1/4 Sheet Sander/ Bandsaw Riser

Is there any advantage in using a 1/4 sheet sander over a 1/2 sheet sander? I have an old Craftsman 1/2 sheet, 1'2 HP, 4400 spm, orbital/straight line. I've been considering a DeWalt 1/4 sheet Palm sander. I do have a PC 5" Orbital and a Ryobi Corner Cat. Jim
P.S. I just made a 9" riser for my Craftsman 14" bandsaw. That gives me a 15" re-saw capacity with a 111" blade. I had to re-drill the alignment pin holes to get the guides to line up. Now I know why it had been returned to the store but then the price was right.
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I have a 1/2 sheet sander that I am not using for years. I also have a Makita and Dewalt 1/4 sheet sander. They remove more material faster then the 1/2 sheet. The dust collecting is better but still need improvement. They both have 13500 OPM. The dust collecting is fair. The dust bag needs to be repaired often. A new bag cost around $14.00 CAD. The Makita has a better switch that the Dewalt, it is more accessible and positive. If you buy one get the 2006 model the dust collecting is far better and the switch also works better.

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On the same note, a sander is as good as the sand paper it uses. I do not purchase any sand paper from stores like Home Depot and the like any more. Norton (made in Canada) No Fill Adalox works well on a 1/4 sheet palm sander. I get an 8" X 11" at about 0.60 per sheet. Then I cut it in four equal parts I can only buy it at the Auto Part stores in the auto body repair section. Other sand paper made in Finland also work well but it is hard to get it. 3M also have a good quality sand paper.

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I might be mistaken, but I don't think I have ever purchased anything other than 3M sandpaper from Home Depot. I'm not sure if they even carry other brands.
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Good point, the sand paper sold at Home, correct me if I am wrong, in Canada is not the same quality as the paper sold in Auto Body repair shops. I'll make another visit at Home Depot and check the situation on sand paper. They may well have new stock that I am not aware.
The sand paper I ended up using is always the No Fill type and the size is 8" X 11" sheet. Otherwise the sand paper packs up and does not remove material anymore. I mainly use sand paper on hardwood. In the beginning of each spring I use coarse grit to remove some of the antifouling off the bottom of my sailboat using the sheet palm sander.

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Odd. Open coat papers are normally suggested for softwoods where resin is a problem, or stearated for sanding between coats. Full coat papers should give you the best combination of finish and longevity on hardwoods. Heavier use likes resin over resin adhesive for durability.
Try some of the Finnish (Mirka) or German stuff if you can find it, noting their grit system is a bit different. I like Klingspor as a source in the US. They've got every permutation and combination of grit, backing and mountability available. Just ordered the Son-in-Law a PC speedblock for Christmas, and decided to move into the 21st century by ordering a hook and loop pad for my old Rockwell.
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No doubt Mirka is the very best. I still have some left. I mainly use 2 and 3 inches disks for speed sanding on my lathe. You may be right about open coat. However, I do lots of sanding and I get better results and longevity with the open coat or no fill type using the sheet palm sander.

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My experience with Home Depot and sand paper is they seem to mostly carry Norton. Lowes carries 3M and Gator I believe. At least that's what's going on in my region, not sure about other areas.
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Home Depot may not carry the same stocked items as in the US. What I have noticed at Home Depot is that the quality of their sand paper (in Canada) is not an industrial quality. The Norton sand paper I get at the Auto Parts supplies stores is an industrial quality. It is labelled Norton A 275 No-Fill Adalox B-WT made in Canada. I get much better results with this type of paper then other brands sold at popular hardware and depot stores. Anyway, thing changes and I should check things up at our Home Depot store. I use lots of sand paper and at 0.60 for ea sht of 8 X 11" industrial quality I find it a fair price.
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Michael Faurot wrote: >

Same here in CT.
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Here in California, they carry Norton brand...
Patriarch
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I really do not enjoy sanding hence I have a lot of sanders which makes my life easier.
I have two rockwell / portercable 555 half sheet sanders and they are infinitely quicker and nicer than my craftsman orbital / linear half sheet sander.
I laso have a Porter cable 1/4 sheet sander that I use for small projects and tight places. I also have a PC 5" right angle random orbit sander. I like the PC Random Orbit but I still prefer the 555 half sheet sanders for most work.
I usuaually keep my sander setup like this: 80 grit in PC 4x24 belt sander. 100 grit on PC 5" random orbit. 120 grit on PC 555 half sheet orbital. 150 grit on Rockwell 555 Half sheet orbital. 180 grit on Craftsman half sheet orbital in linear mode.
This makes "running through the grits" quicker and easier. I have all my sanders by my bench in arms reach. I will usually run through all the grits on one side of a project before rotating the project to the next side.
I have found my PorterCable detail sander pretty useless. And like I said above the 1/4 sheet sander only is used ocassionally. I do really like my gel palm sanding glove when I have to do a lot of sanding. I also like having all porter cable sanders because the vacuum hose quickly moves from sander to sander. The best thing I have done for any of the sanders is remove the factory cord and replace it with a 15'+ power cord.
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You have an efficient array of sanders. I like the idea of keeping the set up with a different grit for each sander. I always make sure that the connecting electrical cord is replaced by one made out of pure rubber. This way when it gets cold in my garageshop the cord does not get stiff. Over the years I have learned to make use of scrappers. Depending on the job I may use scrappers or at time I'll go to 60 grit on the 3X21 belt sander to remove varnish or damaged wood.

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