Last Updated on 2020-12-23 by Harry Masterton
Before we get to the best edge sander reviews let’s examine the different types of belt and the best edge sander so that you can purchase exactly the right edge sander for your shop.
The main types of edge sander are the stationary edge sander, the benchtop edge sander, the oscillating edge sander and the benchtop belt disc sander combo. So whish type is the best edge sander for your shop?
Table Of Contents
- 1 The Best Edge Sander – Let’s Take A Closer Look
- 1.1 What is an edge sander used for?
- 1.2 Belt Or Edge Sander Vs Disk Sander.
- 1.3 The Best Edge Sander Reviews
- 1.4 Stationary Floor Standing Edge Sander
- 1.5 Oscillating Edge Sander
- 1.6 Bench Top Edge Sander
- 1.7 Benchtop Belt Disc Sander
The Best Edge Sander – Let’s Take A Closer Look
Stationary Edge Sander
The stationary edge sander is a floor standing machine usually found in larger woodworking hobby shops and professional cabinet shops. The JET 708447 OES-80CS 6-Inch x 81-inch oscillating edge sander with its 1 1/2 Hp motor is a typical example of a good stationary edge sander.
Benchtop Edge Sander
The smaller cousin to the stationary or floor standing edge sander the benchtop edge sander is non the less powerful and with similar features the benchtop edge sander is a more flexible machine particularly if you're setting up a small woodworking shop. Benchtop belt and edge sander that are really suited for a small woodworking shop setup are usually combo machines like the Triton TSPST450.
Oscillating Edge Sander
A standard belt or edge sander sands in a straight line direction which utilizes only the part of the sanding belt that is in direct contact with the wood edge that is being sanded. An oscillating sander will have an up and down stroke that ‘oscillates' at a given number of times per minute.
This has the effect of removing more material, uses more of the sandpaper belt thus lengthening it's life and reducing heat and the risk of scorching the wood. The best edge sander for larger projects, the serious woodworking hobbyist and professional woodworking shops
Benchtop Belt Disc Sander Combo
The belt disc sander is probably the ideal woodworking power sander for the woodworking hobby shop and small woodworking shop. Combining the belt sander for edge sanding and material removal with the added flexibility of a disc sander for curves, end grain and shaping the belt disc sander is also at the lower end of the price range so is a much more budget friendly choice when it comes to choosing the best edge sander for your small woodworking shop.
What is an edge sander used for?
An edge sander is a more accurate version of a belt sander that is used, as its name implies to sand edges to closer tolerances than you would be able to achieve with a hand held belt sander, disk sander or orbital sander.
The best edge sander is used for sanding board edges after ripping with a power saw, table saw or band saw to smooth the edges. When you are fitting cabinets the edge sander is particularly useful and would be used for accurately and smoothly sanding cabinet shelf edges, drawer fronts, drawer box joints before the drawer fronts are fitted and for edge sanding cabinet doors to fit instead of using a planer.
The edge sander can also be used to produce beveled and chamfered edges on boards, cabinet, drawer and door edges.
Once you've chosen the best edge sander for your shop and used it for a couple of weeks you'll wonder how you managed without it!
Belt Or Edge Sander Vs Disk Sander.
The big difference between an edge sander and a disk sander apart from the size of the sanding surface is the force applied by the sanding surface. A disk sander spins and puts downward pressure on the wood that you are sand thus pressing the wood down onto the table. A belt or edge sander delivers a sideways force onto the woodworking project you are sanding and wants to ‘throw' it out in the direction of travel.
So in this respect an edge sander can be quite dangerous if it grabs the piece you are working on and throws it off the table. Always make sure the kids, grandkids, wife and dog are not in the shop and anywhere near the belt direction of travel at the time and that includes you!
So whilst the best edge sander or belt sander delivers more accuracy over a greater length and allow you to handle larger boards or sub assemblies the disk sander gives you far more control because you're not fighting to stop the work piece flying off.
The Best Edge Sander Reviews
Stationary Floor Standing Edge Sander
Shop Fox W1688 1.5-Horsepower 6-Inch by 80-Inch Edge Sander
The full-sized edge sander in this Shop Fox W1688 review measures 47 L x 20 W x 49 H in inches. Those dimensions are not too large for many dedicated shops, and the 29.5 L x 14.5 W-inch footprint is somewhat compact for this class of power tools and makes the Shop Fox W1688 the best edge sander for smaller pro woodworking shops and the serious hobby woodworker.4.5 out of 5.0 stars
Shop Fox W1688 features
The 6 x 80-inch belt size provides you with plenty of abrasive for sanding. That will allow you to sand most edges, including bevels that range from -60 to 60-degrees (one of the features that makes it the best edge sander for professionals).
This Shop Fox edge sander uses a 1.5 HP electric motor that can be powered by 110v or 220v power. That allows you to use a standard house outlet or the higher current a dedicated 220-volt outlet offers. The horsepower rating is on the low end of full-sized edge sanders, though.
The table on this Shop Fox edge sander is adjustable, with travel up to five-inches. It is spring-loaded, a feature that allows you to make adjustments more easily.
Shop Fox W1688 – Things We Like
- 6 x 80-inch belt provides a lot of abrasive
- 29.5 L x 14.5 W-inches footprint
- 110v or 220v power options
Shop Fox W1688 – Not So Good
- The secondary drum table is a bit small
- You will have to assemble it
Oscillating Edge Sander
JET 708447 OES-80CS 6-Inch 1-1/2-Horsepower Oscillating Edge Sander
The oscillating edge sander reviews start with JET's 708447. The main table is 29 3/4 L x 9 7/8 W, and the contour table is 9 7/8 x 11 7/8-inches. It has overall dimensions of 51 L x 26.5 W x 44 H, giving it a larger footprint than the Shop Fox reviewed above.
4.1 out of 5.0 stars
JET 708447 features
The six-inch-wide belt measures 89-inches in length. Adding 1/2-inch of oscillation allows you to use more of the belt's surface, extending its use between cleanings and overall lifespan.
The 1.5 HP electric motor comes wired for 110 volts, but you can also set this product up to run on a 220v outlet. That makes it an 18-amp power tool out of the box. JET lists its motor for overall performance and not just optimal conditions, giving you maximum output when sanding edges or curves.
The best oscillating edge sander moves at 3,900 Surface Feet Per Minute. That speed will remove material quickly. JET includes attachments that allow you to work horizontally or vertically with support. Another standout feature is the rubber-coated driver drum that keeps the belt better aligned as it rotates.
The Jet 708447 could be the best edge sander for your shop if you need the extra sanding power of the oscillating feature.
JET 708447 – Things We Like
- Tensioning mechanism on idler drum easy to use
- Effective belt guard/dust port for debris collection
- Contour table located above motor
JET 708447 – Not So Good
- Table columns generate some noise
- The miter gauge could be better
JET 708447 Oscillating Edge Sander Review
SHOP FOX W1730 Oscillating Edge Sander
We have included a Woodstock International product to the list with this Shop Fox w1730 oscillating edge sander review. When calculating space, this model measures 50.5 L x 23 W x 49-inches in height. Its footprint on the floor measures 22.5-inches x 19.5-inches.5.0 out of 5.0 stars
SHOP FOX W1730 features
One thing that we appreciate about this model is the two HP electric motor. That extra power means you need to supply 240v, so a standard home outlet will not be sufficient.
The single-phase motor rates at nine amps and provides 1,725 Rotations Per Minute on the driving drum (3,150 Surface Feet Per Minute) so whilst this makes the Shop Fox W1730 the best edge sander with it's powerful 9amp motor and oscillating function you may need to modify the electricity supply to your shop.
A seven-inch drum drives the belt. That will provide plenty of grip for belt movement and should reduce drift as it turns.
This design places a spindle atop the idle-roller. The manufacturer includes 1.5, 2, and 3-inch spindles that stand 4.5-inches tall.
The W1688 table is just under 27-inches in length and provides 12-inches of width for material support. It moves up to 3 3/4-inches vertically, which is not as much range as you might expect. That offers less path for thin boards, especially with just 1/4-inch oscillation.
SHOP FOX W1730 – Things We Like
- Uses a seven-inch drive drum
- Larger motor driving 89-inch belt
- Two four-inch dust ports
SHOP FOX W1730 – Not So Good
- Idle-roller sander is separate from main belt
- Only provides 1/4-inch oscillation to belt
Grizzly Industrial G0564 – 6″ x 108″ Oscillating Edge Sander
Like many Grizzly G0564 reviews, the stand out feature here is the 6 x 108-inch belt. It will provide you with plenty of surface contact for quick material removal. It takes up a lot of room compared to other models we have reviewed, measuring 60 L x 28 W x 49-inches high (a 32 x 19.5-inch footprint).
4.4 out of 5.0 stars
Grizzly Industrial G0564 features
The Grizzly G0564 uses a three HP electric motor to turn the belt and generate 1/4-inch oscillations. Its 240v design requires a 220v outlet to operate at 11 amps. That represents the largest motor among the oscillating sanders we review here and should meet any of your shop's needs making it the best belt sander for woodworking.
A seven-inch drive roller moves at 1,725 RPMs, giving you a sanding belt speed of 3,150 Surface Feet Per Minute. You can get up to a 90-degree tilt on the belt for beveling. That range should cover all of your woodworking projects.
The table on the Grizzly G0564 is 35.5 L x 12-inches wide. It will support larger sheets and glue-ups adequately while you move the piece. You have a pair of four-inch dust ports that keep the dust at a minimum.
Grizzly Industrial G0564 – Things We Like
- Uses a 108-inch belt for sanding
- Three HP electric motor
- Quick-release belt tension lever
Grizzly Industrial G0564 – Not So Good
- Controls mounted on the side and not front of sander
- It is heavy at 495-pounds
Bench Top Edge Sander
Grizzly Industrial G1531 – 6″ x 80″ Bench Top Edge Sander
A large 6 x 80-inch sanding belt is one feature that makes this the best benchtop edge sander for woodworking. It measures 47 L x 17.5 W x 34.5-inches in height. The footprint on your bench will measure 22 x 11-inches.4.8 out of 5.0 stars
Grizzly Industrial G1531 features
Grizzly Industrial has used quality materials to build the G1531, making it the best benchtop edge sander for the money. It uses a 1.5 HP TEFC Capacitor-Start induction motor. The sander is ready for a 220v outlet, but you can wire it to run on 110v.
A 4.25-inch aluminum drive roller turns at 1,725 RPMs, which generates 1,800 Surface Feet Per Minute on the belt. That will remove a lot of wood quickly and is another standout feature that makes this the best benchtop edge sander for woodworking.
The best bench-top edge sander for the money also comes with easy to use control levers and hand dials. It has a paddle on/off switch with a removable key, adding safety and eliminating accidental starts.
Grizzly Industrial G1531 – Things We Like
- Offers 30-inches of sanding surface from the bench
- Four-inch dust port on a benchtop design
- Uses a hand wheel to adjust the height of the table
- The best edge sander if you're looking for a benchtop model
Grizzly Industrial G1531 – Not So Good
- The table is shorter than the belt
- Contour table is only four-inches wide
Benchtop Belt Disc Sander
Rockwell RK7866 Belt/Disc Combo Sander
The disk belt sander reviews begin with the Rockwell RK7866 belt disc sander. It has dimensions of 12.6 L x 10.6 W x 21.7-inches in height. That size, along with the 41-pound overall weight, makes it a tool that you can move and store when it is not in use.
The Rockwell RK7866 is certainly a contender for best edge sander with a belt and disk combination.
4.5 out of 5.0 stars
Rockwell RK7866 features
A 4.3-amp electric motor powers this combo sander. It runs off of a standard 110-volt household current. This Rockwell RK7866 belt disc sander review seeks to stress the ease of use the power tool provides.
It uses a 4 x 36-inch belt that can tilt from 0 through 90-degrees. The single-speed motor generates up to 3,600 RPMs under no-load conditions.
A six-inch disc sander provides sanding on a separate table. The miter gauge uses high-contrast markings for easy viewing, including several popular angles.
A safety switch helps to prevent accidental start-ups, while a quick-release lever makes belt changes fast and easy to do.
Rockwell includes a hex wrench and miter gauge with this combination sander. The manufacturer also covers the RK7866 with a two-year limited warranty.
Rockwell RK7866 – Things We Like
- The quick-release lever makes belt changes fast
- Its simple design is easy to use
- Miter gauge is easy to read
Rockwell RK7866 – Not So Good
- The belt adjustment can work loose if left unchecked
- This Rockwell Shopseries RK7866 comes with a big price tag
RIKON Power Tools 50-151 Belt Disc Sander
The RIKON 50 151 review starts with a look at the overall dimensions of the tool, measuring 15.0 L x 12.93 W x 14.63-inches in height. Lighter metals and plastic cut down the weight as well as cost. The 50-151 weighs in at 18-pounds, making it easy to move around in your shop.
If you're looking for the best belt sander on a budget with the flexibility if a belt and disk combo then the RIKON 50-151 will fit the bill.4.5 out of 5.0 stars
RIKON Power Tools 50-151 features
A 2.3-amp electric motor powers this combination sander. The motor runs off of a 110-volt outlet. It will supply adequate power for light sanding jobs but will feel underperforming with larger projects.
A small 1 x 30-inch belt runs up to 3,340 RPMs under no-load conditions. That same motor drive the five-inch disc sander. The compact dimensions are adequate for fine pieces but will take longer to use on larger wood surfaces.
RIKON uses a smaller 2.0-inch dust port instead of the 4.0-inch design. It should still connect to shop vac hoses for debris extraction.
A standout on this RIKON power tools 50-151 review the small price tag. It puts this power-tool within reach of novice woodworkers and workshops that are on a tight tool budget. That is even more impressive when this belt and disk sander combo comes with a five-year limited warranty.
RIKON Power Tools 50-151 – Things We Like
- A budget-friendly price tag
- Belt tracking knob provides easy adjustments
- Disc sanding table use one knob tilt adjustment
- Best edge sander with belt/disk combo on a budget
RIKON Power Tools 50-151 – Not So Good
- A smaller 2.0-inch dust port
- The compact tables offer minimal support
WEN 6502T 4.3-Amp Belt and Disc Sander with Cast Iron Base
The highlight found in many WEN 6502 belt sander reviews is the sturdy construction. The base of this sander is cast iron, adding durability along with a stable platform. It helps to prevent the transfer of noises and vibrations.
4.6 out of 5.0 stars
WEN 6502T features
The WEN 6502 belt disc sander measures 22 L x 11 W x 12-inches High. It weighs 39-pounds, making it manageable to move. The base includes bolt holes for a more permanent mounting, which I would suggest.
Like the RK7866, the product in this WEN 6502 review uses a 4 x 36-inch belt that you can adjust from 0 through 90-degrees. Its drive roller creates up to 3,600 RPMs under no-load conditions. The belt will move at 1,900 Surface Feet Per Minute.
The electric motor on this sander rates at 4.3-amps. It should handle most light and medium sanding tasks in your shop. The belt tips up from one side in a hinge-movement and is locked in place by a knob.
A disc sanding table can be used with the belt sander when it is vertical. This feature cuts down on bulk and weight while supplying material support for both sanding stations. The best edge sander as an alternative to the Rockwell RK7866.
WEN 6502 – Things We Like
- Cast iron base reduces vibration transfer
- Tracking knob is conveniently located
- Work support aids with part stability
WEN 6502 – Not So Good
- The dust extraction is poorly designed
- Miter gauge feels loose in slot
BUCKTOOL BD4801 4 in. x 36 in Bench Belt Disc Sander with 3/4HP Direct-drive Motor
The BUCKTOOL bench sander measures 21.46 L x 20.47 W x 20.67-inches tall (depending upon belt sander position). It weighs approximately 40-pounds. The direct-drive design places the motor on the side of the sanding belt, meaning you will need to compensate for this on your bench.4.7 out of 5.0 stars
BUCKTOOL BD4801 features
The highlight in this BUCKTOOL sander review is the direct-drive motor. It rates at 3/4 HP, generating five-amps. That is an increase over the other models we have reviewed in this category making the Bucktool BD4801 the best edge sander in the budget Belt Disk sander in the benchtop category.
The belt and disc are driven directly by the motor shaft. That increases efficiency up to 25-percent more than traditional motor designs. It produces 3,450 RPMs on the drive roller, translating to 2,161 Surface Feet Per Minute on the belt under no-load conditions.
BUCKTOOL uses a 4 x 36-inch belt that can be adjusted up to 90-degrees vertically. Another standout in the BD4801 is the eight-inch sanding disc, which is larger than the discs on the other combination sanders we have reviewed.
The manufacturer includes a dedicated dust port for the belt and the disc. That should provide better extraction than using a single port for both stations.
BUCKTOOL BD4801 – Things We Like
- A powerful 3/4 HP direct drive electric motor
- No belt tensioning is required
- Independent dust ports for better extraction
BUCKTOOL BD4801 – Not So Good
- Direct drive design is less-compact
- Aluminum is less-durable than cast iron
Taking The Rough Down To The Smooth
As a woodworker, you will spend a considerable part of your hobby finishing the projects that you build. Sanding is a necessity, and a variety of sanding power tools can help to speed up the process while producing smooth results making choosing the best edge sander for your shop an absolute must.
For large projects, nothing can beat a full-sized edge sander. They can handle cabinet sides and doors, as well as everything in-between. Stationary floor edge sanders need a dedicated space in a medium to large shop, though.
Adding oscillation to the movement can create a better-looking surface or edge. That movement can also extend the life of your belt.
Benchtop designs are great for small shops, as well as carpenters on the go. They work well with small and medium projects but may lack the power and support for big ones.
Belt and disc sanders combine the fast material removal of a belt sander with the control offered by a disc sander. Many of the combination sanders mount to your benchtop or a stand designed for the tool.
That is also true for an oscillating belt and spindle sander. These are usually smaller than the previously-mentioned combination units, using the same drivers and table surface for the belt or the spindle.
Remember that your sander is only as good as the paper it uses. Investing in quality belts, discs, or drums can speed up the process and save unwanted wear on your power tools.
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