Most helpful positive review
50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
on May 22, 2012
I needed a finishing sander to sand the stairs in my house before putting a polyurethane coat. It may not be very fast, but you can get to all corners with it.
These sanders are not very expensive, so I wanted to get the best one. Limited my choices to Dewalt, Bosh, Milwaukee and Makita. Started looking at Amazon reviews and to my surprise all of them except Makita had very poor customer feedback. Being an engineer I went to Lowes and Home Depot to verify it first hand.
Bosh and Milwaukee both have a modern way of holding the paper. At first I liked it because of easy paper loading, but I have to trust other reviewers in that these new clamps are not holding the paper securely. So these two names are crossed away from my list.
I always had a lot of respect for Dewalt and their line of professionally looking tools. Recently my opinion started to deteriorate after I have learned that many if not all their 20V little cordless drills have chucks with unacceptably high runout. How come they allowed that to happen to their very expensive tools? For comparison I can say that my recently purchased 2 no good name cordless drills exibit practically no runout and they cost only a fraction of the Dewalt's cost.
Amazon reviews say that many Dewalt sanders model D26441K fail due to a problem with their plastic platen, which holds the sanding pad. Plastic breaks under load and pieces get jammed in the motor. Not very good... In addition somebody said that their pad is too big to accept a 1/4 sheet of paper. I have compared Dewalt and Makita side by side and can testify that Dewalt's pad is bigger. What good is the sander if it cannot take the paper?
So I desided to take my chances with Makita for which I could not find really horrible reviews. It is the most expensive among 4 big names (due to the plastic case which I wanted)and has only 1 year warranty (Milwaukee has 5 years). Yesterday I finished my sanding project. Based on my experience with this tool I can say that it is pretty good. It is powerfull, paper clamping is easy and secure, vibration is low due to a special balancer on the motor shaft. The pad is just the right size to accept a 1/4 sheet of 9"x11" paper. This sander does not collect all the dust, but about 90% of it, which is very good without the help from a vacuum cleaner. Other sanders can accept a vacuum hose, but on the stairs it is impossible to manipulate with it. So Makita was the perfect tool for the job. I gave it 5 stars.
Unfortunately I cannot say the same about Amazon performance. I have ordered the sander on May 6, it was not shipped until May 11 and was delivered On May 14. I have lost a good weekend of work due to this delay. To make matters worse it was shipped from the warehouse in Allentown, Pa and I am in York, PA. They could have it delivered in 2 days with no trouble at all, but they elected not to. This was the free super saver shipping case and they were not obligated to deliver it quickly. I cannot prove it, but somehow I've got an impression they waited intentionally. Sorry for venting it out, but this is not the first and not the second bad experience with Amazon.