Makita 9903 Belt Sander Review


The Makita 9903 belt sander offers efficient, fast, quiet stock removal with speed, power and easy to use features. Deck builders, floor installers, carpenters, general contractors and woodworkers can use this machine for their needs.

Electronic speed regulator allows a constant speed to be maintained by the 8.8 amp motor. The speed is matched to the use easily by the control dial for variable speeds of sanding.

The belt system is auto tracking allowing the belt to be tracked without having to be adjusted while the operation is comfortable as a result of the front grip. The base is extended to allow it to sand flush against a wall and the balance is improved by the low profile design. The features and the fact it came with a warranty made us think it was worth taking another look at.

The Makita 9903 8.8 Amp 3-Inch-by-21-Inch Variable Speed Belt Sander with Cloth Dust Bag provides an excellent combination of power and speed as well as easy to use features, including less noise for fast and efficient stock removal.

Any belt sander review for the Makita 9903 8.8 Amp must mention the auto-tracking belt system, with a front grip for comfortable operation, that tracks the belt without adjustment. Better balance is achieved with a low-profile design while the extended base enables the user to sand flush to the wall with the nose inside of the Sander.

The Makita 9903 Belt Sander – Features:

  • Belt sander with a powerful 8.8 amp motor and variable speed
  • At 85 decibals it’s the quietest in its class and the unique design enables flush sanding to the corner of the wall with the nose and side of sander
  • The Auto-tracking belt system tracks the belt without adjustment
  • Included is (1) 80 grit sanding belt
  • Weight is 9.5 pounds; 1-year warranty

The Makita 9903 Belt Sander is designed for those who require the best-in-class belt Sander available, such as woodworkers, furniture makers, floor installers, carpenters, general contractors and deck builders. The 16.4 foot power cord makes the Sander easy to maneuver and the highly efficient dust collector keeps the dust in the work area down. Also, its optional sanding shoe for precise sanding depth control. Engineered specifically for cabinetry and woodworking it is ideal for closets, furniture and wood panels when you’re looking for precision, accuracy and innovation professionally or in your own home shop.

Negative Reviews

We are not pessimist but we do begin with the negative reviews first in order to paint an accurate picture for the consumer.

The negative aspects of the unit were difficult to pinpoint since there were so few of them mentioned by the reviews. The balance was off on the machine causing it to roll to the left resulting from the weight of the motor. There was a problem experienced holding the sander level as a result of it being off balance. The fact that accessories were difficult to find was a negative aspect to those that had used the sander in the past.

Positive Reviews

Now we will move onto the positive aspects of the 9903 Sander from Makita. The trigger lock was a pleasing feature for users. The tracking was right at all times regardless of how hot the belt became or how much pressure was applied to the unit. The fact that the unit could be flipped over in order to hold pieces by hand using the unit as a table sander was a plus. The dust collection on the unit was so good that it prevented dust from being blown back in the users face and over the surface area the items being sanded was placed on. This combined with the ease of use and quiet operation made the sander an ideal choice for anyone wanting to sand. The sanding was found to be flawless by the reviewers.

The unit was found to be reliable, durable and function well for virtually all wood working and sanding tasks. The sander was a bit heavy but it was not so heavy that it could not be used at numerous angles.


Would we recommend the 9903 8.8 Amp three inch by twenty-one inch variable speed belt sander with the cloth dust bag from Makita to consumers for purchase?

Yes, we would and we’ll tell you why.

The positive aspects outweighed the bad to the point that they were and the unit was found to be reliable. We can recommend this belt sander from Makita to consumers that wish to have a reliable durable sander for large and small projects.