Legend has it that the drum sander was invented by a gentleman named Alex Clarke who was tired of leaning on tough and scratchy bars. Soon after getting to be common for bar tops, the sander subsequent found by itself resurfacing desks for schoolchildren, producing it 1 of the number of examples of everything evolving from bar to university as an alternative of the other way about. The inventor may well be amazed to understand that today his sander is well-liked not only with woodworkers but also with luthiers – craftsmen who make instruments like guitars and violins.
Whether you are a professional or a tinkerer, and whether or not you’re organizing to make tables or veneers or chopping boards or cupboard doors, be positive to read through our reviews and buyer’s information to support you find the appropriate drum sander. And the subsequent time you lean on a bar, be sure your elbows send a silent thank you to Mr. Clarke.
Our Favorite Picks of 2022 Compared:
| Best Overall
| The Runner-Up
| Best Value
||JET 628900 Mini||
The 5 Best Drum Sanders:
1. Powermatic PM2244 Drum Sander – Best Overall
The Powermatic PM2244 will have you looking close to for wood to run via it merely simply because it’s such a great device. With a 1.75HP motor and a 22” drum, you can put items up to 44” through right here and they can be up to 4” thick to commence, despite the fact that it also works all the way down to 1/32”. It arrives with a digital depth display that makes it possible for you to measure out to the thousandths of an inch, for greatest precision, and presents you a digital readout on feed rate as nicely. This device is a monster, at 400 lbs. and about 4’x2’, but comes assembled, with wheels, and set up is so effortless you will be sanding in significantly less than 15 minutes. This is a significant drum sander that will make you look like a grasp woodworker (even if you’re truly not) and can even stand in as a lightweight planer. If big-scale woodworking is your livelihood, this is an expense – with a price tag to match – you will not regret. All round, we consider this is the greatest drum sander we have reviewed this calendar year.
2. JET 649003K Drum Sander
The JET 649003K arrives with a great deal of the very same bells and whistles as our Leading Pick. Its 1.75HP motor can also manage wood up to 44” vast and from 4” down to 1/32” thick, additionally it offers vehicle handle of the variable feed rate to keep your drum from above-functioning. This is a benchtop sander, so it is much more compact (about 3’x1’) and lighter (“only” 250 lbs.) and you will want a stand of some form for it, even though which is accounted for in a significantly lower cost tag. This JET sander stumbles on two relatively small fronts, even though. It lacks the digital readouts of the Powermatic, and the in and outfeed tables, though optional, are a challenge to consider off and put on. If you really do not care about those two concerns, this may well be the excellent sander for you no matter whether you are a pro or a hobbyist.
3. JET 628900 Mini Drum Sander – Best Value
The JET 628900 Mini is mini in a lot of senses of the term. This benchtop model is drastically more compact, lighter, and less expensive than our foremost drum sanders, but nonetheless provides for the pastime woodworker. It can take care of wooden up to 20” broad and 3” thick but can work down to as skinny as one/32”. Not made to handle substantial sanding positions, it holds up properly under moderate use by a experienced operator but is not idiot-evidence like its much more costly cousins: the sandpaper can be tough to adjust, the conveyor belt is a minor quirky, and it shuts off if you request way too significantly of it. But for anyone undertaking scaled-down initiatives in their garage or basement, this is a handy tiny drum sander and a cut price to boot. All in all, this is the ideal drum sander for the funds this calendar year.
4. SuperMax 19-38 Drum Sander Tool
The SuperMax 19-38 is another monster of a drum sander, coming in a nearly 4’x5’ and in excess of three hundred lbs. Every single one of people three hundred lbs. will be visible in the course of established up, which will just take a lengthy time and require a buddy to aid and carry on to be obvious until finally you add your own wheels considering that it does not appear with any. As soon as you get it up and working, you will be happy with the electronic depth indicator, but you are most likely to locate the wood feed rate automatically slowing to a crawl. Even with the slowing of the feed, although, you’re nonetheless liable to be disappointed by burn up marks exhibiting on your wooden. This SuperMax is way too finicky for the hobbyist but doesn’t supply the efficiency a pro should anticipate, leading us to question who this equipment is doing work for.
5. Grizzly G0716 Drum Sander
The Grizzly G0716 is priced to contend with our Best for the Cash decision but isn’t in the very same league. It is 1.5 HP motor can manage boards up to nine.5” extensive and 3” thick, but can only work down to ¼”, making it unsuitable for veneer or instrument tasks. It’s fairly large – 200 lbs. – for some thing which is only about 2×2.5’ and only delivers guide manage of its variable velocity conveyor belt. It does come with a stand, which is an unforeseen plus at this cost point, but consumers are almost common in complaining that it is way way too quick, necessitating jury-rigging to avoid turning into a hunchback. When not bemoaning its height, or absence thereof, every person is annoyed by the sandpaper shifting. Even although a basement woodworker may possibly not need a prime-of-the-line device, there is no reason for them to settle for this sander.
Buyer’s Guide: How to Select the Best Drum Sander
A drum sander, not to be puzzled with a drum floor sander, is a massive store device comparable in design to a planer. Utilized to quickly and successfully sand products like chopping boards, tabletops, and cabinet doors, they are also well-known for making stringed devices like guitars. A drum sander will preserve you hours if not days of hand sanding but, provided their steep price tag tags, are meant for the expert or severe hobby woodworker.
But you are fatigued of shelling out hours hunched in excess of your orbital sander and are all set to invest in a drum sander. What must you be on the lookout for?
Every drum sander will generate tremendous quantities of dust. They are all developed to be related by a hose to an electric powered dust collector. If you do not previously have one particular, you will absolutely want to get a single.
Maximum and minimum wood sizes
Are you arranging to make eating tables that seat twenty men and women or reducing boards? Conclude tables or violins? You really do not always need to have the sander that allows you feed in the largest slabs of wood if all you’re utilizing it for is cabinet doorways. The widest board you can deliver via will be, at most, double the width of the roller: with a 22” drum roller, you can sand a 44” piece of wooden. Go through the specs very carefully if you plan to function with broader pieces considering that you really don't want to wind up with a board that’s completely flat and smooth everywhere but an inch strip down the center because the drum could not achieve it from either aspect.
At the reverse end of the spectrum, you may possibly also want to preserve an eye on the thickness of the wood the sander can accommodate. If you want to operate on or with veneers or if you are learning how to make guitars, a sander that can only sand down to ¼” might not perform for you. The fancier sanders can go down to one/32” producing them a a lot far better decision for the super-slim assignments. Of program, if you’ll also need to consider once again if you ended up arranging to send out 8” sq. posts via your drum sander – those will be significantly too large.
How to adjust it
Maybe in an additional ten years, this stage will be outdated, but proper now we have acquired machines in two unique flavors: large-tech and old faculty. The old school devices have manual knobs and levers to make most of the measurements and adjustments. The large-tech kinds have functions like tiny onboard pcs that supply self-regulating feed tables and digital measuring to the thousandths of an inch. The modern ones offer better precision (and price tag tags), but the old-fashioned kinds still get the occupation completed with a person who understands their things. The option below comes down to private choice – does the concept of a electronic device make you frown or smile?
Installing new sandpaper
The fundamental premise driving the sandpaper installation for all the drum sanders is rather considerably the identical: you are going to wrap a ribbon of sandpaper that’s a number of inches broad about the rotating drum and secure it at equally ends. With some sanders, this will get you 30-60 seconds. With others, even though, this will just take you thirty-60 minutes and call for an additional instrument or two and Herculean ranges of tolerance. There is no very good purpose for this approach to be a trouble, so be confident to search for a sander that is consumer-welcoming in this regard.
Some drum sanders – specially at the higher price tag tags – may possibly be able to do some of the operate far better suited for a planer. But most of these are not able to shave off thick layers in a single move, and when you question them to, they might just shut down. Some designs can self-regulate the feed price and sluggish it down when the drum motor struggles to consume by way of the board, creating shut-offs unusual. But the a lot more previous school designs expect you, the consumer, not to overload them, and when you do, they flip off to prevent damage to the device.
If you want your sander to phase up and be a planer sometimes, or if you know you really don't have the tolerance to make small but regular passes, you will want to pony up for a product that automatically controls the feed charge and guards your investment for you.
Bench or stand
As you evaluate drum sanders, study the merchandise description completely. Some are bench models and do not appear with a stand. Considering that you possibly do not want to run your new sander whilst it is sitting on the ground, you want to make sure to purchase a stand if it doesn’t come with a single. (But you could also rig up a momentary stand and then use the new sander to create a customized stand for your self!)
Even although this is a drum sander, not a planer, you nevertheless need to have to preserve an eye out for snipe, those divots at the major or trailing finish of your board in which the device grabs and releases. On a drum sander, you might even see evidence of snipe in the middle of the board. But if you do not ask your sander to chunk off much more than it can chew, snipe will be unusual.
Your feed rate can and will fluctuate relying on how deep of a cut you inquire it to make, with a more rapidly feed fee corresponding to a shallower minimize depth and a want for more passes. On some of the more outdated-fashioned designs, you manage the feed charge manually, so you want to pay out interest to make sure you are not overtaxing the drum roller. A lot more present day devices will manage the feed price for you and speed up or slow down dependent on how tough the drum roller is working.
You will not be tossing your drum sander in the back of your truck every single morning to consider to a occupation web site. Most of them weigh a few hundred lbs and unless they are on casters, you should not think of them as transportable. Some models appear with wheels previously hooked up, some enable you to set your very own on, and some really don't do possibly.
Give some considered to exactly where you will store the sander in your shop or garage. These equipment can be place hogs, so get a search at the merchandise dimensions and then discover or develop a room for it. If it’s on wheels, you can push it to an open up portion of the ground for when you are making use of it, but you are going to even now want to designate a parking spot for it when you are doing other stuff.
With any purchase at these charges, even the less pricey machines, you have the appropriate to count on some first rate client assistance to back up your acquire. Some makes, like Powermatic, are known to have exceptional customer services. But there will be other folks whose track record is a tiny spottier so be confident to do some history check on the manufacturer you are contemplating.
The costs for drum sanders are all more than the location. Our Leading Pick costs numerous times what our base-of-the-list option does. The considerably less expensive designs will be much more aged-fashioned and lack the contemporary digital readout kinds of whistles. On the other hand, you may possibly not want (or want to find the money for) the Ferrari of drum sanders, and you can most likely be properly pleased with a a lot more modest sander if you can dedicate a couple of added minutes to comprehending it and making it function for you.
The Powermatic PM2244 is our Leading Pick, delivering the most up-to-day technology to assure fast, precise, and super-clean sanding proper out of the box. High-priced but will pay you back again in overall performance and time-personal savings a lot of occasions more than.
Our Ideal for the Funds drum sander is the JET 649003K. Despite its lack of bells and whistles, this easy drum sander will get the job carried out at a mere fraction of the price tag of our Top Decide.
A drum sander may possibly wind up becoming 1 of the premier and most high-priced equipment you ever buy. Consider the time to read through our reviews just before you pull the trigger. We hope the variety procedure goes as efficiently as everything sanded with 220 grit sandpaper!