HF 1x30 sander...

It's cheap but seems to get decent reviews...anybody here have handson w/ it or an alternate suggestion of moderate/low initial cost? Primary purpose touchup sanding for curved legs, etc., from the BS...
Also, the Grizz benchtop oscillating spindle sander looks to be a decent deal at $160 -- doesn't seem much else available that is as capable/well-equipped that isn't much higher?
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On 2/10/2013 2:57 PM, dpb wrote:

I have a similar craftsman, 1x40.. I like it, comes in handy for all sorts of things. Sharpening axes , rounding metal.. I have some coarse belts for wood, and it works well. Mine also has the ability to do inside sanding, you loop the belt back to itself so you can do inside sanding. Pretty neat. I have read the reviews on the HF and don't think you can go wrong for the sale price + 20% off coupon.
I also have a big belt 6x48. That I use.
If I were going to spend the 160 on the griz, I would check out the Rigid combo, belt and drum oscilating .. for $199 it still looks like a nice unit. I was looking for one used before I found my $2 6x48 that needed rebuilding. It was well worth the effort. But it doesn't have the oscilating feature... which I think is nice, but it makes fast work of everything.
--
Jeff

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On 2/10/2013 2:36 PM, woodchucker wrote:

I've got a 10" by 6x48 combo unit so don't really need the Ridgid--I like the larger table on the Grizz...
I've used the sanding platen w/ the 12" Craftsman bandsaw and it works ok up to a point but is somewhat of a pita to have to set up so for the cheap on the HF I'm pretty sure I'll give it a go--it's just too cheap to worry about...don't have any coupons at the moment but that's hardly an issue for the price...
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On 2/10/2013 2:36 PM, woodchucker wrote:

+1
Don't own it because I have both a Delta BOSS, and a Delta drum/belt sander, but the first time I saw it I thought that if I had to do it all over again, there it was.
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On Sun, 10 Feb 2013 13:57:29 -0600, dpb wrote:

I just bought one today. I'll try it out in the next week or so. But I bought mine to shape rails for model RR turnouts so my report may not be much good for woodworking.
And, as someone pointed out, with the lack of quality control in HF stuff, I could get a perfect one and the next buyer get a piece of trash - or vice versa.
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I'm thinking good for flat surfaces. For curved irregular surfaces probably something more like this.
http://www.harborfreight.com/4-inch-80-grit-coarse-grade-abrasive-ball-96948.html
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Missed the original post, but instead of the Grizz I'd go with the Ridgid at $199:
<http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay? productId0061671&storeId051&langId=-1&catalogId053&cm_spzVoice- _-RLP-_-100061671-_-x#.URkkkBlIMuZ>
I've got one and am quite pleased with it.
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On 2/11/2013 11:07 AM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

Looked again -- I see I misinterpreted it some on earlier pass-by--I'd assumed the spindle function was only using the two ends of the belt. It's back on the radar--does the second roller come entirely off I presume?
I'm watching a used PM 014 auction that's at least presently too good to pass up if it doesn't go sky-high in last moments so will hold off on this until the dust settles there (so to speak :) ).
I did go ahead and pull the lanyard on the HF 1x30 -- even if it takes some rework if it works at all it's not much of a loss if it does only the one job at hand at the moment before it dies...
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On Mon, 11 Feb 2013 14:54:57 -0600, dpb wrote:

Yes, it does.

I just put mine together this afternoon. Unlike some reports, the platen on mine was square to the belt path and there were no burrs or other impediments to assembly.
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"dpb" wrote:

------------------------------------------------- My landlord had a 1" x 40" bench top belt sander.
Primary purpose was to knock off burrs after sawing, rough sharpening of work chisels, putty knives, scrapers, scissors, etc.
Worked well for that purpose.
It's a cheap and dirty sharpening device.
No experience with HF unit, but at $40, it becomes a throw away.
Lew
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I bought one with the intent of using it for sharpening. The included table was useless, and the machine seems to run much too fast for the task.
Building a slower or variable speed one is on my "someday" todo list.
Puckdropper
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I've had ther 1X30 belt/5 inch disc sander model 69033 for well over 10 years now of weekend warrior use and it still works fine. I recall it was nearly identical to the same sized unit made by Delta at the time when I bought it, but cost about 1/2 as much. I do see in the current HF reviews some complaints about "handles" breaking. I'm not sure what handles they are referring to, maybe the levers for setting the table angles, or knob for adjusting belt tracking? Never any trouble with mine, but there likely have been some production changes over the years.
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On 2/10/2013 1:57 PM, dpb wrote:

...
OK, it got here yestiddy and I put off what should have been doing to play... :)
Out of the box this unit was fine w/ the exception of needed to tap the hole in the table that the set screw goes into for the level indexing--burrs from table finishing had filled it up...
The platen was actually aligned pretty well; simply "adjusted" it a little to be parallel w/ the belt; it was a little off plumb. I knew the table was small--didn't realize just how small, but then the whole unit isn't but 15" sq or so...
Runs and as other said w/ the rubber footsies, it's stable and stays put...for small stuff it's pretty much useful right out of the box.
I had a set of front legs roughed out which was reason for jumping at the moment--they're 28" L and 6/4 by roughly 4" oak so are bulky enough the little 8" sq (or so, didn't actually measure, but that's probably close) was pretty small to give a reference point but being eager I put one of the 120 grit belts had ordered separately on to be not-so-aggressive and gave it a quick shot...not bad! But, was quite difficult to swing around an arc smoothly w/ little support so took a chunk of an old Formica-covered kitchen counter top had laying around and cut it out to fit around the existing table and for a quick, temporary test made a box of scrap ply ripped to height of table less the 3/4"+. Shimmed it level on the bench and tacked it in place w/ a couple of furring strips to the bench top and checked out how a piece could be moved...worked pretty well. W/ that, was able to clean up the convex curves in the constricted spaces to within about a sixteenth or so of the intersection of the two curves in the point which is limit owing to thickness of the platen preventing a belt edge going past it into the crevice. But, a little hand work w/ chisel and that is also gone...
Overall, for the price and if you're not expecting an industrial-strength machine, it's not a bad little unit. If build an extra table for perpendicular, it can handle decent sized work if don't try to hog too much material at a time. If want the angle, that'll take some engineering to arrange anything larger that's adjustable; the small bracket provided to mount the table that comes with it isn't sufficient for much else than that...
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On Sun, 17 Feb 2013 09:16:11 -0600, dpb wrote:

That's a pretty large job for something whose footprint is about the size of a piece of paper :-). I'm pleasantly surprised it did as well as it did.
FWIW, I was looking for fine grit belts. The only place I found them was Woodcraft. They go down to 220 for $1.49 per belt. There were 10 packs but I didn't check the price. When I find out what the best grits are for grinding model RR rail I'll go back and buy the bulk packs.
I would also use the unit for sharpening lathe tools, but I have the Delta belt/disk combo in the workshop for that. In fact, I bought the HF unit just so I wouldn't have to lug the Delta back and forth :-).
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Lee Valley had some really fine grit 1x30 belts, so if you need finer than 220 it might be worth a look.
There's another placed that I wound up ordering a bunch from, I'll look it up if you're interested. It went up to around 3600 grit, I think.
Puckdropper
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On 2/17/2013 12:15 PM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

The platen length above the table is roughly 3" I'd estimate w/o going and actually looking again so there's adequate sanding surface for a 2" thickness. One could, I'm sure, bog the puppy down pretty easily, but for finishing to a line a light touch is the ticket, anyway. It did just fine as far as stock removal goes.
It would _not_ have been very easy w/o the auxiliary table I described to keep the leg flat on the table and make a smooth transition rotation, however, so I think for anything of any size one would always have to that for any precision.
What surprised me was that it was not difficult to get close-enough to square of the table to the surface in both planes that there's no discernible angle across the faces and they're flat enough no gaps show w/ the small square. I had expected a lot of fiddling around filing, shimming, whatever, to be able to come even close but at least this one was really quite close from the start.
I don't know of super-fine 1x30 belts; I order a selection from <http://www.2sand.com/377/1x30-White-Non-Loading-Sanding-Belts.html as starters--the coarse and find combo selections and something just over $1/belt average I think it was.
I may delve into the sharpening later on; my object at the moment is to build this credenza/whatever to call it to set the new TV on that's replacing the old console model the folks had when we moved back...it's going to mimic (very crudely) an old washstand down in the change room from which I took the leg patterns. When I get a little further along I'll try to post some pichurs somewhere--I'm actually pretty please w/ the legs; I hadn't done any "fine" work in some years being tied up w/ the barn and farming and all...
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