random orbital or finishing sander?

hello,
when would you ideally use each type of sanders? what are these specifically design for? When is it best to pull out your finishing sander or orbital sander and lets include the belt sander?
I currently own a rectangle finishing sander but my attention is always called to the those abrasive pads for the orbital sanders. I cant justify a purchase for one of those things yet. Can somebody help me out?
NORY
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I use my ROS far more often than the finishing sander. The belt sander only comes out when it's necessary to remove large quantities of material, and a hand plane isn't a suitable alternative. The ROS is faster and more effective than the finishing sander. I'll use the finishing sander when levelling the finish on a table top, or to remove "nibs" raised by a finish. Other than that, the ROS does most of the work in my shop.
Kevin
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Like Kevin the ROS gets used the most but when corners are involved the 1/4 sheet sander gets used.

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A belt sander will remove massive amounts of stock. I use the belt sander only for rough shaping. I have an agressive PC right angle ROS and a PC SpeedBloc finish sander. I use the ROS for taking care of glue lines and rough surfaces and only use 150 grit paper on this tool. I use the Finish sander for the final sanding and normally only use 180 grit paper on that sander. Each has its benefits. Fost all ROS sanders do not do well in boxed in corners. I use the ROS and finish sander equally.
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http://pages.cthome.net/edhome
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Ed Pawlowski notes:

I've got a finish sander somewhere, the best made: P-C SpeedBloc. I just never use it, so would be hard put to find it. Thanks for the mower blade sharpening tip. I'm about ready on a couple of mine, and, if I can find my belt sander, I'll go to work. I don't recall seeing it for about 5-6-7 years now, since I got my first good ROS.
Charlie Self "Don't let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers
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On 8 May 2004 07:12:25 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@i-manila.com.ph (Nory) wrote:

I have owned and used a number of sanders. lesse...
4 or 5 non-random orbit jiggle type sanders. they're just too slow. gave the last ones away when I got the random orbit PC. 3 belt sanders. one is bench mounted, gets quite a bit of use grinding metal. of the handhelds, the 1" wide one gets the most use, which isn't much. the 4" wide one gets pulled out sometimes for flattening dirty jobs, subflooring or something where I wouldn't want to ruin an edge tool. belt sanders are not finish tools. 2 6" PC random orbiters. I keep them set up with different grits of PSA paper. these are my main finish sanders 1 performax 16/32. it does what it does....
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Since I got an ROS my older Makita finisher get used by those who ask to borrow a sander. Only.
-- ******** Bill Pounds http://www.billpounds.com

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I have a PC ROS and use it for just about everything. I have pads for it ranging from 120 grit to 400 grit. I use a mouse for tight spots and for even tighter spots I use a thin stick with sand paper attached. Joey in Chesapeake

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