Building a drum/disc sander #2: Prototyping the size

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Blog entry by WoodenSoldier posted 02-27-2012 07:35 AM 4924 reads 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Designing and demensioning Part 2 of Building a drum/disc sander series Part 3: It's getting out of hand. »

Trying to figure out the size still. I picked up a .5 steel rod at the hardware store and mocked it up a little. I haven’t glued the discs together yet or I just wanted to check out the size.


I’ve got 24” to work with, which I think will be plenty of space to fit the whole thing except for the disc sander table. That’s not a big deal I guess, I’ll just make it fold down, so that it will fit in my flip up cabinet.


I did a little digging around on Mcmaster Carr and found that conveyor belt material is really not that expensive so I think I will try to work it into the design. The motor I wanted on CL got snatched up by somebody else, so I’ll have to continue to search.

Here’s phase 2 of my design. It’s getting complicated, but I’m excited about the challenge. I’m going to try to use a parallel table design raised and lowered by 4 threaded rods that turn in unison with a bike chain.

drum-disc sander 2

My sketchup skills aren’t that great, so it’s not completely accurate, more of just a rough model. Also, I can’t figure out how to draw the belts and chains.

-- Create something everyday.

6 comments so far

View 559dustdesigns's profile


633 posts in 3701 days

#1 posted 02-27-2012 08:16 AM

This is looking good, more like a production machine. I have a old Makita 2030 that needs its rollers resurfaced.
I contacted a place in Oregon called Western Roller, but never sent them off. I bet the could help you with a first rate set of rollers for this thing, if you plan to use feed rollers. good luck with your challenge. I’m looking forward to following this build.
The idea you have to raise and lower the table will work great cause, thats exactly how my woodpeckers router liftworks you will just need some gears to work with the chain. I wish I had the money and time to take on a challenge this cool.

-- Aaron - central California "If you haven't got the time to do it right, when will you find the time to do it over?"

View Sarit's profile


551 posts in 3673 days

#2 posted 02-27-2012 09:24 AM

You’ll need springs for the feed rollers, otherwise you will break something or the rollers wont do anything. That’s how your planer keeps pressure down on the material while still allowing you to vary how much you take off.

View Vince 's profile


40 posts in 3033 days

#3 posted 02-27-2012 05:39 PM

If u use 4 seperate threaded rods to lift the table and work piece into the drum, what would happen if one of the rods arent exactly aligned by height with the other?? you may get an uneven sanded work piece

-- "Putty and paint make the carpenter I ain't"

View Egor's profile


135 posts in 4484 days

#4 posted 02-27-2012 06:27 PM

I like what you have going so far. Will watch this as you progress.

How do you plan to attach the 12” disc to the shaft to keep it from spinning?

-- Brock, Illinois

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3842 days

#5 posted 02-27-2012 06:44 PM

Here is a homemade thickness sander posted by one of the Lumberjocks mreza. It looks to be well designed and thought out. It might give you some ideas.

View WoodenSoldier's profile


161 posts in 3479 days

#6 posted 02-29-2012 05:43 AM

Thanks Sarit, I hadn’t thought of spring loading the rollers. I will have to figure some kind of spring mechanism into it. I was going to make them spin freely, but now I’m thinking of scrapping the conveyor belt idea and using the rollers as a power feed, much like my Dewalt planer.

Vince, I think the lowering mechanism can keep it straight as long as I build in some guide rods with good sleeve bearings to keep the whole thing square. Check out my next blog with the newly revised design.

Egor, I’m keeping my eyes peeled for something to attach the axle to the disc, but if I can’t find something, I’ll just get one machined from aluminum most likely. I can get a good price with one of the machinists that my facility works with.

-- Create something everyday.

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