Thats right! New kid on the block, a cordless belt sander and its from RIDGID. They have been setting the world on fire with awesome release after awesome release in their GEN5X line. What they gave us was a brushless belt sander.
Now I can count on one finger the cordless belt sander options on one finger, seriously this is the first, well Ryobi came out with one too around the same time. But RIDGID has always marketed itself towards a more “pro” consumer but does it fall short?
The thing is I know quite a few tool users that don’t take RIDGID very seriously, being an exclusive Home Depot brand it sometimes gets flagged as a homeowner line of tools. But that isn’t the case, RIDGID power tools are a rugged and affordable option for even pros. They carry a basic tool line that will cover you essential needs but I have found its a great battery line to supplement my main cordless line.
So having a cordless belt sander is an amazing addition to the shop. Its pretty affordable too coming in at $149. That falls in the middle of the pack for a 3″ x 18″ belt sander. The lesser expensive models tend to be more DIYer brands like SKIL, Black and Decker, you get my drift…
So is it worth it? Yes it is! Now its not going to replace a corded unit, especially a larger belt like a 4″ x 21″ but its a fairly compact unit with adequate power. Now I have been using it with a 4.0 ah pack, this yields at the most around 20 minutes of runtime. We do know that RIDGID is producing some larger packs but for now you’ll want to use a 5 ah with this, the more advanced cells will give you that extra grunt.
Now the sander doesn’t lack in power, depending on the grit of the belt it will tear through any material you put it up against with its variable speed option. The dial is in a great spot for your thumb to easily adjust it, but stays out of the way form your natural grip.
You’ll notice a knob for tracking as well, a quick turn in either direction will adjust the belt. To change your paper simply flip the level to release the tension, slide the new belt on and your ready to sand.
Now lets talk dust! I am thoroughly impressed with the collection of this unit, when using the dust bag your collection is somewhere around fifty to sixty percent, but the real magic happens when you connect your vacuum or extractor. The amount of dust that gets collected with a hose on the back is something I would expect from a high end sander like Festool or Mirka. I couldn’t find a spec of dust on the unit. Now 100 percent collection is next to impossible but I would say it was able to capture around 90 percent of the dust.
So RIDGID did us right with this one, I strongly urge you to get your hands on this! We don’t always need a belt sander but having it without a cord attached it phenomenal. Besides, you can even adjust the handle location, loses the screw with the onboard hex key and the front handle will slide on the track to lock in to your comfort.
Run in your local HD, head over to the RIDGID section and just pick it up. The weight isn’t bad at all and it has a pretty decent grip on it. RIDGID kept its “hex” grip which is a rubber non-slip grip. Go get it dirty!