Angle grinders and circular saws have their own uses and advantages; they are both for specific tasks. They intend to make the handyperson’s job easier. Primarily, a circular saw is for wood, and an angle grinder is for metal cutting. Although, you can use both the tools on construction sites and in-home DIY applications.
The circular saw has a base/ guard; you can adjust these for different angles and depths. By attaching a blade, you can also use it to cut metals and other materials. Similarly, using an angle grinder disc/ wheel can convert your angle grinder into versatile cutting and grinding tools, including wood grinding/ cutting.
In this case, it may seem confusing where I should stick to which tools. But some notable differences make them suitable for use in specific tasks. But, how would you know which is ideal for your project between these two tools?
We discuss all differences and similarities between angle grinders & circular saws, which will help you to avoid the wrong one for your project by mistake
Note: You shall not use them both together in any project. If you want to cut metal using angle grinder then we have some recommendation on this article.
Angle Grinder Basic
An angle grinder/side grinder/disc grinder is an electrically or pneumatically handheld power cutting & grinding tool. There is a rotating abrasive disc attached to it.
It is designed for grinding, cutting, deburring and polishing materials. The versatile tool can cut through various objects and surfaces, including stone, concrete, wood, metal, marble, etc. People often use it on thick and hard surfaces. But it can also cut wood efficiently.
Angle Grinder Disc
You will always see an abrasive disc or wheel placed horizontally in the angle grinder. It is the main part for cutting, grinding, or honing tasks. Moreover, the two most common angle grinder disc sizes are 4 ½-inch and 9-inch.
The disc can rotate thousands of times per minute depending on its size and the grinder’s motor. Generally, disc damage after a specific cutting exercise. Therefore you have to change the disc frequently to get the precision and efficiency in the job.
Angle Grinder Types
Angle grinders are available in corded and cordless versions. The corded grinder is mainly used at construction sites. It requires more power for efficient disc rotation to complete the job faster.
On the other hand, the cordless grinder mainly uses at home as a DIY tool. It is lightweight and more energy-efficient. The cordless grinder operates using rechargeable batteries. It is easy to operate.
Circular Saw Basic
A circular saw is also a handheld power tool. Although it is mainly used to cut wood and similar materials, you can also use it to cut different materials like brick, metals, cement, etc. The tool is very similar to a chop saw or a table saw. You can power it with electric (wired / cordless, gasoline or hydraulic motor.
So you can choose from various options depending on your project requirement.
As a rotary tool, the circular saw can operate in two modes: handheld mode and fixed mode. The handheld mode is for smaller cuts in wood with mobility. This mode is used when precision is needed in work. In the handheld mode, a circular saw can cut through metal pipes.
In fixed mode, the wood is passed through a circular saw set to the center of the table. The wood is passed slowly to produce tremendously straight and precise cuts. However, the accuracy in the fixed mode is far better than in the handheld mode.
Circular Saw Disc
A circular saw utilizes a round metal disc enclosed with sharp teeth. This toothed, abrasive disc uses a rotary motion rotating around an arbor to cut different materials. However, it is placed vertically for cutting with precision.
Circular Saw Types
There are basically two types of circular saws depending on their powering method, such as; corded and cordless. Corded one requires electricity, and cordless can be operated using gasoline or a hydraulic motor.
Key Difference Between Angle Grinder & Circular Saw
Although the purpose of both tools is quite the same, their priority is different for different projects. Angle grinders and circular saws still have a difference in their competence, design, performance, etc.
Since you know the basics, let’s learn how to angle grinder and a circular saw is different from one to another.
The angle of the Blade
The blade arrangement is quite different in both circular saw and angle grinder. In an angle grinder, the blade is located parallel to the motor. Conversely, the blade is perpendicular to the circular saw motor. The cutting blade position defines the usage of both tools.
Since the blade is parallel, you can use an angle grinder for cutting and sanding tasks. However, you can only use the circular saw for cutting due to its vertical blade placement.
Cutting Shapes (Straight cuts & rough cuts)
The circular saw the extremely precise cuts compared to angle grinders. It can produce the utmost straight cuts with no burrs. The reason is that you can use the circular saw in a fixed position to make fine cuts.
The circular saw can still produce accurate cuts when used in handheld mode, depending on the user’s skill. It doesn’t mean the angle grinder cannot make precise cuts.
An angle grinder can also produce accurate cuts, depending on how the user cuts. It mainly makes rough cuts that can be sharpened using the grinder itself.
Mounted or Portable
An angle grinder is a handheld device designed to be freehand. It offers maximum mobility needed to perform grinding, sanding, and polishing.
Conversely, a circular saw is primarily used in fixed mode to cut materials accurately. However, you can use it in handheld mode too. It works as an angle grinder in that case. But, it is generally not suggested to use a circular saw as a free tool.
An angle grinder has various applications, including cutting, grinding, polishing, deburring, etc. Moreover, it can be used on many materials such as concrete, metal, wood, tile, pavers, bricks, etc.
On the other hand, the circular saw has mainly used to cut wood or wood-like materials. It can also cut Metal and plastic but it leaves uneven burrs.
Angle grinders are mainly used to cut metals and masonry materials. With the proper disc attachment, it can even cut through thick objects. It is also fine at cutting pavers, stone, wood, plastic, rebar, bricks, etc. In addition to cutting, angle grinders can grind concrete, Metal, and other surfaces. A Circular saw, instead, is best for cutting wood.
A circular saw can cut wood within minutes. It may not be as versatile as an angle grinder, but it can do what it does quickly with precision. However, an angle grinder can perform various tasks, requiring time.
Since it’s a handheld tool, an angle grinder requires a bit of time to get the job done. The cutting speed of the grinder depends on the user’s skill too. If you have the skill and right toolset, you can also use it for quick cuts.
1. Is It Possible to Put a Circular Saw Blade on an Angle Grinder?
Never ever. A circular saw blade must not be attached to an angle grinder. The saw will be likely to fly backward and strike the user. It could cause an explosion and result in severe injuries.
2. Can I Use an Angle Grinder as a Circular Saw?
No. Angle grinders cut through various materials using an abrasive wheel, not a toothed blade. This wheel cannot cut wood with precision like a circular saw.
3. Which one is the Best Between Angle Grinder & Circular Saw for Cutting Concrete?
Undoubtedly, the angle grinder is the best for cutting concrete and other hard masonry materials. A circular saw is an expert in making precise cuts in wood or wood-like materials.
4. Angle Grinder or Circular Saw for Cutting Pavers?
Definitely, an angle grinder is the best option for cutting pavers. It doesn’t mean a circular saw cannot cut pavers. The circular saw can cut pavers with a diamond masonry blade, but the best option is to use the angle grinder.
5. Angle Grinder or Reciprocating Saw to Cut Metal?
Both the tool has similar cutting rates when it comes to metal cutting. Still, if compared, the angle grinder has more power and an extremely high cutting speed. So, it’s a suitable option for cutting Metal.
To sum up, both tools have a lot of similarities and differences. Are you still wondering which one should you use? We would suggest using the tool that works best for your project.
If your project involves cutting slats of wood, you should definitely use a circular saw. It will deliver you straight cuts with maximum accuracy. However, if you are working on your walkway or driveway, an angle grinder would be best.
We hope all the queries in your mind regarding angle grinders and a circular saw are clear now. We are leaving it all up to you which one to use between an angle grinder and a circular saw.