Pros: Inexpensive, Powerful, Comfortable Design
Cons: I didn't buy one sooner
I recently purchased this sander to replace an old Black & Decker random orbit sander.
The Craftsman sander features a 2.8 amp motor (my old sander was only 2.0 amps) which is plenty of power for most anything I'll throw at it.
It features variable speed, which is a new feature to me. You can dial down the orbital speed if you feel the need.
The dust collection seems adequate, considering most sanders (no matter how good the brand or price tag) will still shoot out dust. Basically, you have a chute with a little bag attached. When you start to see dust around the base,
It looks like it will be pretty simple to adapt the attached dust collection chute to my shop vac also... a little duct tape should work fine.
I've only had a few days to test out my sander, but I can tell it's a well built machine.
Unlike my old orbital sander, this one is super quiet at all speeds. I normally wear hearing protection when sanding, but this sander is so quiet that I could carry on a conversation with someone while working.
The power switch is a new design for me also. The switch is mounted in a manner in which you only need to press your finger or thumb against the sliding switch. This is a much better design than the sealed toggle switches (at least I think so). I've not had any problems switching on or off with either hand.
This sander doesn't weigh a ton, but it feels sturdy.
As for sanding discs, it uses 8 hole hook & loop (commonly known as velcro) and the sanding discs stay in place pretty well. Just make sure to properly aligh the paper holes with the sanding pad for better dust collection.
The power cord is quite long, I'd guess 8 feet give or take a few inches.