How To Dress a Grinding Wheel

A grinding wheel for sharpening tools and other items can be valuable. Dressing a grinding wheel involves removing the top layer of  abrasive material, thereby cleaning the surface and creating a new sharp surface for working.

Dressing Tool

This tool is a cutting edge, and some have single points while others have multiple points. They often use diamond cutters that need to be kept sharp as well. You can keep the tool sharp by regularly rotating the cutting edges one-eighth of a turn.

If you need to dress tools frequently, then turn them once a day.

Point of Contact

A dressing tool's point of contact should cover as much of to the surfaces used for grinding on your wheel as possible. If you have a multi-point dressing tool, you will be able to have full face contact.


Wear safety glasses and use appropriate equipment for this task. A safety cover may be included with the dressing tool's “wheel sharpening” unit.

Dress the wheel slowly, cutting off a small layer at a time. If you are using a single dressing tool, make sure to use a 10 to 15 degree drag angle to get a sharp grinding surface.

For a sharp grinding surface, dress a grinding wheel often.