Rated 4.6 out of 5 by 12
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Caroline Lighter, easier to use and with a clutch
Upgraded from a long-lasting Porter Cable standard random orbital to this low-profile one. Significantly more expensive but so far worth it. Much lighter – though still not totally ergonomically comfortable – and easier to control than the last model (the basic PC-382). The clutch makes it quick to go off which is very nice when you're done sanding, though there is a strange slight delay on startup. The receptacle for the sawdust is better than the hard plastic version (which is basically worthless), though much more difficult to get on/off. I like the way it latches, but it's for strong hands.
It's only been used a handful of times, but so far I love it.
May 22, 2012
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by Verified Reviewer Best electrical sander I've tried
Overall a very good sander. Easy to control and excellent dust collection.
This sander has plenty of power and won't try to run away.
I still prefer the air sanders but since they require a nuclear powered air compressor they are not appropriate for job sites.
This sander sits low but is a little big for my hand and the switch is hard to reach one handed but don't let that stop you.
It's a little pricy compaired to other name brands but the minute you turn it on you'll be glad you spent the extra.
Don't pay extra for the case unless you plant to transport it a lot.
July 18, 2012
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Fivestringer Great Orbital Sander
I had a B&D "two in one" orbital sander for about 18 months before it died. I never did like the B&D because it walked so much; it was really hard to control.
I decided I'd try a Porter-Cable because of their reputation. I 'm glad I got it. This thing works great. The pad brake works well so you don't have to worry about gouging when you first set it on the wood.
The only negative is the size of the handle - I've got average size hands and the handle is just way too big.
The dust catch system is the best! My old B&D used a pleated paper filter that seemed to let about half of the dust go through it. Not this P-C! The cloth bag does a great job of catching dust. It's much, much better than the B&D.
I would definitely recommend to anyone in the market for an orbital sander.
February 2, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by CoastalCarpentry Very good balance & smooth motor
This new sander was ready to go right out of the box. The variable speed has already been a big improvement on various materials, such as softer PVC trim which will heat up with high rpm. Soft start feature is a big bonus, as I've been putting up with standard "hang on and go" sanders previously.
There have been some comments about the wide power head, but I don't find it an issue. What I do appreciate is not having a top-heavy housing as I work on many off-angle exterior trims and mouldings, so balance is key.
June 18, 2013
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by 2011CA2 Great Value (But made in Mexico)
I have only used it a few times, but hooked to a standard shop vac, there is very little dust. The sander performance is similar to others I have used. I do like the quick braking of the pad and I have no ergonomic issues with it.
The 4 stars is because it is probably made with slave labor.
January 23, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by EAWshop Great sander if you have a large hand
I am a professional antique restorer and use a sander on a continual basis. If you have a hamfist hand to palm this sander, it is excellent. My hand is a normal mens large and it is just a bit big for my taste. What I like about it most is the low felt vibration and how fast it stops turning once you shut it off. Once I hit the off switch it stops before I can even set it down. Vaccuum port is a real plus. As a big Porter fan this one is a good one!
January 24, 2012
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Enjay This is an excellent product which I highly recommend.
The dust pickup was very good (most of my previous sanding was with a ¼ sheet pad sander and it hardly picked up any dust at all). I have used both Bosch and Porter Cable H&L discs and they both stay on the sander very well. I have not had any discs slip. I used a pack of 60-120-240 grit discs and they worked great for taking the old finish off the old deacon’s bench I am refinishing and preparing for stain. You can easily feel the difference each time you change grits. The hard plastic case not only protects the sander, it has enough room for extra packs of sanding discs. My hand felt fine holding and maneuvering the sander, but I can see where different hand sizes might have a problem. My only complaint (and it is very minor): the power cord should be longer. You will probably wind up using an extension cord. Don’t forget to wear hearing protection. Like every sander I have ever used, it is loud. The price was good and it shipped promptly.
September 5, 2013
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by Tbone low profile design makes sanding with limited space just that much easier
I must admit that the feel of holding the low profile sander took a little getting used to coming from the regular sander to this one, but it sands great and with the 4 1/2" height allowed me to sand in some tight spots.
August 21, 2013