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Thread: Drum Sander Reviews???

  1. #1

    Smile Drum Sander Reviews???

    I am looking for a reliable drum sander that can handle daily use with out too much fuss. On the lower end I'm looking at:
    Performax 16-32 Plus Drum Sander or
    Delta 31-250 18" x 36" Drum Sander
    These run about $900 to $1,000.
    If I step up a notch, I would consider this one
    WOODTEK® 25" DUAL DRUM SANDER for about $1,500. This is the very high end of my budget.
    Any thoughts, opinions would be appreciated....
    THANKS!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Tokyo Japan
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    15,588
    Hi Todd, sorry I cannot help you on the drum sander review, but I just wanted to welcome you to the Family!

    Welcome!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    ozarks
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    4,992
    hi todd!
    look for a used woodmaster if you`re dead set on a drum sander?
    they`re servicable with off the shelf parts and you`ll be hard pressed to find any bad publicity about the company or their product.
    tod
    [SIZE="1"] associated with several importers and manufacturers.[/SIZE]

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Albuquerque, New Mexico
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    Hello Todd, welcome!
    I very recently sold my Delta 18/36 and bought a used 2675, 26” Woodmaster. The used Woodmaster was right there at the upper end of your budget.
    The Delta served me well but the 2675 Woodmaster is far & away a superior sander.
    "I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a
    friend...if you have one."
    --George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill

    "Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second..if there is
    one."
    --Winston Churchill, in response




  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Wake Forest, NC
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    I have a Performax 22-44 and in hindsight would rather have one that is supported on both sides. I would want a minimum of 25" as that is about as wide as I sand. The open armed sanders are ok, but you have to be careful not to touch the sanding head or you will create valleys.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Near Winchester, VA
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    I have the Performax 16-32. It's my one and only drum sander, ever, so I don't really have much to compare it to. I will say that Travis is right on about the sanding head. One small touch and you've got a little valley. Doing long boards is kind of tricky. The in/out-feed tables don't want to line up very easily and I still haven't gotten them to where they really need to be.

    It's a reliable enough machine, though. I find I will use the Performax a lot of times instead of my planer, simply because of the noise levels!!

    No matter what you get, I hope you have a large capacity dust collector. A drum sander requires a good DC or you'll clog the sandpaper too quickly.
    I keep cuttin, but it just ain't gettin any longer!!!

  7. #7
    I am not a fan of drum sanders in any configuration from any manufacturer at any price. If you have sufficient need you will be much better off with even the least capable wide belt sander rather than the most capable drum sander.

    I tried for two years to get by with a drum sander and in the end, with desroyed paper (as Steve describes) and twithchy time wasting set ups, I reckon I wasted the cost of a wide belt in productive time. I now have a wide belt and would not take a drum based machine if you gave it to me and offered twice its value as a cash bonus.

    Alternatively if you don't have that volume of throughput you will be better off with sharp blades in a planer and a good random orbit sander.

    Just my opinion but a hard earned one.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Austin, Texas
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    1,349
    I have the Performax 16/32. It is a great drum sander. But it taught me that I don't want a drum sander. I have no problem running it, even with long boards, without the infeed and outfeed tables.

    The paper wrapped around the drum loves to creep, so the right end of the drum quickly gets uneven (near useless). I use mine a lot, but as soon as I hit some sap or a glue line, the heat melts the glue, creates a line on the sandpaper around the drum, and burns all future boards. I use chalk to mark where the burns are, so I feed narrow boards between the burn lines.

    The velcro based drum sanders may solve the creep problem, but they add more material between the drum and the work, allowing more heat build up, and more opportuinity for unevenness.

    The 1 to 1 1/2 hp of the small (Delta, Performax) sanders are powerful enough to get the drum hot and burn or melt glue, even with minimal wood removal. But they aren't large enough to level a wide board in a small number of passes.

    I was admiring the 10 hp (which is considered small) wide belt sanders, but they require a) more space, b) more money, c) more dust collection capacity, d) more electricity (at least 50 amps at 240 volts), and more compressed air (makes me want a big shop air compressor too). The wide belt sanders give the belt a chance to cool down during each revolution of the belt, and presumable have less problem with burning. Since I already have a very good jointer (16 inches) and planer, I was looking at single belt, not expecting to have to run multiple grits to get the work level.

    If I were starting again, I would save the $1000 until I had the space, money, dust collection, power, and air, and get a wide belt.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    I have wondered for a long time what was causing the line around the drum and never realized it was glue heating up.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Austin, Texas
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Porter View Post
    I have wondered for a long time what was causing the line around the drum and never realized it was glue heating up.
    Glue or sap from knots and sap pockets. One of the reasons the vendors recommend feeding at an angle is so that the glue line moves across the drum, and there is less chance of melting and accumulation. Of course, if I am sanding a 15 inch panel in a 16 inch sander, that idea doesn't work!
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

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