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seeking information about this tool, pros and cons, any insight is welcomed. I am working on a 32 truck so the surfaces are mostly flat . The Straight Line Air Sander or Random Orbit Sander which would be the most useful for doors, top, bed, no fenders. This may sound incredible but the cost is unimportant, I am looking for a model that will do a good job of moving and smoothing body filler (3m zebra) I am aware of the Hutchins models but believe that is a bit more for a pro, I am a home car builder. tanks in advance
 

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Take this for what its worth, but I do collision repair for a living and DO NOT own a straight line sander.
My 8" snap on da or mud hog smoothes filler out faster and flatter then any straightline Ive ever seen or used.
My snap on unit is a tad spendy at 280 but Ingersoll Rand makes a super nice 8" da at around 120 bucks I believe.

I currently work with 5 other body techs and none of them use a straight line. My last shop 1 guy out of 7 used a straight line. Dont like it JMO...Eric
 

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I use them both a lot. I get the body filler pretty straight with my snap on 8" orbital, and once it get to final finishing it, use my viking air file. Also nice to have the airfile if you are blocking a lot of primer out. Saves a lot of sanding by hand on a board, but use the hand boards a lot too. Would you absoulutley need an airfile, no, but it comes in handy and saves time. Then on the other hand the 8" orbital is great for stripping paint of a car. Never can have too many tools, I'd save up for them both.
 

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Fine, I usually sand in a cross pattern. I still use a block too. I get majority of it with a board file. A block you need for getting bodylines and stuff straight, and some parts are easier done with a block. I usually get my bodyfiller straight with 36 grit and go over it with 80 on a board file. Prime, board file with 180, reprime and hand block with 400 wet. Thats what is usually the case anyways.
 

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For rough sanding filler the 8 inch DA gets my vote. Most oll of my work is done by hand with blocks and boards though. Had a Viking air file years ago- wasn't imressed and traded it in. Nothing beats hand blocking for straightness IMO. Air tools are for fast material removal, rough in work, and final sanding on production type work.
 

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I don't think it got mentioned above, but I find my DA essential for feathering edges. It does a better job than hand sanding in my book. I also like my straight line when I hit a nice big flat patch that I need to get straight - but I can't feather with it. So if price in not a problem...buy 'em all.
 

· Brian Martin,Freelance adviser
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I have to go with the anti long board folks. I have not owned one in the 25 years I have done this work for a living. I had one just before I started when I was 17, loaned it out and never missed it. We all have different ways of getting things done.

I find that the 8" ND900 is THE most valuable tool for cutting filler. I have two, one as back up. If these tools went up to a thousand bucks today and I needed one, I would buy it, they are that valuable to me.

I have gotten pretty proficient using it and will do body lines and just about every size work. I rough out the work with it, then about 90% of the time will still "rub" a block over it just to knock any pokeys flat. I then skim coat it and switch to my 6" Dynabrade orbital finish sander (not a "DA" but an orbital) and will get it as flat as some of the guys I work with using a block!

I will go over that with a block 90% of the time to as flat as I can get it.

I say "I" but I have seen many guys do something similar. There are a couple of guys in the shop that do it exactly the same. One hardly ever touches anything with a block, 6" orbital only. I have to say, after the priming and painting his work looks the same as mine. :)

I do own an orbital long board that on particulary large panels I may pull out of the box. I use it VERY rarely, maybe twice a year.

Brian
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
GOOD info!!!!!!!! just what I was looking for, thank you ALL very much . . Loads of nice folks here that are full of wonderful knowledge , again thank you and good luck to all



greg (pepi)
 

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Yeah get the 8" orbital and a couple different hand boards and blocks, They aren't too expensive. Then later on you can consider an air file. If you have a large area of filler, the 8" will knock it down nicely and save a lot of muscle, I also use it to strip peeling paint or sand down to metal, it works nice for that too. I find it has more power then an airfile. The air file takes much longer to sand down plastic filler. An a da, you just can't live without.
 
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