Extra Large drum sander

  • Advertise with us
Review by Tony posted 03-20-2009 10:12 PM 8580 views 0 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Extra Large drum sander Extra Large drum sander Extra Large drum sander Click the pictures to enlarge them

I have just acquired this beast of a drum sander from Jet, minus the stand. The installation and initial setting up was very easy, even single handed, but be warned the main part of the unit is very heavy 85kg (187lbs), then add the extension tables and you are talking about 100kg (220lbs).

(A similar unit to the Performax 22- 44 Plus Drum Sander, see the review posted by GaryK

Please note that this is a European version, the drum sander specs may be different in your country.

The instruction booklet that comes with the system is adequate, but could be better written. I did not buy the cabinet stand that is offered here in Europe, The $300 price tag, plus the shipping cost was prohibitive.

The drum sander comes preloaded with a 80 grit strip on the drum and a box of jet replacement strips at 40, 80 and 120 grit also a sanding strip/abrasive cleaner, in addition I bought a 25m (82’) roll of 120 & 180 grit 3” strips which should last a few weeks.

The only real calibration on the drum sander is setting the drum parallel to the platen. I still have not got this as accurate as I would like – for some reason, when you tighten the nuts, the whole drum assembly moves up on the outboard side by 1 to 1.5 mm (0.04” – 0.06”). Jet states that the outboard side should be parallel or slightly higher than the inboard side, but for me 1 mm is too much, I would be happy with 0.025mm(0.001”)

Care must be taken when loading the drum, so the paper is really tightly wound from the out-board side to the in-board side, with no overlapping joints, if there is a gap between the joints that is OK. If you load from the in-board to the out-board side the paper tends to loosen (as the automatic paper tensioner is on the in-board side) and overlaps toward the inboard side during the operation.

The feed table speed is fully variable, with an automatic reduction in feed rate if the load (you are sanding too thick) is too great.

The 2.4HP motor is very quiet, delivering more than enough vibration free power and torque even when sanding with 40 grit paper and a wide board.

I was pleasantly surprised at the dust collection – there is no discernible dust present on the table/platen during operation, when connect to the dust collector – with out the DC then you have a London “pee Souper” in seconds.

The home made support table is made from not so good quality Birch I had in stock and the 4 wheels (50kg rating each) the total cost was about $60 (significantly cheaper and probably stronger than a purchased stand) – be warned the overall dimensions when installed takes a large footprint 1.2m (48”) x 1m (39”). It would be nice if Jet made the extension wings fold-able when not in use. You could unbolt the wings easily, but then it would take too long to reinstall and set them up again.

I am only going to give this 4 stars, mainly due to the problem with getting the drum parallel to the platen and that the extension tables cannot be folded out of the way when not in use.

Update: 21-03-2009. I managed to get the drum parallel with the platen today, but I had to use a clamp to hold the out board side of the roller in position whilst tightening the bolts – not a perfect solution, but acceptable as you do not have calibrate the roller every day.

Update: 22.03.2009. The inboard sandpaper retaining clip/tensioner broke today during operation, releasing the sand paper onto the drum, overrunning and reversing the sandpaper (grit side down) onto the drum – now the nicely polished drum is all badly scratched. I now have to find out where I can get this repaired as there re NO jet service centers listed for Finland.

Updated: 01.04.09. The supplier is going to ship me the spare part for fitting, unfortunately it is not in stock, so I have to wait 2 weeks. Luckily I managed to make a temporary repair to the retaining clip so at least I can still use it whilst waiting.

-- Tony - All things are possible, just some things are more difficult than others! - SKYPE: Heron2005 (

View Tony's profile


994 posts in 5002 days

18 comments so far

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4660 days

#1 posted 03-20-2009 11:25 PM

Sure sounds like a nice machine ,Tony : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View JPBatts's profile


41 posts in 4349 days

#2 posted 03-20-2009 11:37 PM

I recently acquired the Jet-22-44 and am very pleased with it. My first drum sander was the Delta x5 and was disappointed from day 1. The elevator system was difficult to align and keep that way. The Jet is eveything I had hoped for. I am building some large sofa tables with live edges and I needed something that I could also use as a planer.

-- If she asks please tell my wife that I can sell my tools for what I paid, okay?

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3810 posts in 4994 days

#3 posted 03-21-2009 12:53 AM

Nice piece of equipment Tony.
I makes my old home made sander look pretty amateur.
That 2.4 hp motor will make it pretty smooth even with an 80 grit on the drive.

Best of luck with it Tony and again thanks for taking time to evaluate it for us.


-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Max's profile


56000 posts in 5245 days

#4 posted 03-21-2009 01:07 AM

I have this same sander (the American version)With the enclosed cabinet. I purchased mine used about 4 months ago and love it.

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4716 days

#5 posted 03-21-2009 05:05 AM

Nice review, Tony. I have a Delta 18-36” drum sander and I keep the out board side of my platen about .010” thicker. It prevents burning the along the edge of the drum when doing a panel wider than 18”. The ridge is almost unnoticeable and is easily sanded out. If I do a panel less than 18”, I just run the panel through both ways to even it out. These are great tools to have for saving time on small table tops and such.

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 4846 days

#6 posted 03-21-2009 05:05 PM

Thanks for the review, Tony. A good drum sander is rising to the top of my wishlist, so I’ll use this info when I’m ready to buy.

-- -- --

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4960 days

#7 posted 03-21-2009 06:39 PM

Nice review Tony. Since Jet purchased Performax That is probably the Performax sander with the Jet name.
It looks like Jet add a more powerful motor though. That will sure make a difference.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4685 days

#8 posted 03-21-2009 07:57 PM

Thanks for the detailed review. I hope you get the parallelness (did I just create a new word? ;-) you are looking for.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 5286 days

#9 posted 03-22-2009 05:27 AM

I was checking this out today and saw they had an oscillating version. I’d love to get one but then I look at my check book. If I knew I had a lot of kitchens in my future I’d sure go for it. I’ve spent the last few days on the idiot end of a belt sander and after a while that just kills my back.

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4794 days

#10 posted 03-22-2009 02:03 PM

Nice review, Tony. I have had one of these on my wish list for some time now. Thanks for the information on the tool.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Chris's profile


340 posts in 4330 days

#11 posted 03-22-2009 08:05 PM

Thanks for the review Tony. I keep looking at these but the footprint is killing me. I have to reorganize somehow (not my strong suit to begin with) to find a place to stash it.
Hope it keeps working well for you.

-- Chris

View Karson's profile


35269 posts in 5372 days

#12 posted 03-22-2009 08:14 PM

Tony: I used a brass rod and no sandpaper on the drum to level my sander. The rod allowed me to level up the table to match up to the drum.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View Tony's profile


994 posts in 5002 days

#13 posted 03-22-2009 08:25 PM

Karson. In this model you have to level the Drum to the table, not the other way around. The problem arises when tightening the bolts, this is when the the whole assembly moves if not held in place.

-- Tony - All things are possible, just some things are more difficult than others! - SKYPE: Heron2005 (

View Miket's profile


308 posts in 4744 days

#14 posted 03-22-2009 09:09 PM

Tony – The trick with bolts is to tighten them a very little bit moving from bolt to bolt.

If that doesn’t work them offset it in the opposite direction by the amount it moves when you tighten them.

-- It's better to have people think you're stupid rather than open your mouth and remove all doubt.

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3810 posts in 4994 days

#15 posted 03-22-2009 09:13 PM

Tony try putting a thickeness or 2 of mdf between the table and drum and set the drum to that then tighten the bolts.


-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

showing 1 through 15 of 18 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics