The Makita 5-inch orbital sander has a durable design with an excellent combination of power and control. Its ergonomic rubberized handle improves operator control, while the variable speed ensures smooth and even sanding. However, it’s dust collection feature needs improving.
Professional carpenters and DIY enthusiasts often have trouble finding the best sanders for their workshops that can offer smooth, swirl-free sanding on any wood surface.
In this context, the Makita 5-inch orbital sander can be ideal for heavy-duty woodwork projects, thanks to its rugged construction and powerful performance. We reviewed this orbital sander based on its design, power, sanding speed, sanding efficiency, control, and price. So, read our review for in-depth knowledge about the product!
Makita Orbital Sander Review
Table of Contents
- Makita Orbital Sander Review
- Body: Lightweight, Ergonomic Design
- Power: Adjustable Power And Variable Speed
- Pad: 5-Inch Pad With Controlled Pad Speed
- Dust Collection: Works Well For High-Speed Sanding
- Sanding Efficiency: Fast And Smooth Sanding With No Swirl Marks
- Easy To Use: Adjustable Front Handle With Improved Grip
- Other Features: Two-Finger Trigger Switch
- Recommended Usage: DIY And Professional Carpentry Projects
- Price: On The Lower End
- What We Like
- What We Don’t Like
- Makita Orbital Sander Final Verdict
Body: Lightweight, Ergonomic Design
The ergonomic design of the Makita 5-inch orbital sander makes it far superior to any random orbit sander. It has a durable plastic body made from the highest quality materials and is ideal for heavy-duty tasks.
This Makita sander has three front handles, making it stand out from other regular sanders, as it becomes much easier to use and hold the unit. You can hold it with its long handle or use it like a regular palm sander by holding its top handle, whichever is more convenient for you. Also, the front handle has a rubberized palm grip for comfort and easy control.
Its rubberized grip reduces vibrations and ensures that you don’t get affected when using the machine. In fact, the lightweight design, paired with the durable plastic body, makes it easier to glide the machine effortlessly over a wooden surface for fast and smooth sanding. Its over-sized sealed ball-bearing construction even offers a longer tool life.
We loved the adjustable handle of this product, which helps apply even pressure and can be handy when sanding tight spaces or confined areas, such as cabinets or closets.
Power: Adjustable Power And Variable Speed
When tackling heavy-duty jobs with utmost efficiency, there are few sanders that can beat the power and quality of this Makita unit.
Its durable hard plastic body houses a 3.0 amp motor, which offers enough power to prevent the machine from getting hot or bogged down even under excess pressure. This powerful 3.0 amp motor also ensures that the sander doesn’t slow down to deliver an even, super-smooth sanding.
Furthermore, this Makita sander comes with an adjustable variable speed control dial ranging between 4,000 and 12,000 OPM. Just adjust the long handle based on your requirements or the material on which you’re working to get the desired results.
It’s best to set a lower sanding speed while polishing a surface using polishing pads. On the other hand, set it on a higher speed if you need to use the power tool on a rough wood surface.
We recommend using a premium-quality sanding disc with a coarser grit for faster output. Most importantly, even at the highest sanding speed, the tool is super-easy to control for smooth and fast sanding.
Pad: 5-Inch Pad With Controlled Pad Speed
Like most compact orbital sanders, this Makita sander has a 5-inch pad featuring a hook and loop abrasive disc system for quick disc changes. This system is quite strong and can last for ages if you take good care of the machine without misusing it. For instance, avoid using dull discs that heat up and melt the hooks or put excessive pressure on the sander.
Moreover, the pad control system offers a more controlled pad speed while using the sander on delicate surfaces for polishing. The ⅛-inch random orbital radius of the pad also offers smoother sanding with minimum swirl marks. Its controlled pad speed decreases the risk of burning the wood and over-sanding, a common problem with belt sanders.
Dust Collection: Works Well For High-Speed Sanding
Even though the dust bag of this Makita sander isn’t the best feature, it’s better at collecting dust than most random orbit sanders. It collects dust quite well when empty, and the machine runs at high speed for a few minutes. But, at lower speeds, the bag isn’t very effective in collecting dust.
Using the dust bag is far better than working with bare tools, but it doesn’t create a dustless environment. It’s better to hook the machine to a shop vac for improved dust collection. The dust collection is nearly perfect when you use a shop vac, even at lower speeds.
However, the kit doesn’t come with a shop vac, and the machine only connects with the 2.5-inch diameter vacuum hoses. You can remove just the dust bag without taking out the entire dust canister and fit the vacuum hose right inside the built-in vacuum port adapter. Thus, you can improve the machine’s dust collection efficiency and enjoy a cleaner work environment.
Sanding Efficiency: Fast And Smooth Sanding With No Swirl Marks
The Makita sander is highly versatile and can work on wooden surfaces, from cabinet doors to outdoor porch decks.
For instance, you can use it to remove lacquer from your cabinet doors by applying minimum pressure while sanding your outdoor decks to remove old paint stains effortlessly. It’s better than any random orbital sander for fast, super-smooth sanding.
Moreover, the ⅛-inch random orbit action offers a swirl-free finish while sanding a wooden surface. The pad control system delivers a controlled pad speed during the start-up to prevent over-sanding or swirl marks.
You can also use the pad brake to stop the pad and prevent the machine from overheating or burning the wood. Hence, this pad control system offers smooth sanding and increased operator comfort.
Easy To Use: Adjustable Front Handle With Improved Grip
This Makita sander is the first orbital sander that features a new adjustable front handle with ergonomic rubberized handles for improved operator comfort, making it ideal for continuous use. It also offers a better grip to create a smooth finish while working on a rough, wooden surface.
Not to mention, the rubberized handle design is extremely comfortable and doesn’t cause any soreness, even if you’re working with the machine for long hours. That said, the sander might still feel a bit heavy if you continuously use it on vertical surfaces for a few hours, and it’s true for all Makita sanders.
Furthermore, the vibration levels are low, making the machine a comfortable choice if you want to use it for long hours. You won’t feel any significant vibrations even if it’s running at the highest speed. This low-vibration feature of this sander makes it completely safe for people with carpal tunnel or arthritis.
Additionally, the innovative adjustable front handle is perfect for easily sanding tight spaces and corners. So, this sander combines power with these additional ease-of-use features to deliver the best results while offering excellent comfort.
You can also use the battery version if you don’t have a nearby power source or find the cord troublesome. The battery-powered version usually has extra batteries included in the sander kit for your convenience.
Other Features: Two-Finger Trigger Switch
This Makita sander doesn’t have a traditional on/off button but instead features a two-finger trigger switch having a safety lock.
This trigger switch can be a blessing if you work on an elaborate project requiring frequent disc changes by starting and stopping the machine. The lock system offers better control while operating the machine if you don’t want to use the long handle.
Furthermore, the pad brake system is specially designed to control pad speed to prevent gouging, enabling fast and swirl-free sanding without damaging the wood surface.
Recommended Usage: DIY And Professional Carpentry Projects
The palm sander is ideal for all woodworking projects, thanks to its variable speed and superior control. Since it’s easy to use, even DIY enthusiasts can try this machine in their private workshops. Not to mention, the powerful 3 amp motor makes it quite a catch for professional carpenters for heavy-duty woodworking projects.
Price: On The Lower End
This Makita orbital sander is quite affordable, and you can get it at an attractive price of $88.99. Its price is on the lower end, especially considering its powerful motor and superior control. Even if you want to purchase the machine with the tool case, you can get the entire kit for $100.
What We Like
- Powerful 3.0 amp motor
- Variable speed for superior control
- Comfortable, rubberized grip
- Innovative adjustable front handle
- Durable and high-quality plastic body
What We Don’t Like
- Poor dust collection at lower speeds
- No shop vac adapter in the kit
- Feels too heavy on vertical surfaces
- Product Name: Makita BO5041 5-Inch Random Orbit Sander
- Product Brand: Makita
- Abrasive Disc Size: 5 inches
- Net Weight: 3.5 lbs
- Orbits Per Minute (Variable Speed): 4,000 – 12,000 OPM
- Maximum Orbits Per Minute: 12,000 OPM
- Orbit Diameter: ⅛-inch
- Power Type: Corded
- Amperage Capacity: 3 amp
- Voltage: 110 Volts
- Wattage: 300 watts
- Vibration (m/s2): 3.5
- Dimensions (L x W x H): 10.8 x 4.8 x 6 inches
- Pad Size (round): 4.16 inches
Makita Orbital Sander Final Verdict
The Makita 5-inch orbital sander is an excellent choice for all professional carpenters and DIY enthusiasts invested in their woodworking projects. It is ideal for carpentry workshops, thanks to its precision performance and high speed output that helps prepare most surfaces for a fine finish.
Its pad brake system also allows swirl-free sanding while the reduced vibrations lets you maneuver the product with ease. But it’s best to hook up this power tool with a shopvac for improved dust collection while sanding.
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