What safety precautions should you follow when using abrasive wheels?
- Select the right wheel for the job. It is important for safety. A wheel is dangerous when used for work for which it was not designed. Booklets from wheel and machine manufacturers provide technical information on wheel selection and proper use.
- Use only wheels marked with the type of wheel and maximum speed in revolutions per minute (rpm).
- Inspect the wheel upon receipt.
- Visually examine the wheel for any signs of damage such as chips and gouges.
- Use "ring test" to check if the wheel is damaged. Ring tests do not apply to small wheels 10 cm (4 in.) diameter and smaller.
- Use abrasive wheels only on machines with safety guards. Exceptions may apply to some classes of wheels. Always check with the manufacturer’s instructions.
What is the "ring test?"
- The ring test is one way to check whether the wheel is cracked or damaged. Ensure the wheel is clean and dry. Tap wheels gently with a nonmetallic tool such as a plastic screwdriver handle for light wheels and a wooden mallet for heavy wheels.
- Tap wheels about 45 degrees each side of the vertical center line and about 3 to 5 cm (1 or 2 in) from the periphery. Repeat the test by rotating the wheel 45 degrees.
An undamaged wheel will emit a metallic ring. Reject any wheel that sounds dead or cracked and does not have a clear ring.
How should you handle and store the abrasive wheels?
All abrasive wheels are fragile.
- Handle wheels carefully. Avoid dropping or bumping.
- Do not roll a wheel on its edge.
- Transport wheels in containers designed to provide support for the wheels if they are too heavy to carry by hand.
- Do not pile other items such as tools on top of wheels.
- Store wheels in racks or bins with dividers for different types of wheels and ensure easy access and less handling.
- Place straight or tapered wheels on end in a cradle or chocked position to prevent rolling.
- Never store wheels near excessive heat or cold, in contact with water, oil or moisture, nor in drawers with loose tools.
- Store wheels in a dry area. When selecting the racks, bins, boxes or drawers for storage consider the size and type of wheels to be stored: for example, lay flat thin bonded wheels, and support larger wheels in racks. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
- Sort and store wheels in such away that older wheels can be selected first.
- Follow the manufacturer's instructions for length of time a wheel should be stored.
Add a badge to your website or intranet so your workers can quickly find answers to their health and safety questions.
Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy, currency and completeness of the information, CCOHS does not guarantee, warrant, represent or undertake that the information provided is correct, accurate or current. CCOHS is not liable for any loss, claim, or demand arising directly or indirectly from any use or reliance upon the information.