Sheet sanders are designed to use a portion of a regular sheet of sandpaper, usually mounted with locking clips or pads. Some models do require the use of special paper with Velcro backing or even self-stick paper, but most allow the user to select from any type of sandpaper, and cut the sheets down to size. Because a sheet sander is a vibrating sander, it is important that the sander be moved along the grain of the wood, as going across the grain can result in scratching or gouging of the wood surface.
A sheet sander tends to be less expensive than a random orbit sander, and has the advantage of using readily available common sandpaper. In most cases, the size of the sander is indicated by how much paper it uses, such as the 1/2 sheet sander, the 1/3 sheet sander, and the 1/4 sheet sander. In some circumstances, sheets must be cut to a specified shape, such as with the 4″ sheet sander.
Dewalt Sheet Sanders
Many sheet finishing sanders, such as the DeWalt and Milwaukee models, feature dust recovery bags or canisters. This allows the removal or grit and dust from the work area, and offers the user a cleaner environment both for working and breathing.
Makita Sheet Sanders
Most Makita sheet sanders are designed expressly as a finishing tool. They are available in 1/4, 1/2, and 1/3 sheet sizes, and engineered to leave a smooth, polished appearance to wood, plastic, and polished stone or tile. Makita’s industrial reputation makes these sanders a common site in cabinetry shops and construction areas, and the affordable price makes them popular with home woodworking enthusiasts.
Porter Cable Sheet Sanders
Porter Cable sheet sanders feature the dual dust ports that allow easy connection of vacuum devices, a trait that is rare among other manufacturers. The dust filtration process works to remove dust directly from the surface being sanded, giving you more control and a higher degree of accuracy in the finished product.
Bosch Sheet Sander
Bosch improves on the dust collection design with through-the-pad filtration. This type of system actively removes dust as it is created, and offers users one of the cleanest sanding experiences available. This makes it a great tool for work in confined areas, or as a tool to use in general contracting jobs.
Pneumatic Sheet Sanders
Drywall companies have known for years that a pneumatic sheet sander can save huge amounts of time in finishing drywall. Several different companies offer great sheet sanders, including pneumatic leaders such as Chicago, Cooper, and Campbell Hausfeld.
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