Reviewed by Neil Scobie
I have been using a Proxxon long neck grinder for about two and half years now, so my review is based on plenty of use. This is a fantastic little machine, and small size is one of its benefits as it is light to handle and emits much less noise than an angle grinder carver. Used for what it is designed for it will perform really well for you, just don’t use it for heavy duty applications like hollowing out burl bowls. Proxxon tools are made in Germany and imported into Australia by a few distributors. The kits that come in through Europe have fewer attachments supplied, with a price to match. The Proxxon kits imported via the USA are sold as the Merlin Kit pictured and come with a chainsaw blade, carbide rasp blade, flap disc, and metal grinding and cutting blades. The tool has a 100 watt motor and spins at 13,000rpm. Cutting disc diameter is 50mm and weight only 550gm. Being 270mm long it fits well in one or two hands.
I first bought one of these to use when demonstrating woodturning and carving at symposiums, where the lightness to carry onto aeroplanes and the quieter operation proved excellent. In my workshop I use it for detail carving and sculpting.
I am not a great fan of the chainsaw blade, but it does cut timber readily without being too aggressive. I prefer to attach one of the Arbortech blades to it, either the pressed metal disc or even the newer Mini Turboplane. Mostly I tend to use it with the red carbide disc for smoothing out carved surfaces. The Arbortech mini-carver sanding disc also screws straight onto the arbor which gives a really good ‘harder’ sander.
The high speed of 13,000rpm makes it a bit fast for sanding, but it can be attached to a speed controller to slow it down. I make my own soft sanders out of the Arbortech mini-carver sanding discs, but these are not really suitable at full speed as the abrasive just burns too much.
I do find the Proxxon tool well worth having in my workshop, but I use it in short bursts and for lighter work.
Proxxon tools available from www.cwsonline.com.au
Arbortech tools from www.arbortech.com.au