It might have been intended as a good-natured insult, but Dwight Sanders says his feelings weren’t even a little bit hurt. In fact, he took the dig as a compliment.
“Bruce Daniels watched me shoeing some horses using a grinder once and called me a grindersmith,” he told his audience during an American Farrier’s Association convention presentation in February. “Well, I’m glad to be a grindersmith because we can get a lot of horses done.”
Sanders, a farrier — and grindersmith — from Kenly, N.C., knows what a lot of other farriers know as well; that grinders — whether hand-held, mounted on your rig or used in your workshop — can save time and effort and offer a quick payback on their cost.
While just about any job a farrier can dream up to do with a grinder can also be done with a rasp or some other mechanical tool, a grinder can generally do it more quickly and with less wear and tear on a shoer’s body. The latter may actually be more important than the former reason. The time savings between safeing the edges of a shoe with a rasp vs. using a grinder may add up to only a few seconds, but those seconds involve placing a great deal of stress on your elbows, wrists and shoulders and can eventually lead to repetitive motion injuries.
Tom Riddle, general manager of Centaur Forge of Burlington, Wis., says belt grinders seem to be the most popular with…