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Thread: What wide belt sander

  1. #1

    What wide belt sander

    My shop mills about 2-300 bf of v-match each day. When we receive the planed stock from the yard we have the task of sanding the planer marks off with an orbital sander. There has to be an easier way!! Curious if you veteran woodworkers think a 5hp grizzly G0819 wide belt sander with platen or maybe the grizzly G0527 wide belt sander with orbital action would do the trick. My shop is fairly small so Iím limited on equipment size. Love to hear some suggestions and thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Whatís v-match?

  3. #3
    Tongue and groove wainscoting

  4. #4
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    A widebelt sander is one of the most useful tools in the shop, so yes it would help you tremendously! Now whether or not that particular brand of sander is any good is a matter of opinion, of which you'll probably get many. But a sander.... yup, good investment!

    JeffD

  5. #5
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    In my experience “two widebelts this far” everything still needs a orbital sanding with or without a platen.

    I do agree with Jeff they are amongst the most useful tool in a cabinet shop. I was not very impressed at first as I don’t much care for sanded finishes but you know if your not making the finest furniture then your probably sanding. And even then many are still sanding. The amount of tasks I find to use the widebelt for blow my mind.

    I would hate to be without one now.

    I. Pretty sure there are machines that will sand well enough to not need a orbital. These are not just 2-3 head units though. I think they are highly specialized and can be used to finish sand doors and the such. I’m also pretty sure they are stupid expensive vrs a normal widebelt that’s already very pricey.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Walsh View Post
    In my experience “two widebelts this far” everything still needs a orbital sanding with or without a platen.

    I do agree with Jeff they are amongst the most useful tool in a cabinet shop. I was not very impressed at first as I don’t much care for sanded finishes but you know if your not making the finest furniture then your probably sanding. And even then many are still sanding. The amount of tasks I find to use the widebelt for blow my mind.

    I would hate to be without one now.

    I. Pretty sure there are machines that will sand well enough to not need a orbital. These are not just 2-3 head units though. I think they are highly specialized and can be used to finish sand doors and the such. I’m also pretty sure they are stupid expensive vrs a normal widebelt that’s already very pricey.

    Not to disagree but..... v-board is the perfect type of material that would not need further work after going through the wide belt. Remove the planer marks and done

    As far as those expensive machines that leave a finish ready surface, yup I used to run one of those in my previous life. They are awesome machines to have access to, but your never going to be shopping one against a Grizzly. They are stupid expensive and generally not small. But not only can you finish sand your doors.... you can sand/scuff the finish between coats

    JeffD

  7. #7
    it's been my experience that - for furniture-grade work - i cannot go to the finishing room off of the wide belt. ROS is required for a fine finish. that said, i agree it's an indispensable tool. admittedly, perhaps for your application, the wide-belt finish would be sufficient.

    we are on our second sander - we bought the latest one brand new, it's an Ironwood 37" single drum from Stiles. we purchased it a few years back at IWF in atlanta, compared a number of brands/machines, and felt that the ironwood was the best value for the money, based on features and overall beefiness. wide belts are one of those tools with a massive bell curve on price - you can spend $8k for a really cheap one, or $75k for an italian or german-made beauty with laser sensors and automatic everything. the stiles was, for us, a good fit, under $20k. it's been rock solid.

    do you have 3ph power in your shop?

    good luck with your purchase.

    -- dz

  8. #8
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    Do you have a big enough dust collector to run one?
    Bil lD

  9. #9
    Iím limited on space and power. What is more important - having a platen or having a osicilating drum? The wide belt sander Iím looking at is a 5hp with a platen. Iíll never run completed doors through this only pieces of doors. I completely understand that Iíll need to use a ros after my doors are constructed.

    Thanks so much for all this help thus far!

  10. #10
    i think it has to oscillate or you're going to quickly cause lines and stripes. the platen is useful for final passes, but if that's the choice, 99 times out of 100 i would say you need the belt to oscillate.

  11. #11
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    I wouldnít go cheap on this machine regardless of what kind of finish you are after.

    We have a brand new $17K Scmi Sandya 1 and Honestly it just barely suits my expectations of what a widebelt should be able to do.

    It leaves a snake pattern as most all do. Even sanding through the grits to 150 if you donít random orbit you will see the pattern under paint.

    Beyond that in the case of a door or a face frame you will get dips before and after intermediates and or rails. Itís slight but itís really annoying. Run the piece at a angle and it still happens.

    I myself would never purchase a budget widebelt for any purpose.

    But thatís me and I have high expectations. When I spend any amount of money on a tool to perform a task and it canít Iím gonna be peeved. As a result I have learnt to set your expectations accordingly and open the wallet.

    Or lower them and not get mad or aggravated when you get what you payed for.

  12. #12
    I have the old model 5hp 15" grizzly widebeltG9983. It works well for me. Uses compressed air for tracking, and requires a good DC, but have had mine several years, hobby use, no complaints. And my belt oscillates.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Walsh View Post
    Beyond that in the case of a door or a face frame you will get dips before and after intermediates and or rails. It’s slight but it’s really annoying. Run the piece at a angle and it still happens.
    Are you using both the drum and the platen as contact points? I don't get the dip running at an angle, but I have an extra head on my Sandya.

    How much are you removing and with what grit?
    Last edited by J.R. Rutter; 06-15-2019 at 12:37 PM.
    JR

  14. #14
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    I have a 36 x 60" Safety Speed. It has a removable platen and an oscillating belt and uses a photocell to control the belt, so air usage in minimal. I run 50 to 180 grit, and have sanded everything from individual rail and stile sticking all the way up to complete 3/0 interior doors. Mine is single phase with a 10 HP motor. Yeah, you need a good dust collector, and yeah, the finish, even with a 180 belt using the platen, still needs a final ROS sanding. I got it at the AWFS show a number of years ago and since it's coming up again in July you should go check them out if you have a chance.

  15. #15
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    Ive tried it with the player and without,

    With the hard platen and the soft,

    I take minimal bites like one light bump on the digital control so that like .010 or something. Forgive me Iím retarded.

    But u know I know my bites are appropriate for the grit Iím using as the machine was purchased new and came with a tear sheet indicating cut depth and how it correlates to grit.

    Even had the seller ďretailer or dealerĒ come tweak it only to find getting it 100% isnít gonna happen.

    Itís good enough but you can see the dips after cv is sprayed if you really look for them.

    Iím sure itís the single head and fact that itís a entry level machine.

    As far as hp I was told not to ever purchase a machine with less than 20hp on the first head. I can attest to at least for our use this bring good advise as the amp meter on our machine goes through the roof if you throw day a passage door or counter top through it regardless of bite size.

    Just my two cents and my experience yours all may vary. I have very high expectations of pretty much everything. But as said when you buy the entry level machine or from a high end hobby manufacture you canít really expect much more.

    Maybe you get more but Iíd always count on not getting more as to not be disappointed..

    t
    Quote Originally Posted by J.R. Rutter View Post
    Are you using both the drum and the platen as contact points? I don't get the dip running at an angle, but I have an extra head on my Sandya.

    How much are you removing and with what grit?

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