Mirka Sander and Dust Extractor -- Reviewed by John D.
Mirka Deros 5MM Orbital Sander -- Reviewed by Keith C.
Out of the box, I connected the dust extraction hose and the power cord. To test a tool, it is best to not follow convention.First Test
I put on an Abranet 350 grit paper, grabbed a piece of 500 X 300 White Beech (a soft timber) that had been put through the drum sander with 120 grit. After a few minutes of sanding the face side finish was smooth, swirl free and flat.Second Test
A piece of Mountain Ash (a hard timber) 300 X 300 had been drum sanded with 120 grit. The Mirka soon had the parallel lines removed from the face side and, once again, a swirl free finish. The back side was sanded. After 3 minutes two deep parallel lines remained so I switched to an Abranet 120 grit paper. After 1 minute the grit lines were gone. I put back on the Abranet 350 grit and 1 minute later I had a very polished piece of timber.Third Test
I have a 1000 X 300 hardwood hall table top ready for its final polyurethane coat. With the used Abranet 350 grit I sanded off the nibs. The finish was equal to flat polyurethane and better than some furniture you see in the shops. The final coat of semi gloss polyurethane came up like a gloss finish.Final Thoughts
It took me a few times to get use to the lever on/off switch but now all is well. Swapping from left to right hand during sanding was a breeze. Vibrations were so low it makes my other three sanders seem like road vibrators.
An unexpected outcome of all the tests was that arises were razor sharp and a paper cut to a finger almost occurred.
Mirka Deros 5MM Orbital Sander -- After Continued Use
Using the Mirka sander for the past few months has enabled a sound testing of the machine. Usage is for a few hours per week by a serious woodworker. A variety of timbers are sanded, mainly dense hardwoods.
My Mirka is optioned with the 150mm and 125mm sanding pads plus pad savers in both sizes. While supplied with additional counter balancing weights, to reduce vibrations, doing so is not required. The factory settings remain in place. The sander is connected to a non Mirka vacuum cleaner via the standard Mirka anti-static hose.
Yes, the sander does have vibrations when in use. The vibrations are minor when compared to the three other orbital sanders that I’ve used in the past. I can feel no difference in vibration with the 150mm or 125mm sanding pads plus respective pad savers.
Dust is almost zero when connected to the vacuum cleaner using a Mirka sanding disc. When a standard pre punched hole disc is used, dust levels are still close to zero.
The machine is nice and light but with sufficient mass so that the sander does all the work. I could not go back to a traditional orbital sander.
The Deros sander emits much less noise than my vacuum cleaner. I wear ear muffs during use.
The Mirka Abranet sand paper is far superior to any other sand paper I use. The mesh construction allows for maximum dust removal. The Abranet lasts much longer as well. As sanding discs are swapped during sanding operations, the velcro efficiency remains as new. I’m yet to see a build up of gum in the Abranet mesh.
The Deros sander is light weight, has speed adjustment and sound dust extraction. Traditional punched sanding discs work on the sander. Line up as many extraction holes as possible when securing the disc. The Deros is efficient in removing timber. On hardwoods, no swirl marks are present when 120 grit or above are used, either Abranet or punched sanding discs. 240 grit Abranet produces a high polish on hardwoods. Slap on an 800 grit Abranet between polyurethane coats to produce a highly reflective final finish.
Ironbark - a dense hardwood
Macrocarpa Pine - a softwood
Mountain Ash - a dense hardwood
NSW South Coast hardwood - a medium hardwood
Sydney Blue Gum - a dense hardwood
White Beech - a soft hardwood
Seeing swirl marks on Macrocarpa Pine, even up to 240 grit, raised a few questions. Nevertheless, hand sanding with Abranet using 120, 180 and 240 grits resulted in a mark free slab of timber.
Initially, using the lever type on/off switch caused a few frustrations. Now, it is a dream to use.
Using a light weight, dust free, low vibration and efficient Deros sander makes for a speedier job with higher quality. The Abranet sanding discs have longevities and their mesh design greatly improves dust collection. The lever type on/off switch facilitates seamless swapping between left and right hand operation.