Hand Sander Features Improved Ergonomics

Sanding can be tedious. You may get into a zone as you do it. But the palm of your hand will pick up serious feedback with the continuous  vibration.

Experts at Bosch note that with 27 bones, 33 muscles and 22 moving axes, the hand is the most complex of all human appendages. The palm of a hand has 17,000 nerve endings.

Strong vibration over long periods of time, triggered by power tools, can throw this sensitive structure off balance. While it’s important to limit operating times for high-vibration tools, manufacturers are trying to develop tools that are lower in vibration.

Bosch took very seriously, even before the directive came into effect in July 2002. At AWFS woodworking show, Bosch Power Tools previewed the ROS65VC, the first random orbit sander to feature a vibration control suspension system, which seems to dramatically minimize vibration and prevents hand fatigue. From my trial test of it, the ergonomically designed handle with naturally positioned thumb switch  is a big improvement. Due out in October, it is very smooth handling and a very comfortable random orbit sander.

Designed for sanding jobs such as rough or finish sanding on wood and composites, paint removal, and smoothing, cleaning and polishing composite materials such as solid-surface counter tops, the Bosch ROS65VC has a 3.3-amp rating, so it’s got some oomph.

The ergonomics package features multiple ergonomic soft grip locations, so you can switch locations as you move around to different work planes and angles. It can be operated single-handed or  two-handed operation.

The Vibration Control suspension system is like a set of four shock absorbers under the hood, separating the case from the motor. This softens the connection between the gripping area from the motor and the pad drive system, to minimize the transmission of vibration to your hands.

Another unique feature: this new Bosch sander  accepts either 5-inch or 6-inch pads, using a high performance, soft microcellular hook-and-loop backing pad that conforms to many contours. Its pad dampening system is designed to prevent swirl marks; a  die-cast aluminum gear housing with dual-bearing pad mount cuts down on wobble and vibration.

As far as dust collection, the ROS65VC  features a local, tubular Bosch Microfilter dust canister, with a paper filter and screw-off cap for emptying. It also has a vacuum hose adapter for connecting to centralized dust control systems. The ROS65VC-5 includes a 5-inch backing pad and sanding disc, while the ROS65VC-5 includes a 6-inch backing pad and sanding discs. 

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.