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This is a quick and cheap drum sander that I dreamed up to run on my ShopSmith in my Az shop. I have neither the budget nor the space here for the luxuries that my shop at home in B.C. has so I had to be a little creative.

The concept is to use as much of the existing machine as possible and duplicate as little as possible. The machine, in this case a ShopSmith Mark V 510, already has a variable speed motor and bearings and a solid chassis so I didn't duplicate them. I simply made a drum to fit in the existing lathe and an accurately adjustable table to mount under it.

The table mounts rigidly to the lathe chassis or way tubes on a SS and pivots at one end. The other end is raised and lowered by either one central or two side elevators, depending on the accuracy required. To assure that nothing moves due for instance to the piece being fed through off center, There are locks right and left of the body to lock the table when making really critical cuts.

The dust collection is made from PVC pipe fittings and 1/2 of a 24" piece of 4" pipe. I was going to install rare earth magnets to hold it in place but the suction from the DC makes it almost un-removable when it's turned on.
There is no dust escapement at all even when sanding MDF.

The fact that the drum and the body / table assembly are totally separate and independent means that if you have another surplus faceplate to dedicate, you can make a second drum for another grade of sandpaper. Changing grade then is as easy as switching drums.

The photos show:
1) The setup on my SS with the headstock helping support the DC hose.
2) The bare ABS pipe drum fitted with end plugs and mounted for trial spin up.
3) The locking bolt shown from under the reinforced table.
4) An opened up view.The extra drum is shown behind the sander.
5) Some quick marquetry I did to test the accuracy. These are before sanding and are commercial 1/32" veneer.
6) The same pieces after sanding with the 220 grit drum. They were put through five incremental cuts to completely level and clean them and they are not sanded through or even close anywhere.
(Please don't critique the marquetry, It is just some quick pieces that I made up to test the sander and to practice my sand shading. I know they are rough.)

This is a very easy sander to build and it costs only about $100, give or take, depending on what usable bits and pieces you have around the shop.

The building blog is here: http://lumberjocks.com/shipwright/blog/26701

Grizzly Hook and Loop Conversion Kit: http://www.grizzly.com/products/Hook-Loop-Conversion-Kit-for-Model-G1066/H5037
Thanks for looking. Questions, comments and critiques are always welcome.

Gallery

Comments

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465 Posts
very cool
 

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212 Posts
that's badass sir, that's some crazy technique.
 

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11,255 Posts
Year+ later and I'm wondering how it's going. Have you made any modifications or would you do anything differently?
 

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5,279 Posts
Still working fine but I only use it when I'm in AZ so it's not quite that long. Here it is in use this year.
 

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5 Posts
Brilliant! I've been looking at many configurations but yours wins for so many reasons. Thanks for posting!
 

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87 Posts
Using the hook and loop sandpaper from grizzly do you clamp it in or are we just securing it to the velcro? I ask as I'm trying to convert a belsaw planer into a thickness sander all the mechanics are there just need to figure out the drum and sandpaper issue.
 

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The hook side is peel and stick (very powerful glue - get it right the first time)
The loop side (sandpaper) just attaches in the normal way, no clamps.
 

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Paul, I had a thought on this for different grades of sandpaper. Would it be possible to roll a finer git over the existing one with a clamp at each end? Or is the wrapping process too time consuming?

Cheers, Jim
 

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It's hook and loop Jim so it doesn't come with clamps. The hook and loop conversion kit I bought (grizzly) had lots of hook base to make two drums and as I remember perhaps three. I found it easiest just to make more drums, not to say it wouldn't be worth a try.
Let me know how it works.
 
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