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Single vs Dual Drum Sander and Some Questions

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Forum topic by builtinbkyn posted 03-16-2018 03:54 PM 1626 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1082 days


03-16-2018 03:54 PM

I’m considering the purchase of a drum sander. Not sure which make model etc. However it probably won’t be an open ended sander. For those with a dual drum, is this a feature you value? In other words, is the cost increase worth it? Do you always use it with two different grits? One grit on both? Don’t utilize the second drum? Does the second drum complicate things?

As to HP – how significant is this for a drum sander? Another LJ has stated he used a DS for actual dimensioning and takes down rough stock with course grit paper. Would the extra HP be required for this? Oh and how does a DS handle heavier stock? ie. say a decent size slab or glue-up of some length and thickness? Can a DS draw this thru similar to a planer or does it need assistance? I’m sure both ends would require roller stands to support the work. But even with those, can a DS handle a heavier section?

Also, I’m curious about abrasive platen belts vs the industrial type. Does one track better than the other? Does the abrasive belt provide adequate slip resistance? How do they wear vs industrial belts and can an industrial belt be retrofitted if a particular machine doesn’t come with one from the factory?

I ask these questions because I’m somewhere in between purchasing a larger DS and foregoing a combo JP and maybe just picking up a jointer somewhere. Would this combination satisfy your needs?

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)


19 replies so far

View BoardButcherer's profile

BoardButcherer

144 posts in 236 days


#1 posted 03-16-2018 04:14 PM

Great questions, I’d like to know the answers too. Never considered buying one until this thread.

View bearkatwood's profile

bearkatwood

1640 posts in 1153 days


#2 posted 03-16-2018 04:28 PM

Wow, go big or go home ;) Ditto, I would like to know as well. I have the cantilevered version and would like to upgrade eventually.

-- Brian Noel

View CharlesNeil's profile

CharlesNeil

2436 posts in 4012 days


#3 posted 03-16-2018 04:39 PM

Personally , having owned both, I find the dual drum more trouble than its worth, i actually sold my 37” performax dual drum and bought a single, never looked back .
All of mines are 37 ”, and 5hp, and I have ran large slabs with no issue, so yes HP matters. My rune of thumb is no matter what width you get , get the biggest motor available .
In my opinion . The SuperMax line of sanders is a step above , they are the old performax, which i am still running today .

The abrasive conveyor’s do great, Had a 25×2 Powermatic with the industrial belt, it did pretty well ,seemed to be more of a hassle to keep it tensioned properly.
IMHO ..a drum sander of any woodworking machine, will improve your woodworking , they are great .

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jbay

2661 posts in 1041 days


#4 posted 03-16-2018 04:47 PM

If it’s any indication of how important hp is,
My 37” wide belt has a 18 hp motor.

View CharlesNeil's profile

CharlesNeil

2436 posts in 4012 days


#5 posted 03-16-2018 04:50 PM

I have a 37” timesaver and I forget what HP it is but its big, as well
The dual Supermax 37” has a 7.5 I believe.

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builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1082 days


#6 posted 03-16-2018 05:10 PM

Hmmm. The only 5HP machines I can find are all dual drum. The Supermax 25×2 is what I have been looking at. I thought the SM 25 Pro was 5HP but it’s 1 3/4 like most other single drum sanders. The only plus in my estimation is it’s not cantilevered.

On another note my shop is filled with fine concrete dust. Made the hole for my ductwork to pass from the location of the DC to the shop :)

Implements of destruction!

Destruction :)

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

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GR8HUNTER

4702 posts in 854 days


#7 posted 03-16-2018 05:12 PM

I’m moving to your house Bill you got a much nicer shop then me :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

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builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1082 days


#8 posted 03-16-2018 05:14 PM



I m moving to your house Bill you got a much nicer shop then me :<))

- GR8HUNTER


Well the last shop had curtains. This one is wallpapered lol Classy Woodworks :)

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 3789 days


#9 posted 03-16-2018 05:51 PM

Only with meticulous infeed and outfeed
support will you have a chance of thickness
sanding long, heavy stock with a drum sander,
imo. In that case, one with a head that moves
would be preferable to one with a moving feed
table.

I’m sure you’re aware that they can only take the
lightest of passes and the feed rate is pretty
slow. There’s a lot of standing around involved
and things can go sideways fast if you take your
eye off the machine.

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builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1082 days


#10 posted 03-16-2018 06:37 PM



Only with meticulous infeed and outfeed
support will you have a chance of thickness
sanding long, heavy stock with a drum sander,
imo. In that case, one with a head that moves
would be preferable to one with a moving feed
table.

I m sure you re aware that they can only take the
lightest of passes and the feed rate is pretty
slow. There s a lot of standing around involved
and things can go sideways fast if you take your
eye off the machine.

- Loren


That makes a lot of sense. It could be tedious to have to raise and lower infeed/outfeed supports when sanding pieces that require multiple sides to be sanded and of differing dimensions. Having fixed infeed and outfeed with a movable drum, would be much better in that regard.

I’m probably going back to plan A and getting a combo machine to replace the jointer and planer I sold before my move. Then maybe picking up a much smaller DS that can be stowed out of the way. I can envision the DS with fixed supports would take up more landscape than a combo machine.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

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Loren

10477 posts in 3789 days


#11 posted 03-16-2018 06:48 PM

Look around and see if you can find a local
shop that does wide belt sanding. Rates
can be reasonable and it will save you hours
of work using other methods.

I’ve had a couple of drum sanders and I found
them most useful for dimensioning and finish
sanding small parts.

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AandCstyle

3163 posts in 2398 days


#12 posted 03-16-2018 09:36 PM

Bill, here is another option to consider.

-- Art

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

8085 posts in 2939 days


#13 posted 03-17-2018 02:33 PM

FWIW, I have a dual drum sander and love it, however I only use one drum.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View JBrow's profile

JBrow

1366 posts in 1061 days


#14 posted 03-17-2018 03:02 PM

builtinbkyn,

I have been using a Woodmaster 38” single-drum sander for flattening glue-ups for several years. It is a closed end drum sander where the bed/conveyor height adjusts. The drum is powered with is a 5 hp motor while the conveyor is power by a DC variable speed reversing motor with a chain drive to the conveyor. The conveyor is highly textured (probably a synthetic material) belt which grips the stock well and keeps it moving through the machine. I equipped the machine with Woodmaster’s infeed and out feed extension rollers and a conveyor reversing switch. These options allow a panel to be run through the machine in one direct and then, without touching the panel, reverse the conveyor and bring the panel back through the machine.

http://www.woodmasterdrumsanders.com/our_sanders

Since I only use the drum sander for flattening panels, the single drum is fine for me. However, a first drum with 80 grit paper and a second drum with 120 grit paper could save a little time finish sanding the panel.

Having a jointer and a planer for milling rough stock would be my priority purchases over the drum sander. But I really like having the drum sander.

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1082 days


#15 posted 03-17-2018 03:32 PM



builtinbkyn,

I have been using a Woodmaster 38” single-drum sander for flattening glue-ups for several years. It is a closed end drum sander where the bed/conveyor height adjusts. The drum is powered with is a 5 hp motor while the conveyor is power by a DC variable speed reversing motor with a chain drive to the conveyor. The conveyor is highly textured (probably a synthetic material) belt which grips the stock well and keeps it moving through the machine. I equipped the machine with Woodmaster’s infeed and out feed extension rollers and a conveyor reversing switch. These options allow a panel to be run through the machine in one direct and then, without touching the panel, reverse the conveyor and bring the panel back through the machine.

http://www.woodmasterdrumsanders.com/our_sanders

Since I only use the drum sander for flattening panels, the single drum is fine for me. However, a first drum with 80 grit paper and a second drum with 120 grit paper could save a little time finish sanding the panel.

Having a jointer and a planer for milling rough stock would be my priority purchases over the drum sander. But I really like having the drum sander.

- JBrow


I didn’t really consider Woodmaster as I thought they just made larger industrial sanders. But I see they make a 26” sander with a good size bed. With the infeed/outfeed rollers attached, they extend the support to over 5’. They’re on sale now with free shipping :O

They use felt backed paper. Any issues with that aside from the paper being more expensive? Burning, etc? How is paper changeout? Time consuming?


FWIW, I have a dual drum sander and love it, however I only use one drum.

- shipwright

Paul any reason why you only use one drum? This is what I was looking to find out from people with a two drum machine.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

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