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Though many people enjoy doing at-home projects or working in their garage, very few enjoy sanding. It is a necessary part of various building projects, but it can also be a lengthy and tedious process that, if not done right, often leaves you with disappointing results.
To fix those problems, there are belt sanders. The tools enable you to work with all sorts of materials, ranging from wood to metal to laminate, without exerting too much effort.
They create a wonderful finished product as well.
Tools for All Your Sanding Needs
Every belt sander, though same in functionality, is a bit different in practice. Some are made for small projects, some are for large ones, and some are only for specific materials.
In that way, you should not look for the general best belt sander. Rather, you should attempt to find the best belt sander for you.
This guide will help with that search by breaking down the top seven belt sanders on the current market and exploring what makes them special.
1. Astro 3037 Air Belt Sander
Kicking off our discussion is the Astro 3037. While every sander on this list has specific strengths and weaknesses, the Astro makes the cut because of its multi-use capability.
Every worker needs a tool that can adapt to any job. Versatility is one of the most important factors when it comes to streamlining your workspace, and that is exactly what the Astro offers.
This belt sander gives you great handheld performance at a more than reasonable price. The small package helps you sand down hard-to-reach spots and allow you to control your project in an extremely efficient way that other models simply cannot match.
A Small but Sturdy Package
Continuing off the idea of control, this sander is equipped with many features to make sure it never overpowers you or gets too unwieldy.
Not only do you get the small size, but this also comes with an easy-to-adjust lever (ensuring you always get the right angle) a 1/2-inch belt groove and variable speed control that goes up to 16,000 rpm.
That power mixed with the tight package gives you optimum grinding capabilities on every project. The Astro is a perfect sander for vehicles, but it has uses across the board.
No matter your sanding experience or what you need to get done, this will give you results.
Just note that the Astro does not come with a dust bag, so always wear eye protection and gloves while using it.
2. Matika 9403 Belt Sander
Next up is the Matika 9403, a sander that offers incredible quality at an affordable price.
Most of the time premium belt sanders, while effective, are expensive. That makes the cost of entry more than many people would like to pay.
The Matika offers a stellar solution to that problem by providing you with a strong, durable belt sander that gives you top-of-the-line results at a fraction of the cost of other models.
While this sander can handle a range of different projects, it truly excels when it comes to wood. The machine strips wood better than anything else out there, allowing you to remove it from just about any surface.
It gets that dependability from its 4-inch by 24-inch belt that moves at 1,640 speed per minute, which generates enormous amounts of power extremely quickly.
Sleek, Quiet, Affordable
Matika 9403 is a belt sander with a low-price tag and a lot of power. As an additional upgrade, it is also incredibly quiet.
Belt sanders tend to be extremely loud. Having one that only hits noise levels of 84 decibels ensures that you will be able to work without killing your ears or disturbing any neighbors.
The only caveat here is that this model clocks in at 15.8 pounds. That is quite a bit of weight, which means you should try to use it on horizontal surfaces as opposed to vertical ones.
It can do vertical work if needed, but you should be prepared to break every now and then.
3. WEN Corded Belt Sander with Dust Bag
Our third tool on this list of best belt sanders is another affordable option. As with the Matika 9403, the WEN Corded Belt Sander is a machine for the DIYer or mechanic on a budget.
This model is incredible because it comes with many features for its cost, giving you an easy and reliable alternative to the much more expensive sanders on the market.
Equipped with a seven-amp motor and a three-inch belt that moves more than 13 feet per second, this device has the quality to handle both big and small jobs.
While it does not give you every single fancy characteristic, you save a ton of money here without giving up anything of importance.
Excellent Features and Additions
It is easy to assume that the WEN is not high quality. People tend to avoid lower price tags, but you should not let that dissuade you from this incredible tool.
This sander is more than meets the eye. Not just because of the price, but also because of the strength it packs into its small six-pound frame.
Lightweight-but-sturdy, the sander is more than equipped to handle any at-home or DIY projects. It has an easy belt replacement as well as a removable dust bag for simple and quick clean up.
A plethora of knobs and levers also makes it easy to adjust, which is an important feature to have when sanding different items materials.
If you’re looking for a cheap, at-home belt sander this is the choice for you.
4. Hitachi SB8V2 Amp Variable Speed Belt Sander
Our number four best belt sander is the Hitachi SB8V2. Versatile and sturdy, this model is the perfect tool for people who want features.
This device comes with a 9.0 AMP motor that reaches speeds of 1,475 feet per minute. In addition, it also has a handy tracking system that increases both convenience and general visibility, as well as a soft rubber grip to give more control and better handling as you work.
The grip is particularly important because it prevents accidents, stopping any unwarranted slip-ups as you sand.
However, the Hitachi SB9V2 doesn’t stop there.
Its v-belt is also naturally wear-resistant, which helps it stand up to the test of time. That provides you with a product that will stand up to constant use throughout the years.
Such features, combined with the dust bag and variable speed dial, give you a sander that can handle any job you throw at it.
Pure Power and Total Control
The Hitachi SB9V2 has all of the bells and whistles, but it is much more than that. The device has a powerful motor inside its sturdy frame, giving you the strength to sand as many different surfaces as you need.
It works on paint, wood, steel, and much, much more. Not only that, but it also sands with little effort.
All of that is then wrapped up in a fantastic 5-year warranty. The company believes in their product, and they make sure you’ll get the most use out of it as possible.
5. 18-Volt RIDGID GEN5X Cordless Brushless Belt Sander
As with the above models, the 18-Volt RIDGID Gen5X is an incredible belt sander outfitted with wonderful features and exciting attributes. However, it has a distinct advantage in that it is completely cordless.
Cordless devices have been around for years, and they are often used in traditional electronics. Having a tool with no cords is also extremely handy in a garage, shed, or workspace because it enables you to move around without worrying about getting tangled up.
Not only is getting caught on cords annoying (especially when moving quickly) but it can also be extremely dangerous. Taking out that obstacle frees up your space and makes it much less likely that you will trip or fall.
The GEN5X gives you that peace of mind while also providing you with a tool that is perfect for all forms of sanding. The device is great for more experienced workers, but its user-friendly features make it a great choice for casuals or newbies as well.
Every Feature You Could Ever Need
The cordless aspect is one of the biggest selling points of the GEN5X, but it is far from its only one.
The machine is one of the best belt sanders because it has a brushless motor, which creates a smarter tool with improved resistance detection, as well as an extended run-time, reduced friction, and less voltage drops.
In addition, the belt sander lasts for quite a long time on a single charge. Though you need to supply your own batteries, this is an essential feature that allows you to put in a long day’s work without worrying about your tool dying on you.
6. Porter-Cable 362V Variable Speed Belt Sander
Next, we have the Porter-Cable 362V. This is one of the best belt sanders around simply because of the fact that is a strong, sturdy piece of machinery that newcomers can use and control with ease.
Everything about this machine screams heavy duty.
Not only does it come with a 12 amp motor that is able to hit 15,000 feet per minute, but the motor sits in the middle of the body to increase balance and handling as you work.
The 100-grit zirconium belt is a nice touch that helps prevent wear-and-tear, while the variable speed dial vastly improves the amount of control the 362V offers.
On top of that, the dust bag turns a full 360-degrees to maximize comfort, while the unique Flush Sanding design allows you to tackle both horizontal and vertical angles.
A Sander for All Your Wood Needs
Few belt sanders can handle as many forms of carpentry as the 362V. The device is strong, but not so overpowering that it will intimidate beginners.
The product is a perfect balance of strength and form all the way through. It sands extremely well and generates a ton of power.
You won’t find all of the trendy features some of the above models have, but if you’re looking for dependability, this is the way to go.
Porter-Cable even provides a 3-year warranty to cover any defects in materials or workmanship so you know you can depend on your purchase.
7. Black and Decker DS321 Dragster 7 Amp
We conclude our break down of the best belt sanders with perhaps one of the biggest names in tools.
Black and Decker is a company that has been generating great products for years, and the DS321 is just another amazing item in their collection.
This belt sander is perhaps the best item out there for DIY or at-home workers who want an affordable machine that will give them both the reliability and power.
Weighing in at just 6.5 pounds, the DS321 is a workman’s tool that can be used on just about any surface or with just about any material.
Easy on Your Wallet, and Your Hands
All of the best belt sanders have features that make them unique. The stand out aspect in the DS321 is its special front roller that enables you to sand tight or hard to reach corners.
That is then backed up with a fully adjustable handle that gives you ample control over your project.
Such features are key because they mean you get great results without putting in too much extra work. You can sand for hours and not feel the strain that you might with other machines.
Worthy Additions to Your Toolbox
Though there is no one best belt sander, there are a few that rise up above the rest.
You never know when you will need to sand something, but when those times come you will be glad to have one of the best belt sanders on hand and ready to go.
No matter what your needs are, how often you like to sand, or where you do your sanding, the machines in this article will all provide you with great results.