Recently we received a request from a potential customer who wanted to convert a grinder that was clearly marked and designed for small grinding wheels, to a machine that would accept larger diameter grinding wheels. We declined the sales and advised the customer not to alter the machine. Additionally we provided this customer with safety materials including an ANSI B7.1 (Safety Requirements for the Use, Care and Protection of Abrasive Wheels) book.
In light of this most recent request, perhaps it is a good time to review some of the issues associated with machine conversions.
All machine alterations should be performed by the machine manufacturer or other authorized machine/equipment repair or rebuild organizations. Machine alterations can be very dangerous and should only be done by a specialist. Consideration must be given to the machine’s guarding systems, wheel mounting system, speed, spindle bearings, work-piece feeding system, etc. This list of items is long and complicated.
Altering a grinding machine MUST be done by trained, skilled professionals. Do-it-yourself machine alterations are a recipe for disaster. As always, play it safe at the wheel!