Grinding uses an abrasive process to remove material from the workpiece. A grinding machine is a machine tool used for producing very fine finishes, making very light cuts, or high precision forms using an abrasive wheel as the cutting device. This wheel can be made up of various sizes and types of stones, diamonds or inorganic materials.
The simplest grinder is a bench grinder or a hand-held angle grinder, for deburring parts or cutting metal with a zip-disc.
Grinders have increased in size and complexity with advances in time and technology. From the old days of a manual toolroom grinder sharpening endmills for a production shop, to today's 30000 RPM CNC auto-loading manufacturing cell producing jet turbines, grinding processes vary greatly.
Grinders need to be very rigid machines to produce the required finish. Some grinders are even used to produce glass scales for positioning CNC machine axis. The common rule is the machines used to produce scales be 10 times more accurate than the machines the parts are produced for.