Dust-free sanding sounded too good to be true, but the Mirka Deros 650CV sander, priced from £340, makes it as dust-free as possible. It does this with an electric sander connected to a vacuum cleaner – but you can do this with a standard orbital sander. Where the Mirka differs is in using an abrasive mesh, which lets the vacuum suck the dust through the mesh: – a standard sander uses a circle of ventilation holes and thus misses much of the dust.
I used the Mirka Deros to sand out the forepeak of my boat when replacing headlinings, connecting it to a Wickes wet-and-dry vacuum cleaner, and it removed old paint very effectively – with none of the clouds of dust that usually accompany such sanding activities. When I’d finished there was no noticeable dust in the air or on the horizontal surfaces of the forepeak – very impressive.
The sander can also be used with ceramic silver ace discs, which are much longer-lasting than standard discs. The unit itself was lightweight and compact – it’s claimed to be the lightest on the market, and it was certainly lighter than the small Bosch random-orbit sander I normally use. The mesh discs are of a comparable cost to standard sanding discs.