Bench Grinder vs Angle Grinder: What’s the Difference?

There is a time and place for everything and this is the time and place to talk about bench grinders and angle grinders. Like bench grinders, angle grinders can make great contributions to your work duties.

What is the difference between a grinder and an angle grinder? One of the main differences between the two grinders is that the angle grinder is not stationary. A bench grinder should be attached to a stand or workbench, while the angle grinder provides you with a lot of mobility options.

There are more differences than that. To find out all the differences, just continue to read. We have placed a lot of good information in this article to help you understand the difference between the two power tools.

Difference Between Bench Grinder and Angle Grinder

In this section, you will find more differences between the two useful grinders.

1. Weight - the weight of the angle grinder is significantly less than the bench grinder. That is because it is made to move with you and be easy to carry. The average weight of an angle grinder is about 7 to 8 pounds, with the rare exception exceeding 10 pounds.


Most bench grinders come with a cast-iron base. As you know cast iron is very heavy. The reason for using this material is that the bench grinder needs to be stable, handle a lot of pressure and remain in one spot. It also cuts down on vibrations.

2. Design - if you have seen an angle grinder, you know that it is designed to fit into your hands. It has a long handle for easy maneuvering and to cut down on vibrations.

The bench grinder’s design works with you when you have those long awkward to maneuver pieces to grind.

3. Function - bench grinder’s primary function is to sharpen dull tools. Especially those tools that require two hands to get that perfect edge. With two wheels and lots of power, your sharpening jobs move along quickly.

While an angle grinder can be used to sharpen tools, it is a bit hard to do so with one hand. Its main function is to grind down metals in those hard to reach places or cut the excess metal off.


Another difference is that the angle grinder is better at polishing than a bench grinder. Plus, the angle grinder does a better job at sanding.

4. Wheels - As you may already know, a bench grinder is outfitted with two wheels. You have one grit size on one side and another on the other side. This design balances the bench grinder and saves you a little time.

On the other hand, the angle grinder only has room for one wheel. This means that when you want to make a change, you have to stop what you are doing and change the wheel.

5. Wheel Speed - angle grinders have a clear edge here as their wheels spin at about 8,000 to 12,000 RPM. When you have more precise work to be done, you can get an angle grinder that turns its wheel at 6,000 RPM.

In comparison, the bench grinder wheels spin at about 3,500 RPM, give or take 1,000 RPM. Or you can choose to use one whose wheels spin at 1,700 to 1,900 RPM approx.

6. Accuracy - this is a toss-up as both the bench grinder and the angle grinder’s accuracy depends on its user. Neither are accurate without the help of the person operating them.

As is the case with most power tools, all it takes is a little practice to master both of these tools.

The Pros and Cons of Angle Drivers

To help you see the difference between the two power tools we have compiled a list of their pros and cons. No tool is perfect, unfortunately. Although their good points outweigh their bad.


  • Very mobile.
  • Wheels run at high speeds.
  • ​They can get into difficult corners and other angles.
  • ​Easy to hold.
  • ​Protect against vibrations.
  • ​They are durable.
  • ​Easy to change wheels.
  • ​Convenient on and off switch.
  • Easy to use.
  • Trigger lock.


  • Spindle may be too long in some cases.
  • Can overheat too fast.
  • ​Beginners may have a difficult time with them.
  • ​Inferior construction materials.
  • ​Doesn’t always come with extra wheels.
  • ​Inferior construction materials.
  • Takes time to learn how to use.

The Pros and Cons of Bench Grinders

Bench grinders are very good tools, yet they have their imperfections.


  • Comes with variable speeds in some cases.
  • Holds alight so you can see better.
  • ​Cast iron base for vibration control.
  • ​Powerful motors.
  • ​Comes in slow and high-speed models.
  • ​Some can run off a generator.
  • ​Stable.
  • ​Easy to change motors.
  • ​Lots of safety features.
  • Variety of wheel sizes and options.


  • Wheels can slow down due to too much pressure.
  • Inferior parts.
  • ​Non-adjustable tool rests in some models.
  • ​Wheels may not be perfect and need some work before using.
  • ​Not made for all people.
  • Can be expensive.

Can You Use an Angle Grinder as a Bench Grinder?


Just about anything is possible, even with power grinders. The answer to this question is yes you can. The good news is that it does not take that much effort to turn an angle grinder into a bench grinder.

being able to convert the angle grinder to a bench grinder can save you a lot of money. The bench grinder can be a bit expensive and using an angle grinder can save you a little time. Turning the angle grinder into a bench grinder does not hurt the power tool.

The innovation can make you look good and impress your friends.

Turn Angle Grinder Into a Bench Grinder


As we said, it is not very difficult to turn an angle grinder into a bench grinder. You do not have to go to a lot of expense buying new materials to make a special grinder stand. You could make one out of scraps but it may not be that stable or effective. But why spend the time if you already own a vise.

All you need to do to make a bench grinder out of an angle grinder is to attach a piece of square tubing lengthwise to your angle grinder. Then attach a small piece of square tubing to the first piece of square tubing and use it as a tool rest. You will only need to do minimum welding to make it all work.

After this is done, you place the lengthwise piece of tubing into your vise and close its jaws. You want to make sure the vise is nice and tight. If the grinder moves then you may damage the piece of metal you are working on.

How to Use an Angle Grinder


Watching someone else use an angle grinder looks easy. So easy that you might think anyone can do it. Yet, like all power tools, it takes a little instruction and a little time to get the technique down pat. Here are some instructions to help you use this power tool correctly.

Step 1: Find the right grinder for the job you have to do. There are two kinds of angle grinders. The electric version is the most common and the most popular. It is powerful and can accommodate lots of accessories.

the other version is the pneumatic model. Just like pneumatic wrenches you see at gas stations, these grinders are powered by air power. They are not as big as their electric counterpart. That means that they can get into smaller places when you need to.

Step 2: Read your instruction or owner’s manual carefully and thoroughly. Because these grinders are very powerful knowing how they work is very important and can save you from serious injury.

Step 3: Learn how to change the wheels. This doesn’t take long. Most angle grinders come with a feature that will lock your wheel in place making it easier to remove. A little practice makes perfect.

Step 4: Be safe. Unlike bench grinders, the angle grinder does not come with a lot of safety guards on them. That means flying metal, sparks and other hazards may come out too quickly for you to avoid.

You should wear tight-fitting safety gloves, not loose-fitting, safety goggles or a face shield. Keep yourself protected.

Step 5: Learning the angle to use. This is another vital aspect of using the angle grinder. Of course, the angle depends on the type of job you are using it for. When you cut a piece of metal, you want a 90-degree angle. There will always be exceptions to this rule.

When you are grinding, polishing and so on, you will want to use a 5 to 10-degree angle. The angle you use all depends on the project and what needs to be done. Also, every angle grinder is different, what works for one grinder may not be a good fit for another model.

The last point in using an angle grinder or any power tool is- first you get good, then you get fast. Speed is not an essential criteria when using either a bench or an angle grinder. Being good is. Practice till you are good, then work on your speed.

Angle Grinder Safety Rules

Safety rules for angle grinders are different from the safety rules for bench grinders. There are some similarities but with the different purpose for angle grinders, more rules were needed to protect the user:

  • Learn how to hold the grinder safely and comfortably.
  • Make sure the object you are grinding is stable and immovable.
  • Make sure the object you are working on is positioned in such a way, you remain comfortable and not distracted.​
  • ​Double check all safety gear to make sure they are attached correctly.
  • ​Test the wheel. Start the grinder first and let the wheel run for a few seconds. If all is okay, you can begin your work.
  • ​When operating, don’t bring the grinder too close to your body.
  • ​When you turn the grinder off, don’t put it down until the wheel stops spinning.
  • ​Watch the amount of pressure you put on the grinder. More isn't always better in this instance.
  • ​Tie long hair back and do not wear loose clothing or safety gloves.
  • ​Always unplug the grinder when not in use. This prevents accidental starts and protects you as you change blades or make other adjustments.
  • ​Double check any attached accessories to make sure they are attached correctly.

Use the proper wheel, spark and dust guards to keep metal. Etc., from going all over the place.

Answers to Your Questions

1. How do I know the correct wheel to use?

There are a variety of wheels available that handle specific materials. Look up the charts on the internet or ask your power tool dealer for a chart to help you find the right wheel for the project you are doing

2. Do I have to wear gloves when using an angle grinder?

A lot of metalwork employers are making it mandatory for their employees to use safety gloves. You may not have a choice. If you are working at home, you have a choice but it is a smart move to protect your hands by wearing gloves when you grind.

Some Final Comments

There are a lot of similarities between the bench grinder and the angle grinder. Yet the purpose of both make the two tools very different. A bench grinder can almost do the exact same tasks as an angle grinder, except it can’t get into small corners.

On the other hand, an angle grinder provides you with a lot of flexibility as you can maneuver it into a variety of positions. It is also very mobile. This allows you to handle different grinding tasks without dismantling the project you are working on.

There is nothing to be afraid of in using either power tool. They are not dangerous except when you do not respect them or take their power seriously. Just follow the simple basic safety rules and you should be fine.

The differences between the bench grinder and the angle grinder actually benefits you. You have two tools that can help you with all your grinding jobs.

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