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10 Best Random Orbital Sander Reviews 2021

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Being under the category of hand-held power tools, random orbital sanders come in a broad variety. Some can perform sanding till the doorstep of perfection, whereas some can do so only on specific materials. Amongst the thousands of options available in the market, you need to shortlist the best random orbital sanders based on motor size, pad size, body configuration, and OPM.

Are you an active woodworker? Do you spend ample of time and resources on DIY projects for your property? If yes, you must already be aware of the impact of a high performance random orbital sander. Not only do you achieve smooth surfaces, but the uniformity in your end result would make the product visually elegant and captivating.

Choosing the best random orbital sander must be a top priority as users can reduce worrying about grain direction too. Above all, as the angle of rotation can be adjusted, along with the speed settings, one can perform impeccable polishing and finishing. Besides, this investment would be a long-term addition to your arsenal of woodworking tools, proving beneficial in every project you take up.

Ever thought you could build your personalized cabin in the woods? Each of these sanders would play a significant role in ensuring the symmetric appearance of your cabin!

10 Best Random Orbital Sander Reviews

The degree of manipulation you are rewarded with a random orbital (RO) sander makes it a great choice for erasing layers of rough material. Each of these RO sanders utilizes circular shapes of sandpaper that merge with the sanding disc via a velcro. Moreover, as the disc spins in an elliptical motion, chances of swirl marks are significantly reduced.

Sanding wooden joints becomes much more efficient as the RO sander is not susceptible to changes in direction of wood grain. Thus performing desirable sanding on a combination of wooden pieces at right angles becomes a piece of cake.

Image Product
Dewalt 20V Max Orbital Sander, Tool Only (DCW210B)
  • Variable speed control of 8,000 to 12,000 OPM
  • One-handed locking dust bag
  • Brushless motor
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Makita BO5030 5” Random Orbit Sander
  • Dust-sealed switch
  • 3 AMP motor allows up to 12,000 OPM
  • Massive sealed-ball bearing construction
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Makita BO5041 3-AMP D-Handle Random Orbit Sander
  • Diverse speed control options: 4,000 to 12,000 OPM
  • PVarious speed settings as per the application
  • Pad brake maximizes productivity
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
CRAFTSMAN CMEW231 Random Orbit Sander, 3-AMP
  • Versatile peg hook can be attached
  • Minimalistic design
  • Detachable/vacuum compatible dust bag
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
TACKLIFE PRS01A 5-Inch Random Orbit Sander
  • Quality ball-bearing erases most noise
  • Easy-to-access power switch
  • Washable dust collection box
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Makita XOB01Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless RO Sander
  • 3 evenly-spaced speed settings
  • 18V Lithium-Ion powered battery
  • Efficient power management system
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Milwaukee Electric Tools 2468-20 M18 Random Orbit Sander
  • Application-centric adjustability for orbit speed
  • Greater sanding capacity per battery charge
  • 35 minutes of runtime
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
SKIL SR211601 5” Random Orbital Sander
  • X-flow dust collector
  • Soft rubber grip permits minimal vibrations
  • Turntable plays the role of a clutch
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Ryobi P411 One+ Random Orbit Power Sander
  • Eradicates intense vibrations
  • Pressure judgment is super easy
  • Added collection of sanding pads
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →
Ginour 5-inch Random Orbit Sander
  • 2.5A RO sander offers 6 speed settings
  • Microfilter in the dust collection system
  • Added sponge disc and wool disc
VIEW ON AMAZON → READ REVIEWS →

1. Dewalt 20V Max Orbital Sander

The palm-sized casing to hold and navigate this RO sander, along with the texturized grip makes it an exceptionally comfortable solution for sanding. Whether you are sanding before painting, after painting, or during both phases, the brushless motor offers a more than satisfactory run time, without power drops.Trying to evade the struggles of the tedious process for changing sandpaper? This RO sander comes with a replaceable 8-hole hook-and-loop sanding pad for making sandpaper-changing a hassle-free task during your projects.

Quick Summary

  • Option to set speed between 8,000 and 12,000 RPM
  • Sanding pad is changeable
  • Weighs 16 ounces
  • Batter powered composite RO sander
  • Dust port is present to attach dust collectors
DEWALT 20V MAX Orbital Sander, Tool Only (DCW210B)

This 20V RO sander offers substantial power to get your everyday sanding tasks done. Based on the surface area and thickness of the material that needs to be sanded, you can adjust the speed to acquire quality results.

Even better, this product is not noisy and doesn’t come with the annoying trouble of cord management or poor dust bags. The built has been designed to ensure that users do not feel the stress of arm soreness, despite sanding for hours at a stretch.

Top Three Features:

  1. Cordless - Say goodbye to those days of wasting time untangling the cords of power tools. Being cordless, compact, and battery-powered, the usability becomes super easy.
  2. Variable Speed Control - This feature lets you acquire speed control to a whole new level. Depending on the vision of your end product, you can adjust the speed to anything between 8,000 and 12,000 OPM.
  3. Tried and Tested Grip - What better attribute than one that simplifies your maneuverability efforts? The texturized rubber over-mold grip settles into a human palm and offers sturdiness in motion.
What We Liked
  • Replaceable velcro padding
  • Easy to maneuver
  • Compatible with a vacuum hose
  • Great battery life
What We Didn't Like
  • Dust collection is not too efficient
  • Less effective for large woodworking tasks

2.Makita BO5030 5” Random Orbit Sander

DIY enthusiasts and finish carpenters could easily sand baseboards, windows, mantels, and even doors using this RO sander. If you’re looking for something that assures crisp finishing and leveled moldings, then this 5-inch RO sander should sound appealing. The rubberized grip makes user operation extremely convenient while providing much-needed control.Precision in attributes is the most attractive aspect of this RO sander. The powerful 3 AMP motor coupled with a 1/8-inch RO action is enough to assure continuous operation and a smooth sanding experience.

Quick Summary

  • 12,000 OPM permits quicker sanding
  • Quick change 5” hook-and-loop abrasive paper
  • 120 Volts and 300 Watts motor capacity
  • Pad control system for speed regulation
  • Holding mechanism showcases an ergonomic design
Makita BO5030 5' Random Orbit Sander

The pad control system allows the user to adjust the pad speed while powering the sander. Even better, the switch is rubber-sealed to reduce the possibility of wear and tear by contamination. This makes the Makita B05030 RO sander a long-lasting piece of woodworking equipment!

Being a worldwide manufacturer of industry-level power tools, Makita uses cutting-edge innovation that satisfies even the most particular woodworker. For example, the installed fabric dust bag comes with a wider mouth for making waste disposal an efficient process.

Top Three Features:

  1. Oversized Ball Bearing - The big-sized ball bearing enhances productivity, reduces noise, and brings extended life to your tool. What would take you 2 hours using a regular sander can be completed in under 45 minutes!
  2. Rubberized Palm Grip -  Even by using the RO sander at its maximum power capacity, the pressure won’t affect your control and precision in sanding, all credits to the ergonomically designed layering. Vibrations are minimized too.
  3. Efficient Dust Collection System - Boasting 8 evenly-sized holes, dust is extracted from the pad automatically and collected in the dust bag. This guarantees a cleaner working process without leaving shards to result in swirl marks.
What We Liked
  • Comes with a detailed instruction manual
  • Dust gathering mechanism won’t let you down
  • Reduced chances of swirl marks or over-sanding
  • Comes with a casing
What We Didn't Like
  • Hooks section for pads are weak

3. Makita BO5041 3-AMP D-Handle Random Orbit Sander, 5-inch

This too has a 3 AMP motor and a maximum OPM capacity of 12,000. Although the eye-catching feature is the speed control dial’s ability to set a range varying from 4,000 to 12,000 OPM. This makes it possible to perform over a dozen different types of sanding applications for different materials.The front handle is completely adjustable to suit left-handed and right-handed individuals. If you need to perform sanding on corner-like confined spots then the handle proves to adapt to your desired level of comfort.

Quick Summary

  • Variable control speed dial
  • In-built vacuum port adapter for efficient dust collection
  • 1/8’’ RO action allows faster sanding
  • Double-insulated layering
  • Pad control system
Makita BO5041 5' Random Orbit Sander, Variable Speed

Much like the previous model, the BO5041 also has a construction with an oversized ball bearing to increase the durability of the product. Worried about gouging and random jerks ruining your woodworking efforts? The pad brake works like magic to combat the common mistake of gouging.

Above all, the switch is large enough to be labeled as a two-finger trigger button. It also comes with a lock-on switch at a position that makes the operator’s life easier. Thus, all the DIYers who keep altering the power of operation will find it much easier to switch between OPM’s for attaining a desirable result.

Top Three Features:

  1. Variable Speed Control Dial - Many RO sanders offer a high RPM capacity, but very few let you access a much lower RPM capacity. Ranging from 4,000 to 12,000 RPM, this RO sander allows the user to execute even intricate sanding tasks.
  2. Precision-oriented Pad Brake - Can’t afford to make unwanted grooves and damage your precious projects? The presence of a precision-engineered pad brake lets you work freely, simultaneously increasing productivity.
  3. 1/8” RO Action - The size and quality of this crucial component permit swirl-free finishes in sync with a smooth sanding experience. Above all, this diameter covers a reasonable surface area to help complete sanding projects quicker.
What We Liked
  • Soft start and stop mechanism
  • Lightweight makes it easy to use in various demanding positions
  • Top-notch case quality
  • Fewer vibrations manage to reach your hand
  • Doesn’t produce irritating noise
What We Didn't Like
  • High-speed gouge marks may occur
  • Average dust collection efficiency

4. CRAFTSMAN CMEW231 Random Orbit Sander, 3-AMP

The sleek finishing and overall built makes this RO sander an epic choice for DIYers. Keep in mind, this CMEW231 model is not cordless, but yet has a configuration of 3 AMPS and a 12,000 OPM capacity. These specifics contribute to helping users complete their sanding projects with no need for consecutive back and forth.It also has a dust bag onboard. This bag is capable of being connected to an 11/4-inch vacuum hose. Don’t stress about having to compromise on durability due to the dust-intake feature. The main switch is dust-sealed and ensures the insides of your RO sander don’t get damaged.

Quick Summary

  • Quality dust collection system
  • Compactible with 11/4” vacuum hose
  • Dust-proof switch
  • Corded electric built
  • Weighs 3.5 pounds
CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander, 3-Amp, Corded (CMEW231)

Whether you are removing painting or varnish, preparing surfaces, sanding corners, or smoothing seams, this 5-inch RO sander caters to all such applications, that too without gouge-causing vibrations.

The dust bag may not seem to grab all the dirt particles around, but it definitely does a job as good as a detail sander does.

Afraid to take a leap into the domain of slightly challenging woodworking projects? Check out this woodworking 101 guide.

Top Three Features:

  1. Solid Construction - Using it even on full-fledged construction sites won’t harm the built in any way. The entire outer casing is really well done, both in the case of aesthetics and giving a compact feel
  2. Dust Sealed Switch - What better than a power switch that comes fully-protected from the tiniest of dust particles? Irrespective of the material density, quality, and grains, you can be sure that your switch won’t face problems.
  3. Minimalistic Built - This is the reason that users are awarded an exceptional degree of comfort (minimal vibration) and flexibility in the way they use the RO sander.
What We Liked
  • Velcro-themed RO sander
  • Small size but high-power capacity
  • Capable of high-speed sanding
  • Perfect RO sander for small to medium intensity jobs
  • 3 year limited warranty
What We Didn't Like
  • Need to purchase an accessory for shop vacuum

5. TACKLIFE PRS01A 5-Inch Random Orbit Sander

This could surely be a top candidate for the best random orbital sander on this list. Apart from having the highest OPM (13,000) amongst all our shortlisted products, it also features a power switch on the upper end of the sander. It is placed so as to make it convenient to turn it on or off while in use.Another added perk is its ability to get into the tightest of spaces for sanding purposes. This makes it an epic option for DIYers who frequently work on different types of tables, stands, dressers, and other furniture. 

Quick Summary

  • Plastic dust collection box
  • Corded electric RO sander
  • 120V at 3 AMPS and 350 Watts capacity
  • Compatible with polishing pads
  • Generates power at 13,000 OPM

Much like the other RO sanders, this also has an all-ball bearing built that comes with fantastic construction. But the added benefits are several; low noise, low vibration, swirl-free finishing, and greater control over the equipment.

Weighing 3.4 pounds it may be a little heavier than other RO sanders. But this factor is neutralized by the ultra-high OPM of 13,000 orbits per minute.

Top Three Features:

  1. 6 Adjustable Speed Dial - This lets users set the required speed based on the type of work they are undertaking. Functioning at 13,000 OPM, it beats the above options in terms of power as yet.
  2. High-Performance Dust Collection System - What do you expect when the RO sander possesses a microfilter capable of trapping particles as tiny as ½ micron in diameter? This also eliminates the chance of the operator inhaling little specs of dust.
  3. Sandpaper (12 pieces) - This comes as an added perk as you won’t have to spend additional money, at least in the beginning. There are 6 pieces of 80 grit and 6 pieces of 180 grit sandpaper to perform the most common sanding operations.
What We Liked
  • Variable speed control dial
  • Literally no sense of weight and vibration
  • Quiet enough for a RO sander
  • No need to spend on sandpaper initially
  • 3-year tool & battery Significantly speeds up projects
What We Didn't Like
  • Size is slightly big
  • Dust containers can get jammed

6. Makita XOB01Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless RO Sander

Firstly, the XOB01Z works with only an 8 hole quick-change 5” hook-and-loop abrasive disc. This greatly increases the diversity in using it for various projects. In fact, you will be given a 120 grit sanding paper which should last through the initial periods of usage.Top-performance is a sure-shot attribute due to the detail-oriented formulation of the 1/8” random orbit section. This along with the pad brakes have undergone amazing innovation for lightning speed sanding and attractive finishes.

Quick Summary

  • 50% longer runtimes
  • Battery provides 3X faster charging
  • Switch and bearing are dust-sealed
  • Quick-change 5” hook-and-loop (8 hole) abrasive paper
  • Battery-powered cordless RO sander
Makita XOB01Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless 5' Random Orbit Sander, Tool Only

One cannot avoid praising the Lithium-Ion battery. It gets fully-charged in 30 minutes and offers 25 minutes and 50 minutes of battery life for low speed and high speed usage respectively. Also, the speed setting can be done using an electronic switch. There’s no hassle of turning knobs or reading digital screens. Simply use the one-touch switch to alter between slow, medium, and fast speed settings. 

Top Three Features:

  1. Lithium-Ion Battery - The battery composition reduces waiting periods between charging sessions. Expect up to 3X rapid charging as compared to other RO sanders. Even better, this is accompanied by a generously extended runtime.
  2. 3 Speed Setting - Despite being small in size, it comes with the following speed setting options, 7,000/9,500/11,000 OPM. Choosing amongst the three can be done using a one-touch electronic control switch.
  3. Pad Braking System - This system is created to cancel the possibility of common free-spins that ruin the finishing touch. Each sanding task will portray precision and beautifully sanded surfaces as the end product.
What We Liked
  • Functionality keeps up with durability
  • Easy vertical battery installation near dust pouch
  • Small, yet 3 different speeds of operation
  • Reduced fatigue due to strategically designed grip
  • Added 5” round abrasive disk
What We Didn't Like
  • Dust can enter between bearing and plastic shocks (though cleanable)

7. ​Milwaukee Electric Tools 2468-20 M18 Random Orbit Sander

Powered by M18 batteries, the most sought-after batteries in the whole domain, the 2468-20 is equipped with 67% and 25% more capacity than 3 XC and 4 XC batteries respectively. This is complemented by almost similar weight and footprint. All this because of the lithium-ion cell upgrade in the battery. The motor is so powerful that users will observe greater efficiency while sanding. More material can be worked upon in a single battery charge, as compared to other RO sanders. Keep in mind, this depends on how you use the principle of pressure in your favor.

Quick Summary

  • Weighs 2.7 pounds
  • Cordless electric built
  • Variable speed dial (7,000 to 12,000 OPM)
  • Semi-transparent extension to avoid dust box and battery clashing
  • Works on an M18 3Ah battery pack
MILWAUKEE'S Electric Tools 2648-20 M18 Random Orbit Sander

Moreover, it has a 5-inch sanding pad with a healthy 1/8” orbit diameter. The former can be changed in under 30 seconds using the hook-and-loop system. Whereas the latter fastens the process of sanding large surface areas.

Even the variable dial is made considering user preferences and can simply tweak the output of the RO sander with minimal efforts.

Top Three Features:

  1. Powerful Motor - The power ratings are proof that the motor comes under the category of powerful motors. Users can easily remove more than the average amount of material on a single battery charge.
  2. RedLithium Battery Technology - Using an M18 3Ah battery pack, this delivers 35 to 40 minutes of runtime on maximum power usage. At around 9,000 to 10,000 OPM, the runtime can easily extend to an hour.
  3. 1/8” Orbit Diameter - Though labeled as 3/32-inch, it means the same thing as the classic 1/8” orbit diameter. This, along with the 5-inch sanding pad maintains the global standards for most RO sanders.
What We Liked
  • Low noise tool
  • Ergonomic design
  • Robust power
  • Side handle & side clip for added safety
  • LED battery charge level indicator
What We Didn't Like
  • Battery and charger are not included
  • Feels a bit bulky when put to extended use

8. SKIL SR211601 5” Random Orbital Sander

The majority of the hand-access portion is coated with high-quality rubber. This offers stability, comfort, and a solid grip while sanding. If your hands tend to vibrate during sanding tasks then the shock-absorption handle design could curb this downside for good.Engineers at SKIL have induced a level of precision that promises gouge-free sanding along with clearance of 95% of material waste. The best part is that one could use it on plastic, metal, or even wood, and the quality of sanding remains constant. Just make sure to shift between speeds based on the material being sanded.

Quick Summary

  • 2.8 AMP motor offering 13,000 OPM
  • Weighs 3.44 pounds
  • Counterweight balance combats hand fatigue
  • Compactness permits corner sanding
  • User control is not compromised despite the ability of semi-detail sanding
SKIL 5” Random Orbital Sander with Cyclonic Dust Box & 3pc Sanding Sheet - SR211601

Wondering how does the X-flow dust collector help? It creates an incredibly lethal suction force through 2 small channels. This suction force is because of the narrowness of the X-shaped funnels. More than anything, the dust container is a plastic box that can be detached via a mild jerk. Don’t worry, it’s strong enough to stay intact while sanding!

Top Three Features:

  1. High power capacity - Rated as per a 2.8 AMP motor capable of performing at 13,000 OPM, this RO sander works smoothly on a plethora of distinct sanding applications..
  2. Ergonomic Design - The manufacturers have built the handle after plenty of trial and error. The rubber-textured grip doesn’t cause jerks that would either be uncomfortable or cause little gouges on the surfaces.
  3. X-Flow Dust Collector - As the design of the dust collector has been emphasized, you can expect amazing dust collection capabilities. This is solely due to the X-flow design that makes use of cyclone-like force during dust collection.
What We Liked
  • Speed control is very effective
  • Eats through wood with Duragold sandpaper
  • Exhaust vents remove dust without any manual operation
  • Sanding pads are easy to replace
  • Comes with 3 sanding discs
What We Didn't Like
  • Dust collector not good enough for bulky sanding projects

9. Ryobi P411 One+ Random Orbit Power Sander

For all you cordless power tool freaks out there, the Ryobi P411 requires zero extensions and lets you enjoy the freedom of working without jumbled wires. Though you’ll have to get the battery yourself. But the investment for a Ryobi One+ battery would power the RO sander with an impactful 18V lithium-ion unit.Speaking of the grip, it is made of rubber infused with notches. This blocks most part of the vibrations and helps you improvise on smooth sanding techniques.

Quick Summary

  • Cordless electric motor
  • Compatible with Ryobi One+ 18V battery systems
  • 10,000 OPM rating
  • Rubber texturized grip for simple usability
  • Weight and power in sync require minimal pressure
Ryobi P411 One+ 18 Volt 5 Inch Cordless Battery Operated Random Orbit Power Sander (Battery Not Included / Power Tool Only)

Be wary of the angle you hold the sander at. The sooner you figure out what works best, the sooner you’ll witness the true potential of this small-sized power tool.

There’s no kind of tedious assembly that needs to be done. Simply get the RO sander out of the box and clip a sanding pad using the hook-and-loop arrangement. You’re good to go!

Top Three Features:

  1. Durable Dust Bag - Forget about thinking whether wooden or metallic shrapnel will tear the dust bag. The materials used in building the dust bag are tear-resistant.
  2. Super Strong - You’ll be shocked when you notice the strength and precision go hand-in-hand. Hardly any RO sanders of this size offer the same amount of power.
  3. 10,000 OPM - If you’re experienced and know the concept of applying the right pressure at different OPM settings, then this RO sander would excel in completing all polishing and sanding related tasks.
What We Liked
  • Can be used with felt-backed buffing pads to polish/wax cars
  • Works for 6X longer with a 5 Ah battery
  • Lightweight construction
  • Compatible with 18V batteries of other Ryobi tools
What We Didn't Like
  • Doesn’t come with batteries

10. Ginour 5-inch Random Orbit Sander

Which manufacturer gives 3 different types of sandpaper along with an RO sander? That too 5 pieces of each! The 80, 120, and 180 grit sandpapers prove to help in different types of sanding tasks. Use the coarse sandpaper for a high material removal rate. Whereas using the fine sandpaper can take a little longer but will achieve a smoother finishing.Guess what? There’s no need to disassemble or assemble any new parts. Simply tear and paste the sandpaper and continue operating the machinery.

Quick Summary

  • Comes With Sponge Disc And Wool Disc
  • 2 Super-Large Vents For Component Protection
  • Easy To Perform Sandpaper Replacement
  • Works For Rust/Paint Removal And Wood Polishing
  • 2.5 AMP With A Rating Of 300 Watts
Random Orbital Sanders, Ginour 2.5-Amp Palm Sander 6 Variable Speeds 13000 RPM hand Sander with 15PCS Sandpapers (P80x5, P120x5, P180x5) & Sponge, Wool Disc, Power Random Orbit Sanders for woodworking

In case you plan to polish or wax your vehicle with the RO sander, attach 4-inch foam pads for better results. Also, if you decide to use the sander for polishing a wall, please give it a pass or else internal components will burn and the sander will smoke.

Though the vents are big and there is a microfilter, you want to always keep the sander flat while working. This is the best way to divert the dust into the dust box.

Top Three Features:

  1. Enlarged Vents - There’s not a chance that the components in the random orbital sander can get damaged due to internal heat. The 2 large vents ensure heat dissipation by avoiding components from burning.
  2. Microfilter - Besides having a detachable dust box, there is also a microfilter in the dust collection system. This filters out particles as small ½ micron in diameter.
  3. High-end Specifications - So what if your RO sander is cordless? This 5-inch Ginour RO has a 2-meter cable and can work at 300 W performing up to 13,000 OPM. It’s super easy to assemble and can be used at 6 different speeds.
What We Liked
  • Comes with 15 sandpapers of 3 types (80, 120, and 180 grit)
  • Made of quality materials
  • Effective dust collection setup
  • 6 settings for speed management
  • Quiet and lesser vibrations
What We Didn't Like
  • Sander will smoke during wall polishing

Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in the Best Random Orbital Sander?

Not all of these RO sanders could be the best random orbital sander for you. Based on your application type, the body size, power rating, base plate size, usability, and overall configuration, would impact the effectiveness of the RO sander.

Here are a few things you must decide between:

1. Power Source

A random orbital sander can either be powered by pneumatic means (compressed air), rechargeable batteries/cordless, or an electric cord. Based on the type of power source, the performance and usability of the sander varies.

  • Pneumatic RO sanders are often used by professionals who do sanding for a living. If you have an air compressor capable of giving an output of 40 CFM or higher then this power source could help you sand huge surfaces in record-breaking durations.
  • Rechargeable Battery/Cordless RO sanders work well if you need to perform sanding in different areas with no power source nearby. The batteries can be changed after a single charge (30 to 50 minutes) has been exhausted. There’s no need for messy cords or extensions.
  • Electric Corded RO sanders are reliable as they offer long usage times. This is because they are powered through a wall socket. If you work in closed spaces or at a specific workstation then corded RO sanders are your best bet.

2. Base Plate/Sander Disc Size

This is a section on the base where the sandpaper is added. Generally, the common disc size for RO sanders is 5-inches and works well for finishing-related projects. However, you can purchase a 6-inch or bigger sized base plate for high-end sanding tasks. For best results, make sure these bigger sized base plates are powered by pneumatic means.

Luckily, you can tweak the sander disc size too. Find an RO sander that lets you attach bigger sander discs for contacting greater amounts of the surface area.

Under 5-inch sanding discs are known to tackle sanding tasks on smaller and more cornered spots. Make sure the process to change the sanding disc is simple and does not take more than a minute to complete.

3. Dust Collection System

You could either choose a quality RO sander that comes with a high-performance dust collection system, or you could opt to wear a mask. Although RO sanders with a dust collection system are generally priced at a few dollars more and are worth it. The system ensures that you can work in a clean environment and you don’t inhale dangerous sharp specks of the material.

When you choose an RO sander with the dust gathering system, make sure the dust storage bag is durable and can expand when filled. You don’t want a poor quality dust bag that tears or even fails to store different kinds of materials due to their varied bulkiness.

4. Orbital Speed

Denoted as OPM, the orbits per minute rating will decide the output your RO sander is capable of. OPM ratings can vary from 4,000 to 15,000. A lower OPM (below 6,500) comes in handy for basic polishing/waxing or sanding soft materials. Whereas a higher OPM (between 6,500 and 10,000) is the perfect rating for finishing applications.

In case you plan to involve yourself in detailed sanding that requires greater amounts of scraping then choose an RO sander with a much higher OPM (between 10,000 and 12,000).

Remember, the best random orbital sander should let you alter between at least 5 to 7 speed settings.

5. Variable Speed Dial

Though the sandpaper grit rating normally defines the quality of sanding performed, an attached variable speed dial offers the operator greater control over the force of sanding. Switching between low and high speeds helps in fine sanding and finishing coarse materials quicker.

You want to study the user convenience offered in case of such dials. The button/switch/knob must be able to be used while sanding. The user shouldn’t have to stop sanding, switch the speed, and then restart.

6. Quality and Reliability

Look for materials in the composition of your RO sander that are durable and sure to sustain rigorous woodworking tasks. Everything from the handle, base plate, motor, hook-and-loop system, and the power source should be constructed with quality materials.

The best random orbital sander would have an extremely tight-fitting grip and absorb 99% of vibrations, all credits to the use of accurate materials.

Also, look for a long-enough warranty. Most RO sanders come with 1 to 2-year warranty options, but for greater sander security you must choose a 3-year warranty.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is an RO sander better than a palm sander?

An RO sander is better than a palm sander when you want to work on larger surface areas. Also, if you are looking at finishing large surfaces that haven’t been painted/treated yet, an RO sander works best. Palm sanders are good for sanding already painted/treated wood.

Can my RO sander act as a piece of polishing equipment?

Yes, an RO sander can be used as a polisher as long as you attach thick felt foam pads. This makes it ready to use on vehicles, walls, and even other equipment.

What does “random” in random orbital sander mean?

The term “random” indicates a randomized motion of the sanding pad. Apart from following an elliptical pattern, the circular pad rotates on the primary axis in a random manner. This is what assures swirl-free and smooth finishes.

Conclusion

Each of the power tools listed in this guide deserves the title of the best random orbital sander. Compare the features, pros, and cons, based on the sanding operations you perform. Above all, pay close attention to the configuration of the RO sander you choose.

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