AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder Grinders

AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder


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Build Quality
Noise Output
Comfort
Performance
Value
Final Thoughts

The AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder is solid all the way around. It has a very effective muffler system which keeps it remarkably quiet, it's comfortable in the hand, features an excellent trigger, and its variable speeds give you the utmost control of the tool. It's my new full-time die grinder!

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Sometimes lost in the shop’s mix of impact wrenches and sockets is the eminently useful die grinder. To be sure, it’s used more often in welding repair, fabrication, and other body work, but Automotive Pros still need one around for cutting, polishing, grinding, and general machining. A die grinder is a rotary tool whose only distinguishing feature from all other tools in the rotary category seems to be its pneumatic nature. Today I get to hook up the air hose to the Aircat 1/4-inch Straight Die Grinder. You may not be familiar with Aircat, but for nearly twenty years the company has manufactured pneumatic tools and now has a fairly deep line of impact wrenches, ratchets, grinders, drills, air hammers, sanders, buffers and more. Let’s see if this die grinder is the cat’s meow or not.

You can also check out our review of the Aircat 6 Inch Orbital Sander.

First Impressions

The Aircat 1/4-inch Straight Die Grinder is a 1.0 horsepower, 90 PSI, direct drive tool with steel bearings and 22,000 RPM no-load speed. It also features a rear exhaust at the end of its 9-1/4 inch body and pulls 8 CFM in use.

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AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die GrinderThe box I received didn’t have any product information; it only contained the tool and two wrenches for loosening the collet during cutter changes. But I took a quick trip to the company’s website and found a PDF of the manual. While I was there, I checked out the features and noticed the die grinder has a patented quiet tuned exhaust which produces only 82 DBA. Even under no load, die grinders are notorious for being obnoxiously loud. I had to hear it for myself. Wouldn’t you know it – this Aircat is remarkably quiet. The tool scored some points before the real work even started!

The Daily Grind

Mechanics and body guys know that our skills often attract some strange requests – and so it was during this review. Before I got near a vehicle, I was asked to cut off the sharp corner of a stove. So there I was, with an appliance in the shop rather than a car. I used the two AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinderwrenches included in the box to loosen the collet and insert the cutter. After the cut, I exchanged the cutter for a light grinder to smooth the sharp edges and then a buffer to finish it off. Then I got to some more typical tasks around the shop with the AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder.

Well, I found out that my die grinder is junk compared to the Aircat! I must underscore again how quiet it is – it’s muffler system is very effective – but it’s also incredibly smooth. The trigger is excellent and the overmolded tool body feels like it was made to fit in my hand. It’s variable speeds gave me a confident feeling of control over the tool and work.

Pro Tip

Extend the life of pneumatic tools by draining water in the air tank daily. Bonus: if you have a hose over 25 feet long, you might need to increase the pressure at the tank. Double Bonus: Always wear eye protection when using a die grinder!

AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die GrinderNot only did it cut well but did a great job as a buffer and grinder, too. The exhaust comes out at the bottom of the tool body – where you’d expect it to be – and it blows away from your work area. All told, the AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder is a fine tool that quickly replaced the one I had used (for far too long, apparently.) And I’m not the only one that thinks so – although you won’t find many other reviews of this tool yet, other users seem to have had the same experience that I did.

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AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die GrinderThe Bottom Line

The AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder is solid all the way around. It has a very effective muffler system which keeps it remarkably quiet, it’s comfortable in the hand, features an excellent trigger, and its variable speeds give you the utmost control of the tool. The collet changes easily much like any other die grinder. At around $88, you’ll probably kick your old die grinder out the shop door so fast it won’t be able to make one more revolution!

To purchase the 1.0HP AIRCAT 6260 Die Grinder, click here.

AIRCAT 6260 Die Grinder Features

  • Full 1.0 HP non-stall motor
  • Patented quiet tuned exhaust (82 dBA)
  • Superior steel grade internal bearings for longer life
  • Feather trigger for better speed control
  • Ergonomically designed housing
  • Most comfortable trigger in the industry

AIRCAT 1/4-Inch Straight Die Grinder Specifications

  • Model: 6260
  • Motor: 1.0 HP
  • Collet/Wheel Size: 1/4-Inch
  • Gears: Direct Drive
  • Exhaust: Rear
  • Free Speed: 22,000 RPM
  • Weight: 1.2 Pounds
  • Length: 9-1/4 Inches
  • CFM: 8
  • Recommended Hose Diameter: 3/8-Inch
  • Air Inlet NPT/BSP: 1/4-Inch

 

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