Makita 9403 and Rockworth ARPS1200 belt sanders: parts compatibility?

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13 Feb 2019
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Does anyone know if there is a material difference between the Makita 9403 belt sander and the Rockworth ARPS1200?

The only obvious difference (besides the brand) I could find is the speed, with the Makita 9403 running at 500m/min and the Rockworth ARPS1200 at 480m/min.
Visually these two look nearly identical.

During one of my longer sanding session, my Rockworth suddenly started arcing significantly and even produced some smoke.
I've taken the usual steps, such as:
- replace brushes
- visually inspect the armature and stator
- clean the commutator (including the gaps between each segment)
- check bearings
The commutator didn't appear worn before cleaning and now (after light cleaning) looks brand new.
However, upon reassembly, any attempt to turn the sander on results in loads of sparks and smoke almost immediately.

I'm not well-versed in electrical motors, but it seems that the most common advice in case of arcing is to replace the brushes and then the armature.
Unfortunately, I had no luck finding the Rockworth ARPS1200 armature online. Since the Makita and Rockworth sanders are visually similar, I found Makita 9403 armature dimensions online, and they all match exactly with the armature dimensions of my Rockworth.

So, I was wondering if anyone knows if the parts of these two sanders are interchangeable? I assume the gear ratio is slightly different, but other than that... what are the chances that Makita armature with the same dimensions will not work inside Rockworth? Both are 240v 1200W motors.

Rockworth ARPS1200-

Makita 9403



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It's not without precedent for makita to cooperate with other makers to produce clones eg Bosch biscuit jointer is essential the same as makita. Also makita trim router parts fit Katsu.
Well worth a punt I'd have thought.

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