Tool Test: Spindle Sanders
Oscillating drums smooth curves quickly and easily
Synopsis: The up-and-down movement of an oscillating spindle sander is ideal for sanding curves. The work goes faster, the abrasive drum lasts longer, and there is less risk of heat buildup. Roland Johnson tested seven spindle sanders ranging in price from $140 to $640. All have the power to sand 8/4 red oak without slowing or stalling. All but one come with at least four spindles, ranging in diameter from 1/4 in. to 2 in. One converts easily from spindle sander to belt sander. In addition to testing for squareness, runout, power, and general comfort and convenience, Johnson offers tips for making accurate cuts; sanding for a uniform, steady curve; using a jig to sand straight edges; and using a tilting table.
Models tested include the Bridgewood OVS-5; Clayton 140; Delta SA350K; Grizzly GO538; Grizzly G9922; Jet JBOS-5; Ridgid EB4424.
Nothing beats an oscillating spindle sander for sanding curves. The up-anddown movement helps keep the…