Rupes LEGACY BigFoot 5" Electric Random Orbital Polisher

Rupes LEGACY BigFoot 5" Electric Random Orbital Polisher

Rupes LEGACY BigFoot 5" Electric Random Orbital Polisher

Rupes LEGACY BigFoot 5" Electric Random Orbital Polisher
Option 1: Rupes 5" Foam Buffing Pads were designed specifically for use with the BigFoot machine.Option 1: Rupes 6" Foam Buffing Pads were designed specifically for use with the BigFoot machine.Option 2: The Rupes 980.027 5" Extra-Hold Backing Plate is a direct replacement for the factory installed unit.Replace the factory plastic bolts with polished button head stainless steel bolts! Nicer looking, plus they allow you to super-tighten the head cap assembly (which always seems to loosen up when using the plastic screws).
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Smooth Operator, Swirl Annihilator.


 NOTE:  This is the original version of the BigFoot Polisher, now referred to as the LEGACY. The updated version (officially named the MARK lll) is located here. The MARK lll offers improved performance, and higher RPM. The Legacy and Mark lll machines are very similar in appearance.

The Rupes® LHR15ES BigFoot 5" Electric Random Orbital Polisher is S•W•E•E•T.  Say goodbye to your buzzy, short stroke random orbital polisher; this Italian marvel delivers rotary-like smoothness.  Thanks to its enlongated design, the LHR15ES even feels like a rotary buffer.  

The LHR15ES BigFoot creates a 15mm diameter orbit.
Random orbital machines that use 5" to 6" discs and pads typically create small orbits, sometimes as little as several millimeters in diameter. The Rupes LHR15ES creates a 15mm diameter orbit, which really gets pads, discs, and compounds moving.  

Note: This machine is also available in a 6-inch, 21mm version: LHR21ES

Why is a large diameter stroke or orbit beneficial?
To better understand why a large stroke machine can deliver better and faster polishing results, imagine hand sanding a panel of wood with a typical sanding block & paper using very short 1mm back and forth strokes.  Although sanding would be concentrated and exact, most of the sanding debris would remain positioned between the sandpaper and wood panel.  Rapid clogging of the sandpaper would likely occur, effectively limiting cutting power and finishing potential.  

However, if the length of each sanding stroke was increased (within a similar time frame), the sandpaper would move along at a more rapid pace.  The increased speed of motion would assist in loosening any stuck-on debris from the sandpaper, all the while helping to eliminate sanding debris residing between the paper and wood surface. The exact same principles of extending the stroke apply when using the LHR15ES, except its motion is rotational (not linear), and we use buffing liquids (not sandpaper) to accomplish our work.

High speed + lots of motion = very fast polishing.
A majority of the buffing liquids available today utilize abrasive particles that are engineered to assist in polishing the surfaces we're working on.  To work efficiently, these particles must occasionally shift and tumble in order to keep them free of debris, minimize clumping of the abrasives, and slow contamination of the buffing pad.  The LHR15ES's large-diameter stroke (15mm) and high-speed capability (4,800 RPM) combine to deliver unrivaled performance in this regard (excluding the LHR21ES), utterly stomping the performance mustered by other competitor's machines.

The LHR15ES BigFoot leaves surfaces beautifully polished & remarkably scour-free.
My first go-around using a BigFoot Polisher was with the big brother of this machine, the aforementioned LHR21ES. I expected everything from that machine, as I had recently spent untold hours writing an in-depth article entitled Machine Stroke - How It Affects Sanding and Polishing Performance (read the article here). Through the writing of the article, it became very clear that large stroke machines had a lot to offer in terms of cutting speed and finishing performance.

The LHR15ES BigFoot did not disappoint; its combination of adequate machine speed, ample backing plate rotaion, and smooth sweeping motions combined to deliver remarkable results. While the LHR15ES lacks the sheer power and cutting speed of the LHR21ES, it is by no means a slouch, easy outperforming all other random orbital machines available today.

The LHR15ES  BigFoot is easy to control, and fun to use!
The moment you use the Rupes BigFoot 5" Random Orbital Polisher, it is immediately apparent how managable and comfortable it is to operate.  The LHR15ES BigFoot is specifically balanced for use with Rupes-brand 130/150mm (5") Foam Pads, but can also be used with other similarly-sized or weighted pads (such as Meguiar's DA Microfiber Discs).

To recap, this machine features:

           • An orbit diameter of 15mm
           • Super-fast cutting speed
           • Fantastic finishing potential
           • Extended working time per application of buffing liquid
           • Less build-up of contaminants across the face of discs & pads
           • Smooth & balanced swooping motions that increase user comfort
           • Increased rotation of the backing plate versus other machines

 OPTION 1:  Add a Rupes Buffing Pad Set, save 15%. 
You'll be ready to tackle just about any polishing task if you've a set of Rupes® Buffing Pads on hand.  These pads have been optimized specifically for use with BigFoot machines (read about them here).  Choose from five different grades:

  Blue   = Hard Cut  |    Green   = Int. Cut  |    Yellow   = Polish  |    White   = Finish  |    Gray   = UHS 1-Step

 OPTION 2:  Add a SPARE backing plate, save 15%. 
Make sure to keep a spare backing plate on hand, as a simple dropping of the machine can bend the backing plate's mounting pad. This can stall polishing work until a replacement plate arrives.

The Rupes 980.027 5" Backing Plate is a direct replacement for the factory installed unit. Click here to read more.

 NOTE:  This is the original version of the BigFoot Polisher, now referred to as the LEGACY. The updated version (officially named the MARK ll) is located here. The MARK ll offers improved performance, and higher RPM. The Legacy and Mark ll machines are very similar in appearance.

This machine carries a one-year parts and labor warranty.

This machine is also available in a factory-built kit: Rupes LHR15ES/DLX Deluxe Edition Duffle Bag Kit
Check out the LHR15's big brother: Rupes LHR21ES 6" Electric Random Orbital Polisher
Specifications & Notes:
Motor specifications:
500 watt (output)

Speed settings:
1,700 R.P.M - 4,800 R.P.M.

Stroke size:
7.5mm offset, creates a 15mm orbit diameter

Machine type:
Random Orbital Polisher aka Dual Action

Action 1:
Shaft drive rotates a free-spinning backing plate spindle, creating a circular path measuring 21mm in diameter

Action 2:
Backing plate free-spins and is able to rotate in either direction.

Backing plate #980.027
4-7/8" (123.8) 8mm x 1.25mm bolt-mount

Spindle mounting hole:
8mm x 1.25mm female thread

Machine weight: 5 lbs 5 oz

Electrical cord:
Length: 120"
Specs: 2 x 16g, CSA/UL certified
Overall dimensions:
14-1/4"L x 5-7/8"W x 5"T
Body width: 3-1/4"
Shroud width: 4-1/2"
Backing plate width: 4-7/8"