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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:53 pm 
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Here is a quicky review of the Makita DBO180 18 volt cordless 125mm brushless random orbit sander.

Makita DBO180 125mm brushless sander 001_01.jpg
Makita DBO180 125mm brushless sander 001_01.jpg [ 45.57 KiB | Viewed 831 times ]

Above: That's what mine looked like for, oh, about an hour after I bought it. (See below for a "real world" photo or two)

OK, so a bit of a mouthful, but the tool itself is relatively compact, If you've ever used Makita's little 1/4 sheet orbital sander (the BO45550) then this is a very similar size which makes it an easy package to handle in one hand - just as well because that's all you'll get on it to get a grip! In the past I've been dubious of the power of batteries to drive tools like this - I always thought that a battery just wouldn't last - but here Makita have produced a brushless motored model which already gives it an extra 40% or so battery life over what you'd get out of one of the older brushed motors, so I thought I'd give it a punt.

What you get in the carton is the sander, a dust adaptor/bag frame, a cloth dust bag and Makita
also give you a single P120 alox sanding disc. My main use for this was always going to be skirting joints and architrave mitre joints so it isn't going to be running for hours on end. At those two tasks I have to say it does well and a 5Ah battery gave me well over a day's sanding (probably a twenty or so skirting joints and a couple of sets of architrave) with some 2 bars remaining on the battery fuel gauge, so in that respect the tool works well enough for my needs.

Makita DBO180  cordless sander 001_01.JPG
Makita DBO180 cordless sander 001_01.JPG [ 47.09 KiB | Viewed 831 times ]

Why go cordless? Mainly because there are bits and bats at the end of any job I do where hauling a transformer around (I'm trade, so 110 volt is mandatory) is always going to be a royal PIA. Having a sander which has no flex seems rather strange at first, but not having the flex get in the way all the time is a major plus

How good is the dust extraction? Actually, on the bag it is quite passable. Although not at Festool standard it is well up to the extraction standard of the BO4555. The bag can be removed and the tool hooked up to a vacuum cleaner, but that seems like a odd way to work to my mind.

What sanding disc system is used? A fairly standard hook and loop system with 8 holes which means that abrasives should be readily available off the shelf from a variety of sources. The only negative point I'll raise is that my one quickly developed a tendency to throw P50 (i.e. very coarse) sanding discs on E-weight (very heavy) backing paper. I suspect that it's the aggressive grit combined with a really heavy weight disc which was the issue because with P80 and P120 there were no issues

Makita DBO180  cordless sander 001_02.JPG
Makita DBO180 cordless sander 001_02.JPG [ 20.97 KiB | Viewed 831 times ]

What is the orbit and what speed does it do? The orbit is 2.8mm (fine) and the standard speeds are 11000rpm, 9500 rpm and 7000rpm. By default when you press the start button it starts at the highest speed, press the button again and it reduces to 9500 rpm, once more it reduces to 7000rpm, and if you press it again it speeds up to 11000rpm again. Press "0" and it stops fairly quickly - faster than my mains 150mm random orbit sander in fact. The random orbit action seems smooth and well braked and vibration to my hand wasn't excessive and the tool had bags of power on hand - every bit as much as an equivalent size mains-powered tool

What batteries will it use? Any Makita BL-series battery from 2Ah up to 6Ah (couldn't find any reference to 1.3 or 1.5Ah batteries). There is also a 14.4 volt version of this tool available, the DBO140

How heavy is it? Bare of batteries it weighs c.1.7kg - so c.2.5kg with a full-size battery attached which is fairly heavy for a small sander but not unmanageable as the tool has a low centre of gravity

What's the price? I picked mine up for £85 (bare) a few weeks before the Christmas.

How noisy is it? I actually think it is somewhat quieter than the BO4555. In any case I didn't feel the need to wear ear plugs or defenders when using it.

Makita DBO180  cordless sander 001_03.JPG
Makita DBO180 cordless sander 001_03.JPG [ 66.43 KiB | Viewed 831 times ]

I think this will turn out to be a reasonable addition to my 18 volt Makita kit. I'll post a long term test in due course. If anyone has additional questions, please post them and I'll do my very best to answer them. Sorry about the tool being mucky, but filler really is awful stuff to sand and attaches itself to everything in site

"The person who never made a mistake, never made anything" - Albert Einstein

"I too will something make, And joy in the making" - Robert Bridges, 1844~1930

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:33 pm 
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That's a nice looking piece of kit! Apart from this and the SDS drill I think I have my Makita cordless kit boxed off!

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