Oscillating spindle sander suddenly oscillating less.

  • Advertise with us

« back to Power Tools, Hardware and Accessories forum

Forum topic by Elizabeth posted 08-30-2014 07:20 PM 6953 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Elizabeth's profile


823 posts in 4426 days

08-30-2014 07:20 PM

I have a secondhand Ryobi oscillating spindle sander, visible in the fifth photo on my workshop page . I was using it today and suddenly it went from its steady up-down oscillation to a kind of stumbling gait, going up fine but sticking and jerking on the way down.

I turned it off and checked it for dust buildup, on the top anyway, and cleared out anything I found but it didn’t make any difference. I haven’t opened up the bottom to access the motor as I’m not an electrical person anyway. I did carefully tip it on an angle and turn it on while peering through the grate on the bottom and I thought I saw an occasional blue spark within the guts of it – a bushing contact maybe? – but haven’t investigated that further.

Is the unit borked? Is it just showing its age, or could this be a symptom of either an easy fix or some kind of regular maintenance thing that I haven’t been doing?

It still runs, but not as well, and I’m unsure whether I could damage it (further?) by using it in this condition.

14 replies so far

View Slemi's profile


118 posts in 2824 days

#1 posted 08-30-2014 07:38 PM

I would say the problem is the parts that main unit inside is sliding up and down on. It probabyl just needs to be cleaned and lubricated. here is the sander in parts. I think th eproblem is on the middle, somewhere around parts 29 to 38. You probably best to take it to some handyman around You. Also take this picture on link with You, it will help him a lot!


View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 3795 days

#2 posted 08-30-2014 08:42 PM

Elizabeth, how long have you had it and how much is it used? Reason I ask is Ryobi are OK for weekend here and there projects but they aren’t designed to withstand long and hard use. I had a Ryobi planer that gave me 3 years of hard use before it died, after sitting it out on the curb I went and bought a Dewalt but.. I use it a lot. The spindle sander I had was one of the Rockwell and it also quit working on me so I replaced it with the Rigid, if all else fails and you have to buy a new one I’d suggest the Rigid that HD sells.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View tyvekboy's profile


2138 posts in 4296 days

#3 posted 08-30-2014 08:57 PM

I agree with Slemi. It is probably not an electrical problem if it still rotates fine. I would unplug it and take it apart and see if maybe a belt or some other part broke. The fact that it goes up and not down sounds like a broken part.

Also, if you have used it for a while, you might want to see if you can get replacement brushes and change those out while you have it apart.

If you do have to replace it, I would agree with Blackie on getting the Rigid oscillating belt and spindle sander from HD. Iʻve had one and it works fine. If you do get it, check with Rigid to see see if they still offer free lifetime service. If they do, youʻll have to register it soon after your buy it. They should be able to tell you what you have to do.

-- Tyvekboy -- Marietta, GA ………….. one can never be too organized

View Loren's profile


11307 posts in 4930 days

#4 posted 08-30-2014 09:25 PM

Powermatic made some of those sanders and you’d
be lucky to find one these days without a broken

They way they bob up and down may vary, but
the mechanism will be subject to clogging and
wear in any case. There may be a maintenance
protocol in the manual with some ridiculous
stipulation like taking it to a service center
yearly. I had a $200 Skil disposable table saw that
had that in the manual. yeah, right.

Sparking may be caused by brushes. I think
the oscillation is going to be a totally mechanical
thing unrelated to electrical issues.

You should certainly address the problem before
using it further.

View Elizabeth's profile


823 posts in 4426 days

#5 posted 08-30-2014 11:24 PM

Thanks for the thoughts, guys. I’ve had it for about three years and it’s seen very light use, but I got it secondhand at an estate sale of a woodworker and I don’t know how heavily it was used prior to that. Before today I probably hadn’t used it in a year, and I was probably using it for about five to ten minutes before it went funny. I only paid $50 for it though so if I can’t get it repaired it’s not a huge loss. I mainly have been using it for cutting rounded finger-holes in bandsaw box drawers, which is what I was doing today. I can do that with a forstner bit if I plan ahead a bit more, most likely, so I probably don’t need to replace it anytime soon.

I think it’s more likely to be a clog than a broken part, because it does go down fully, it just doesn’t do so smoothly.

View coachmancuso's profile


259 posts in 3214 days

#6 posted 08-31-2014 12:55 AM

You can try taking compressed air and blowing it down through the top part and then turn it upside down and blow it out really well from underneath. This should take care of any dust and debris in there

-- Coach Mancuso

View ohtimberwolf's profile


1112 posts in 3635 days

#7 posted 08-31-2014 01:58 PM

If you can see the belts look for some missing or worn teeth on the down drive belt.

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

View Elizabeth's profile


823 posts in 4426 days

#8 posted 08-31-2014 02:45 PM

I’ll try both of those – thanks!

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3973 days

#9 posted 09-01-2014 12:40 AM

Probably not your problem but mine did a very similar thing when I changed spindles and forgot to put the washer UNDER the rubber spindle. It had stuck to the spindle I removed and I didn’t notice it was missing. A quick fix!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View kerrymurf's profile


2 posts in 2098 days

#10 posted 03-03-2016 01:04 AM

the problem is a worn or broken ocillating belt. There are two belts-one for the up and down motion, and one for the spining motion. the ocillating belt is narrower than the other belt. Both belts are identical in size accept for the width. sears sold these sanders under their name and after checking on the searparts site I see that most of the parts for this sander are out of stock. However the ocillating belt is still available for around $12.00 I would get several if you can. I just changed the smaller belt in my sander and you have to take the unit apart to replace the belt. When sanding , you have to have a light touch and not press the piece too hard against the rotating sanding sleeve or you will burn the teeth off of the belt. I haven’t checked the ryob parts site to see if parts are still available from them, so good luke.

View kerrymurf's profile


2 posts in 2098 days

#11 posted 03-03-2016 02:31 AM

I did find the belts on ebay. they have both belts together or the smaller ocilating belts in 2 packs. The ocillating belt Number is part no. 662572002 when changing my ocillilating belt it looked like you could use the wider belt on the ocillating gear, which might make it last longer without stripping out so easily. I didnt’ have a wider one at the time so I just used the narrow one like the original.

View LakesideWoodworker's profile


24 posts in 1353 days

#12 posted 08-18-2018 05:42 PM

Thanks the schematic and the parts number on eBay. I had the same problem with my Royobi 450 sander after not using it for several years. I read the posts, ordered the belts, installed them and it is now working great again.

-- Lakeside Woodworker

View GR8HUNTER's profile


9128 posts in 1995 days

#13 posted 08-18-2018 07:07 PM

the problem is in part 38 I had same problem with my g0538 same style needs cleaned and new grease I do hope this helps you out GOOD LUCK :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View Gruntledlark's profile


1 post in 1174 days

#14 posted 09-12-2018 04:57 PM

kerrymurf I hope you’re still lurking around. I see that you’ve changed the belts on the OSS450. I am having the same issue that I think Elizabeth had (hopefully remedied by now). I obtained replacement belts and I’ve taken the machine apart to get the belts on. What I don’t understand is how the thin belt relates to the idler pully. The only diagrams I’ve been able to find are the exploded parts list and that doesn’t help me with the fit up. Does the belt go inside the idler or outside the idler? Any other advice would be welcome

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics