Woodworking is a fantastic hobby. There’s a thrill and pride that comes from crafting beautiful objects. In a home shop, you want good tools that give you professional results. Because these tools are not working as hard as they would in a professional shop, you don’t need to spend a lot to buy good quality machines.
This review is going to help you find the best DIY benchtop belt and disc combo sander. These are great tools for rough flattening, sanding wood that is particularly rough, cleaning away old paint, and creating freehand curved edges.
A benchtop planer that allows you to sand across two planes is incredibly versatile. This is one machine with both a belt and disc sander. The sanders featured in this review are combination belt disc sanders. You have the advantage of a belt sander and a sanding disc.
A flat bed, with a sanding belt, makes it easy to perform rough sanding tasks with the greatest efficiency, providing a uniformly flat surface to ensure that you obtain an even finish across the length of a board. The best belt sanders have a bed that can tilt, allowing you to sand at any angle.
The disc is great for detailed shaping. The rotating disc provides the user with greater control over the piece, thereby allowing for improved maneuverability when creating curves and finishing edges. A table, with a miter gauge, makes it easy to sand with precision when working at an angle.
Taking into account the most important features, and a price limit of $200, we’ve compiled a review of several great benchtop belt disc sanders for the home shop. These tools can even meet the needs of a smaller professional shop.
The cheapest on the list (WEN 6502T) is also the most popular and is a best-seller on Amazon. This is a wonderfully practical DIY benchtop belt disc sander. The WEN brand is known for outstanding value for money. At under $120, the WEN 650T should be irresistible to most bargain hunters.
The Shop Fox W1855 is my personal pick of the bunch. It displays all the traits of a high-end professional machine yet is perfectly affordable for the home user. The Powertec BD4600 and Rockwell Belt/Disc Combo Sanders are also great products.
- Two-in-one sanding machine includes both a 4-by-36 inch belt and a 6-by-6 inch disc
- Belt tilts anywhere from 0 to 90 degrees
- Sturdy cast iron base prevents any heavy vibrations
- 3 Amp motor provides up to 3600 RPM
- Tension release lever provides for simple changes between sandpaper grits
Weighing almost 40-pounds, the WEN 6502T is a really sturdy belt disc sander. The solid cast iron base, with bolt holes, mounts to any workbench. Cast iron is a great material for a benchtop sander as it is really good at eliminating vibrations. In essence, this is a light to medium duty belt disc sander. Though it could just as easily find its way into a professional shop and not be out of place.
The ½HP (4.3A) motor provides the power needed to get the job done quickly and easily. Rotating at 3600 RMP the 4” X 36” belts sander is up to the task. It has a tension lever to make belt changes quick and easy. The belt can tilt from 0° – 90°. This is easy to adjust by means of a large knob that you loosen to move the belt, then fasten when the desired angle is reached. Markings make it pretty easy to set the exact angle you require.
The 6” X 6” disc has a fairly sturdy aluminum table with a slot for the miter gauge which is included with the sander. It has an industrial on/off switch. In general, the WEN 6502T has the look and feel of a quality machine that’s built to work hard. It has a 2¼” dust port – a pretty important feature on a tool like this, which generates quite a bit of sawdust.
WEN is a brand that most of us know and trust. They manufacture really good tools. While I wouldn’t rate this as a heavy-duty brand for professional-grade tools, they are certainly amongst better, tougher machines in the lower price range. One thing no one can argue with is the quality vs price aspect. The WEN 6502T is one of the cheapest benchtop belt disc sanders and can compete with much more expensive machines when it comes to functionality and general quality. A great deal as far as I’m concerned.
Shop Fox W1855
- Motor: 1/2 HP, 120V, single-phase, 3600 RPM
- Belt size: 4″ x 36″
- Disc size: 6″
- Table size: 6-1/4″ x 9″
- Cast-iron base
Fox Shop is one of my favorite brands for affordable workshop tools. I see this as a sort of crossover brand. Fox Shop tools are found in both commercial and home shops. The price is affordable enough for home users and the industrial-grade design and quality are of a standard good enough for professionals.
On the face of things, the Shop Fox W1855 is not that different from the (much cheaper) WEN 6502T. This machine weighs 38-pounds and also has a solid cast iron base. Most of the features and functions are almost identical when comparing the two sanders.
It’s only in the details, like the superbly crafted disc sander table, that we start to notice the Shop Fox difference. For a little extra cash, you’re getting a more refined, professional-grade machine. Then there’s the stuff we don’t see, like motor gearbox, and bearings. By simply looking at the sander, there’s no telling how well it has been engineered. It’s only after many years, that the true quality of a machine can be recognized.
When reviewing (or buying) a new machine, determining its true quality is mostly a matter of trust. With experience, we come to respect certain brands. Manufacturers that look beyond the bells and whistles, focusing just as much attention on long-term durability. This is what makes a brand like Shop Fox a cut above the rest. You’re effectively paying a little extra for that peace of mind, knowing that the brand has a reputation for quality and attention to detail.
The ½HP motor is comparable to any of the best in this class, propelling the sander to 3,600 RPM with ease. The table is 6¼” X 9”, utilizing a 4” X 36” belt. This is a very practical size and is great for a shop with limited space. It is perfect for smaller pieces. Belt changes are super quick and easy, thanks to a quick-release lever. The belt tilts just as easily from 0° to 90° with easy to read markings for accurate settings.
The 6” disc has a really strong table with a perfectly machined miter slot and accurate miter gauge. The table tilts easily from 0° to 45°. As one would expect from one of the best belt disc sanders, the Shop Fox W1885 has a dust port, which is conveniently positioned at the back of the machine, near the bottom.
Although the Shop Fox W1855 is the most expensive in this review of the best DIY belt disc sanders, in the general scheme of things, the price is very reasonable. It falls well below the $200 threshold that I consider a decent price for this type of tool. For a few dollars more than the average home shop sander, this impeccable machine is of a more industrial-grade standard. Worth it, if you want a more refined product.
- Includes: heavy-duty belt and disc sander combination flaunts a 4”x36” sanding belt, 6” sanding disc, A belt with 0° -90° tilt including a work support, a disc worktable with 0° – 45° tilt, a heavy-duty miter gauge, and a dust port
- Features: a 6½ x 8¾-inch cast aluminum table that provides exceptional work support and tilts up to 45 degrees, precision tracking system, a safety key switch, and a quick-release belt change; sturdy cast iron base and mounting hole prevent wobbling and walking
- 2-1 design: sanding machine is equipped with both, an abrasive Belt and disc Combo, large enough and perfectly sized to handle an assortment of sanding and woodworking applications
- Power: enhanced with a quiet but powerful 120V, 60 Hz, ½ HP (peak), 4. 3 amp induction motor delivers 1900 FPM For the belt and 3600 RPM for disc speed
- Dust pickup: This belt and disc sander Combo includes one 2¼” dust port which provides a tidy and effective dust collection
The Powertec BD4600 is slightly more expensive than the WEN 6502T (reviewed above) and appears to be very similar. This has me wondering if it is worth paying extra for, the WEN belt disc sander seems to be better value for money. Perhaps Powertec is the superior brand, though I’m not convinced of this. Regardless of my personal opinions, the Powertec BD4600 is extremely popular and has received amazing customer reviews. For this reason, it has made it into our review of the best DIY belt disc sanders.
Going through the specs and features, the Powertec BD4600 has everything one would look for. It weighs 36.6 pounds with a heavy cast iron base. The 4” X 36” belt can tilt from 0° to 90°, making it as versatile as any. Belt changes are no hassle, using a quick-release lever. Power is certainly up to expectations, derived from a ½ HP induction motor (3600 RPM).
The disc sander has a wonderful aluminum table which provides good support for the workpiece. The table can tilt up to 45° and includes a miter gauge. An industrial safety on/off switch places this sander in the same league as the others featured in this review. It also includes a 2¼” dust port.
The Powertec BD4600 matches up to any of the belt disc sanders reviewed here and is very reasonably priced. Users of this machine have great things to say about it, giving me quite a bit of confidence in its quality and ability to get the job done. An all-around sensible buy.
Rockwell Belt/Disc Combo Sander
- HORIZONTAL & VERTICAL SANDING – The 4” x 36” belt platform raises and lowers from 0-90°
- BEVEL EDGES The sanding table adjusts from 0-45° for smoothing out beveled edges
- HEAVY INDUCTION MOTOR Powerful 4.3-amp motor provides plenty of power
- EASY BELT CHANGES Quick-release tension lever lets you easily change out the sandpaper
- SAFETY SWITCH Prevents accidental starts
Rockwell is yet another brand that is highly respected in the DIY power tool arena. It seems only fitting to include the Rockwell belt disc combo sander on the list of top choices. It is not expensive, although both the Powertec and WEN models are cheaper. This is, nonetheless, a great value product that has received a lot of praise.
The fairly hefty weight of 41-pounds is an indication that this belt disc sander, with its solid cast iron construction, has what it takes to be considered a heavy-duty shop sander. It certainly is a solid machine, with a distinct feel of good quality about it.
The 4” X 36” belt sander is very capable, with the ability to tilt up to 90°. It is driven by a powerful ½ HP (4.3A) motor, providing a belt speed of 1700 SFM. It features a quality safety on/off switch and a quick-release belt change lever.
The 6” disc has a good table with a 45° tilt and miter gauge. It is machined to perfection. A 2¼” port takes care of dust extraction.
Comparable to any of the best belt disc sanders, this model from Rockwell has a distinctly high-quality resonance. The perfect machine for any home woodwork shop. It fits well into the under $200 price category, making for excellent value.