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  #1  
Old 03-25-2012, 02:06 PM
Stewie Stewie is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Santa Paula CA
Posts: 185
Default Why not expensive die grinders?

Hi all-
I just purchased a Sioux angle drill and love it already. I was thinking about tool quality, and was wondering why builders spend a fair bit on drills, rivet guns etc but I have not seen people recommend good quality die grinders in the "recommended tools" threads? Just curious - it's a tool that I use as much as, if not more than any other.
Eric
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  #2  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:15 PM
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Walt Walt is offline
 
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Location: Dallas/Ft Worth, TX
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Default

I have a Dotco dye grinder, it's one of my most used sheet metal tools and well worth the $$.
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  #3  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:32 PM
roee roee is offline
 
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Location: San Diego, CA, U.S.A.
Posts: 770
Default

A die grinder is not a high precision tool, and doesn't need to be in order to perform its function well.

I use a $20 die grinder from Harbor Freight and it seems to do its job just fine.

In what way is a $400 die grinder so superior to a $20 one to be worth the price difference? Just curious.
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  #4  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:33 PM
ROTARY7 ROTARY7 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Dayton, OH
Posts: 163
Default Dynafiles are worth their weight in gold

A good die grinder is a must. Like a lot of tools, one that will last a lifetime is worth the cost. To me anyway.

The air tool I personally think is worth its weight in gold is a Dynafile (or equivalent brand). The model I have is: Dynabrade 40320. I was just using mine today, on some alligator jaws for upcoming tools for Hondajet. The unit accepts 1/4" - 3/4" belts.

I was telling a friend today how useful these are. You can change out belts, and switch quickly from sanding to polishing. It is readily throttleable, and you can really turn the belt slowly for great control. I like to hold mine so that the belt throws the debris away from me. This isn't a cheap air tool, but you will use it ALL THE TIME.

There are electric versions out there too. Dynafile is the gold standard.

http://www.aaabrasives.com/products/...x-457-mm-belts
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  #5  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:36 PM
Bob Axsom Bob Axsom is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 5,685
Default Well, it has to be good enough to do the job

I have a good die grinder that I inherited from my brother Drex and when I need it it does the job perfectly - I used it last night to put a groove in the edge of a part for a perfect fit into a small space at the end of an installation. But, I don't use it often and when I'm done the part that I am working on is the important thing. If the tool allowed me to do the necessary work like this spinning variable speed manual tool has done that's all I care about. Tools like rivet guns and especially electrical pin and terminal crimpers predetermine the quality limit of the product and therefore demand more of my attention in tool selection.

Bob Axsom

Last edited by Bob Axsom : 03-25-2012 at 04:38 PM.
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  #6  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:46 PM
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Walt Walt is offline
 
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Location: Dallas/Ft Worth, TX
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ROTARY7 View Post
A good die grinder is a must. Like a lot of tools, one that will last a lifetime is worth the cost. To me anyway.

The air tool I personally think is worth its weight in gold is a Dynafile (or equivalent brand). The model I have is: Dynabrade 40320. I was just using mine today, on some alligator jaws for upcoming tools for Hondajet. The unit accepts 1/4" - 3/4" belts.

I was telling a friend today how useful these are. You can change out belts, and switch quickly from sanding to polishing. It is readily throttleable, and you can really turn the belt slowly for great control. I like to hold mine so that the belt throws the debris away from me. This isn't a cheap air tool, but you will use it ALL THE TIME.
Mark and I think alike...
I'm gonna have to keep an eye out for a Dynafile now
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EXP Aircraft Services LLC
Specializing in RV Condition Inspections, Maintenance, Avionics Upgrades
Dynamic Prop Balancing, Pitot-Static Altmeter/Transponder Certification
FAA Certified Repair Station, AP/IA/FCC GROL, EAA Technical Counselor
Authorized Garmin G3X Dealer/Installer
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  #7  
Old 03-25-2012, 04:54 PM
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KTM520guy KTM520guy is offline
 
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Location: Texas, where else.
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by roee View Post
A die grinder is not a high precision tool, and doesn't need to be in order to perform its function well.

I use a $20 die grinder from Harbor Freight and it seems to do its job just fine.

In what way is a $400 die grinder so superior to a $20 one to be worth the price difference? Just curious.
I have an old (at least 30 years old) Dotco die-grinder. It's smaller and lighter than any of the cheaper tools out there. Even with it's worn out gear set it will run newer grinders into the ground.
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  #8  
Old 03-25-2012, 05:11 PM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
Posts: 2,813
Default die grinder?

I had to look up what a die grinder even was! I have never used one before I started my build. After the tail kit is nearly complete, I still haven't used one. I did buy a fake Dremell kit from Costco, but I haven't opened the box yet.

I do have a really cool tool that fits on my angle grinder with a couple of chains on it for carving wood, but I probably won't use it on the plane either! I will look at the posts and the links and see what the die grinder works well for. The one with the mini belt sander looks like it could have a bunch of uses.

That is one of the fun things about building, finding more tools.
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  #9  
Old 03-25-2012, 05:48 PM
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Jerry Cochran Jerry Cochran is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Sherwood, Oregon
Posts: 981
Default

I agree that quality tools are great, but if one has certain budget constraints, might go this route and buy avgas with the $408 difference...

http://www.harborfreight.com/air-belt-sander-97055.html

Just sayin'.

.
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Last edited by Jerry Cochran : 03-25-2012 at 05:55 PM.
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  #10  
Old 03-25-2012, 06:01 PM
paul mosher
 
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Default Grinder

As a professional aircraft mechanic I would never spend more than $20 on a die grinder. I've had expensive ones and they work no better than a Habour Freight cheapee. They usually last about a year in an industrial environment. (I'm speaking of heavy check chasing lots of corrosion job).
Drills, ect I would go for the high quality stuff.
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