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View MikeUT's profile

Rigid vs WEN: Oscillating Sanders

by MikeUT
posted 12-18-2018 05:32 PM


27 replies so far

View Dustin's profile

Dustin

700 posts in 1276 days


#1 posted 12-18-2018 05:42 PM

I have the Rigid, and it is beyond valuable to me. I may not need to use it often, but when I do, I’m sure glad I have it. Whichever you decide on, make sure to get some decent belts and spindles. I ordered the bargain box of belts from Klingspor, and with shipping, I paid about $30 for 30 belts of varying grits. They hold up much better than the cheap Diablo ones sold in store.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5228 posts in 4496 days


#2 posted 12-18-2018 07:28 PM

I have the Ridgid. Would buy it again, but mine just keeps runnin’ and runnin’.

-- [email protected]

View jamsomito's profile

jamsomito

433 posts in 962 days


#3 posted 12-18-2018 09:54 PM

I have the WEN. Its very sturdy, don’t let that thought sway your decision.

I just went through this decision about 6ish months ago. Maybe less. There are a couple good reviews on this site, and I think I made a thread too. Hate to be that guy, but do a search on LJ and you’ll find lots of good info. If I have time online later I can try to post a link to my thread.

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

11870 posts in 3964 days


#4 posted 12-18-2018 10:12 PM

I’ve never used the Wen but, I can say I love my Rigid. From the Amazon description, it appears that the Wen table is somewhat smaller that the Rigid. That could be problematic when using the belt. I’ve spindle sanded a few band saw boxes where the table size really mattered, too.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View jamsomito's profile

jamsomito

433 posts in 962 days


#5 posted 12-18-2018 10:40 PM

Here you go. Lots of good info here: http://lumberjocks.com/topics/289097

View Steve's profile

Steve

1613 posts in 1118 days


#6 posted 12-18-2018 10:54 PM

The Ridgid used to be $199 a few months ago. At that price, I’d probably lean towards it, but at the new $250 price, I think the Wen is a better buy. Only thing you really lose out on is the miter slot.

View GrantA's profile

GrantA

1938 posts in 1943 days


#7 posted 12-18-2018 11:11 PM

I’ll be the odd duck and say I’m happy with my HF. I’ve only had it a few months though so I can’t speak to longevity. I can’t imagine much going wrong knock on wood

View MikeUT's profile

MikeUT

195 posts in 1895 days


#8 posted 12-18-2018 11:25 PM



I have the WEN. Its very sturdy, don t let that thought sway your decision.

I just went through this decision about 6ish months ago. Maybe less. There are a couple good reviews on this site, and I think I made a thread too. Hate to be that guy, but do a search on LJ and you ll find lots of good info. If I have time online later I can try to post a link to my thread.

- jamsomito

Haha, I’d rather be the ‘tell people to search LJ’ guy like you than the ‘No one has ever thought about posting about this topic’ guy like me. Thanks for the help.

View MikeUT's profile

MikeUT

195 posts in 1895 days


#9 posted 12-18-2018 11:31 PM



The Ridgid used to be $199 a few months ago. At that price, I d probably lean towards it, but at the new $250 price, I think the Wen is a better buy. Only thing you really lose out on is the miter slot.

- Steve

My thoughts exactly. If the Rigid was $200, I would have already picked one up at my local HD. With the other comments I’m leaning towards the WEN.

View jamsomito's profile

jamsomito

433 posts in 962 days


#10 posted 12-19-2018 12:06 AM

I plan to write a review of the WEN but I was waiting until I got a bit more experience with it. It has plenty of power and works nice and smooth. My table is flat but the extents of the swing don’t make a true 90 or 45 (90 is pretty close, 45 is off a few degrees). Using a Dremel to extend the slot by a degree or two will fix the problem, I just haven’t gotten around to it yet. I think this is the type of problem you’ll run into with the WEN. Overall it’s a pretty nice unit.

I have a tiny workshop and I can’t imagine what a behemoth the Ridgid would be in there. The WEN is comparatively one of my bigger tools, about in line with my chop saw, right behind the band saw/table saw of course. I could see maybe some issues with the table being too small if you use the 3” spindle that’s part of the belt attachment, the Ridgid has more room for that. You also lose the miter slot. Otherwise, it’s not much of a compromise.

If you’re a nerd like me, check out the reviews that were linked in my thread by EEngineer, the oscillating mechanisms are very different between the two. It doesn’t appear to matter much from either a functional or longevity standpoint though. The WEN is definitely a bit louder than the Ridgid. I wouldn’t run mine more than a minute without hearing protection. I’m also paranoid so there’s that.

I think that about sums it up. Any specific questions about the WEN and I’ll try to answer them for you.

View jonah's profile

jonah

2089 posts in 3835 days


#11 posted 12-19-2018 02:26 PM

I have the Rigid and I’ve never used the miter slot. I do sometimes appreciate the bigger table, just going by the pictures I’ve seen of the Wen.

At $250 I don’t think the Rigid is as good a deal. I paid $170 for mine and I’m happy with it for that price. I don’t use it all the time, but when I need the thing it’s a lifesaver.

View YesHaveSome's profile

YesHaveSome

165 posts in 794 days


#12 posted 12-19-2018 05:38 PM

I have five WEN tools (disc/belt sander, oscillating sander, drill press, band saw and air cleaner) and they all have performed well. Based on all the reviews and feedback I’ve seen on WEN they are pretty good tools. However, I’ve had my eye on the Ridgid combo and then I’ll get rid of the two WEN sanders. That Ridgid is time tested and loved by quite a few people. I’d go that direction over the WEN.

-- But where does the meat go?

View AE8U's profile

AE8U

3 posts in 89 days


#13 posted 08-16-2019 09:36 PM

I am not sure why no one else has mentioned this, but the Ridgid is 5 amps, but it also says it is a 3/8 HP motor. Amps times volts times efficiency equals HP. Go to this site: https://www.inchcalculator.com/amps-to-horsepower-calculator/
So working backwards if we use 115 V and 5 Amp, and we need it to be 3/8 HP, that means the motor is only 50% efficient. That usually results from poor bearings, poor fitting parts, etc.

Both the Wen and Grizzly have as you pointed out 3.5 Amps, but they also say they have a 1/2 HP motor. Using that same site, that means they are about 93% efficient. Which means they have much better bearings and better fitting parts. In other words they have more horsepower and draw less amps to use it.

I think this conclusion is supported by the reviews I see on the Ridgid website.

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5555 posts in 2887 days


#14 posted 08-16-2019 09:49 PM

I have the Rigid, and it works great. I can’t say anything about the WEN except to say the table looks to be smaller. There has been a few times that I wished the table on the Rigid were larger.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View AE8U's profile

AE8U

3 posts in 89 days


#15 posted 08-16-2019 10:03 PM

Bondo, just out of curiosity how old is your sander? I think Ridgid has recently done some cost reducing on some of their products and the new ones do not look to be as good as their older models.

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5555 posts in 2887 days


#16 posted 08-16-2019 10:11 PM

Oh, I’m not sure, have to guess at about 6 years.


Bondo, just out of curiosity how old is your sander? I think Ridgid has recently done some cost reducing on some of their products and the new ones do not look to be as good as their older models.

- AE8U


-- Bondo Gaposis

View natgas's profile

natgas

27 posts in 1525 days


#17 posted 08-16-2019 10:14 PM

I’ve had the WEN for about 4 months and am very happy with it; does the job when I need it

-- Randy

View Toller's profile

Toller

44 posts in 2136 days


#18 posted 08-17-2019 12:09 AM



So working backwards if we use 115 V and 5 Amp, and we need it to be 3/8 HP, that means the motor is only 50% efficient. That usually results from poor bearings, poor fitting parts, etc.

Both the Wen and Grizzly have as you pointed out 3.5 Amps, but they also say they have a 1/2 HP motor. Using that same site, that means they are about 93% efficient. Which means they have much better bearings and better fitting parts. In other words they have more horsepower and draw less amps to use it.


More likely it means Rigid is more honest. Wen and Grizzly are 93% efficient?! If you believe that….
I had the Rigid and it was a nice tool, but badly underpowered. I would not want to drop down to 3.5a.

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

4081 posts in 1110 days


#19 posted 08-17-2019 03:29 AM

Ridgid is listed as 5 Amps. The rest are listed as 3.5, except the MLCS, which just says “powerful motor”

-- Think safe, be safe

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

4081 posts in 1110 days


#20 posted 08-17-2019 03:34 AM

So working backwards if we use 115 V and 5 Amp, and we need it to be 3/8 HP, that means the motor is only 50% efficient. That usually results from poor bearings, poor fitting parts, etc.

Both the Wen and Grizzly have as you pointed out 3.5 Amps, but they also say they have a 1/2 HP motor. Using that same site, that means they are about 93% efficient. Which means they have much better bearings and better fitting parts. In other words they have more horsepower and draw less amps to use it.

More likely it means Rigid is more honest. Wen and Grizzly are 93% efficient?! If you believe that….
I had the Rigid and it was a nice tool, but badly underpowered. I would not want to drop down to 3.5a.

- Toller

Long history of companies selling tools using gooey liquid mathematics to say a motor does…......... Sears Roebuck was the best with 1 1/2 Hp marked motors that they advertised as “developing” 3 Hp. This was to attempt to lure returning GI’s into their saws, instead of 3HP Delta’s. PM’s and the like. Stick strictly with Amps, and use any of the good electrical conversion charts. Doing so you won’t buy a tool that stalls out with any attempt to use it.

-- Think safe, be safe

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

5998 posts in 3349 days


#21 posted 08-17-2019 03:43 AM

I have the Ridgid sander, and it’s the only one in the bench top class that seems to have a miter slot. I wouldn’t be without a miter slot, because I use it extensively for chamfering through tenons.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View AE8U's profile

AE8U

3 posts in 89 days


#22 posted 08-18-2019 06:45 PM


More likely it means Rigid is more honest. Wen and Grizzly are 93% efficient?! If you believe that….
I had the Rigid and it was a nice tool, but badly underpowered. I would not want to drop down to 3.5a.

- Toller

So, first of all I am a retired engineer. And I have spent many years designing equipment – 20 years in hand and power tools. I absolutely believe that motors can be 93% efficient and higher. In fact with today’s technology I would classify as junk any motor that is not at least 75% efficient. Also there are regulations in place that mandate minimum efficiency ratings for motors – look at this website:

https://www.designworldonline.com/doe-mandates-more-efficiency-for-small-electric-motors/

Furthermore, most Ridgid power tools, including the sander, are now made in China. The parent company of Ridgid, as well as Milwaukee and Ryobi is a company called TTI. I have been in their factory in Hong Kong. If you are lucky enough to have an older tool then you probably have something to defend. But if you are looking at the current models being sold, then that is a different story.

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

4234 posts in 2524 days


#23 posted 08-18-2019 08:52 PM

I am sorry but I could care less about the motor efficiency. The bottom line is that the Ridgid has been in my shop for years and still works great. It is a relatively cheap tool that just keeps going, works well enough and good enough for my use.

View AndyJ1s's profile

AndyJ1s

67 posts in 291 days


#24 posted 08-18-2019 10:02 PM

Electric motor horsepower ratings are like men arguing over… well, polite company will not let me make that analogy.

Some vendors rate it at the absolute maximum product of torque and speed, at which it will overheat and self-destruct in a few minutes (often on universal motors).

Other more respectable vendors rate it at the max power the motor can safely put out all day, every day (more often induction motors)

Do these machines have universal (brushed) motors like routers, circular saws, corded drills, shop vacs etc. or are they induction motors? The latter are much quieter and last much longer, but are bigger and heavier than the former.

Andy

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

4081 posts in 1110 days


#25 posted 08-19-2019 02:06 AM


If you are lucky enough to have an older tool then you probably have something to defend. But if you are looking at the current models being sold, then that is a different story.

- AE8U

I have noted this same thing, and I only have one badged Rigid tool, and old Metabo dual mode sander. It carries across almost all the tool lines for the power hand tools. Cheaper by the season. It’s funny because I think a lot of the TaiChinese stationary equipment is better than it used to be. I think since HF is becoming so big, they are surrendering. I just hope at least one of them continues making something partially good so tradesmen can still get hand power tools, that don’t upset the bottom line, and aren’t total trash.

-- Think safe, be safe

View mel52's profile

mel52

1067 posts in 801 days


#26 posted 08-19-2019 04:27 AM

I have had the Wen for around 3 1/2 years and haven’t had any problems yet, and I do use it all the time, ( some of the things I use it for aren’t what is was designed for ). They also have a good warrantee, not sure about the others. Mel

-- MEL, Kansas

View Chad_B's profile

Chad_B

54 posts in 936 days


#27 posted 08-19-2019 02:08 PM

i have a rigid and I’m not too impressed with it. I paid $50 for it off CL, if I would have paid $200+ for it I would be pissed. It works, but it is under powered and the switch is junk.

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