bench grinder to belt sander

DIY Bench Grinder to Belt Sander Conversion! – Easy Steps

 If you’re looking for an easy and affordable way to convert your bench grinder to belt sander, this DIY guide is for you! By following these simple steps, you’ll be able to get the job done in no time at all. And if you ever find yourself needing to switch back to a bench grinder, don’t worry – this conversion will still work! So whether you’re looking to save some money or just want to improve your work speed, this DIY guide is the perfect way to go!

bench grinder to belt sander

Required Supplies

The following is a list of the supplies that are utilized for the conversion of bench grinder into sander belt:

  • 2 x 42-inch Sanding Belt Assortment
  • 2 x 72-inch pulley set
  • 5/8 – ½ Reducing bushing
  • Extension spring
  • 3/16″ steel plate
  • Spray Adhesive
  • Metric hardware set

Step 1: Disassembling the Bench Grinder

Begin by removing the grinder wheel, belt guard, and grinding wheel. Once these are removed, you can begin to disassemble the grinder.

  1. Remove the 4 screws that hold on the top cover assembly. This will allow you to remove the top cover.
  2. Next, unscrew the 2 bolts that secure the motor power housing to the shaft (be sure not to lose these!). You can then remove the HP motor housing from the shaft and set it aside.
  3. Finally, take out 3 nuts and 3 washers that secure the belt pulley assembly onto the shaft (again be careful not to lose these!). Once all nuts and washers are removed, you can remove the belt pulley assembly from the shaft.
  4. Finally, take out the grinding wheel and belt guard. Be sure to keep the grinder wheel in good condition – you’ll need it for later on!
  5. Clean all parts of the bench grinder with a solvent before reassembling.

Step 2: Templates

Now that the bench grinder is disassembled, you’ll need to create templates for the sanding belt.

  1. You can either use a piece of paper or an existing belt.
  2. Once you have your template, measure out 5 inches from each end and make a mark with a pencil.
  3. Next, cut out the desired belt shape using sharp scissors or saws. Be careful not to slice through any of the metal parts!
  4. Finally, reassemble all components except for the grinding wheel and belt guard. Thread the grinding wheel onto the shaft (be sure to hold on to the grinder wheel).

Step 3: Cutting Out the Shapes

Now that the grinder is reassembled, you can begin to cut out the shapes for the sanding belt. Be sure to keep a close eye on your templates if they’re not perfect, you can trim them down with sharp scissors or a saw.

Once all belt shapes are cut out, affix them to the grinding wheel using double-sided tape (or any other adhesive).

Step 4: Drilling All the Holes

Now that the belt shapes are affixed to the grinding wheel, it’s time to drill all the holes.

  1. Begin by drilling a 1-inch hole in the center of each belt shape.
  2. Next, drill a 2-inch hole every inch on either side of the central hole.
  3. Finally, use a dowel or screwdriver to make several small holes near each edge of each belt shape. These will allow airflow and prevent sanding dust from accumulating on your work serrated surface.

Once all holes are drilled, reattach the grinder guard and grind away!

Step 5: Tracking Roller Hinge

One of the most important steps in belt sanding is tracking the roller hinge.

To do this, affix a piece of paper or cardboard to one edge of your belt template and mark where the grinding wheel will hit.

Now remove the grinding wheel and drill two 1/8-inch holes through both templates at those marks.

Reattach the grinding wheel and sand away!

Step 6: Dry Fitting All the Pieces

Now it’s time to fit all the pieces together and test the sanding belt.

  1. First, affix one of the belt templates to a piece of wood or a door jamb and trace around it.
  2. Next, use a sharp knife to cut out the traced outline.
  3. Finally, fit each belt section onto its corresponding template hole and screw them in place with screws.

Test your sanding belt by rubbing some grit across an area that you’ve previously roughed up with sandpaper. If everything looks good, you’re ready for round 2!

Step 7: Backing Plate and Rest.

To create a smooth surface for your belt sander, it’s important to install a backing plate.

  1. To do this, locate the center of the grinder wheel and drill two 1/4-inch holes in opposing corners of item location.
  2. Next, use wood screws or dowel pins to attach the grinder guard to the back of the wheel.
  3. Finally, screw on the versatile tool rest of the belt sander components: sanding belt, tracking roller hinge, and grinding wheel cover.

Step 8: Final Assembly

Now it’s time to test your belt sander again.

  1. First, sand an area that you’ve previously roughed up with sandpaper.
  2. Next, switch the grinder guard and grinding wheel cover positions and continue sanding.
  3. If everything looks good, it’s time to finish up!
  4. To do this, remove the wood screws or dowel pins that attached the grinder guard and grinding wheel cover, then screw them back on in reverse order.
  5. Finally, affix a finishing grit cloth to the grinder wheel cover (if desired) and polish away!

Step 9: A Functional Belt Sander!

Your belt sander is now ready for use!

  1. To start, switch the grinder guard and grinding wheel cover positions.
  2. Next, sand an area that you’ve previously roughed up with sandpaper.
  3. Finally, remove the finishing grit cloth if desired, and enjoy your shiny new belt sander!

Difference between Belt Sander and Belt Grinder?

bench grinder and belt sander

A belt sander is a powerful tool that uses rotating sandpaper to remove surface material. It is most commonly used for woodworking, but can also be used on other materials such as plastics and metal.

A bench grinder, on the other hand, is a machine that uses conical or cylindrical grinding stones to sharpen blades or grinding surfaces. It is primarily used in manufacturing and repair work, but can also be used for general carpentry purposes.

Frequently Asked Questions

What other tools does my bench grinder need besides the sander itself?

Depending on the type of wood you’re grinding, you may need other tools to get the best results. For example, if you are grinding hardwoods such as oak or maple, you will need a good dowel jig or may be angle grinder to help hold your pieces in place while they are being ground. You may also want to have a sanding block for finer finishing touches.

How much does it cost to buy a set of bench grinder belts for sanders?

When shopping for a set of bench grinder belts, it is important to consider the specific needs of your machine. Some models require different variety of belts than others, so it is important to measure your existing slack belt and find a matching option. In addition, make sure that you choose a belt that’s durable enough to withstand regular use and weather conditions.

Belts typically range in price from around $10-$30 per set, but they may be cheaper or more expensive depending on the item model and brand. Remember to factor in shipping costs as well; some sellers offer free shipping on orders over $50.


With the right materials and shop tools, it is possible to convert your bench grinder into a powerful belt sander in a few simple steps. By following our step-by-step guide, you will also understand how easy it is to convert your tool and get amazing results as you sand wood, metal sheets, or concrete floors. Do share how did this makeover work for you? Also, tell us if there’s anything we have missed in our conversion guide.

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