Is it possible to polish with an eccentric sander

Kia Spectra, 2011

polish, eccentric, sander

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Varieties of devices

The use of a design with the presence of eccentrics complicates the device, but for the most part, the models are similar to each other. The only fundamental division can be made between household appliances and professional equipment. The household version is characterized by its compact size and modest weight, which gives it excellent ergonomics. Basically, this category is represented by eccentric sander for wood, which have low power indicators and are designed for short-term processing sessions. Professional models, on the other hand, have high productivity and can be used in stone and metal processing. At the same time, these are massive units, the parts of which are distinguished by a long working life and good endurance..

Kia Spectra, 2011

Tool cost

The price tag of orbital sanders depends on the level of operational parameters. Low-cost devices for household use can cost 2-3 thousand rubles. With the help of such equipment, it is difficult to obtain high-quality processing, but it is better than performing similar operations with improvised means. The class above is followed by eccentric grinders, the price of which varies from 4 to 7 thousand rubles. In this range, by the way, most of the models of the above-described manufacturers are represented. Such a power tool is distinguished by decent performance, well-thought-out ergonomics and a wide range of functions. For 10-15 thousand rubles. you can also purchase a professional model that will quickly cope with materials that are difficult to process, regardless of their surface condition.

Kia Spectra, 2007

The versatility of eccentric machines

Among the operational features that distinguish orbital grinders, it is worth noting a wide range of applications, that is, versatility. The fact is that in terms of the quality of processing, such models are comparable to vibratory devices, and in terms of power, they are comparable to tape technology. But that’s not all. As already noted, eccentric devices are also capable of performing a polishing function, although for the full use of the unit in this capacity, appropriate equipment may be required. To a large extent, the high versatility that the eccentric sander possesses is achieved thanks to the discs used. The working element can perform not only rotational-translational movements, but also circular, and also provide an oscillatory effect.

ESHM weight

As previously noted, the weight of an eccentric sander directly depends on its power. It’s just the engine. The more powerful it is, the heavier the machine. Weight does not directly affect the quality or productivity of the work. But this parameter is important for the comfortable work of the master. So ESM with a large weight will be more difficult to process vertical surfaces, as well as the ceiling. For processing horizontal surfaces, this parameter has little effect on the comfort of working with it..

EShM type

For the operation of ESM, various energy sources are used, depending on this, there are several types of eccentric grinders. It can be an electric machine powered by the mains or a battery, or it can be a sander that uses compressed air. This variety allows the use of ESM both where there is electricity and where it is not. Choosing this or that option, it is necessary to clearly understand why and where the ESM will be used..

If everything is more or less clear with electric grinders, then a little should be said about pneumatic. The eccentric pneumatic grinding machine is mainly used on an industrial scale, since it requires the installation of additional equipment in the form of a compressor or compressed air cylinders. These ESHM perfectly serve in the garage, service station or in the workshop for the production of furniture. Their main advantages are their low weight, it is only from 600 g to 1000 g. As well as a small number of moving parts. Since, using compressed air, the need for an electric motor has disappeared, there are correspondingly fewer parts. This affected both weight and service life. In addition, the low weight allows for a longer and more comfortable use of the tool itself. One of the manufacturers of such ESM is Dynabrade, with its Dynorbital eccentric grinders.

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EShM plate diameter

The performance of the eccentric sander, in addition to power, also depends on the diameter of the sanding pad. Everything is simple here – the large area of ​​the plate allows you to quickly process a large area at a time. The most common sizes are 125 mm and 150 mm. But you can also find non-standard sizes of 50 mm, 80 mm, 90 mm or 115 mm. Although the eccentric sander is designed to grind only flat surfaces, the small diameters of the sole plate allow fillet grinding.

Non-standard sizes of the sanding pad are rare. They are produced by only a few companies and among the entire range of eccentric grinders on the market you can find only a few copies. Rupes TA 50 and Metabo SXE 400 grinders are outstanding representatives of ESM with a small plate diameter..

When purchasing ESM, in many cases it is enough to look at the model name to determine the diameter of the plate. Most manufacturers indicate the size there. For example, an eccentric sander Interskol EShM-150 / 600E. Looking at the markings, you can immediately determine that the diameter of the plate is 150 mm, and the power of the machine is 600 watts. But it will not be superfluous to look into the passport or ask the seller. Since the Makita BO5031 eccentric sander does not contain such data in its name.

Second handle

The specifics of working with an eccentric machine provides for pressure on it from above. Even the very shape of the instrument is wholly and completely directed towards this. But quite often the starting mechanism and the electric motor are somewhat off-center, which creates certain difficulties in operation. In this regard, the manufacturers of ESM have added an additional handle that compensates for the pressure on the other side and makes it easier to work with the machine. The handle itself can be removable or stationary. It all depends on the model. For example, the Makita BO5040 / 5041 sander has a removable handle, while the Bosch PEX 400 AE is equipped with a stationary additional handle. Of particular note are the DWT grinders. They have equipped their ESHM with side handles, which provides additional convenience when working on vertical surfaces..

Pressure indicator

One of the additional functions useful for a beginner is the pressure indicator. This is especially useful for those who have not yet learned how to feel their pressure on the instrument. This indicator, in case of excessive or insufficient pressure, will allow you to correct it in order to perform the grinding properly. This function will be useful for professionals as well. It will allow you to assess the degree of your skill in working with ESM and facilitate the grinding process itself..

ESM rotation speed

This parameter of an eccentric sander is directly related to its power. The quality of the work performed and the convenience of work depend precisely on the rotation speed. But there is one important point here. When buying, they usually try to choose a machine with high rpm, believing that the higher the better for the job. But this applies more to productivity than to the quality of work. Very high RPMs of ESM are suitable for roughing the surface, but for perfect grinding, low RPMs are required..

Another feature that should be taken into account is associated with the rotation speed. It lies in the fact that the rotation speed will be the lower, the higher the power of the machine. For example, the bo6040 eccentric sander from Makita has a power of 750 W, and at the same time, its rotation speed is only 1600 – 5800 rpm. At the same time, the Bosch GEX 125-1 AE eccentric sander has a power of 250 W and a rotation speed of 7,500 – 12,000 rpm. When choosing an ESM, it is necessary to remember this feature and focus on the purpose for which the machine will be used. Will it be a high speed sander for rough sanding or a low speed sander for finishing sanding.

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The amplitude of the ESM vibrations

The next parameter that affects the quality of surface treatment and depends on the speed of rotation is the vibration amplitude or, as it is also called, the eccentric stroke of the grinding machine. As noted above, ESM performs reciprocating circular movements. And if the speed of rotation to a greater extent affects productivity, then the amplitude of movement of the sanding pad is responsible just for the quality of processing.

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Basically, the amplitude of the oscillation and the speed of rotation are related. It is the combination of these two movements that allows high-quality sanding. There are models on the market with an amplitude of 2 mm to 5 mm. DWT grinders have the smallest amplitude. The presented photo demonstrates the movements of the grinding pad of an eccentric sander, it can be seen how, depending on the amplitude of the vibration, the quality of surface treatment changes..

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Important! It should be noted that for some pneumatic ESM, reciprocating movements are created using special levers-nozzles. Depending on which arm is installed, this will be the diameter of the grinding orbit..

Disc machines

In appearance and principle of operation, the device resembles an angle grinder. A disc-type car sander is an inexpensive and highly efficient tool. The type of spindle rotation allows you to work at large angles, but requires accuracy. It is not recommended to use such a machine for a thin layer of paint. Professional disc grinders differ from an angle grinder in diameter: for “home” work with a personal car or a small metal surface, an angle grinder with a radius of 125 is suitable. A device with a radius of 185-205 is professionally used.

Among the domestic manufacturers of grinders, the company Interskol should be highlighted. Her tools are great for medium-sized tasks, which is why they are often used by car mechanics to polish cars..

Angle Grinder

The tool is analogous to a disc sander at home. Car enthusiasts come to polishing an angle grinder after the car receives small defects on the body. Compared to a professional machine, an angle grinder has a smaller circle radius and, as a result, less efficiency, but copes well with small defects.

To eliminate minor defects, a foam or wool disc and paste are enough to be applied to the tool. It is important to use an angle grinder with adjustable speeds and modes, as well as an electronic system for maintaining speed under load in order to avoid causing even greater damage to the car.

Additional materials

In addition to tools, consumables are required to process car paintwork. They are used to maintain shape, protect and gloss surfaces. Polishes are divided into:

They are classified by grain size and composition and are a must for quality surface finishes..

What else can you grind

In addition to professional electric tools, hand tools for polishing a car and improvised tools are used for do-it-yourself grinding. Hand tools include a plane and sandpaper. This method is used when it is necessary to perform high-precision work on small surfaces. These tools are more often used at home, in the absence of a delta sander..

Handy tools – multipurpose tools that can be used, among other things, for grinding metal surfaces. These include:

Devices perform the same functions as professional machines, but with less efficiency, therefore they are used exclusively at home in the absence of specialized tools.


Performs grinding due to the movement of a looped abrasive belt. Used to remove paint from large flat surfaces. The use of such a device is justified, but it will require additional equipment for operator access to hard-to-reach areas. Used for rough finishing before painting.

Orbital cars

The tool is more complex than disk devices. The cost of an orbital polisher for a car of the same power is higher than for a disc.

The device is a sole to which the disc is attached. During operation, in addition to the rotation of the disc, there is a translational movement that moves it along the sole.

The orbital machine is in high demand and is considered a better tool by professionals than other types of polishers. Due to the translational movements, the speed of work and the area of ​​the simultaneously processed surface are increased. In addition, the device causes less heating of the surface, therefore, when working with an eccentric machine, the paint does not fade and is better preserved. It is more expensive than other devices, but this type of tool is recommended by professionals..

Work technique

Before starting to polish a car, you need to decide on the place and time. For a small area, it will take 2-3 hours, and after that the car should stand for about an hour. The procedure is not recommended to be performed in direct sunlight or in an extremely hot room..

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Before you polish the car with your own hands, you should prepare: thoroughly clean the polished area from dust, lime and insects. In addition to cleaning, it is recommended to degrease the machine coating. For this, it is best to use specialized tools..

After the preparatory stage, you can proceed to the main one. Grinding the machine before painting is carried out in 2 stages:

Protective polishing eliminates the first step.

Abrasive stage – removal of large paint defects requiring the application of a new coat of paint or varnish. At the same time, the hardest nozzle is inserted into the machine for grinding the car body, and the procedure is carried out with a large number of special consumables.

The protective stage is carried out after the abrasive and involves the careful application of a small amount of polishing mixture using soft nozzles.

The machine is not polished immediately, but in small areas. This is necessary to ensure that the polishing mixtures do not harden prematurely and evenly lay on the body, providing a shine. This approach also eliminates overheating of the polishing machine..

In order to properly polish the car at home, you need to deal with the mixture, attachments and pressure on the tool. Before you start, you should practice on unnecessary or rough parts so as not to spoil expensive body parts..

The car polisher is designed to do the job without manual work, but automating the polishing and sanding process has additional benefits. The use of a revolving tool allows you to start processing paintwork with fine-grained abrasives, which significantly reduces the risk of rubbing the varnish layer through and through, ruining the surface of the body with uneven processing, etc. However, in addition to the advantages of this polishing method, there are nuances directly related to the nature of the work and the parameters of the grinder.
There is a common misconception about the difference between an angle polisher and a regular polisher. Angular can only be a grinder, and its version intended for polishing is a polishing machine. Those. in body polishing equipment, the axis of the disc is always at right angles to the main axis of the tool – on the opposite side there is usually a handle. This does not mean that you can only polish a car with an angle grinder: you can do it with anything, including a conventional drill, but such an angular arrangement of the axis of the circle is much more convenient (correct load distribution and low center of gravity).

The main parameter of the machine is revolutions. To start polishing a car, you need to get at least 1200 rpm, and for high-quality polishing up to 3000. When choosing, you need to pay attention not only to the rpm range, but also to the smooth start-up and adjustment possibilities. The speed control can be manual or electronic – it is better to opt for the second option.

The cost of such equipment is mainly determined by its durability. Working with the body of one car every 3-4 months means that you can take almost any one, but if we are talking about commercial use, then the safety margin will never be superfluous. The most budgetary Chinese version is enough for 8-12 months of continuous operation, for 1-2 years with periodic use. If there is any doubt about the nature of the operation of the tool, it is better to opt for the products of a well-known brand by purchasing equipment with minimal characteristics, but with a good guarantee. Even if it is planned to use it only for minor car repairs, it may always be necessary to operate it for the purpose of earning money, and in this case it is easier to put up with the inconvenience than with the lack of a working tool.

Do not be seduced by the ability to work offline. Body polishing is a lengthy process, and a standard battery lasts about 10-15 minutes. The presence of a battery increases the cost of the tool at times, so it becomes easier to find a good adapter for it. It is worth paying attention to the peculiarities of using wheels: some polishing tools cannot use the entire range of polishing wheels – saving on this parameter is not the best option.