5 Types of Bench Grinder Wheels

Types of Bench Grinder Wheels

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Bench grinder wheels can be seen in all kinds of manufacturing industries. They are common in car workshops, tool shops, construction sites, and many more places of work.

There are plenty of different types of grinder wheels and choosing from them is important but it can be intimidating if you don’t have much experience with them. However, for this article, you’ll learn about a few types of grinder wheels and a few things to keep in mind to purchase the right kind.

Are Bench Grinder Wheels Universal?

Bench grinder wheels, for the most part, are universal. While you can get ones from Powertec, Dewalt, Norton, and many other brands, they work on the same principle.

That said, they come in a variety of sizes, so you need to make sure to know which size will suit your tool. If you are not sure, you can check your bench grinder’s manual or the description printed on the wheels that you are currently using.

What to Keep in Mind When Choosing the Right Bench Grinder Wheel?

If you are planning on buying a bench grinder wheel, it is important to keep in mind a few factors that make each one its own kind of tool.

Some of these are relatively small differences but can make a strong impact when you finally begin to use them. Of course, if you are ever unsure about these factors when buying a wheel, ask a professional to get any extra specifics you need.


Bonds play an integral part in determining what bench grinder wheels are able to do. The bond breaks down so it can regenerate fresh cutting edges as its abrasive dulls and wears during the process of grinding. A couple of different types of bonds include:

Electroplated Bonds

These bonds are specific to electroplated wheels and use just one layer of abrasive stuck together by a small layer of nickel. This bond quickly works through harder materials without the need for re-dressing.

Instead of purchasing new wheels, you could save by giving your wheels to a shop so they can be re-plated and re-stripped.

Some advantages to these types of bonds are that there is no truing necessary and the bonds are very strong. Plus, they will have higher wheel speed as well as higher stock removal rates.

Resin Bonds

These kinds of bonds consist mostly of fillers and, of course, resin. They are easily among the more common kinds of bonds for CBN and diamond abrasives.

When resin bonds are used alongside CBN, they are perfect for working with harder materials like steel. As for diamond abrasives, they are a quality choice for ceramics, HVOF, and quartz.

A few advantages of these bonds include a high-quality finish and versatility in being able to work both dry and wet.

Bench Grinder Wheel in Use


Bench grinder wheel grit comes in two different sizes: coarse and fine. This is one of the most distinct differences when it comes to grinder wheels and is important to look at when buying one.

You should choose a coarse grit size when you do not need the finish of the surface to be all that neat. Also, the more coarse the grit, the quicker its stock removal will be. This will make it more usable for larger fields of contact than abrasives that are fine gritted.

Coarse grit size is the better option for stringy and softer materials like aluminum and softer steels that do not require a necessarily perfect finish as well.

You should use fine grit for the exact opposite reason as coarse grit size. That is when you need the finish to be neat and tidy for your project to be successful.

You should also pick fine-grit when your project calls for more precision over a small field of contact. Harder and more brittle materials like tool steel, cemented carbide, and glass are best suited for a fine-grit abrasive.


A bench grinder wheel’s grade tells the holding power that its bond has, which contains abrasive grains inside the wheel.

You should use soft grades for harder materials like carbides and hard tool steels. They are also ideal if you are working with larger fields of contact and fast stock removal.

You should use hard grades for softer materials, smaller or more narrow fields of contact, and to extend your wheel life for longer.

5 Types of Bench Grinder Wheels

Bench grinder wheels come in many shapes and sizes with each wheel having its own different purpose. Some will cut and sharpen, meanwhile, others will smooth and polish. The shape of the wheel you pick should match its application.

#1: Straight Bench Grinder Wheels

These are the most common bench grinder wheels around, and they can be found in workshops all over the world.

They are commonly used for sharpening tools such as lawnmower blades and chisels. Many people even have these in their house for their grinding wheel needs.

POWERTEC 15508 1/2" Arbor 150-Grit Silicon Carbide Grinding Wheel, 6" x 3/4"

#2: Grinding Cup Bench Grinder Wheels

This type of bench grinder wheel is most often used to polish concrete or stone. However, with some finer grit grinding cup wheels can do even more delicate tasks like adhesive and paint removal.

These wheels are also typically used for finishing and re-sharpening depending on their abrasive size.

DEWALT Grinding Wheel, Steel Backed Cup, 4-Inch x 2-Inch x 5/8-Inch-11-Inch (DW4960)

#3: Large Diameter Bench Grinder Wheels

These grinder wheels are somewhat along the same lines as straight wheels but they just work on a larger scale. They have a wide surface and can grind down outer portions of circular objects such as carbide blanks.

Large diameter bench grinder wheels are also used particularly frequently in the oil and thermal spray industry for OD grinding. These wheels can sometimes be made with diameters of even up to three feet.

#4: Segmented Grinding Bench Grinder Wheels

Segmented grinding wheels are made in a few various ways but the major difference this wheel has is, rather than having an unceasing abrasive rim, these sections are applied to the wheel and segmented.

When you use this with lubricating or cooling fluids, segmented grinding bench grinder wheels get rid of a lot of material quickly without damaging your work surface. Every segment builds a canal that makes use of centrifugal force so it can carry its fluids where it is most necessary.

#5 Grinding Dish Bench Grinder Wheels

Grinding dish bench grinder wheels appear similar to grinding cup wheels although they have a more thin surface edge and tend to be more shallow.

This narrower shape lets them fit into tighter crevices than a grinding cup wheel could but, other than that, they pretty much can be used for any task that a grinding cup bench grinder wheel can do.


Bench grinders are among the most common tools you will find in any workshop however, there are plenty of beginning DIYers and builders that have mistakenly gotten the wrong kind of wheel and have had to spend a good bit of extra money to find the right replacement.

The five bench grinder wheels listed above are, of course, not all the types you will find available. Although, they are all fairly common and will work well for most projects that require them.

Hopefully, now you have the knowledge you need to get the right type of bench grinder wheel for your next project. Be sure to keep in mind bonds, grit, and grades when looking at these wheels, and be as safe as you can when operating these tools.