What's the difference? One saves you time, the other saves you money.
We reduced 2 cubic feet of poplar to dust -- literally -- to find the top-performing abrasives for your random-orbit sander.
For flattening and smoothing wide panels, as well as reducing stock thickness without grain tear-out, you just can't--ahem--beat a drum sander.
These machines, priced from $400 to $800, tackle a range of sanding tasks with both power and finesse. And though they look similar, we found big performance differences among the tested models.