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Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:09 pm
by SteveHGraham
My current 8" grinder came with rubber feet, and that's what I've been using. I'm concerned about getting pinched in the guards, but other than that, it doesn't scare me.

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:40 pm
by liveaboard
I just hold mine down against the workbench with one hand and hold the work in the other.

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:16 pm
by spro
Yeah okay... I remember different grinders which would flip upon startup. You had hold them down. Doesn't take long to realize that isn't wise. They need to fixed, clamped someway that you aren't actually in contact with them. Who knows when a short to case happens and when the humidity is right there. I've run one bolt and that is half a$$ed because the grinder wants rotate around that one point. If the grinder is secured by at least two, you have more confidence in grinding anything.
A friend bought a new 8" or 10" grinder with the steel/ iron pedestal. He assembled the wheels and turned it on. As it came to speed it was walking across the cement floor until the cord was unplugged. Sure it was unbalanced and he trued the wheels later but how can you even do that if it isn't mounted tight?

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 8:44 pm
by BadDog
Many of my grinders are mounted to a massively heavy industrial cart I have defined as my "grinding cart". I have a 7" Baldor and Baldor Carbide grinder each mounted to the heaviest of the HF grinder bases (the one with the thick/heavy cast base). And finally, an 8" Baldor that's used outside for heavy cleaning and wire wheel work (and heavy mess when cleaning) that is mounted to a brake drum off a semi tractor. Drum must be close to 100 lbs, and moves only grudgingly when I make an effort to move it (tip-n-spin-walk). None of these have ever offered to go walk-about at inconvenient times, and I've used similar setups over the years without issue. In fact, in my memory starting from working in my grandfather's shop when I was a teen (building first car, a '70 '340 Cuda bought as a hull from a junkyard) until now, I can only remember 3 grinders bolted to a fixed surface (i.e. bench). They've always been semi-mobile because I/we never knew quite where they needed to be for the next job...

Not saying it's the ideal safety situation, and I'm sure would give OSHA fits, but that's my experience with that type of machine. For that buffer, I like best the idea of a heavy mount, perhaps on a drum like my 8". Maybe with addition of an apron to stand on "just in case" something like the grap-n-hold described earlier results in a badly out of balance scenario.

Not crazy about a momentary foot switch because I never know quite how I'll need to stand when presenting a work piece to it. And not crazy about the foot e-switch because if you are (or it knocks you) off balance, it may be hard to get a foot to it.

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 3:54 pm
by SteveHGraham
My feeling is that you educate yourself about the risks, you think about how much aggravation and expense you're willing to put up with, and you choose a level of danger you are willing to accept.

From what I've read, this thing is never going to have the danger designed out of it, so most of buffing safety is really good buffing practice, not equipment.

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:32 pm
by DualValve
First post here. I want to describe a possible/probable scenario:
You have a part that you are buffing. You have a wire wheel on the left side of the buffer, and have removed the sandpaper flap-wheel shown in your photo of your buffer, and installed an 8inch buffing wheel.

The part you are buffing on requires a fair amount of pressure to work it against the wheel. 'Fair amount' is enough that the buffer decides to rotate around it's vertical axis, it's pedestal, not bolted to the floor.

The buffer rotates, the part in your hand follows the buffing wheel and the wire wheel gets closer to your body..
A bit too much movement of the buffer and your arm contacts the wire wheel.
Your left arm has a long sleeve shirt, properly buttoned down, but it is 'bit' by the wire wheel and pulled into the buffer. This pulls you off balance and you and the buffer begin a painful 'dance'.

OR as the buffer rotates around it's vertical axis, it moves the wire wheel closer to your hip, your lower ribs [depending on your height and the mounted height of the buffer].
The wire wheel grabs your shirt, or your belt, or otherwise something you are wearing.

The result, is at least a nasty wire brush 'burn', or the removal of several layers of skin..
Let me say that removal of skin by a wire brush is probably the most painful method to remove skin. More painful than fire, or a single cut with a blade. A wire-wheel burn is a burn from friction, and multiple slices from each wire tip, and lots of dirt and bits of fabric imbedded in the multiple cuts in the shin. Not a pretty sight, or much fun to get cleaned out and properly bandaged.

So, a suggestion:
Make what ever base you have or decide on using large enough that you STAND on it with BOTH feet. A 3' square piece of 3/4" plywood comes to mind.
You can lag-screw the pedestal's base to the stand-on base.

Or if you have 'favorite' locations that you might use the buffer/wire-wheel/flap-sander. If these locations are near a wall, make some form of brace to the wall, and clamp the pedestal to the wall via the braces.. Anything to add some upper rigidity and stability to the pedal. Something in addition to and other than gravity/friction of the base against the floor.

Just please, don't think that you will never budge the buffer/wire-wheel/flap sander and it's motor/pedistal off center or off balance enough that you and the wire wheel or other spinning wheel will never get together in painful or dangerous contact.. It can and most likely will happen. And just say you have a friend over who is trying to be helpful with your project or is working on his project in your shop, and he uses the unmounted buffer/wire-wheel/flap sander... and he gets injured.

So, while your desire for mobility is certainly noted and understood. The buffer/wire-wheel/flap-sander should not be able to become 'mobile' when in use. For your safeties sake, or someone else's safety make it rigid when in use.


Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:10 pm
by SteveHGraham
I'm not worried about my friends getting hurt. None of my friends could even turn it on.

I don't apply a lot of pressure to it. Far as I know, this is bad technique and causes problems. The wheels will not take much pressure. I definitely would not wear long sleeves while using it.

I'm not putting a giant base on it. I'm not screwing it to the floor. No way. I don't have that kind of space.

I will see how it works in practice, and I will take reasonable safety measures given my circumstances.

Re: Horrors of Buffer Safety

Posted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:07 am
by spro
Hey DualValve guy. Welcome!