Tool Gloat...Performax 16-32 Drum Sander

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Forum topic by Brad_Nailor posted 04-24-2012 04:44 AM 10833 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3985 days

04-24-2012 04:44 AM

I had been itching for an Ipad for some time now, and when things went my way this past Xmas, I was able to get the funds together to buy one. After thinking about it , I realized the Ipad was an expensive toy….maybe I should spend the money on something more usable. I have always wanted my own drum/belt, but new Jet 16/32’s were around $1200….double what I had to spend. So fate intervened, and I see a listing in CL for a slightly used, older Performax 16-32 drum sander. I send an email and the guy says all he has had was spammers and guys trying to work the price way down. I immediately went over to look at it, and bought it on site!

It was in almost perfect condition, and looked like it had barely been used. It’s a true pre Jet Performax. It also came with the in feed/out feed tables. I immediately took those off, cleaned it up, tensioned the belt and checked the drum for flatness. These models didn’t have the easy adjustability..if it isn’t flat you have to shim it to adjust it…what a pain..luckily this thing was dead adjustment needed. So I immediately made a cart for it…

The D/C port was 2”, but my shop vac does a great job collecting the dust but the filter clogs quick..I will either build a cyclone into the base of the cart, of get a fitting and use my DC.

Didn’t come with any paper but some worn out 80 grit on the drum…I ordered a variety pack of pre cuts from Klingspor.. 2 80 grits a 60 and a 100..that should work for a while. I am so glad I grabbed this sander…it works is so great to have the ability to drum sand parts to precise thicknesses..especially thin, small pieces. The guy wanted 675 for it, which was a great deal..I talked him down to 600…another CL steal!


12 replies so far

View bluekingfisher's profile


1250 posts in 3007 days

#1 posted 04-24-2012 08:03 AM

Great buy, I bought a Jet 16-32 last year on ebay. It came with the leg set and castors, extension tables and 8 sets of paper.

The guy used it once, when I went to collect it there was no dust on it at all, the belts were all unused so I’m not sure he actually used it.

He had decided to take up metal working instead so surplus to his requirements. From the house he lived in I got the impression money was not a factor in the guys life and seemed happy that a “poor boy” had plans for it. I have seen older tattier examples go for much more so I guess I bid at the right time.

I mounted mine on a seven drawer tool chest, handy for keeping all the belts and spares in.

I got mine for £535, I’ve only used it a couple of times so far and what a joy to use. With all the belts I have it should be a while before I have to buy again.

Anyway, I’m sure you will have stress free hours of fun sanding those thin strips, well done on your find.

-- No one plans to fail, they just, just fail to plan

View ellen35's profile


2738 posts in 3460 days

#2 posted 04-24-2012 08:42 AM

You will love this machine! i have a now 2 yr old 16-32 and it is my go to machine for so many projects.
Dustbunny is coming over in about a week to help me change over to hook and loop paper. If this machine has a weakness, it is getting the paper on and off. Luckily Grizzly makes a kit for one of it’s bigger machines and it can be used on this one to convert to hook and loop.
I have an iPad… I like this machine better ;-)

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View BlankMan's profile


1490 posts in 3381 days

#3 posted 04-24-2012 09:02 AM

Great score! I always wanted one but the price put me off. Before Jet bought them a buddy of mine answered a ad on CL for a sander and it turned out to be a Performax 16/32, he picked it up for like $400, the guy didn’t know what he had. I was envious. A while later I got a good deal on the Delta when they first came out, before Delta was even shipping them, saw a demo unit and had to wait a few months. Gets a lot of use, one of the best machines I ever bought, a real time saver. I pretty much keep 220 on it and rarely use anything else or have to do any more sanding afterward. Enjoy!

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View CanadianWoodChuck's profile


402 posts in 3941 days

#4 posted 04-24-2012 11:40 AM

Great buy. I have a Steel City model that looks identical …. just cost me a lot more. Enjoy

-- Wood Chuck (Bruce)

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3701 days

#5 posted 04-24-2012 12:31 PM

Nice gloat!

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3985 days

#6 posted 04-24-2012 12:39 PM

Thanks guys! I love this sander…I have used it quite a few times..I was using my planer to flatten cutting boards but this works so much better.

Curt..I am surprised you keep 220 on it..I was thinking of leaving 100 on their most of the time..

Ellen..I think it is really easy to change the just have to stretch it out with a crepe stick and re tension it..My buddy has a dual 36” drum and he put the hook and loop conversion kit on improved the performance of the sander.


View jim C's profile

jim C

1472 posts in 3126 days

#7 posted 04-24-2012 12:58 PM

Finding and setting up tools/machines etc. is sometimes more fun than the actual woodworking.
Great find.

View BlankMan's profile


1490 posts in 3381 days

#8 posted 04-24-2012 02:19 PM

David, yeah, after I face the boards on the jointer then plane them they’re pretty smooth already, especially with the DW735 if I take a pass on both sides of them. I use the drum sander for final sizing most of the time. I think I only have 80 grit, maybe it’s 100, and 220 on the large rolls that you cut a piece off. Can’t remember the last time I had anything but 220 on it.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View Philzoel's profile


302 posts in 2371 days

#9 posted 04-25-2012 12:03 AM

Great chose. sander over Ipad. my sander is a great tool. I believe you will put in/outfeed back on. PLEASE Don’t throw them away. They take out having to be there on some slow cuts.

No SNIP is a great treat.

I use a variety of grits 80 for sizing and cleaning up rough sawed wood and then to 150 to work the wood.

Mine was easy to get get flat. It’s the jet 16/32. 4” port is good.

-- Phil Zoeller louisville, KY

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3202 days

#10 posted 04-25-2012 12:05 AM

Welcome to the “How did I EVER live WITHOUT this thing?” world.

Love my 16/32. Congrats !

-- -- Neil

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2832 days

#11 posted 09-09-2012 10:53 AM

I’ve always heard these machines were the top dog. I am so excited, cuz I’m going to get one this coming Wed. A good friend is going to sell it to me. I just have to travel 340 miles to get it. I’ll post it when I get I get it home.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14173 posts in 4011 days

#12 posted 09-09-2012 06:42 PM

you will love it … I ‘ve had a Ryobi 16/32 for 10 years. Best tool I ever bought. Huge time saver.

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

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