Random-orbit sanders provide scratch-free sanding with a unique mechanism: The motor shaft drives a counterweighted assembly that contains an offset bearing in which the pad spins freely. This produces both orbital and rotational motion in the pad.

What's hotter than a chili-cooking contest in Chihuahua? Try random-orbit sandcrs. Since they were introduced three years ago. these multi-purpose sandcrs have captured the interest of woodworkers and manufacturers alike.

It's easy to understand why. Random-orbit sandcrs arc your best choice for all types of flat sanding. They're powerful and aggressive enough for heavy sanding, yet smooth enough for finish work. And they'll produce a scratch-free surface even sanding across the grain, so you can sand face frames after the joints are assembled. In fact, they sand so smoothly you can skip some intermediate grits—switching straight from 80 to 150, for example—and still obtain a scratch-free surface.

There are more than two dozen random-orbit sandcrs on the market today (and several new models on the horizon from Bosch and DeWalt). That's triple what was available when we reviewed them in 1991. (See AW *22.) And many of these new models sport features that make them even more user-friendlv than that earlier generation.

To help you choose which one to buy, we tested every electric model available, and we also tossed six popular pneumatic units into the mix to show you how the air-powered and electric units compare. Our staff put the tools through hands-on evaluations in the AW workshop over several weeks, and then rated them on such factors as sanding power, ease of control, and vibration. Our findings are summarized in the chart on page 34, while specific comments on the sandcrs appear below. See the sidebar on page 3^ for details on the pneumatic sandcrs.

Bearing offset from motor

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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