If the OSHA’s proposed silica rules go through you’ll be doing a lot more wet cutting or cutting, grinding, and drilling with tools that connect to HEPA vacs. The tool companies seem to think some kind of rule will go through—which explains why so many of them are introducing grinders and rotary hammers that can be connected to vacuums. We’re not talking about the retrofit efforts of yesterday; we’re talking tools where the ability to efficiently collect dust is baked into the design.

Here are a few such tools I saw at the Metabo booth in January at the World of Concrete (video below). Given how much concrete dust tools of this kind can generate, it’s amazing to run them connected to vacs and see how little dust escapes.

RS14-125 Dustless Concrete Grinder

  • Wheel diameter: 5”
  • No-load speed: 2,000-7,000 rpm
  • Amps: 12.2
  • Rated input: 1,450 watts
  • Arbor size: 7/8”
  • Spindle thread: 5/8”-11
  • Weight (with wheel): 7.7 pounds
  • Length: 14.375”
  • Country of origin: Germany
  • Street price: $479 (w diamond wheel); $659 (w diamond cup wheel)

RS17-125 Dustless Concrete Grinder

  • Wheel diameter: 5”
  • No-load speed: 8,500
  • Amps: 14.2
  • Rated input: 1,700 watts
  • Arbor size: 7/8”
  • Spindle thread: 5/8”-11
  • Weight (with wheel): 10.4 pounds
  • Length: 18”
  • Country of origin: Germany
  • Street price: $639 (w diamond wheel); $819 (w diamond cup wheel)

RF14-115 Scarifyer

  • Cutter head diameter: 4 1/2”
  • No-load speed: 800-2,800 rpm
  • Amps: 12.2
  • Rated input: 1,450 watts
  • Spindle thread: M14
  • Weight (with cutter head): 9.6 pounds
  • Length: 13”
  • Country of origin: Germany
  • Street price: $599 (w 15 carbide star cutters)