A Guide to Finding Best Wide Belt Sander for 2021

So you need to get a wide belt sander for your project!

Well, you’ll find a lot of options to choose from. But to complete your project perfectly, you need the perfect sander.

As there are number of variations for sander, you may become overwhelmed by them.

If you’re really in that kind of situation, you can have a look at this buying guide.

Here, we’ve discussed the top-rated sanders of the market along with the features that make a wide belt sander the best one. So that you can find the best wide belt sander for your projects easily.

A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Preview
Overall Best
SHOP FOX W1738 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander
Grizzly Industrial G0447-37" 20 HP 3-Phase Double Head Wide-Belt Sander
SHOP FOX W1757 25 HP 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander
Powermatic 1632 16" Open-End Belt Sander, 7.5HP, 3PH 230V (1791251)
Safety Speed Cut 3760 WBS3760101 10HP Wide-belt Sander
Grizzly Industrial G0527-18" 5 HP Wide-Belt Sander
Product
SHOP FOX W1738 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander
Grizzly Industrial G0447-37" 20 HP 3-Phase Double Head Wide-Belt Sander
SHOP FOX W1757 25 HP 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander
Powermatic 1632 16" Open-End Belt Sander, 7.5HP, 3PH 230V (1791251)
Safety Speed Cut 3760 WBS3760101 10HP Wide-belt Sander
Grizzly Industrial G0527-18" 5 HP Wide-Belt Sander
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Overall Best
Preview
SHOP FOX W1738 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander
Product
SHOP FOX W1738 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander
Star Rating
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Preview
Grizzly Industrial G0447-37" 20 HP 3-Phase Double Head Wide-Belt Sander
Product
Grizzly Industrial G0447-37" 20 HP 3-Phase Double Head Wide-Belt Sander
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Preview
SHOP FOX W1757 25 HP 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander
Product
SHOP FOX W1757 25 HP 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander
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Powermatic 1632 16" Open-End Belt Sander, 7.5HP, 3PH 230V (1791251)
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Powermatic 1632 16" Open-End Belt Sander, 7.5HP, 3PH 230V (1791251)
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Safety Speed Cut 3760 WBS3760101 10HP Wide-belt Sander
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Safety Speed Cut 3760 WBS3760101 10HP Wide-belt Sander
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Grizzly Industrial G0527-18" 5 HP Wide-Belt Sander
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Grizzly Industrial G0527-18" 5 HP Wide-Belt Sander
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Top 6 Wide Belt Sander Short Reviews

1. SHOP FOX 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander (Model No W1738)

SHOP FOX 37-Inch Three Phase Wide-belt Sander
  • Motor: 15 hp, 3-phase, 36/18 Amp;
  • Conveyor motor: 1 HP;
  • Table elevation motor: 1/4 HP;
  • Rotation:  1725 RPM;
  • Maximum board width: 36-1/2-inches
  • Maximum workpiece thickness: 6-inches
  • Minimum board length: 14-inches
  • Air requirements: 70 PSI
  • The surface speed of drums: 2,565 FPM
  • Conveyor feed rate: Variable, 15-49 FPM
  • Approximate weight: 1786 lbs.

This unit has digital settings to adjust the speed of conveyors, oscillation, platens, and countless other features. The adjustment can be made to the tiniest bits possible so that you will always have the same perfection as long as you want. 

This machine can easily handle boards up to 36 inches. So, if your production is mainly about making super fine cabinets and doors with perfect surfaces, then this machine is surely a must-have for your shop.

There are three motors in the sander and all are three-phase types.

My most favorite thing about this beast is its control panel, which doesn’t let you do anything manually. Besides, there are three types of sanding options to choose from. You can choose among platen up, platen down, or platen even. In combination with the variable oscillation, the proper sanding can do miracles to the stocks if handled properly.

I couldn’t point out one verdict about this wide belt sander. The matter is, its highest capacity is 36 inches; if your requirement is higher than this, then there are other options that may satisfy your needs.

Things We Liked

  • Digital micro-adjustment features;
  • Safety shut down;
  • Different platen types for different materials.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Requires three-phase power to operate.

2. Grizzly 37-Inch Wide-belt Sander with Digital Readout (Model No W1710)

Grizzly 37-Inch Wide-belt Sander with Digital Readout
  • Motor: 20 hp;
  • Conveyor motor: 1 HP;
  • Table elevation motor: 1/4 HP;
  • Maximum board width: 36-1/2″;
  • Maximum board thickness: 6 -inches;
  • Minimum board length: 11 inches;
  • Maximum sanding width: 6-Inches;
  • Air requirements: 57 – 75 PSI, 7 CFM;
  • Dust port: 4-Inches;
  • The surface speed of drums: 3600F/2800R FPM;
  • Conveyor feed rate: Variable, 14–60 FPM;
  • Six 4″ dust collector port.
  • Approximate weight: 2709 pounds;

This one is another version of the previously reviewed 37-inch sander from Shop Fox, but a more affordable one. Apart from digital settings, it has digital readout features. So, using this machine is the easiest thing even if you are new to these types of machines.

This wide belt sander has been made keeping in mind budget woodworking shops that work with large boards. Workers of such shops usually are beginners, hence operating this sander is also made the easiest among all the sanders available from this manufacturer.

The capacity of this sander is limited to boards of 37x6x11 inches. But the good thing is, it can be operated in single-phase power outlets, whilst other similar machines require three phases to kick start.

Like any other wide belt sander, you will be able to adjust the feed rate, sanding and oscillation rate, and so on. The ease of belt changing and tensioning prevents belt breakage. No matter how intimidating this machine looks, operating this is child’s play.

Things We Liked

  • Easy to use;
  • Precise application;
  • Budget-friendly;
  • Overload protected.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Not widely used.

Read more: 5 Best Drum Sander Reviews, Click here


3. SHOP FOX 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander (Model No W1757)

SHOP FOX 43-Inch Three Phase Double Head Wide-belt Sander
  • Motor: 25 HP, 3-phase, 64/32A;
  • Conveyor motor: 2 HP;
  • Table elevation motor: 1/4 HP;
  • Rotation:  1725 RPM;
  • Maximum board width: 43-inches;
  • Maximum board thickness: 6 -inches;
  • Minimum board thickness: 3/16 inches;
  • Minimum board length: 14 inches;
  • Maximum sanding width: 6-Inches;
  • Dust port: (10) 4-Inches;
  • Front drum surface speed: 3,543 FPM
  • Rear drum surface speed: 2,565 FPM
  • Conveyor speed: 14 – 60 FPM
  • Sanding belt size: 43-by-60-inch
  • Approximate weight: 3380 lbs.

It is a monstrous machine that swallows wood stocks as long as 43 inches and 6 inches thick, and replaces rough surfaces into the world’s finest feather smooth boards in a blink. But let me clear one thing first, this machine is meant for shops that work with large and thick stocks on a daily basis and needs a high production rate. Because, the price, weight, and space this machine requires, can be a daydream for small shop owners.

The benefit of three types of sanding has been incorporated in one machine. You can do surface removing, surfacing, and feathering in one go with this machine. Besides, if something seems not right, with its emergency stop, you can discontinue the work immediately. This feature is proven to be life and money-saving for the users.

The power this sander provides comes from its three-phase motors that run on three-phase power sources. Besides, to enjoy its miraculous features, you must be prepared to pay a fortune.

Things We Liked

  • Suitable for large production houses;
  • High capacity;
  • Easy to use;
  • Emergency shut off.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Needs three phases to operate;
  • Pricey, large, and heavy.

4. Powermatic 16-Inch Open End Belt Sander (Model No 1791251)

Powermatic 1632 16' Open-End Belt Sander, 7.5HP, 3PH 230V (1791251)
  • Motor: 7-1/2 HP, 3-phase;
  • Conveyor motor: 2 HP;
  • Table elevation motor: 1/4 HP;
  • Rotation:  1725 RPM;
  • Maximum board width: 16-inches;
  • Maximum board thickness: 6 -inches;
  • Minimum board thickness: 3/16 inches;
  • Minimum board length: 14 inches;
  • Maximum sanding width: 6-Inches;
  • Dust port: 4-Inches;
  • Front drum surface speed: 3,543 FPM
  • Rear drum surface speed: 2,565 FPM
  • Conveyor speed: 14 – 60 FPM
  • Sanding belt size: 17-by-54-inch
  • Approximate weight: 1106lbs

The open belt gives the flexibility of using larger boards even if the capacity of the sanding belt is limited. Besides, it takes smaller space and costs less compared to closed-end sanders. When it comes to this sander from Powermatic, it comes with a separate digital readout that you can choose not to purchase right now as it is a little bit pricey.

Maintaining this sander is easier than maintaining a closed belt sander. As closed one comes in a more compact form and leaves less opportunity to clean, grease, or replace its parts on your own. I loved everything about this Powermatic sander when I tried it. I would like to recommend it for anyone who wants the functionality of a pricey high-capacity sander in an economic form.

Belt changing can be problematic for this sander. If proper caution is not taken, you may end up breaking it in a snap.

Things We Liked

  • Comes with load meter;
  • Open-ended belt;
  • Accurate setting changes.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Belt changing needs caution.

5. Safety Speed 10HP Wide-belt Sander (Model No WBS3760101)

Safety Speed 10HP Wide-belt Sander
  • Motor: 15 HP, 3-phase/ 10 hp single phase;
  • Conveyor motor: 3/4 HP;
  • Table elevation motor: 1/4 HP;
  • Maximum board width: 36-inches;
  • Maximum board thickness: 6 -inches;
  • Minimum board thickness: 7-1/4 inches;
  • Maximum board length: UNLIMITED;
  • Dust port: 6-Inches;
  • Conveyor speed: 0-18 FPM
  • Sanding belt size: 37-by-60-inch

This one is another open-type wide belt sander that is able to work with unlimited length. There are two motors of 15 hp and 10 hp motors to choose from for your own Safety Speed sander. So, depending on your power sources, you can order the three-phase or the single-phase one.

This machine is lacking high-tech features like most of its competitors do, but the benefit is, that makes it cheaper. Its electric belt tracking system and five emergency stop features give you accuracy and safety.

This unit is lacking important information like the speed settings of the conveyor, oscillating details, and other settings. Besides, there is no customer review online to judge this machine. Hence, you have to explore this one at your own risk.

Things We Liked

  • Low cost;
  • Can work with unlimited length;
  • Electric belt tracking.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Lacking valuable details.

6. Grizzly Industrial 18″ Wide-belt Sander with Digital Readout

Grizzly Industrial 18
  • Motor Speed: 1,725 RPM;
  • Maximum Sanding Width: 6-Inch;
  • Dust Port: 4-Inch;
  • Dimensions: 33 x 40 x 65 inches;
  • Minimum Stock Length: 18 Inch;
  • Model Number: G0527;
  • 16.4, 23, 32.8 FPM variable convoy speed;
  • Sanding oscillation 1/2″ – 5/8″;
  • Weight: 1025 lbs.

Since we’ve reached the final product on this list, you can see that it is one of the most sensible choices on this list. However, it is still going to provide you with a huge amount of extraordinary highlights that you have to finish some work. If you search carefully for this item in detail, you will find that it has a sanding and feed engine speed of 1,725 rpm that will give you everything you need.

Its base stock length is about 9 inches. In light of its completeness, you can sit back and relax to realize that this incredible deal has a lot of incredible features thrown in and you can be praised for using it every time. In conclusion, the most extreme selling width in this particular sander is a remarkable 18 inches and comes with a residual port of about four inches all around.

Things We Liked

  • Sanding Width: 18-inch;
  • RPM Power: 1,725;
  • Minimum stock length of 6-inches;
  • 4-inch dust port.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • No clear cons to mention.

Things to Consider While Buying a Wide Belt Sander

You can choose any wide belt sander from the mentioned list. But before choosing one, you also need to know about the features of the sander, at least the basic ones. Which you can check from two different views-

Features That Make the Sander Best

The features that make a wide belt sander the best sander are-

Control Panel

Almost all belt sanders of these days come with a control panel, with which you can track what is going on in the sander. Generally, these control panels are easy to operate but you may find some with a complex operating system.

So before buying a wide belt sander, you should check that the operating system of the control panel is straightforward, simple and has digital readout.

Variable Speed

Most of the sanders come with variable speed, so you’ll be able to sand your workpiece at different speeds according to the requirement. But not all sander comes with this type of speed. In that case, you need to check how fast the sander rotates to sand any object.

But it is better to get a sander with variable speed so you’ll be able to use it for various purposes.

Dust Collection

Having a smart dust collection system with your sander will ensure that you won’t end up with a messy workshop after completing the project. The wide belt sanding machines we’ve reviewed here, come with an impressive dust collection system.

Power

The power that is provided by the wide belt sander is another thing you need to consider for buying a new one. Most of the wide belt sanders come with a motor of around 20 HP and that is great, even a little less than 20 HP is also okay.

You also need to check the power source of the machine, like is it electric powered or battery-powered, and get the one with which you can work comfortably.

Read more: Finding the Best Detail Sanders

Features that Helps You to Work Easily With the Sander

You also need to check the features of a sander that will help you to deal with it comfortably. And they are-

Safety

This is the most important fact you must look for while buying a wide belt sander. Because you don’t want to mess with the safety of the tool or yourself. If the tool is going to be used by different people, make sure that it has a lot of features that ensure the safety of its users.

The safest wide belt sander comes with several standard & emergency stops which a user can find easily when needed.

Ease of Changing the Belt

Check that the belt changing process of the sander is easy and simple. That means, if the abrasive belt of the sander breaks down during your work, you must be able to change it in a short time without any belt breakage.

Because a complicated procedure will take a lot of time to change the belt and you won’t be able to finish the project at the right time.

Portability

Portability is a must-have feature for a wide belt sander. A portable sander will allow you to adjust the position of the tool or move it whenever needed. There are a number of portable sanders that are designed with minimum weight and provide you stability while you’re moving in different spots.

Digital Readout

A sander with a digital thickness gauge can give you the exact measurement in inches and be able to give you an accurate finishing with minimum sanding line. Moreover, a wide belt sander with that feature is easy to calibrate and also can remember the memory automatically for multiple operators.

FAQs

What is the Difference Between a Belt Sander and a Drum Sander?

Sanding paper is not the same as the two devices. This basically enables one to slip the sanding belts to keep them absent and closed in a great effort. Drum and belt sanders are two distinct devices for hardwood floor resurfacing. Belt sander machines look like conventional drum sanders.

To What Extent Does it Take to Sand a one Story with an Orbital Sander?

You should plan your time for your venture before an injury to your floor. A decent general guideline is that 140 square feet will take you five hours to work alone. This suggests that a 600 square foot room is a long day’s work.

Conclusion

If the basics are now clear to you, you can easily choose one from the list we’ve provided. All of them are able to complete your project perfectly as we’ve enlisted them from our experience.

Simply think about the project you need to work with most of the time, match the features with your requirements and you’ll be able to select the right one for you.

But the most important thing you should remember while working with a sander is to be careful about your safety and always wear your safety gears before starting your project.

Finally, if you’ve any other queries about the wide belt sander or any other tool, you can let us know. We’ll try to share the related information with you.

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About Gavin Ford

Hi, I am Gavin Ford. I am a full-time power tools salesperson and a part-time mechanic. I help my friends and neighbors with their tools. Which one to buy, how to buy it, how to use it, methods to fix broken tools, and so on. In I will do the same for the rest of the world. You will get everything you need to know about tools for regular and professional use.

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