Guide to Sanders

Guide to Sanders

There are many sanders to choose from, know exactly what you will be using one for, and what each can do, will tell you which if any you need to purchase.

Bench-top Belt Sander

There are several power tools in my shop that are indispensable. Of course, there are the usual tools such as an electric drill, a circular saw, and a jigsaw, but the most valuable to me over the years has been my 4 x 36 belt sander with a six-inch circular sanding disc attachment. The brand and model I currently use is the Delta Shopmaster, although I'm sure that there are others of equal quality and value out there. For me, it was a matter of local convenience and an acceptable price. In fact, I've bought two of them in the last ten years.

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Belt sanders are not considered to be 'instruments of fine woodworking' ... but maybe this is a mistake. There are plenty of times that an aggressive tool is required to make light work of otherwise tedious jobs. I discovered the real trick to using any tool, particularly a belt sander is to know the tool. When you realize this, you begin to understand it's capabilities, limits, and drawbacks. Things to Avoid With a Belt Sander

The versatility of a belt sander makes it ideal for a variety of uses, including wood shaping, rust removal, and metal finishing. These machines work particularly well as wood sanders and are favored by professional craftsmen for their flexibility and ease of use.

Pneumatic vs. Electric Sanders

There are a few key differences between pneumatic and electric sanders that may or may not matter to you. Pneumatics are generally lighter. After all, there’s no motor. As a result, they can also be quieter and longer lasting.

Sanding Power Tools

The first step to a perfect finish is to start with a smooth, scratch-free surface. To accomplish that, you'll need to know your abrasives and sanding tools. Use the articles in this category to help you do just that.

Three of the Best Belt Sanders

Power tools can make life extremely easy for the seasoned professional or the do-it-yourself minded homeowner. One of the most versatile power tools at the disposal of anyone performing a renovation is an electric belt sander. The belt sander is a relatively straightforward piece of machinery.


Basic descriptions of every type of sanding equipment commonly found in wood shops.