Porter-Cable 371 Review

Executive Summary

The Porter Cable 371 is loaded for performance, with a powerful 12AMP motor. Offering 20% more power than other models in the Porter Cable belt sander range, the 371 is ideal for tough jobs. It also handles quality hardwoods with ease. Featuring easy, quick-release belt adjustment, the 371 doesn't slow you down, no matter what you're working on, or for how long.

Who Is It For?

The 371 is ideal for the professional craftsman or handy person, as well as those who enjoy their home improvement. It can easily handle a large hardwood floor, as well as providing a professional finish on a range of projects from the small to the spectacular. Whether you're a professional, or just looking for professional quality, the Porter Cable 371 is for you.

Design

The 371, while heavy, is designed with comfort and ergonomic handling in mind. Its weight is purely down to its power, rather than clunky build quality, and operator stress has been minimized in the product's design.

The one major design flaw on the 371 is the location of the dust collection fan, which causes hot exhaust to be directed at the operator's guiding hand. The location of the dust bag is also problematic, but as long as it’s properly closed up, there shouldn’t be any issues with it.

Pros

  • Powerful, effective motor
  • Doesn't require much hand pressure to produce a good result
  • Great for flooring and decking
  • Features variable speed dial
  • Ergonomic design
  • Large dust collection bag

Cons

  • Poor location of dust fan means hot exhaust air is blown straight onto the user's hand
  • The dust bag – unless the bag is clipped on securely, the dust gets out easily and since it’s located on top, the dust could end up shooting in your face

Value for Money

If you know you'll be doing a lot of sanding work, and want to be assured of a professional result, then the Porter Cable 371 is definitely worth the money. For more general purpose or occasional use, however, it may be a little on the pricey side for the use it will get.

Manual

The manual for this product is available on our manuals page.