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Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander Review

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Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander

Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander

(c) 2011 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

The Bottom Line

The Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander is a table-top sander that is perfect for sanding curved cuts. It can accommodate up to a 2-inch diameter spindle plus includes a belt sander attachment which allows for stationary belt sanding as well. The sander as an adjustable table top that can be tilted up to 45-degrees, and no tools are required to change spindles (or to the belt attachment). While there are a couple of items that could be addressed, I feel that the Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander would be a welcome addition to any woodshop.
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Pros

  • Adjustable table top can be tilted up to 45-degrees
  • Includes five sanding sleeves of various sizes and a sanding belt attachment (as shown above)
  • Edge Sander uses standard 4-inch by 24-inch sanding belts, available at any home center
  • Tool-free conversion from belt sander to spindle sander (and vice versa)

Cons

  • Dust collection (through the dust exhaust port) was not as effective as desired

Description

  • 3/8-HP variable speed motor provides 0-1725 RPM (for spindle sanding) or 0-1350 RPM (for belt sanding).
  • Spindle oscillates at 60 cycles per minute with a 3/4-inch stroke.
  • Table includes a handy miter gauge slot for using miter gauge (optional) to keep stock square to the face of the belt sander.

Guide Review - Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander Review

An oscillating spindle sander can make short work of sanding curved cuts. The Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander is one of the few oscillating sanders that offers both spindle and belt sanding on the same unit. The various sizes of spindles allow for cutting curves or varying diameters, and the oscillating action exposes more surface of the sanding drum than a non-oscillating sander could.

The Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander includes five sanding sleeves (1/2, 3/4, 1, 1-1/2 and 2-inch diameters) as well as a belt sander (that uses common 4-inch by 24-inch belts), plus a throat plate insert, various throat plates and washers. Switching between the two types of sanders does not require tools to make the change.

The Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander is relatively light at roughly 40 pounds, which allows the unit to be portable enough to be mounted on a work table, a removable platform or even straddling a pair of sawhorses. However, for more permanent mounting locations (such as in a cabinet shop), I'd love to see Ridgid offer a separate unit with a more sturdy cast iron table, which would provide better stability and less vibration (at an added cost, of course). It also would eliminate the possibility of paint from the painted aluminum table top wearing or flaking off and damaging the surface of the wood being sanded. In my testing, I did not notice any flaking or damage to the wood from the table top, but it is something I would keep an eye on.

One thing I'd like to see addressed is the dust collection through the dust port in the back of the unit. In the current incarnation, the dust collection is mildly effective. Perhaps more holes in the table surface near the spindle would allow the unit to collect more sawdust, much like a downdraft sanding table.
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Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.
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