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Hitachi Belt Sander Crippled by Poor Design
on April 27, 2009
I was ready to buy this Hitachi sander to replace my old Delta benchtop sander, which had a driveline problem. Fortunately, I realized, after I had it in my cart, that the Hitachi sander is just a poor design for SANDING. The Hitachi sander seems well-made, sturdy, and I have great respect for the quality of their tools. The Hitachi sander seems designed primarily for two things: 1. to collect dust, and 2. to prevent operator error by limiting the chance for a kick-out of the workpiece. These are great goals, but the Hitachi design cripples its use as a SANDER. All these 4" x 36" belt sanders have spindles about 15" apart. My old Delta could sand a 30" long table leg just fine, if you removed the bar across the platten. (Re-install the bar afterwards.) There is no chance of sanding a piece longer than about ten inches on the Hitachi - that is all the belt that shows beyond the substantial plastic dust collection housing. This sander is probably fine for small parts only.
For greater usefulness in actual sanding, consider other brands like Skil, Sears, and Delta.