The new Porter Cable PC750AG 7.5 Amp Small Angle Grinder comes in at a low price point, but with many pro features, like an all metal gear case, a tough 7.5 amp motor and a comfortable handle design. This angle grinder is part of a new line of tradesmen tools from Porter Cable that aim at bringing quality and features at a reasonable price.
We like angle grinders because with the right blade or disk they are pretty versatile tools that can tackle all kinds of jobs, ranging from cutting to grinding many different kinds of materials. (Besides, anything that makes sparks has to be fun to use!) Our test tool arrived in a retail-ready cardboard box. Inside the box was the 4-1/2 inch small angle grinder with a 6 foot power cord, metal grinding wheel, spanner wrench, side handle and, of course, the instructions booklet. Just like any power tool, it is sometimes a good idea to take a look at the book.
The main body of the grinder is made of dark gray ABS plastic with black overmolded rubber grips along the entire bottom portion of the tool. The gear housing is all metal and incorporated in it are three different points where you can install the side handle for additional comfort and control of the tool. The handle features a large two-finger trigger that is easy to use even with gloves on and there is also a lock-on button so that the trigger will stay depressed when you let go of it. At this price point, we usually see 6 amp grinders, so when we had a chance to try this one, which has a 7.5 amp motor, we were eager to see what it could do.
To test the grinder we did what we think most home owners would want to use it for and that was to sharpen lawn mower blades. To do this, we first removed the blades from the mower deck. Make sure to follow your mower’s directions for removing and re-installing the blade to ensure that it was done correctly. Next, we put the blade in a vise to hold it securely. Once mounted, we took the grinder and proceeded to put a new edge on the blade. When sharpening mower blades, make sure to only sharpen the area that was originally sharpened from the factory and always maintain the same angle as the original sharpening job. Another thing to remember is to only grind the blade as little as necessary with special attention given to the equal grinding of both ends of the blade so it will stay balanced once the mower is running. Of course for this task, the grinder worked very well with the included metal grinder wheel.
We also used the grinder with a 4” diamond blade to cut some concrete fiber siding and we found the grinder to work as we would expect, without a hint of being overloaded. The one thing we did notice while using the grinder was that the blade guard was not removable and it would rotate sometimes on its own due to the vibrations of the tool. After a quick check of the tool, we saw that there was no easy way to tighten up the guard either; it seemed to us that this was designed as a safety feature so that the user can easily adjust the guard without having to loosen and tighten any screws. Also without any obvious ways to remove the guard, we would expect the guard to stay on the tool where it belongs (so the user will have a safe and enjoyable time using the tool). According to our contact at Porter Cable, this particular tool should not be be used as a metal-cut tool since they have other models with guards designed to better handle that application.
Our final observation in using this tool is that it was LOUD! Depending on the application, the decibel rating varied from about 98 Db SPL to about 114 Db SPL. In its free wheel state, this grinder is a little noisier than some of the other ones we have seen, with most of the noise coming from the gear case side of the tool. Once it was in use, it sounded like most other small size grinders. Bottom line, if you have to do a bunch of grinding, put on some hearing protection.
The Porter Cable PC750AG 7.5 Amp Small Angle Grinder is a great tool for the DIY and handyman contractor types. It will prove to have enough power to handle most tasks like cutting concrete, removing rust and paint, grinding welding beads, and sharpening blades. For our Professional rating we gave this tool a 6/10 since its blade guard, while a good idea, lacks the ability to lock it into position. Also this grinder emits a lot of gear noise which makes it sound louder than other similar grinders on the market. For our Value rating, we gave this grinder a 8/10 because for the power, features and the price, it is a very fair deal.