Re­claim ma­te­ri­als—and your time—with the Re­storer

Re­storer por­ta­ble drum/brush sander, no. PXRA2676, $100

WOOD - - TOOLS & MATERIALS - —Tested by John Knight

I build a lot of projects from re­claimed ma­te­ri­als, so I’m ea­ger to latch onto any tool that makes eas­ier the process of restor­ing the wood to its orig­i­nal sur­faces. The Porter-Cable Re­storer works as a hand­held drum sander, us­ing a 3"-di­am­e­ter, 4"-long sand­ing sleeve to abrade away paint, var­nish, or even aged grime from wood, steel, and vir­tu­ally any sur­face that will hold up to the abra­sive.

I used the Re­storer to re­move sev­eral lay­ers of paint from an old win­dow frame and door. The in­cluded 60-grit sleeves made quick work of this, but you have to be care­ful not to sand too ag­gres­sively and gouge the wood. The 80-grit sleeves work well, too, with­out be­ing as ag­gres­sive, but load up quicker with de­bris. I rec­om­mend prac­tic­ing on scrap to get a feel for the tool be­fore tack­ling a project.

In ad­di­tion to sand­ing, you can buy op­tional drums that swap out eas­ily. A hard-tex­tured paint/rust-re­moval head works well, es­pe­cially on steel. And the ny­lon-brush head ef­fec­tively re­moves soft grain from wood, leav­ing a coarse tex­ture that feels like aged, weath­ered wood. The steel-wire brush works best on metal. The tool has a dust port, but does not in­clude a bag or adapter for the most com­mon-sized vac­uum hoses.

Porter-Cable 888-848-5175, imare­storer.com

Ny­lon-brush head Paint/rust re­moval head Sand­ing drum Steel-wire head

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