|Review by Wayne Precht||posted 07-01-2009 10:26 PM||15509 views||0 times favorited||12 comments|
- Rikon Model 50-120. 6" x 48" belt, 10" disc sander
- Brand: Rikon | Category: Sanders
I came into a little money horse trading some rough oak, so I decided to spend it picking up a couple of much needed tools. The first one is a Rikon 6”x48” Belt / 10” Disc sander. It was on sale at Woodcraft, $50 off. Even though Springfield is a bit of a hike, this weighs a ton, so shipping would have been eye-wateringly expensive. This tool filled a gap in my lineup. Previously I had a little Delta 1”x42” Belt / 6” Disc sander that was just this side of useless for furniture making. About the most important thing it did in the last couple years was clean up some pegs for the Glastonbury project. I really needed a large disc sander to clean up end grain especially and some minor shaping. The large belt has turned out to be even more useful than I thought.
I won’t go into the features; you can look it up for that. This was a bit of a flyer since I have not heard anyone talk about this brand. I have seen it at Woodcraft for years and figured they wouldn’t still be carrying it if it’s junk. Plus the Belt/Disc sander on my “wish list” costs more than double and would involve the aforementioned shipping, or a trip to PA to pick it up, about the same considering gas.
Step one, getting it into the shop and out of the box. I believe I that mentioned it’s heavy and it is; it’s 110 lbs in the box. So humping it down the stairs was a chore. In retrospect, I should have taken it out of the box on the tail gate. The sander has a little flip up handle on the left side (just visible in the photo) and a padded hand hold on the other end. It would still have been heavy, but more manageable than a large box with no hand holds. Anyway, once it was down and I got it out of the box (also a chore), it was time to look at the setup project.
Fortunately, it comes almost fully assembled. All I had to do was install the PVA Disc and then the table for the Disc. The manual was of the usual unremarkable type from these Far East firms. Bad B/W pictures and text you need to read a few times to get the jist of it. The table was a bit to get started as the table is heavy and the sander is hard to flip up on its side, but that’s where you want it to screw together the table supports. I also had to assemble the miter gauge that I will probably never use. Its “ok”, nothing amazing, if I really need one, I will take the Incra off the table saw.
The code is a little short for my tastes, but typical of machines these days. I moved a heavy duty extension code into range and all was good. Note that this draws around 10 amps though, so don’t use a busy circuit.
Running this is smooth. Those 110 lbs of cast iron comes in handy. There is a dust collection port for a 2.5” Shop-Vac type thing. I am not a fanatic about dust collection, but this is the fine dust you really don’t want to breathe so I highly recommend hooking it up. And the collection actually works very well. Even my poor, abused Rigid 12 Gallon vacuum was more than sufficient to handle the job.
My only complaint is that the belt tracking is a bit more finicky than I expected. It took some noodling to dial it in and it’s easy to get running off a bit. I really consider the belt a secondary item though and it’s not bad, just not up to par with the rest of the excellently put together machine.
-- --- Wayne.