Removing a Frozen Grinder Head

How-To

The grinding head on my grinder is frozen on the motor shaft. How do I remove it?

You may find that you can move the grinder head down, but not up and off, the shaft. This is due to the shaft becoming larger for one of two reasons.

First, glass, dust and debris accumulate on the shaft. This coating builds up and makes the shaft larger.

The second possibility is a nick or scar on the shaft, causing the same thing.

In either case, push the bit down to get it out of the way. Then, using a fine steel wool, gently polish the motor shaft (with the motor running) for about a minute. The bit will usually then just lift right off!

If this attempt does not work, you can apply an anti-seize liquid or spray (such as WD-40) onto the grinding head and motor shaft. Wait 10 or 12 hours and try removing the bit.

As a last resort, you can try using a faucet handle/washer remover (from a friendly plumber or hardware store). This tool is used by placing the center of the remover on top of the motor shaft and the pullers beneath the outer edges of the bottom of the grinding head.

Here are a few things you can do to help prevent your grinding head from becoming frozen onto the motor shaft:

Remove the grinding head each time youre done grinding. It sounds like a hassle, but its worth the trouble.

We strongly recommend that you coat the shaft frequently with a thin coat of petroleum jelly or teflon motor shaft lubricant.

Make sure that when youre tightening the set screw onto the motor shaft that you tighten it only on the flat surface of the shaft. If you dont, you might scar the shaft and cause the bit to be difficult or impossible to remove.

Looking for a grinder? Here are a few Delphi offerings...

Reprinted with permission from Stained Glass News. All rights reserved.

9 comments
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Marianne M.  •  May 18, 2019
Thank you to Sheree
Judith M.  •  March 07, 2019
Have a MaxII grinder and am wondering if I am using the right bits. I am trying to keep from having to switch bits when having to grind small notches or curves so I purchased the "platform" to fit on top of my grinder. However, if I leave my 1" bit on and insert the 1/4" bit over it, (1) the 1/4" bit does not have much depth to slide onto the shaft so most of the bit is too high to be able to utilize the entire surface unless I go back to switch the bits back and forth instead of piggy backing them and use the "platform." Is there an adapter I need to use or am I using the wrong bits. The bits I purchased are listed as "Brillant Bits" in the catalog. Thank you for any assistance you can provide. Forgot to mention, I am very new to this hobby and have only been doing this for a few months.
Sheree  •  October 08, 2018
I could not remove my grinder bit with wd-40 or a channel locks. What actually worked for me and it took all of 3 minutes was a tool from home depot. The tool is made by HDX. It is a Handle and sleeve puller and it cost under $6. I had never removed the bit from my grinder for over 10 years. Simple!
Margaret s.  •  July 11, 2011
@jhaan Yes, your saying exactly what I had to do with the first piece. I actualy blew it up to the % before it became distorted then I cut out pieces and blew them up on my copier and then had to fit them back into the pattern. I was told another alternative is to use a projection screen to enlarge. I may have to go that route, it would probably be easier than what I went through before. Thanks for your reply.
julie h.  •  July 11, 2011
Kinko's will enlarge a pattern in the same way you would do it on a copy machine, that is, by percentage. The dimensions will not change. The Glass Eye Studio will allow you to enlarge the patter and change the dimensions. To do this you will need to un-check the box "maintain proportions" then enter the dimensions you would like. However, you will not maintain the proportions so the pattern will be distorted. Sometimes this will not be obvious. One way to solve this problem is to enlarge the pattern using the proportion setting and then complete the drawing by adding your own lines to fill it in. If this is not possible you could enlarge the pattern to fit inside a border to bring it to the size you need.
Margaret s.  •  July 09, 2011
Do any pattern resizers keep perspective on larger pieces? This is the second time I cannot get Kinko's or using the Glass Eye to give me the exact size I need to resize. I am trying to resize a landscape to 25.5" tall x 34.5 wide. The most it will let me resize is 18" tall x 34.5" wide. If I try to enlarge it to the custom size I need it will distort the pattern. Please help!
julie h.  •  June 27, 2011
Make sure you have the right size allen wrench. The size of the hex screw varies between manufacturers. It is possible that the head of the screw has become stripped. You can drill the screw out using a metal bit slightly larger than the screw. Be careful not to notch the grinder shaft in the process
Biffie G.  •  June 27, 2011
I can't get the hex screw (?) out. The allen wrench just spins in it. Any ideas??
Guy S.  •  January 10, 2011
I can't stress enough about all the points made here regarding "Frozen Heads". When I would teach classes I made it manditory that all students remove the grinder bits... if not, well no one ever tested me! LOL http://www.artglassville.com
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Stained Glass News

Stained Glass News

Stained Glass News is a full-color newspaper which has been dedicated to informing, entertaining and inspiring stained glass hobbyists for over 22 years. Each issue features: • information on new books, tools and glass • quick tips & hints and Q&A's • columns on stained glass, mosaics, and hot glass by industry experts • photos of our readers' projects in the Readers' Gallery • glassworking hints from our readers on The Readers' Page • a photo and information about a glass workshop belonging to one of our readers on The Readers' Page • other information that makes working with glass easier, more fun and more rewarding SGN is published five times a year (on the first of January, March, May, September and November). The current issue is SGN #90 (May, 2010).