The term “grinder” can be ambiguous as it can refer to a variety of things, from a sandwich to a power tool. When used in the context of cabinetry, it usually refers to a tool that abrasively removes material from a hard surface. In a kitchen setting, it could also refer to a geared mill used to grind coffee or shred meat for ground beef, or a meatball sandwich on a French baguette.

If the power tool is being referred to, there are two types of handheld grinders: angle wheeled and miniature rotary. Grinding wheels rotate at high RPMs to remove material, typically used for shaping metal. Hand rotary grinders are detailing tools used for engraving or making small alterations. However, grinders are not suitable for sanding or shaping wood surfaces.