

Well-Known Member
Be sure you allow for plenty of room at the front of the grinder. Obviously you need room to maneuver but I'm thinking if you store other items in that location when you aren't working, such as a car. Our car's passenger side mirror housing has several deep scratches because I forgot to take the platen arm out of the frame when I pulled the car in. You'll be hearing stridently from your significant other if you don't. o_O
Haha ... I’ll bet. I have a redundant mitre saw in my little shop that I’m getting rid of ... I think a grinder will fit there perfectly. I did swing by HF today and picked up one of their $52 belt only units. Also, I have a Saleen Mustang that I’m in the process of selling ... wife says I can buy whatever with half of the proceeds :D
 
Being brand new to knife forging and grinding, I pulled the trigger on a KMG, horse and a half with the three pulleys an a 8 inch wheel. Waiting on a one burner Chili forge to arrive. Just enrolled and paid tuition on the Introduction to Bladesmithing at the Bill Moran School of Bladesmithing in Washington Arkansas. Classes start at the end of August.
 
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