Cheap Belt Grinder?

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by hhelton34, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    I posted some youtube links on how to fix the "low power", it is not the motor, it is usually the motor position for the belt, loosen a few screws and tension the belt will fix the "low power". Another guy swapped out the rear pulley and installed a larger one that quadrupled the belt speed. For $50 vs. $500? I'm going to be picking one up soon, I'll probably post the tweaks if it needs them.
     
  2. brooksknives

    brooksknives

    593
    Jul 4, 2001
  3. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    And only starting at $415 "Belt grinder prices do not include motor." and "No pulley included." What a deal!!!!
     
  4. brooksknives

    brooksknives

    593
    Jul 4, 2001
    If you know of a grinder that includes a good motor plus pulley that could be used for knifemaking for under 500 im sure we would all like to know where to get it.

    With the cootes you get a grinder that will flat grind hollow and slack belt plus you also get the option to add a small wheel rig plus disk grinder and it will last for years.

    There are a lot of use knifemakers that started with or still use the cootes everyday for grinding knives so they are a good grinder not a cheap one that you will need to replace a year or two down the road.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  5. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    With the OP being 16 years old, I don't think he is quite yet at the "lifelong" level for a grinder, but who knows, maybe this is his career choice. Entry level things are entry level priced for a reason. People do grind knives with that $50-70 Harbor Freight sander, and he could get a bench grinder with polishing wheel for another $40 and be set up to at least practice knife making at a budget price. The OP did say "cheap" which I interpreted as inexpensive. What does that Cootes run after buying a motor and pulley? About 1K?
     
  6. brooksknives

    brooksknives

    593
    Jul 4, 2001
    A three step pulley is around 25-35 us and if you shop around you can get a 1hp tefc motor for a hundred bucks new or less for used.
     
  7. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008

    http://www.trick-tools.com/Multitool-2-x-48-inch-1-hp-Belt-Grinder-MT482-8953


    The Multitool is easily converted to take 2x72 belts and comes with it's own bench grinder and a disc sander attachment which are both very useful. It's like a 3 in 1 machine. Very useful for the beginner. If you have a bench grinder already, you can just buy the belt grinder attachment by itself for under $300.

    http://www.bladeforums.com/threads/my-2x48-multitool-to-2x72-conversion.1412565/
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017
  8. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008
  9. brooksknives

    brooksknives

    593
    Jul 4, 2001
    Nice little setup i think that would be a great starter.
    Your right about being in canada we dont have a lot to pick from my own grinder is a canadian made grinder that cost me close to 2500 all in geting into knife making part time or full time is not cheap by the time you add up the tools belts sandpaper steel buffers drillpress ect it adds up to several thousands of dollars and you are always adding to it.
     
  10. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008

    About the only problem with the Multitool is that it runs FAST, but you learn real quick that way.:D
     
  11. brooksknives

    brooksknives

    593
    Jul 4, 2001
    You also learn to keep your fingers out of the way belts will cut you to the bone before you can feel it then OUCH OUCH OUCH ask me how i know that one lol.
     
    R.C.Reichert likes this.
  12. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008

    Yah I did that just the other day actually on a 36 grit belt. Not to the bone, but holy crap that hurts a lot more than getting cut by a knife and does not heal very easily afterwards.
     
  13. Balls Deep

    Balls Deep

    342
    Jan 2, 2014

    Cool resources and mod videos and I may check some of them out since I had the tool. I would still say that a $50 harbor freight will not probably compare to something in the $500 + range but I'm interested mess with belt tensioning and pulley sizes.
     
    panoz77 likes this.
  14. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    Agreed that a $50 HF benchtop sander is no comparison to a $500 one, but it can get the job done for someone who has a little extra time and a lot less cash. I know I'll be picking one up soon for more stock removal projects, it will make my life easier.
     
  15. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008
    To be honest, I think the $50 belt sander will only serve to frustrate the hell out of you because all you have you do is touch the steel to the belt and it will bog down and not want to cut...unless you're in to making very small knives. For that price an angle grinder with a grinding disk and some sanding discs will serve you better IMO.
     
  16. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    Not true, see youtube video mods to fix the belt slippage. I currently am using a benchtop grinder and angle grinder, I want something that is easier to put an even finish grind on when close to finished removing material, the $50 HF sander is the perfect solution for me.
     
  17. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008

    Ok well that makes sense if you do some sort of mod to make it better and also to do the bulk of the work on a different grinder. I tried a 1x30 out and basically returned it the next day it sucked that bad.
     
  18. Kevin McGovern

    Kevin McGovern

    Jul 31, 2015
    I started out with a HF 1x30. Compared to my 2x72, of course, it sucks. That said, I made some decent knives on it. I also have one of the 4x36 combo units my father in law gave me. I used it for flattening scales and some other things. I can't imagine how you would get a decent plunge line with that thing. The belt is over 1/2" from the edge of the platen. It also bogs down when sanding wood. I would get a 1x30 any day over the combo unit for making knives. I still use mine to strop with a leather belt, and some other odd's and ends stuff. Also, you mention the dust collector, I would just ditch that thing. I wouldn't want sparks going through it.
     
  19. panoz77

    panoz77

    Feb 3, 2007
    The one I'm talking about is the 4". With the mods, you can't get the belt to stop, see mod vids
     
  20. R.C.Reichert

    R.C.Reichert

    985
    Jul 26, 2008

    I watched the video. That actually looks pretty decent. :thumbsup:
     

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