"I bought this after reading lots of positive reviews and I will certainly recommend this Makita.
Firstly I'm very impressed. The sander feels like a quality item with no parts looking like they will break in the near future.
I bought this over the slightly dearer model of 4 inch belt sander Makita make. I'm glad I did. From what i can see the dearer model is nearly identical spec wise (motor/belt etc) yet does not have variable speed. To help control a belt sander variable speed is essential in my opinion. Perhaps the dearer model (often seen in tool hire shops) has more metal casing rather than plastic?
Providing you use this tool as its designed, its fantastic! Will flatten and smooth boards in minutes."