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Old 05-08-2011, 08:39 PM
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Are all D/As created equal?

I've only ever used HF D/As.

I am about to do quite a bit of D/A work preparing the bare metal on my '55 Bel Air in getting ready for epoxy primer.

Should I get a better one?
What brand do all you like?
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Old 05-08-2011, 09:16 PM
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In a word, no.

I’m not going to get into brands. Most are made in China anyways. The differences are in orbit of their design. 3/32 orbit da’s are for finish work. 3/16 orbit da’s are used for mid to finish work and aren’t too popular in the market. 3/8 orbit da’s are used for quick knock downs and stripping panels.

For stripping hoods and other panels to bare metal I use a 3/8 orbit da. It usually takes less than a half hour and around 4 sheets of 80 grit to strip a hood completely before any other work needs to be done.
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Old 05-08-2011, 09:23 PM
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if you're gonna do a lot of mudding and have an 80 gallon compressor I'd get a mud hog with some 40-80 grit. If you use 40 you can go back over it with 80 grit or 80 with your da. This would save you time in prepping and mudding The mudhog also plows thru filler with ease w/ great control. Or if you have a buffer already on hand you can get a backing plate to use 40 grit or 80 with that too.
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Old 05-08-2011, 10:41 PM
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Are there differences? HELL YES! BIG ones. If you are using a cheapie Chinese Red Army store da you will want to smash it with a hammer once you start using a quality tool. Right off the bat most use MUCH less air so they are way more powerful. I have a HF (Chinese Red Army) die grinder I bought for a particular tool that seldom used and didn't want to have to change it out of my good die grinder while doing this stuff for a living (I have four die grinders with the different tools, two drills dedicated to certain bits, etc.)

This tools job was very simple, it really didn't need much power to get it done, it SUCKS and barely just barely can do it. My similar quality die grinders would kick it's ever loving butt.

There is nothing that makes more sense to me than buying quality tools. If you do it for a living, for God's sake do I have to tell you? But if you are doing this stuff at home, the learning curve is steep enough doing this stuff do you really want to have to overcome using the junk tool too? Do you know what your HF da is worth after you bring it home from the store? NOTHING, you couldn't sell a used HF tool for a dollar. How about a National Detroit Da, it costs about $150-190 how much is it worth ten years from now if still in good condition? You could STILL sell it for $100 or something on ebay. If you bought that tool 25 years ago when they WERE about $75 you could sell it for what you paid for it!

There are all kinds of brands that will do the job for you. Here is what I used every day for years upon years doing it for a living.

"Hog" as Tech mentioned. A ND (National Detroit) 900 is THE tool for cutting filler and stripping paint. When mine broke (after about 10 years of daily service) I wouldn't live a day without it, I bought a new one then sent the old out for rebuild. Now I have two and never have to worry about being without one. I don't know what kind of deal you can get but here is one for $185.00 (Clickhere) This tool is literally an 8" block. You can cut filler flat like a block with this tool, it is a WORKHORSE tool that I wouldn't live without.



For a "DA" the National Detroit "DAQ". This is THE workhorse DA of all time. Again, used one for a couple of decades just about daily rebuilding it once in a while, they are a SUPER tool. Here's one for $165 (click here) This is a REAL "DA" (Dual Action) being that it has a little lock that you flip for changing it from an orbial sander into a grinder with the disc spinning without an orbit. Again, it is a work horse, aggressive sander and NOT for finish sanding, at least not anymore. There was a day when that is exactly what it was used for. It is the grandfather of the DAs. I use mine in the grinder mode for metal finishing only these days (repairing without the use of any filler) being I have other orbital sanders for doing paint prep work.



Then the "Orbital" for finish sanding and sanding primer and the like. I have had one of these DynaBrades for years and it has given me ZERO problems.
Here is one for $185. (click here) This is not a "Dual action" in that it only orbits. This is where the different orbit patterns comes into play, the smaller the more for finishing. Picture this as a 6" "block" it works THAT good. With some use you can "block" filler perfectly flat with this baby, it's a great tool.



All of these tools blow away anything at HF. They would stomp on them in comparison.

Brian
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Old 05-08-2011, 11:44 PM
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That’s why I didn’t want to get into brands. Getting into brands says nothing about the differences in da’s and how they’re used. It just clouds the topic.

Knowing the differences in the random orbits of the brands informs the reader the type they need for a specific purpose.

I have three da’s. Two Ingersoll Rands that cost $179.00 each with 3/32 random orbit. One set up for stickit paper for general finishing and featheredging and the other set up for 3M Trizact 3000. The third is an Ingersoll Rand dual action 3/8 random orbital and cost 179.00 that I use for stripping.

Moreover, it doe’s little good to buy a quality tool if the user doesn’t know how to use the tool. I had to replace a pad on one because a clown I work with borrowed it and doesn’t know how to use a da flat on the surface and bent the shaft.
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Old 05-09-2011, 12:43 AM
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I bought a harbor freight DA when I couldn't find my IR da. It lasted approx 3 hours when it literally exploded, took a chunk out of my finger, the 40 grit paper knocked my glasses and hat off, another chunk dented the fender. I finished what was left of it with a 12 lb. sledge hammer, the ONLY good thing that happened that day. I did have a flash of memory and remembered where the good D.A. was. I would check ebay, hock shops, swap meets for a decent DA if you don't or can't afford brand new. Like Brian says, it's a good investment.
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Old 05-09-2011, 06:28 AM
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i have to disagree with Newbies,not buying the Better tools.

in my life experiences i have found that the better tools,just like Better quality Paints are much easier to use.


Maybe that's just me,who knows?

if you buy cheap beer it taste like cheap Beer,buy good Quality Beer it taste much better on the palate!

this goes for many things in Life!

Travis...
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:08 AM
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Travis, we all agree with you, there is no one saying otherwise.

Brian
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:29 AM
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I'd say the main difference is air consumption and how the sander feels in your hand if it's a palm sander. The airvantage sanders are my da's of choice. For the handled 3/8" ones that's where you really notice the air consumers or cheapies. I have a CP one and it takes too much air. I also had an IR and it was smoother and consumed less air. When you have the air capacity for a hog though I find the 3/8" da just collecting dust and not being used. If I need something less aggressive than a 3/8" handled or 3/16" works well for me. If I need prepping I go to the 3/32" airvantage. What's missing in my arsenal is a good 3/16" palm sander, and I often do use them, but again the hog is hogging up my time so big or small piece of filler gets the hog, but for small and complex shapes I like doing initial shape up with a 3/16" palm sander (or by hand)and I currently just have my first da I ever bought...a craftsman that hogs air. The good da's do make a difference. This is why air tools at HF are a no no for me.
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Old 05-09-2011, 09:13 AM
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Great. Thanks guys.

Learning a lot here. I can ask more better questions now that I have a little more knowledge.

I would like to get a good D/A for the specific purpose of preparing already stripped metal for epoxy priming.

My '55 body had several dents and has had a few patch panels welded in. I've worked out all the dents and welding shrinkage with a slapper and dolly and shrinking disk. It will hardly need any filler at all. However, I will spray the worked areas with polyester primer after the epoxy.

Anyway, the metal needs to be sanded for epoxy with a D/A.

After primer, I will do all the blocking by hand.

I am strictly a hobbyist but cost is not a factor for me when buying tools. I go to HF because I live in a small town and there is a store here, they have everything and it is convenient. Plus, I don't buy my paint supplies locally since I use SPI products and Pro-Spray color which I don't get locally either. Therefore, I don't know the people in the paint supply stores to consider taking advice and buy tools from them. So, here I am on the forum asking this.
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:12 AM
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That's what makes the net so cool! Go to one of the places on line, buy one and it will be on your porch in just a few days.

Brian
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roger1
Great. Thanks guys.

Learning a lot here. I can ask more better questions now that I have a little more knowledge.

I would like to get a good D/A for the specific purpose of preparing already stripped metal for epoxy priming.

My '55 body had several dents and has had a few patch panels welded in. I've worked out all the dents and welding shrinkage with a slapper and dolly and shrinking disk. It will hardly need any filler at all. However, I will spray the worked areas with polyester primer after the epoxy.

Anyway, the metal needs to be sanded for epoxy with a D/A.

After primer, I will do all the blocking by hand.

I am strictly a hobbyist but cost is not a factor for me when buying tools. I go to HF because I live in a small town and there is a store here, they have everything and it is convenient. Plus, I don't buy my paint supplies locally since I use SPI products and Pro-Spray color which I don't get locally either. Therefore, I don't know the people in the paint supply stores to consider taking advice and buy tools from them. So, here I am on the forum asking this.
most people at the paint store don't give good advice. The other day I wasn't around to babysit the crew so they called a paint store and they told them it's ok to spray 2k primer with only half the amount of hardener. That's just STUPID! Anything a paint store rep tells you should be taken with a grain of salt. Most of the time they'll just try to push what they can't sell or what they have too many of.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:05 AM
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Ordered this one:

IR 4151

I decided I wanted to get a general purpose palm type and this one seemed to fit the bill. It's a 3/16 orbit.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:14 AM
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I think that is a great all around orbital sander.

Brian
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:48 AM
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Glad I saw this post, I'm in the market to upgrade from my Craftsman DA to something a little better.
I've been looking at the following models

National Detroit DA
http://www.nationaltoolwarehouse.com...30674C405.aspx

And
Chicago Pneumatic 7215
http://www.nationaltoolwarehouse.com...35108C405.aspx

Price is about the same from this supplier. I like the design of the CP better, as it looks like it would be more comfortable to use. However, it rates the average and actual air consumption at 8 and 16 cfm. Most other sanders I've seen list in scfm, so not sure is this one uses more air.

Anybody have any experience with any of these?
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