Why not to buy a Shopfox Drum Sander

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Review by Det posted 11-18-2011 03:33 AM 14406 views 0 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Why not to buy a Shopfox Drum Sander No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I purchased a W 1740 12 inch drum sander about three years ago. I have had nothing but trouble with this machine. It has plastic gears in the belt dtrive and I have had to replace that once already. Yesterday while out using the sander again, only used on small projects, the gear again stripped out. I contacted Shopfox technical support to order a new gear again and was told that part is no longer available. They have made a replaacement part (obviously because the one they had was causing so many problems) and I have to replace the complete unit, motor and all to the tune of $254.00. I was advised I was just out of luck, either buy the complete unit or do without a sander. Did I also mention that the on off switch broke on it also. If you are looking at purchasing a Shopfox do your research and buy another brand.

-- Jim, Eagle Point, Oregon

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35 posts in 3229 days

17 comments so far

View live4ever's profile


983 posts in 3857 days

#1 posted 11-18-2011 04:02 AM

Ok, so I take it you don’t want to give this machine 5 stars…lol

-- Optimists are usually disappointed. Pessimists are either right or pleasantly surprised. I tend to be a disappointed pessimist.

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2218 posts in 4617 days

#2 posted 11-18-2011 08:27 AM

It always hurts when you get stuck with one of these lemons, I’ve been there.

-- Tom D

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17902 posts in 4035 days

#3 posted 11-18-2011 12:08 PM

Good info and I have heard this before that Shop Fox sanders were junk and they were hard to deal with. Soory to here your having trouble.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

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321 posts in 3538 days

#4 posted 11-18-2011 03:40 PM

If you have enopugh of the gear left a good machine shop should be able to make one from metal. Of course if the opposing gear is also plastic you would have to have that made from metal as well.

-- Mike

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5777 posts in 4079 days

#5 posted 11-18-2011 05:30 PM

I am confused. If this sander was so awful, why did you give it 5 stars?

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

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841 posts in 4388 days

#6 posted 11-18-2011 07:02 PM

Looks like one start to me db. But it is confusing because it looks like 5 stars on the front page. Only when you open the thread can you see the one star….

Anyone have any experience with their larger sanders? I’m pretty sure the 26” double drum 5HP isn’t made with plastic gears….

-- Childress Woodworks

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5777 posts in 4079 days

#7 posted 11-18-2011 08:08 PM

Nope. Looks like the OP must have changed it… It was 5 stars on the front page, and on this one… Now it’s 1 star. From the description, sounds like he wishes he could give it zero…

FWIW, like a LOT of guys, I would LOVE a wide drum sander, but cost of them is so high, that I am working on a DIY drum sander. I have been reworking some of my drawings though… I am working with a metalworking / engineer friend of mine, we are trying to come up with something to do the trick for not a ton of cash…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View Tennessee's profile


2901 posts in 3361 days

#8 posted 11-18-2011 08:13 PM

I’ve been thinking of a drum sander, but it seems like everything in my price range is not so hot. I need something that will do 15” Anything out there?

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View pintodeluxe's profile


6204 posts in 3660 days

#9 posted 11-18-2011 09:10 PM

The problem with a drum sander for me is it’s never wide enough. I rarely need any heavy sanding after stock comes out of my planer, but it would be nice to have a wide drum sander. For the occasions I do need a 50” drum sander, I will take the piece to a local wood shop. Those things take up a one car garage, and are not exactly portable.
Thanks for the review. Sometimes negative reviews are the most helpful.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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45 posts in 3638 days

#10 posted 11-18-2011 09:32 PM


-- duke 66 ocala fl.

View Dustin's profile


393 posts in 4296 days

#11 posted 11-18-2011 09:52 PM

If you get bottom of the barrel you get bottom of the barrel. This is the cheapest drum sander you can pretty much get, so you get the cheapest drum sander you can pretty much get. Does that make sense?
I’ve got the 26” Shop Fox double drum and I love it. I also have four shop fox shapers, and a shop fox mortiser. I love everything I’ve gotten that was a Shop Fox until I also made the mistake of getting a bottom of the barrel shop fox dove tail jig. I eventually just gave it away.

I have used quite a number of brands of tools. Shop Fox is of course not the absolute best, but it’s somewhere in the upper middle. For the price you absolutely cannot beat it. Shop Fox = Grizzly = Steelex btw

General rule of thumb, a decent industrial woodworking machine should cost you AT LEAST 800 bucks, if it doesn’t it’s bottom of the barrel crap usually.

View Det's profile


35 posts in 3229 days

#12 posted 11-19-2011 01:53 AM

Dustin, Couldn’t agree with you more. I bought garbage and that was what I got. I learned my lesson, no more cheap Shop Fox type items. By the time you repair and count your down time you are better off spending the money and uying quality.

-- Jim, Eagle Point, Oregon

View Moron's profile


5048 posts in 4740 days

#13 posted 11-19-2011 05:06 AM

I can understand your disdain for the product, ………….gotta be so disappointing.

I’ve always said that “Experience is the toughest teacher out there as it always gives you the test first and the lesson later”

Drum sanders are quite a bit less money then thickness sanders and I must admit, I’ve never used a drum sander but this I do know………”new” is often a crock of “malarkey”. Sure shiny, never been used, spanking crisp out of the box, …..its like Christmas but its your money.

With most of the worlds economy is near shambles, one mans loss is another mans gain. There are auctions galore and never before could you buy a good quality tool for pennies on the dollar, also Craigslist, e-bay and people are giving tools away.

Sorry, but your a tad naive thinking 700 bucks for a brand new Drum sander is worth its salt. Its packaged garbage, straight into the re-cycling bin. I would think, that anything even remotely reliable has got to cost a couple a grand and even then I would be suspect.

You can buy a nice stroke sander for a grand or less these days, …….used

I could fill a tractor trailer 18 wheeler with the disappointments I have purchased : (

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

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560 posts in 4238 days

#14 posted 11-30-2011 07:02 AM

I tried some Shop Fox equipment a few years ago, and got rid of it with enthusiasm after most of it fell apart after about 2 weeks. Now, I am a professional and make my meager living working wood, but 2 weeks even of hard use should be enough for even a modest priced machine to handle. Delta and Grzzly fit my bill nicely, as I have never had a problem with them.

-- Adventure? Heh! Excitement? Heh! A Woodworker craves not these things!

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399 posts in 3623 days

#15 posted 01-21-2012 11:51 PM

Made in China.

-- "I am endeavoring, ma'am, to construct a mnemonic memory circuit using stone knives and bear skins."

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