We use affiliate links. If you purchase something using one of these links, we may receive compensation or commission.
A sander is one of the most important instruments you get to use when it comes to woodworking, construction projects, or vehicular paint jobs. All of the rough edges, paint peels, nicks, and burrs on your surface or car can be removed with a sander. Sanding, polishing, and grinding are some of the many tasks that you can perform with a good sander.
Before you put on the finishing coat of paint, it gives you the final touch. It’s a tool that you can’t imagine wrapping up your work without. You can truly appreciate its significance, especially when your automobile needs a bump flattened, dents, or scratches fixed, or it just simply requires a brand-new paint job.
You always need to use a sander to remove old or flaking paint, buff, varnish, and polish your car’s paint. It’s up there with the most important prep work before repainting your vehicle. But sanders come in different forms and shapes with their individual merits and demerits, so you have some choices to make before getting one. Air (random) orbital sanders and electric dual action (DA) sanders are the two most common types.
Here we’ll discuss Electric DA sander vs air for auto body work so that you can choose your preferred one following your needs and convenience.
Electric DA Sander
If you’re familiar with a belt sander or a disc sander, you know they come with their shortcomings along with their benefits, and to eliminate those drawbacks, we use a hybrid DA sander. The name itself suggests that it has two movements. One is a constant forward and backward motion, while the other is a rotary motion. This is how the movements and benefits of a belt and a disk sander are both accomplished.
These electrical motor-powered tools are designed to produce fine finishes on different surfaces, like metal, fiberglass, wood, etc. They are renowned for their precise handling capability, versatile usability, and scratch-free sanding features. These machines are energy efficient and easy to use as well. Also, these are relatively heavyweight and perform at a lower speed, but since they don’t need any additional compressors, they are an excellent fit for household use.
Most of the DA sanders are handheld and have a handle for easier grip and a vibration-free motor for a steady work experience. These are equipped with sandpaper with the right sized pad and grit needed for each separate job. They are also easily portable and can be used in any weather conditions.
Mostly used in industry, these sanders are very efficient in removing a lot of materials quickly without leaving any sanding marks. With a disk-shaped sanding pad that spins as well as rotates in a tiny circular path (like the motion of the earth), the air sander creates a random oscillation.
In addition to the above-mentioned tasks, air-power pneumatic sanders can also do wonders when it comes to taking care of the rust on your car. These machines are quite easy to use, totally vibration-free, and come with variable speed control settings.They can reach up to 10,000 RPM speed. All you need to ensure is that you have a polishing pad to apply finishing polish to it.
There are also quite a handful of features that a random orbital sander offers. For instance, they can spin in a circular motion like an electric sander and wobble, additional movements that can further the smoothing process. They also do a terrific job of getting rid of paint from the subtly curved surfaces of a car.
Electric DA Sander vs Air For Auto Body Work
So now that you’re familiarized with the choices, what are some of the contradictions between them? Let’s take a look at the most obvious ones and how they help you with different functions.
• Efficiency: The DA sander is the way to go for covering large areas and sanding on multiple layers. Random orbital sanders, conversely, are a better suit for covering corners and light finishing jobs.
• Capacity: An air sander is an industrial tool, while most electric sanders are used by hobbyists and DIYers. As random sanders work with a strong compressor, achieving much more power, they are rightly used for mass production. Electric ones, on the other hand, are much better suited for smaller shops.
• Operability: DA sanders usually come with palm-sized handles, while the RO sanders come with large handles. The difference in handle sizes is related to their performance. A palm-sized handle is a good option for better control, while large tools can be better for fine finishing. However, the ergonomic design of electric sanders gives them a clear win in this category.
• Power: With a powerful air compressor, you can generate more power with an air sander when compared to an electric sander with the same features and price. But more power means more energy consumption, so that’s also something to keep in mind while making your selection.
• Dust: If dust collection is one of the requirements for your job, then you should go for an electric sander any day. These sanders automatically collect dust after sanding, which is a feature that is rarely found in an air sander.
• Lifespan: Since there are fewer mechanical components inside an orbital sander than there are in an electric one, the latter tend to encounter more disturbances than the former does, especially in the longer run. A balanced ball-bearing construction also contributes to the longevity of the air sander.
• Weight: Air sanders are comparatively more lightweight than electric ones as the DA sanders consist of motors. If the work requires too much movement or you need to carry the sander to distant places, then an air sander sure comes in handy.
However, pneumatic sanders need big air compressors to run, which, if you must carry them as well, is an inconvenience. For stable jobs, an electric sander is pretty good. It’s important to mention that some DA sanders require compressors too.
• Path: The sanding path of a DA sander is well-defined, which means that the path follows a pattern and passes along the same route repeatedly. But for RO sanders, the motions are random, which contributes to their names as well.
• Sound: Air sanders are also quieter than their counterparts as they don’t have any motors inside them. There are some electric sanders too, whose rear exhausts are muffled, which reduces the noise of the motor.
• Price: As electrical sanders come with dynamic workability and more complex building mechanisms, they are more expensive than air sanders. But if you don’t have a compressor beforehand and need to purchase it along with your air sander, their combined cost will outstrip the cost of a DA sander.
We’ve provided you with all the principal indicators of evaluation above. As mentioned previously, each machine has its relative upsides and drawbacks. So, you need to decide which one you should go with depending on your skills, abilities, preferences, and automobile work.