I had posted a couple of weeks back about doing some maintenance on my log home. I wanted to get some info on stains. I used an acrylic stain last year to do some touch up jobs and was quite pleased with it and plan on refinishing my home with it. I plan on doing 2 sides of my house this year then the other two next year. I know this is not the optimal way to do it but with time constraints and work I really don't have any other option. I want to go the grinder route as I have heard nothing but good things and last year I had attempted to sand with a rotor sander and enjoyed the results just not the amount of labor that came with it. I basically just want something that I can maneuver better and has a bit more power. On a previous post that I listed below you had recommended the grinder, disc, and backing pad. I was really intrigued by this but found out grainger only deals with business to business transactions. On another note I also live in Canada. I plan on checking out some hardware stores this week in hopes to find someone who can lead me in the right direction with the same tools you recommended. But I am hoping that maybe I can spark some ideas that may help me down this road from other people since I am a novice when it comes to this area and want to make the right decision.
I just use a 4 1/2" angle grinder. Its smaller, but a lot easier to use for extended periods then some of the heavier grinders(the heavier grinders are hard on fatigue after a time). I bought a ryobi, for $39 at HD, came with a 2 year warranty, and had it back twice for service and they covered it. Put many many hours on it, from sanding hand hewn beams, my logs, and a lot of angle iron cutting. I like the trigger switch much better than the rocker switch. It out lasted the dewalt which I paid more for and broke in less then a weeks time.
If you guys have Harbor freight, they have cheap backer pad kit ($3.00), and also a $10 grinder which is light weight. Its cheap so if it breaks, just buy another one.
I also bought the 3 1/2 cu ft harborfreight cement mixer, and my wife and I mixed over 10 yards of concrete in it for slip form stem walls, and its still running.
I bought the harborfreight carbide 36 grit grinding disk, and it removes a lot of material very quickly. I used it mostly for stubborn bark removal and for making rough tenons on railings (getting them down to size).
We are hard on equipment :).....HD people think of us as their testing people. I bought a used Hitachi coil framing nailer through ebay, and its still going stong (bostich stapler, constantly breaks). Like the Ridgid fuego framing circular saw (much lighter weight than my mikita), the ridgid planer, had nothing but problems.
Also, if you are going to use an orbital palm sander at all, get one that fits your hand well and has less vibration (after an hour or so of sanding it makes a big difference). We like our dewalt a lot. Try it on, hold it etc.