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11 Best Orbital Sanders for Woodworking (Craftsman Review 2023)

Updated: Aug 20, 2023

This article goes over the best orbital sanders only. Don’t buy a palm sander they won’t get the job done easily and just waste sandpaper and hurt your palm.


There are 2 types of power to sanders - Pneumatic (powered by air pressure) and Electric.

Pneumatic is easier on the hand because there are fewer vibrations. Electric comes in many options, some are rougher than others. For example, the less expensive Dewalt's and Makita have much more vibration and are harder on the hands than a Mirka or Festool.



A sander is a power tool that is used to smooth and finish wood surfaces by removing small amounts of material. There are several different types of sanders available, including belt sanders, disc sanders, and orbital sanders. Each type has its own unique set of features and is best suited for specific tasks. Sanders is commonly used in woodworking and construction to prepare surfaces for painting or staining, as well as to remove old paint or varnish.


Think about how much you’ll be sanding. If it’s every day get a Pneumatic or Mirka. If you are sanding for 1 to 3 times a month, get a DeWalt.


This article is ranked in order of which sanders I have and would use first


Mirka Direct Electric Random Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 8.8 x 6 x 4.2 inches

  • Weight: 2.2 lbs.

The Ultimate Pick

The Mirka MID62520CAUS Direct Electric Random Orbital Sander is a type of electric sander that uses a random orbital motion to remove material from a wood surface. The sander has a 6-inch sanding pad and it's designed for use with 6-inch abrasive discs. It features a direct electric motor which is powerful, efficient, and lightweight.


The ergonomic and well-balanced design of the sander makes it comfortable to hold and easy to control, and it has a dust collection feature that helps to keep the work area clean. It's suitable for professional use and can be used in a variety of applications such as woodworking, automotive, and marine, as well as for removing paint and varnish.


Pros:

  • The sander features a direct electric motor which is robust, efficient, and lightweight.

  • It has an ergonomic and well-balanced design, which makes it comfortable to hold and easy to control.

  • You will not have problems keeping the work area clean.

  • You can use it for various purposes.

  • The sander is lightweight and easy to maneuver, which makes it ideal for extended use.

  • The sander has a variable speed option ranging from 4,000 to 10,000 RPMs which allows the user to adjust the speed according to the task at hand, and the material being sanded.

  • Durable and long-lasting.

Cons:

  • Random orbital sanders can be more expensive than other types of sanders, such as belt sanders or orbital sanders.


Mirka Direct Electric Random Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 5 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 5 x 4.2 inches

  • Weight: 0.2 lbs.

Efficiency and Ergonomics

The Mirka MID55020CAUS Direct Electric Random Orbital Sander is a type of electric sander that uses a random orbital motion to remove material from a wood surface. The sander has a 5-inch sanding pad and it's designed for use with 5-inch abrasive discs. It features a direct electric motor which is powerful, efficient, and lightweight.


The ergonomic and well-balanced design of the sander makes it comfortable to hold and easy to control. There is also a dust collection feature that helps to keep the work area clean. It is a powerful and lightweight sander that is suitable for professional use and can be used in a variety of applications such as woodworking, automotive, and marine, as well as for removing paint and varnish. This sander is smaller than the 6-inch version and it's more suitable for small and tight areas.

Pros:

  • It makes sanding tight areas easy to do.

  • The motor is powerful and reliable.

  • It is ergonomic and lightweight to avoid strains when working for long hours.

  • The sander uses a random orbital motion to remove material from a wood surface which provides a smooth finish on the wood.

  • Its dust collection feature is topnotch

  • The sander is lightweight and easy to maneuver, which makes it ideal for extended use.

  • You can choose from various speeds ranging from 4,000 to 10,000 RPMs for better efficiency.

  • Quiet operation is guaranteed

Cons:

  • Prone to overheating if used with an extension cord.


 Ingersoll Rand Random Orbit Pneumatic Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 8.2 x 4.7 x 6.8 inches

  • Weight: 1.9 lbs.

Sleek Black Look

The Ingersoll Rand 4151 is a 6-inch random orbit pneumatic sander that is designed for use with vacuum systems for dustless operation. It features low vibration and a swivel-free finish for improved control and precision. It has a maximum speed of 12,000 RPM and weighs 1.92 pounds. The sander also features interchangeable grips for added comfort during use.


Pros:

  • It produces minimal vibration, which can help to reduce fatigue and improve operator comfort.

  • It gives a smooth, swivel-free finish that can help to reduce the appearance of swirl marks.

  • At a high RPM of 12,000 expect that tasks will be done faster with this.

  • The sander has a 6" pad size which can cover a larger surface area, this can help to speed up the sanding process.

Cons:

  • The sander requires a vacuum to capture the dust and debris it generates, which may not be easy to dispose of.



Festool Pneumatic Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Coarse

  • Dimensions: 15.5 x 11.6 x 7.3 inches

  • Weight: 2.5 lbs.

Clean Workplace Guaranteed

The Festool ETS EC 150/5 EQ-Plus 576339 Sys3 is a high-performance pneumatic sander designed for professional use. It is part of the Festool SYS-3 system, allowing easy integration with other Festool tools and accessories. The sander is designed to work with the Festool CT Dust Extractor, which can help to keep the work area clean and free of dust.


It has a high-power 150W motor, which can help to increase efficiency and speed up the sanding process. The sander has a speed control feature that allows the operator to adjust the speed to match the task at hand, and it also has a 5mm sanding stroke for aggressive sanding without damaging the surface. Additionally, it has an ergonomic design for comfortable use and an interchangeable sanding pad for easy change and replacement.

Pros:

  • It produces minimal vibration, which helps reduce fatigue and improve operator comfort, thanks to the vibration and extraction technology.

  • The sander only weighs 1.2 kg which is a plus when it comes to optimal working conditions

  • It offers constant speed even experiencing underload for better efficiency

  • It features a unique interaction between intake and exhaust air combined with optimum dust extraction for better working conditions

Cons:

  • Requires the purchase of an additional sanding pad, which can increase the overall cost of the tool



 Festool Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Light

  • Dimensions: 15.5 x 11.6 x 7.3 inches

  • Weight: 2.6 lbs.

Efficiency At Its Finest

The Festool 576070 Random Orbital Sander ETS 125 REQ-Plus is a professional-grade power tool designed for sanding and finishing wood, metal, and plastic surfaces. It features a powerful motor that provides a fast and efficient sanding experience, as well as a dust extraction system that keeps the work area clean.


The sander has a large sanding pad (125mm) that is ideal for working on large surfaces and its ergonomic design allows for comfortable and easy use. Additionally, its random orbital motion ensures an even and consistent finish. It's a great tool for professional woodworkers, carpenters, and DIY enthusiasts.


Pros:

  • Its powerful and efficient motor allows for fast and smooth sanding.

  • Its ergonomic design and low vibration levels provide comfortable use.

  • The sander's dust extraction feature keeps the work surface clean and improves air quality.

  • The "Plus" version includes the "Req-Plus" pad, which is said to provide a superior finish.

  • It is also lightweight at 2.4 lbs making it easy to maneuver.

Cons:

  • Pricier compared to its counterparts.


AirVANTAGE Palm-Style Industrial-Grade Electric Sander Kit

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Fine

  • Dimensions: 15.5 x 11.6 x 7.3 inches

  • Weight: 2.6 lbs.

Tight Spaces, No Problem

This product is a professional-grade electric sander designed for industrial and heavy-duty use. It features a palm-style design for comfortable, ergonomic operation and a low-profile pad for easy access to tight spaces. You can get a maximum speed of 10000 RPMs which you can utilize to make the most of every task.


The kit also includes a power supply and central-vacuum system for efficient dust collection. The sander uses a 6" PSA Vinyl disc with a 3/32" thickness. This sander is designed for the efficient removal of material and finish. Furthermore, it is suitable for industrial and commercial applications.


Pros:

  • The user will have a comfortable, fatigue-free operation, making it easier to use for extended periods of time.

  • The low-profile pad of the sander allows for easy access to tight spaces, making it ideal for a wide range of applications.

  • The central-vacuum system included with the kit is designed to efficiently collect dust and debris, helping to keep the work area clean and safe.

  • The power supply included with the kit provides the necessary power to operate the sander at a high level of performance.

  • The 6" PSA Vinyl disc with a 3/32" thickness is suitable for efficient removal of material and finish and is suitable for industrial and commercial applications.

  • The sander is built with industrial-grade components and is designed to withstand heavy use and last for a long time.

Cons:

  • The PSA Vinyl disc may not be suitable for all types of surfaces or finishes and may need to be replaced frequently.




3M Xtract Electric Random Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 5 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Dimensions: 14.5 x 7.5 x 5.3 inches

  • Weight: 3 lbs.

Easiest on the Hands

The 3M Xtract Electric Random Orbital Sander, Ergonomic and Lightweight ROS, 88758, 5 in is a professional-grade electric sander designed for industrial and heavy-duty use. Its heavy-duty capabilities do not compromise its ergonomics making it a popular tool for woodworkers. It uses a 5-inch disc and has a random orbital sanding pattern, which allows for fast and efficient material removal while minimizing surface damage.


Moreover, it is also equipped with a dust extraction feature that helps to keep the work area clean and safe. This sander is suitable for various industrial and commercial applications, including surface preparation, paint and coatings removal, and general sanding tasks.


Pros:

  • The sander is lightweight and has an ergonomically low-profile design, which allows for comfortable, fatigue-free operation, making it easier to use for extended periods of time.

  • The random orbital sanding pattern of the sander allows for fast and efficient material removal while minimizing surface damage.

  • It is pretty easy to maneuver and control.

  • The sander speed can be adjusted according to the surface and application, this allows for better control and precision.

  • The sander is built with industrial-grade components and is designed to withstand heavy use and last for a long time.

  • The sander is compatible with a wide range of sanding discs, which allows for flexibility in the type of materials and surfaces it can be used on.

Cons:

  • It is quite loud when in use.



DEWALT Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 6 inches

  • Type: Battery-powered

  • Voltage: 20v

  • Grit type: Fine

  • Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.7 x 6.3 inches

  • Weight: 2.5 lbs.

Extreme Compatibility

The DEWALT 20V MAX Orbital Sander is a cordless tool, allowing for greater mobility and versatility on the job. It is part of the DEWALT 20V MAX system, which allows for compatibility with a wide range of tools and accessories. Its 8,000 to 12,000 RPM maximum rotational speed is the reason why it will not let you fall short of power.


The sander features a dust-sealed switch that helps to protect against dust ingestion for longer tool life and a low-height design that allows for easy access to tight spaces. It also includes a variable speed control that allows for a range of sanding speeds for different materials and applications. The sander is sold as a tool only, meaning that it doesn't come with a battery or charger.

Pros:

  • Paper changing is quite easy because of the 8-hole hook and loop sanding pad

  • It features a variable-speed trigger, which allows the user to adjust the speed of the sander to suit the task at hand.

  • The sander has a dust-sealed switch that helps protect against dust ingestion for longer switch life.

  • The DEWALT 20V MAX Orbital Sander is compatible with DEWALT's 20V MAX battery platform, allowing the user to use the same batteries across multiple tools.

  • The sander has a rubber over-molded grip that provides comfortable sanding.

  • It is designed with low height and a center of gravity that is close to the grip, which helps reduce user fatigue during extended use.

Cons:

  • It is a bit more expensive than other cordless sanders.


BOSCH Orbit Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 5 inches

  • Type: Battery-powered

  • Voltage: 12v

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 7.6 x 6 x 4.3 inches

  • Weight: 1.8 lbs.

Style and Functionality

The BOSCH GEX12V-5N 12V Max Brushless 5 In. Random Orbit Sander is a powerful and versatile cordless sanding tool from Bosch. It is part of the company's 12V Max cordless power tool lineup and is designed for use on a variety of surfaces, including wood, metal, and paint.


The sander features a brushless motor that delivers a high level of power and efficiency and a 5-inch random orbit sanding pad for fast smooth results. Overall, the BOSCH GEX12V-5N 12V Max Brushless 5 In. Random Orbit Sander is a great choice for professionals and DIYers alike who need a reliable and efficient cordless sander.


Pros:

  • The sander has a 5-inch random orbit sanding pad that provides fast, smooth results.

  • The tool has a dust collection system that helps to keep the work area clean, which can save time and effort during cleanup.

  • Its soft start technology reduces the torque required for its startup for a smoother usage

  • It has a compact palm grip that helps reduce user fatigue during extended use.

  • The sander is compatible with Bosch's 12V Max battery platform, which allows the user to use the same batteries across multiple tools.

  • The sander is lightweight and compact, which makes it easy to maneuver and control.

  • It is relatively affordable compared to some other cordless sanders in its class.

Cons:

  • It may not be suitable for heavy-duty sanding tasks, such as removing multiple layers of paint or heavy rust.



Makita Orbital Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 5 inches

  • Type: Corded

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 10.8 x 4.8 x 4.3 inches

  • Weight: 2.1 lbs.

Works On Almost Any Surfaces

The Makita BO5041 5" Random Orbit Sander is a powerful and versatile corded sanding tool from Makita. It is designed for use on a variety of surfaces, including wood, metal, and paint. The sander features a variable-speed control dial that allows the user to adjust the speed from 4,000 to 12,000 RPMs to suit the task at hand, and a 5-inch random orbit sanding pad for fast, smooth results.


The tool also has a dust collection system that helps to keep the work area clean, and a comfortable grip for reduced user fatigue during extended use. The BO5041 is a durable and long-lasting tool. It is a great choice for professionals and DIYers who need a reliable and efficient sander for a variety of sanding applications.


Pros:

  • The sander has a large two-finger trigger switch that is easy to operate, even with one hand.

  • It has a rubber palm grip that provides a comfortable and secure grip for reduced user fatigue during extended use.

  • The BO5041 has a dust collection system that helps keep the work area clean and prolong the life of the tool.

  • The sander is compact and lightweight design allowing for easy maneuverability and control.

  • The BO5041 is a durable and long-lasting tool.

  • The sander has a large two-finger trigger switch that is easy to operate, even with one hand.

  • It has a rubber palm grip that provides a comfortable and secure grip for reduced user fatigue during extended use.

Cons:

  • The pad needs to be replaced more often than usual


Metabo Variable Speed  Random Orbit Sander

Specs:

  • Disc Size: 5 inches

  • Type: Electric

  • Voltage: 110v

  • Grit type: Medium

  • Dimensions: 8 x 4 x 5.9 inches

  • Weight: 0.6 oz.

Power is in Your Hands

The Metabo HPT 5-Inch Random Orbit Sander is a powerful and versatile corded sanding tool that is suitable for a wide range of sanding tasks. It features a powerful 230W, 2.8 amp motor that can produce 9,000 up to 13,000 RPMs that delivers a high level of power and efficiency, and a variable-speed control dial that allows the user to adjust the speed of the sander to suit the task at hand.


The sander has a 5-inch random orbit sanding pad that provides fast, smooth results, and a dust collection system that helps to keep the work area clean. The tool also has a comfortable grip for reduced user fatigue during extended use. Overall, the Metabo HPT 5-Inch Random Orbit Sander is a great choice for professionals and DIYers alike who need a reliable and efficient corded sander for a wide range of sanding applications.


Pros:

  • It allows the user to adjust the speed from 9,000 to 13,000 RPMs to suit the task at hand

  • The 230W 2.8 amp motor provides power and stability at the same time

  • Random orbit action, producing a smooth, swirl-free finish

  • A dust collection system such as a hose to help keep the work area clean

  • Ergonomic design for comfortable use during extended periods of sanding

  • Can be used for a variety of sanding applications on wood, metal, paint, and more.

Cons:

  • There are times wherein the dust collection bag disperses the dust all of a sudden


That's how we wrap our best sanders list and I hope that you got an idea of what you will buy for your next woodworking project.


Disclaimer: I only recommend products that I have used myself or have in my workshop. All opinions expressed here are my own. This post may contain affiliate links that may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.




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