Makita GA4530KD Angle Grinder Review
£45 – £70?
You can get the same tool cheaper without the case or without the extra discs. I strongly recommend shopping around looking for the version you are looking for.
Quite simply I needed a new angle grinder as my old one literally caught fire while I was using it. It was a cheap one and the old saying “buy cheap, buy twice” is so true. I have bought some cheap spanners from a market and they bent, the jaws opened up they rusted up. I learnt my lesson and treated myself to SnapOn sockets, spanners and other stuff, they are still as good as new. My old angle grinder came of a cheap market stall and I used it for about twenty mins to cut some slabs. The Mustang required a lot of rubbing down so I bought some flap wheels and some wire wheels for it. I used it for a few hours on and off over a few weekends. The grinder suddenly got hot and started to spit flames out the front and stopped dead. The flames came out so I unplugged it and let it burn itself to death well out the way. I was sort of expecting it to be honest, I should have bought a good one. The loss of the tool with lots more work to be done meant I needed to get a new one. With so many on the market the choice is endless. I wasn’t going to fall into the buy cheap again trap. I looked at DeWalt, Draper, Bosh, Makita the list just goes on. So it was a case of what do I want? I listed out the options; 115mm fitting, extra handle, long cable and case to put it all in. That narrowed it down a fair bit, then it was a case of reading reviews. I settled on the Makita, for price, reviews and the case.
What’s in the box?
There are various options of exactly the same tool with the case and extra discs, no case, or case with no extras. This particular version had a formed plastic case which was home for the tool, the screw in handle and small spindle to store other discs on. The cable is a generous length of just over two meters.
The spec for the tool is 720w Input, no load speed of 11000rpm, with a net weight of 1.8kg. The extras it came with was the diamond cutting wheel and the abrasive disc. The case is a sturdy construction and comfortably holds the tool and cable neatly. The nice touch is the spindle that holds some spare discs. I managed to store around a dozen, cutting discs, grinding discs and flap wheels. With the case shut the lid holds the discs in place. The lid itself holds the instructions for the tool and warranty. The slot for the wrench is located at the back of the box. You are able to store the tool away with a disc in place.
Performance & Handing:
The main barrel of the tool is slender and quite light which is home to some machined gears. The tool feels well-balanced and can be held with one hand OK, but then I do have big hands. The main switch is a push down and slide forward to lock the power on. The slightest touch to the switch will jump out and turn it back off. This was a good idea but I found it slightly annoying as the welding gloves I was wearing would brush the switch and turn it off. No big deal to be honest, but I would rather it be that way instead of having to pull the switch if you have to turn of quickly.
The noise was the first thing I noticed. It was much quieter than my old one, I would still say prolonged use should have ear defenders though.
There is a side handle which is ergonomically mounted at a 20 degree angle leaning towards the front. The handle is quite big and I would personally like to have had the handle at 90 degree to the side. I found when trying to work in confined spaces the forward facing handle would get in the way. The work around is to use a smaller handle which I removed from my old grinder. The handle can be mounted on the left or the right hand side of the tool.
The pics here show the different handles screwed into place. I preferred the slightly smaller
handle for forward facing location.
The disc guard is secured in place by a single deep headed cross head screw. The tool is quite small around the main shaft and is easy to handle. The main on/off switch is naturally located for the thumb. Pressing the on switch will trigger a little torque twist and is quiet in relation to other grinders. The motor spins up to its maximum 11,000rpm almost instantly. Turning off the motor spins down to a stop within five to ten seconds or so. The motor has been designed with cooling in mind. The motor was run for around d half an hour and the motor stayed warm and comfortable to hold. When the tool was switched of the heat transferred along the tool to get warmer before it cooled down naturally. If you turn it back on again the efficiency of the cooling then removes the heat again. The main exhaust of the motor heat is at the front grill above the cutting disc. Applying pressure to the cutting wheel or flap wheel etc the motor will slow when a fair amount of pressure is applied. Even then the motor stayed pretty cool.
To change the disc was easy enough with the locking pin located on top of the tool. The supplied wrench is a simple affair with two pins to help lock the disc in place. The 115mm discs fittings are all standard from any manufacturer. So the accessories are very easy to get replacements are different parts for cutting, grinding, rubbing or what ever you can throw at this tool.
There is very little vibration from the tool and fatigue of the hands is reduced considerably and I was able to use it for quite about half an hour no problem at all. The cutting wheel, flap wheel or grinding wheel all performed well. Prolonged use of the tool didn’t seem to faze it at all.
Rating: 8 out 10.
The reason it didn’t get full marks was two-fold, the first was the handle was wrong for me. It would have been nice to have had options of where to screw the handle, such as 90 or 20 degree forward as the only option given here on either side. The second was that I found the off switch a little to sensitive for my hands, especially when they are wearing welding gloves. The slightest of knocks on the switch will turn it off. The price for this tool on the other hand has earned good marks for its quality, case and performance.
Would I buy it again? Yes
Would I recommend it? Yes
This wasn’t the most expensive of the angle grinders I looked at, but this was also recommend to me as well. I can say it’s a nice tool, feels nice and the build quality seems good so far. If I have any issues I will post them here.