Best Belt Sander | UK Guide | 2023
The best belt sander will prove an invaluable power tool. This type of sander is a versatile and multifunctional tool, allowing you to trim material edges, sand down rough finishes and level surfaces. They can also be used for more precise work, such as rounding edges and carrying out shaping work. Unlike other types of sander, belt sanders are incredibly powerful and are designed to accommodate very harsh grits.
This makes them very effective at removing excessive surface material quickly. Looking to take your sanding to the next level? Below, we break down the most crucial considerations to keep in mind when selecting the best belt sander for your sanding projects.
Belt Sanders Explained
Otherwise known as a strip sander, a belt sander utilises a powerful electric motor and twin drums that drive a sandpaper loop in a continuous circle. This provides you with consistent sanding action at high speeds, without you having to contribute much in the way of manual effort. They can be used for a huge array of sanding jobs. However, because of their aggressive sanding output, they are particularly good for smoothing out the surfaces of large pieces of wood, including flooring and panelling.
Power Supplies & Motor Rating
As belt sanders are designed with more demanding sanding jobs in mind, you should pay special attention to motor ratings when selecting one. As with just about any type of power tool, the higher the motor rating, the more effective it will prove to be at doing its job. Ideally, you should be looking for a corded power supply if you want to enjoy consistent performance. If you need a more flexible approach to sanding, a cordless belt sander can still deliver good results, but you will need to be prepared for some trade-off when it comes to performance.
Belt Size & Speed
The size of your sanding belt will also give you an idea of how effective your belt sander will be. The larger the surface area of your sanding belt, the faster you can smooth out surfaces. A faster belt speed will also allow you to complete projects more quickly. However, if you are purchasing a cordless model that operates on battery power, a faster belt speed can drain power reserves quickly.
Size & Handling
To get the most from your belt sander, you need to pick a model that is easy to handle. Although compact sanders can be a bit limiting, they will produce impressive results provided that the motor is powerful enough. The vast majority of belt sanders will require you to constantly move them across materials in order to smooth out surfaces, which is why you need to ensure you are choosing a lightweight model that can controlled comfortably.
A smaller design will also make it easier to access additional features, such as safety switches and variable speed controls. If you want to maintain a high level of productivity, these functions should be selectable with one hand, without you having to stop working in between adjustments.
Although belt sanders can be used for a long time before needing the sanding belt replaced, you will eventually need to change a damaged belt out for a new one. Quick-change belt mechanisms are therefore advantageous. Look for models that allow you to make changes by single-lever adjustments.
Dust Removal Features
Using a belt sander on wood will generate a significant amount of dust and sanding debris. If you are working outdoors, this is not necessarily a problem. However, it makes sense to keep the air around you as clear of pollutants as possible. Therefore, look for belt sanders that include an attached dust bag. The larger the capacity of the dust bag, the more time you can spend sanding before needing to get rid of accumulated sawdust.
Product Reviews – The Best Belt Sanders
If you want to slash the amount of effort involved in sanding work, it is time to invest in a new belt sander. Below are some of the belt sander models currently available.
Belt Sander, Jellas 1000W Electric Sander, 6 Variable-Speed Control with Self – Locking Switch, 12PCS Sanding Paper (75x533MM), 3m Power Cord for Derusting, Stripping Paint and Polishing, BS01
The Jellas BS01 is a high-efficiency option for those looking to upgrade their power tools with a new belt sander. With 1000W of power, this is one of the most efficient sanders around. It also comes with six adjustable speed settings, making a very versatile choice of sanding tool. You can use it for working with a range of materials, with all manner of sanding, stripping and polishing applications possible. This belt sander also comes with a 3-metre power cord that provides you with enough flexibility that you won’t need to reach for an extension cable.
This belt sander also has a large grinding area, allowing you to work with larger pieces of material. The main sander unit comes with a dozen individual sanding sheets, with six different grit varieties to choose. You can also keep on top of debris as you work, with this sander able to connect to a vacuum cleaner without the need for additional adapters. The self-locking switch also means you do not have to continuously press down in order to operate this power tool. This is also a very quiet choice of belt sander, with the main and auxiliary handle covered in rubber coating to reduce vibrations.
If you are searching for a compact belt sander, the Einhell TC-BC 0830 is a good option. This relatively small belt sander is ideal for those who want the freedom to be use their power tool in a handheld fashion. Although smaller than belt sanders designed to remain stationed on workbenches, this is a very high-performance solution for sanding and finishing tasks. The 800W motor makes this sander reasonably powerful and a good choice for those who need to undertake wood sanding tasks. However, it may be a little insufficient for demanding metal polishing and finishing jobs.
An integrated dust extraction system and dust bag means you enjoy high rates of debris removal while you sand. Belt changes are also straightforward, with a simple lever adjustment all it takes to remove old sanding sheets with new ones. The sanding belt run has also been designed with high levels of precision, with the vernier adjustment allowing you to make minor adjustments to the abrasion levels of be belt to undertake a broader range of sanding tasks.
The Blaupunkt BS3000 is an efficient choice of belt sander for those looking to upgrade their power tools. This belt sander uses an 800W electric motor to provide you with reliable sanding performance for smooth results. Although the motor is slightly less powerful than other belt sander models, the belt speed is comparable to more advanced models, with speeds of up to 380 rotation per minute possible.
This belt sander is best used for smoothing out wooden surfaces, although it can also be used to remove paint and varnish layers. This is also a good choice for those who want a handheld belt sander to undertake bigger jobs. Although reasonably heavy at 2.9 kilograms, this ergonomic belt sander is easy to handle and will not lead to user fatigue.
The quick-change belt is also practical. You can replace old sanding belts with new ones in moments, with the self-tensioning mechanism making changes particularly effortless. Belt alignment is also straightforward, meaning you can always ensure new belts are properly aligned prior to carrying out sanding tasks. The trigger lock is another great touch, allowing you to keep the belt spinning without holding down buttons. A dust collection bag and vacuum cleaner connector also mean you can keep areas free of debris as you sand.
If you are happy to spend a bit more on a belt sander, this quality model from Bosch is worth considering. This belt sander includes a patented micro filter system that makes for very efficient dust extraction performance. It also handles well, with the enhanced ergonomics and fairly compact tool housing allowing for superior control. The automatic belt tensioning mechanism is another welcome feature, allowing you to replace old sanding belts in no time.
You also do not have to worry about manual alignment with this Bosch sander. The automatic alignment function means you can be confident that your sander is always in a suitable position for premium sanding results. Although suitable for handheld operation, the durable housing of this belt sander make it ideal for those looking for a tool that can be used in a stationary position. The stable design means this belt sander will rest securely on a surfaces as you sand or finish smaller pieces of material.
The Makita 9911/2 is a great choice of belt sander for those looking for superior sanded finishes and ease of use. This is a great option for those after a high-capacity belt sander, with the dust collection feature allowing you to work for longer periods, without having to stop to clear your work area of debris.
A variable speed control dial also means you can adjust the output of your sander to work with different types of material, or achieve different types of sanding results. The low-profile design also makes this very well suited to handheld operation. The shape of the sander housing means you can get close to walls and ceilings, allowing for flush sanding results.
The flat top of the sander also means you can put this to use as a bench top sanding power tool. An automatic tracking belt system also ensures consistent performance. The double insulation of the housing also means that little heat will find its way through the tool, making it particularly comfortable to operate. This is also an incredibly versatile choice of belt sander and can be used for sanding both metal and wood. It can also be used for more aggressive tasks, such as when you need to get rid of stubborn paint layers or rust damage.
The BLACK+DECKER KA86-GB is a good investment for those who need a belt sander that can tackle awkward angles. The angled belt design means you can sand much closer to surface edges, without having to manually reposition the tool as you work. It is particularly effective for sanding large surface areas, such as flooring or outdoor decking. It can also be used to get rid of stubborn paint layers and thick finishes with ease.
The automatic belt tracking system means the belt will remain firmly in place at all times, allowing you to work for much longer periods. The dust extraction bag also keeps debris to a low level, keeping your work area clean and reducing the amount of time you need to spend on sweeping away dust and other debris. Belt changes are also straightforward, with the lever adjustment allowing you to replace grits in seconds.
The Clarke CBS1-5B is a very versatile choice of belt sander and will make a great addition to any workshop. This power tool provides you with the complete functionality of an efficient belt sander, but can also be used for disc sanding tasks as well. The disc table and sanding belt can also be tilted, with maximum angle adjustments of 45 degrees. This makes the Clarke CBS1-5B particularly suitable for handling smaller pieces of material or when you need to achieve very precise sanding results.
The belt table is also fairly large, making it suitable for a huge range of sanding tasks. You can also expect high sanding speeds here. With maximum speeds of 2,850 rotations per minute, this powerful belt and disc sander should satisfy the demands of those looking to undertake more elaborate sanding tasks. It costs a bit more than a handheld belt sander, but for the additional functionality provided by the CBS1-5B, this slight premium is a small price to pay.
The Ryobi R18BS-0 is a fine addition to any cordless power tool collection. This compact belt sander might be small, but it can put to work with larger sanding projects. The cordless design makes it particularly user-friendly and ideal for those who will not have access to mains electrical outlets. Although some belt sanders that use batteries are limited to slower speeds, you can enjoy superior belt speeds with the Ryobi R18BS-0. In fact, this belt sander is well suited to sanding stubborn surfaces and ca be used to get rid of tough debris with little effort.
The sanding belt is generously sized and can be optimised with a variety of grit types. The multi-position top handle also makes this belt sander easy to use. It can be used to sand flush to walls, while longer sanding sessions can be undertaken comfortably. This belt sander is compatible with any ONE+ battery from Ryobi, although you will need to ensure you have one already purchased as this is a tool-only package.
Belt Sander Buying Checklist
When choosing a belt sander, there are a few factors that are more important than others. Motor rating is a good indicator of how effective your belt sander will be. If you are looking to work with metal, a higher motor capacity is a must. Belt size and speed are also very important. If you want to work with bigger material pieces, go for a larger belt size.
A larger belt will also prove more durable than a smaller one, saving you the need to constantly replace sandpaper loops. Sanding speed is another huge indicator of how well a belt sander will perform. If you are looking into a corded belt sander, go for the highest belt speed possible. A variable speed trigger is also a good idea if you want more control over sanding performance.