Building a homemade tungsten grinder (DIY)
Whether you’re using pure, ceriated or lanthanated tungsten for your welding project, you need to make sure that the tips are properly prepared. The different types of tungsten require different preparations. This is something that every person who’s ever used tungsten inert gas or TIG welding knows.
Each tungsten type needs to be prepared uniquely; these include balled, pointed or truncated. For the last two tips mentioned, using a grinder or sharpener is the best way to get the needed results.
Tungsten grinder prices can range from $200 to over $900. One other important thing about grinders used for tungsten electrodes is that these must not be used for other grinding purposes to avoid contamination.
A contaminated sharpener will affect the tip and may result to the electrode not working properly, and you definitely want to get consistently high-quality weld all the time. So even if you already have a pedal grinder or any other sander or sharpener in your toolshed, you still want to look towards investing in a tungsten grinder.
That’s why despite the high cost involved, most people are forced to shell out a lot of money as these are an absolute necessity. Some folks, however, choose to build their own homemade tungsten grinder. While it does take some experience to be able to do this, a lot of proud owners of this DIY tungsten grinders have found it satisfactory and effective.
Below are some of the benefits that you can enjoy by building your own homemade tungsten grinder.
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Homemade grinders are less expensive
The best sharpeners certainly don’t come in cheap, with the top brands costing at least $500. And that’s just the handheld variety. Ground or bench grinders cost a lot more than that. Making your own grinder costs almost just a quarter of that. With parts available at virtually any hardware store, you can build on the budget and still get what you need.
Homemade grinders are customized to your needs
Purchasing tungsten grinders that are available on the market limits your choices to what has already been preassembled. By constructing your own homemade tungsten grinder, you can choose the different elements such as the type of rotary tool and grinding wheel.
Before you start on a DIY project for your homemade tungsten grinder, it is also important that you know the risks that are associated with it.
Identifying the best parts
Assembling a homemade tungsten grinder may seem quite easy to do. There are forums and a lot of resources available online that may help you out. These plans from your peers often come with recommended parts to use so that you get the best results. However, different people have different opinions on the best parts to use. Some would recommend diamond grinders while others have their own preferences.
Distinguishing about which would be best may result in you having to build and rebuild until you find what works to your specifications.
The importance of preparing the tungsten electrodes to ensure a high-quality weld is a universally accepted fact among craftsmen. Commercially built grinders consider a lot of factors when designing and building their products. If you are inexperienced at building tools, you may not be able to create the right angle and other specifications needed to get the desired results.
While build plans available may seem easy to follow, the actual build may be a bit more challenging if you’re new at making tools.
If you’re thinking about building your own, here are some tips and guidelines that may come in helpful regardless if you’ve had experience in building tools before or none at all.
- Do your research before starting on your project. There are a variety of parts and materials that you can use for the build. In order to find the best wheels and other parts, you can read up on available posted product reviews and testimonials.
- Consult with other people who have built their own homemade tungsten grinder before. They may have helpful and detailed tips on how you can make one with less error. Learning about their attempts and how their grinder works for them will be helpful advice that you can use when you’re constructing your own. If you don’t know anybody personally, you can visit welding forums to meet with like-minded individuals who have the experience you need.
- Do not compromise on the parts. Building your homemade tungsten grinder should be cost efficient and not cheap. Keep in mind that the quality of your grinder will affect the effectiveness of your tungsten electrodes. This means your welding projects will be poor quality. In addition, building a sharpener that does not work well may result in more costs. To get the needed tips, you might end up having to purchase a commercial grinder after all.
- When choosing the type of grinding wheel, take into consideration the type of tungsten electrode you are using for your TIG. Some sharpeners work well with certain tungsten types. Also, tips come in different sizes so you need to make sure the homemade tungsten grinder you will be building can accommodate these.
While building your own homemade tungsten grinder may put a few hundred dollars in your pocket, it is a serious project to undertake. There are a lot of factors that include your experience as well as the availability of parts in your area.
As with any DIY project, building your own grinder can be cost efficient as well as extremely satisfying. Check out reviews and forums online to get information on how to get started on building your very own homemade tungsten grinder.