Disc Sander vs Belt Sander

A sander is a common tool used during woodwork, two of the most common sanders are the belt sander and the disc sander. These power tools are often used to smooth wood by abrasion using sandpaper. There are several types of sanders and it is important that you know the differences and uses of each.

Disc Sander

A disc sander is a type of sander that smooths wood and is commonly referred to as a stationary machine sander. It is called this is because a disc sander is often clamped on a table. Attached to the disc sander is a circular shaped sandpaper that is run electrically. With the disc sander, you will need to bring the wood piece you need to sand to the machine. You can adjust the disc sander to different angles, depending on your needs.

When using the disc sander, you need to always put the guard in place. This is to prevent you from using the wrong portion of the rotating disk. This type of sander also has a dust extraction unit that extracts dust particles produced during sanding. Aside from wood, you can also use the disc sander to other materials including plastic, aluminum and other softer materials.

Belt Sander

A belt sander is a type of sander that can be both hand-held or stationary. The belt sander consists of an electric motor that spins a pair of drums whilst a seamless, or belt-like loop, of sandpaper is attached.

You can use the belt sander as a mobile sander. A belt sander comes in a variety of sizes. You can find a small hand-held machine or a unit big enough to accommodate a large sheet of plywood. Just like a disc sander, a belt sander also has a dust extraction system that captures or extracts dust particles during sanding. For a belt sander, a sack or bag attached to the machine is often used to capture the extracted dust.

Choosing the Right Sander

Choosing the right type of sander will depend largely on the kind of sanding you need. Both the disc sander and belt sander are power tools that can greatly help you in your sanding needs but you need to know which one to use for a specific sanding job.

A belt sander is great for any sanding job you need that requires a lot of material to be removed quickly, such as stripping paint or finishes on flat surfaces, smoothing out wood filter patches, sanding hard wood floors or removing hardened glue. Before using the belt sander you need to turn on the sander before you apply the sanding pad to the surface of the wood piece.

On the other hand, if you need to finish wood surfaces or prepare surfaces, a disc sander should be used. You should use a disc sander when you are ready to prime, varnish or paint a wood piece since it provides a smoother finish.