Professional Power Tools

If you have a question vou'd like answered, send it to us at: Question & Answer, American Woodworker, 2915 Commers Drive, Suite 700, Eagan, MN 55121 or e-mail to [email protected]. Sorry, but the volume of mail prevents us from answering each question individually.

If you have a question vou'd like answered, send it to us at: Question & Answer, American Woodworker, 2915 Commers Drive, Suite 700, Eagan, MN 55121 or e-mail to [email protected]. Sorry, but the volume of mail prevents us from answering each question individually.

Drum Sander Woes

Q. My drum sander is a great machine, but I throw out way too much sandpaper with burned spots that scorch my wood. What am I doing wrong?

C. William Tewey

A. Don't feel bad. We've had a drum sander in the AW shop for four years and had the same problem, until we taped these reminders on our machine:

1. Always start with a coarse grit. Don't try to do it all with a fine grit. Rough lumber - 36 grit

Planed lumber - 80 grit Flattening glue-ups - 80 grit

2. Scrape off all dried glue before sanding. Glue lines scorch sandpaper!

3. Sand only the high spots on the first pass.

4. Angle your boards 10 degrees or so. The fibers are cut more cleanly, and glue lines are spread over a wider portion of the belt. Don't feed the wood straight on until the last pass.

5. Rotate the crank one-eighth of a turn at most. Deeper cuts heat up the belt, causing it to wear out faster.

6. Run every board through twice before turning the crank. Make sure the current setting has removed all it can before cutting deeper. AW

American Woodworker January2003 17

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