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Aluminum oxide is the go-to industrial abrasive for general purpose grinding applications on metals and steel alloys. This material is available in a range of grit sizes from coarse to fine, which allows you to select an abrasive that fits your specific project requirements. The abrasive particles are held in place by a bond, and the type of bond can have a significant impact on the wheel's lifespan. For example, hard vitrified bonds offer durability, but limit the rate at which fresh abrasive grit is exposed to the cutting face. Softer, resinoid bonds release abrasive grains at a faster rate to deliver a higher metal removal capacity.
The type of abrasive grain can also have an impact on performance. For instance, abrasive materials like emery and corundum are naturally occurring, but they don't last as long as synthetic abrasives. They're typically used to polish metals to a shiny finish, but aren't appropriate for rough, heavy-duty applications.
Besides abrasive grain, you'll also want to consider the type of bond and the spacing pattern of the abrasive grains on the wheel. These elements affect the overall performance of a grinding wheel, including its speed, smoothness and longevity.
For mechanized pipe welding, you'll need a more durable, harder abrasive. Our Tiger Mech wheels are formulated to handle the rigours of mechanized grinding applications, such as J and K bevels. This combination of zirconia alumina and ceramic-infused aluminum oxide provides the toughness and durability you need to cut through rust and weld scale without expanding or marring the bevel edge.