Best sander I have ever used

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Review by lumberjoe posted 10-28-2013 07:36 PM 5057 views 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Best sander I have ever used No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

This is truly a 5 star sander (unfortunately with a 5 star price to boot). I’ve always been an ROS guy but never able to get a mirror smooth finish without some hand touch-up in certain areas. This sander delivers!

The Good

Overall Construction This sander is well built. It’s heavy, yet ergonomically pleasing. The front handle comes off if need be. It is solid, quiet, and vibration free. It comes with a dust port fitting, or a dust collection tube with a filter inside (that works surprisingly well – much better than a bag). I sand with the tube on a downdraft table. The trigger has a lock-on for better hand placement. The included soft pad works well- especially on contoured and rounded over edges. There is also a punch to make holes in standard full sheet paper. No need to buy special pads.

Loading paper. Sheet sanders are annoying to load paper. This one is not. The loading and tensioning system is super fast, accurate, and predictable. It takes longer to cut a sheet in half than it does to seat it on the pad.

Vibration – or should I say lack thereof. There is little to no vibration at all using this sander at any speed. It’s quite heavy, but really easy to control. It glides effortlessly across the piece and doesn’t track or move around.

Variable speed. It actually works and is more than a polite suggestion. There is a noticable difference with every turn of the dial.

Finish Quality. You’ll have to see for yourself, but it is amazing. Not a scratch mark revealed with the mineral spirits wipe down through 600 grit.

The not so good
Dust collection is just ok – even with a vac. As mentioned I use it on a downdraft table and it’s not too big of an issue

It really is a finish sander. Don’t expect to load this up with 60 grit and hog off material Rotex style. I have used 80 grit paper on it and I could not believe how smooth the finish was. Through the higher grits the results are amazing.

It’s huge. You aren’t getting in tight spaces with this bad boy. It’s great for panels, cutting boards, and if you pre-sand before final assembly. With the design of the sander you can sand right up to the edges – front and back.

Overall I would definitely recommend this. The finish quality side-by-side with a piece sanded using a higher quality ROS is huge. It also makes much quicker work of one of the most annoying jobs in woodworking. Because there is just about no vibration at all, it’s very comfortable to use.

If you need a finish sander – here it is


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2902 posts in 3021 days

9 comments so far

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3633 posts in 3957 days

#1 posted 10-28-2013 08:15 PM

Thanks for the review. I didn’t realize there would be much of a difference from a high-grit ROS. Do you sand with the grain somehow using this?

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View lumberjoe's profile


2902 posts in 3021 days

#2 posted 10-28-2013 08:17 PM

I do sand with the grain. It could come down to technique or simply the larger surface area. I always thought my ROS finishes were pretty decent. They are not even comparable to this sander


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19241 posts in 4449 days

#3 posted 10-30-2013 05:14 AM

thanks for the info

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Ken90712's profile


17867 posts in 3962 days

#4 posted 10-30-2013 08:23 AM

Great review…. I had been thinking of buying a 6 inch ROS but have so much 5 inch snading discs have held of…. I might have to buy this to add to the my sanders and give it a try. I think this could be a great addition to the shop. Thx for the info.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

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306 posts in 2961 days

#5 posted 11-03-2013 06:11 AM

Thanks for the review. It sounds like Bosch has come out with the first contender to take the crown from the venerable (and sadly discontinued) Porter-Cable model 505 half sheet sander.
This was the only game in town for so long that I’ve been hoarding and refurbishing all the old clunkers I can find.
Have you by chance used a 505? I’d be curious if you could compare the two.

-- Without the wood, it's just working

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2902 posts in 3021 days

#6 posted 11-04-2013 01:24 PM

I haven’t used any other half sheet sanders, but this is really the only (decent) one I could find


View gko's profile


83 posts in 4017 days

#7 posted 11-07-2013 11:30 PM

I’ve had this sander about 2 years and use it mainly to flatten table tops before applying a finish. When getting a mirror finish the surface had large area dips with my old ROS. Because of the huge surface area of the half sheet, OS50VC works like a hand jointer plane keeping the surface flat. Some tips. I run the sander slightly angled so I don’t get strong edge sanding. I usually hold it in the center to avoid pressing on either end of the sander. I go to my Festool ROS ETS 150/3 for final sanding for a swirl free surface. I’ve also had good success with the Bosch ROS (forgot the model no.) For getting a really dead flat surface the OS50VC is hard to beat.

-- Wood Menehune, Honolulu

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118066 posts in 4350 days

#8 posted 11-07-2013 11:47 PM

Thanks for the review.


View Tennessee's profile


2901 posts in 3287 days

#9 posted 11-09-2013 01:06 PM

Peaked my interest immediately until I saw the price. Wow, $355 was the best I could find. $379 on Amazon. Probably a bit steep for me…too bad, looks like a great tool.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

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