Low cost (and good quality) belt disc sander

I got a flyer in the paper today advertising a Ryobi 4"x36" and 6" disc sander from HD for $87. Much as I distrust the Ryobi name I was very happy with the Ryobi oscillating spindle sander I bought on sale last year at this time of year at HD. I checked epinions and there is a very favorable review:
http://www.epinions.com/content_136428293764
I think for $87 vs $157 for the Delta version on Amazon I will take a second chance with Ryobi.
Dick Snyder
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Ditto - me too on the OSS 500. I think it's pretty sweet for the hobbiest.

I'll be waiting to read your experiences. I'm just not sure if that 6" disc/disk is too small yet and if I should just buy a 12" disc/disk with no belt.
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patrick conroy wrote:

I have a machine of this type. The disc really is virtually useless, but that's as much because of the swirly pattern it puts on things, and the ridiculously high speed (tendency to burn) as it is a limitation of the size itself. I don't use the disc often.
I use the belt all the time. The fundamental flaw most machines of this type have (Delta, Craftsman, HF, Griz, Tradesman, and probably others that are all variations on the same theme) is the way the belt is set up against the back side of the disc mechanism (probably where the tilt lock is, I think, but I'm not looking at it). You could sand wider things on it by moving the work side to side if it weren't for that limitation, and I've seen some people pull the disc off entirely and hacksaw off that piece of the casting for this very reason.
I don't have one of the Ryobi machines you're talking about, but I've looked at them. The one thing going for it above all the others is that it doesn't suffer from the same limitation. The belt is well up on top, clear of everything all around, so there's no annoying stop to whap into.
How useful that is might be debatable. It would be hard to move wide work on and off the belt smoothly enough to keep the sanding job even and tidy, so even though the limitation is removed, it's still no substitute for a wide belt sander or a drum sander.
My Delta has been on its last legs for a year or so now. It's really limping. It needs to be shot. When it goes, I *might* replace it with one of those Ryobis, though I will be tempted just to suck it up and buy a bigger machine if money and space weren't issues. A dedicated edge sander with a big belt is really the way to go in the long run. These little belts aren't as useful as they look.
Then again, I've used the absolute hell out of this thing over the years, restrictive though it may be. I've found plenty of good reasons to keep it fed with belts. That Ryobi isn't likely to be any worse than this thing, and it might be better, so you might want to go for it.
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.

I bought a Craftsman 9 in Disc x 6 in belt belt sander in the mid 60's (and a bunch of other Craftsman machines) when I first got into this hobby... I still use it almost every day I am in the shop...I can say the same thing about the floor Drill press....the other machines are history for the most part...but not those 2...
But I agree about the disc being almost useless....Honest I have NOT had a disc on the thing in a very very long time...years in fact...one day I should just remove the entire thing and be done with it
Bob Griffiths.
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Disk is virtually useless, belt isn't a lot bigger than a hand-held.
I'd get a 12" disk, with a firm adjustable table.

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Dick Snyder wrote:

6" diameter? So really only 3" are usable, right?
I probably won't buy another Ryobi tool. My belt sander just gave way, and it sounds like some gears inside broke apart, probably plastic.
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