Do You Need a Variable Speed Bench Grinder?

The right speed is important. When it comes to grinding down different objects, using the right speed helps make grinding faster, It also helps you stay in control of what happens to the item. You can do a better job if you can change speeds and control what happens on your grinder better.

Do you need a variable speed bench grinder? The answer to this question is no. Variable speed bench grinders are helpful but you can get along without one. A single-speed grinder is just as good as a variable speed one and it is the grinding wheel and the pressure you apply that makes most of the difference.

To find out why variable speed bench grinders are so popular and useful, just continue to read our article, it is filled with the information you need to know to make an intelligent decision on which bench grinder is right for you.

Why a Variable Speed Bench Grinder?

There are some very good reasons why you may want to consider using a variable speed grinder over a single-speed model. Here are some of those reasons:

  • They are versatile - you can use them for a variety of projects both large and small.
  • You can control their speed - you do not have a one size fits all grinder speed. You can adjust the speed to fit the project and material you are grinding.
  • There is less waste - you can slow the grinder down and remove less material than a higher speed would do.
  • They keep you safe - you can easily move from a high speed to a lower speed reducing the risk of harm to you and those around you.
  • You stay comfortable - you can choose the speed you like best and can work on comfortably.
  • Helps when you have a deadline - if you need to grind quickly, you can up the speed and grind a little faster.

How Does a Variable Speed Bench grinder Work?


A variable speed grinder works in much the same way as a single-speed model does. The only difference is you get to choose which speed is the best for you and the project you are working on.

A multiple speed bench grinder sharpens tools, lawn mower, and other blades as well as tuneup dull equipment. Plus, it can fix broken steel blades, remove dangerous sharp edges of cracks, etc and more.

Then with a quick wheel change, it can polish metal and items made from other materials.

A variable speed bench grinder also uses stone grinding wheels that are very porous. These wheels help chip away the metal on a variety of items to make those items sharp and smooth.

You can also place different grit wheels on the variable speed grinder for finer results. The key to successfully using a variable speed bench grinder is not to overdo it. The wheels and the grinder itself can be very fragile.

One important fact that needs to be kept in mind is that the grit of the wheel has to match the rotation speed or you may have shattered metal on your hands.

Which is Better? Variable Speed vs Single Speed Bench Grinder


Every item has its lists of pros and cons. These are good if you are comparing tools that handle the same job in different ways. But for bench grinders, there is only one way to handle any grinding job.

You place the object against the stone wheel and stay there until you have reached your grinding target. It doesn’t matter if you have a single-speed grinder or a variable speed one. The job is done the same way.

The advantages of using a variable speed bench grinder comes in that you have better control over the grinding wheel. You can speed it up if necessary or slow it down if the job requires it. You stay in control and do not lose any grinding time looking for another grinder to help you.

The advantage of the single speed grinder is that you already know what speed it is and you know just how much pressure to apply to get the job done right. As for which is better, that would be up to your preference, your skill level and the materials you are working with.

How to Make Variable Speed Bench Grinder


It may not take too much time and effort to make a variable speed bench grinder. The key is to find out what kind of motor you have inside the machine. You can add Dimmer switches, potentiometers, router speed controls, and other speed control switches only to those bench grinders that have a universal brush type motor.

These switches do not work on a bench grinder with an induction motor. For this type of motor, you would need a variable speed frequency drive. Another way to change a single speed bench grinder into a variable speed model is to use a pulley system. But the issue here is that the motor may burn out on you.

Answers to Your Questions

1. Is it safe to make a single speed bench grinder into a variable speed one?

Yes, it is a very safe process and you will not be putting yourself at any more risk if you make the change. The key will be in the type of motor and how well you installed the variable speed switch.

2. I have a single speed bench grinder, should I upgrade to a variable speed model?

Not necessarily. You can do just as good of a job on your single speed bench grinder as you can on a variable speed one. The key is what type of projects are you working on, how often you use your grinder and how much time you have to do the work. If you rarely use your bench grinder, then you do not need to upgrade.

Some Final Comments

A variable speed bench grinder can easily make your grinding life a lot better. You have more control and you get to choose which speed your grinding wheels spin at. This helps you reduce any harmful risks to you or those near your workstation.

Plus, you can cut down on the amount of waste when you slow the grinder down. There are a lot of good reasons to upgrade to a variable speed grinder and it all depends on if you have the need for one.

If you do a lot of grinding, then a variable speed bench grinder is for you. They just have too many advantages over a single-speed model.

Leave a Comment: