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Thickness Sander Plans (Read 71198 times)
Don_Orgeman
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #45 - Jan 7th, 2008 at 7:05am
 
Hi All--

On the theory that a picture is worth a thousand words, here are three pictures of my thickness sander with just a few words.

...

Sander from side with belt protector door open


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Sander from infeed end.  Yes that shiny stuff on the ends of the drum is duct tape.

...

Dust hood on and ready to go.  Yes, you feed from back of table saw.

Sander worked great using 1.5 inch wide 80 grit emery cloth.

Don
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #46 - Jan 7th, 2008 at 12:22pm
 
Hey Unkabob,

I am also working on a sander.  Kind of combining ideas from Dominic's page as well as David Hurd's.

If you are still looking for the hook & loop sandpaper, go to http:/mastertools.com. Click on the accessories and croll through the pages.  I think the 3" wide paper is on the 2nd or 3rd page and the 4" wide velcro is on the last page.

I also found 'thebigbearingstore.com' to be as decent source for bearings, pulleys, and belts.

Hope the info is useful to someone.

Mark
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Jeff B
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #47 - Jan 8th, 2008 at 7:17am
 
Like many of you, I've agonized over whether to build a drum sander or buy one. After extensive research and costing out what it would take to build one, I decided it was not a good option.

So I began a quest for a manufactured drum sander. Performax, Jet and Craftsman were studied, reviews analyzed ad nauseum. Then my wife surprised me with a Grizzly Industrial 17" heavy-duty bandsaw for my birthday. What an incredible machine! The quality is outstanding (built in an ISO 9001 factory). So I looked to see what Grizzly had in drum sanders. I'm now building ukuleles, but want to build guitars in the future. So a 10" model is OK for ukes, but not for guitars. I decided on their 18/36" open-end model.

The Grizzly is unique in that the drum is on a stationary axle and the conveyor is what moves up and down. So all fears of a mis-aligned drum go away. The conveyor's  table height is controlled via a system of four sprockets that are precisely aligned to each other and driven by a continuous chain.

The Grizzly is solidly built and weighs almost 200 lbs. It has a 6" aluminum drum, belt driven by a 1.5HP motor (110V). The conveyor feed rate is variable, controlled by a convenient knob on the front of the machine with a large indicator. So far, I have been nothing but impressed by the machine.

It isn't cheap, however. Retail price is $850 but I was able to use a special code in Grizzly's ad in Wood magazine and got $100 off. Shipping to the lower 48 is $90. Not sure what it would cost to ship to Hawai'i. The shipping weight is 350 lbs! It comes on a wood pallet and is encased in a 1/2" mahogany plywood box. I put casters on its stand so I could move it around (it took 3 of us to get it out of its crate and set up).

Despite the price, I expect this machine to last a very long time and pay for itself quickly. As with all tools, never exceed the limits of the machine. Don't try to take too much off at once, keep the sandpaper clean and use efficient dust collection! By the way, Grizzly also sells tonewoods, Luthier's supplies and tools. Many are much cheaper than the usual sources (Stew-Mac, LMII). The president of Grizzly builds guitars as a hobby.

Aloha,
Jeff
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Don_Orgeman
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #48 - Jan 8th, 2008 at 3:54pm
 
Jeff:

My sander, with a 20 inch drum to accomodate guitars, cost about $200 to build without a motor or stand since I am using my table saw to power the sander.  While it doesn't have many of the features on a manufactured sander, it does the job nicely.  I like the fact that both ends of th drum shaft are fixed with pillow blocks instead of having one end free as in the open end models.  Also, one pass sands the entire surface even on a large guitar top.

I think most of us who built our own sanders did so because we felt it was part of the overall building experience, and liked the fact that we could build it ourselves.  My sander has the features I wanted which makes it slightly different from every other home built sander.

If I was building guitars or ukuleles commercially it might change my opinion, but I expect to build only 4 or 5 ukuleles and then go back to building guitars.  All but one of my ukuleles will probably be given to my children or grandchildren as gifts.  As a true hobby builder, I did not have to measure the amount of time I spend building the sander instead of building ukuleles.  It was just one of the steps in the adventure.

Don
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Jeff B
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #49 - Jan 9th, 2008 at 1:14am
 
Don, you're absolutely right. The drum sander is a luxury. I've been working wood as a hobby myself for over 50 years. I got along fine without the sander all that time. I probably could have gotten along without it another 50 years  Grin. But now that I have it, I intend to make good use of it.

I find fun not only building the ukes and guitars, but making my own jigs to make the process a little more precise - and easier. Sometimes, designing and building a new jig is more fun than the process it was intended to simplify...

Aloha,
Jeff
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #50 - Jan 22nd, 2008 at 3:40am
 
Hi,

Am starting to build framework for a sander.  One thing I haven't noticed anyone discuss was cutting a keyway in the drum shaft for the drive pulley.  I'm wondering if you can get away without it considering the torque you'd get under a load,  especially since the set screw is located in the pulley's keyway.  Would appreciate any feedback.

Thanks,

Mark

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Don_Orgeman
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #51 - Jan 22nd, 2008 at 4:52am
 
Mark:

I did not grind a flat spot on my shaft or use a key.  My pulley also has a keyway slot.  I just clamped the set screw down onto the shaft.  There isn't as much back pressure as you would expect since you are taking the feed very slowly to get a good uniform job with an 80 grit spiral wound belt.

Don
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #52 - Jan 23rd, 2008 at 12:23pm
 
Don,

I am currently putting together a standalone sander. My motor is a 1HP Craftsman and is pretty ancient.  If it gives up the ghost I may just modify the framework to become a saw topper like yours.

I'm curious if you just slipped a 5/8" pulley on your saw arbor?  If so, did you use anything special to secure it, or just use the standard nut?


Does your saw have the 3450RPM motor?


What ratio of pulleys did you end up using?  If I remember correctly you were using a 4" dia. drum.  Mine will end up at about 3-3/4" dia. so I'd probably just build mine to match.

OK, enough questions already.  It's still cool here (low was 24o, high was 36o), so I was just using this as an excuse to come in by the wood stove and get another cup of coffee.  Oh yeah,l you're in Michigan.  I guess not much sympathy on that, eh?

Thanks,

Mark
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #53 - Jan 23rd, 2008 at 12:28pm
 
Roll EyesOOPS!!! ???  Minnesota! No insult intended Lips Sealed
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Don_Orgeman
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #54 - Jan 24th, 2008 at 4:14am
 
Mark:

No offense taken (Michigan vs. Minnesota comment).

I don't know what speed the motor spins at.  I have a Jet contractors table saw wired for 115 volt, so I suspect it spins at 1725.

My sander is an adaptation of the design shown in ShopNotes a while back with some modifications.

I used a 1 inch diameter shaft because I followed some comments from builders on another web site that they were having facetting problems with their MDF drums and associated the problem with a bent shaft or table flexing.  To be safe, I went for a large diameter shaft.  I got the shaft and pulleys from McMaster-Carr (www.mcmaster.com). ; The shaft was a bit pricey but it has worked well.  I got my pillow blocks from Reid Supply (www.reidsupply.com)

I used a 2 inch diameter pulley with a 5/8 bore on the saw, and just attached it with the standard saw blade nut.  The pulleys on my drum are 5 inch diameter with 1 inch bore.  I put pulleys on both ends of the shaft in case I add a dedicated motor in the future and don't know which way it will spin (having seen peoples struggles to re-wire their motor to reverse the direction  of spin).

Part of the reason I went big on the shaft is I built a 20 inch wide drum on my sander so I could also sand big guitar tops with the same sander.  My plans are to return to guitar making after having fun with building ukuleles for a while.  The drum is 5 inches in diameter and is locked to the shaft by 1/8 inch pins through the shaft near each end.  Behind each end disk is a MDF disk with a slot to trap the locking pin.  The last two disks are attached with drywall screws so they can be removed if needed.  The main drum disks are glued together with titebond glue.

If you look at the ShopNotes plans, you will see a nice belt feed conveyor system.  I decided against this because it added flex in the table support for the work.

If I can be of any more help, let me know.

Don
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #55 - Jan 24th, 2008 at 5:29am
 
Don,

Thanks for the speedy response.

I discovered that the arbor length on my Delta contractor saw is only 1-1/8" long.  I can barely squeeze 13/16" of dado on it.  Looks like I would have to mill the locking collar off of my 2" pulley to have enough room for the nut.  Doable, but hopefully I'll be able to find a pulley that is built without the collar.

I am planning on using a 5/8" stainless shaft.  My drum will be two pieces of maple, each 1-7/8" x 3-3/4" x 20" long.  My thinking is that with that much solid hardwood encasing the shaft, there should be plenty of stiffness.  If not, I guess I'll have to upgrade.  I'll let you know how that turns out.

Thanks for you help,

Mark
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Don_Orgeman
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #56 - Jan 24th, 2008 at 9:51am
 
Mark:

I checked my 2 inch pulley.  It's 1 1/16 inch thick, so it would also have to be milled to fit your saw.  That may be your best option -- get a non-steel pulley and cut off the excess then grind flat.

Check McMaster-Carr web page.  They show a lot of data and drawing for their stuff.  They may have what you're looking for or at least let you know that it exists.

Don
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #57 - Apr 19th, 2008 at 5:19pm
 
Hey All,

Finally got around to finishing my sander.  Thanks to Don O., Dominic, and David Hurd for bits and pieces of info along the way.  Thought I'd post pics for those who are considering  making one.

Mark
...
...
...
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unkabob
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #58 - Apr 19th, 2008 at 5:32pm
 
Mark:
That looks nice.
What width and horsepower?

You finished the stand nicely.

Now start building.

Bob
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Wood_Butcher
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Re: Thickness Sander Plans
Reply #59 - Apr 20th, 2008 at 4:23am
 
Bob,

Thanks.  The drum is 20" wide by a net 4" with the hook and loop sandpaper attached.  The motor is an antique (and free!) 1HP Craftsman induction-repulsion motor.  It weighs a ton and didn't even slow down when I was sanding the drum.  A lot of people have commented that a sander this wide would need a 1-1/2 to 2 HP motor, but I guess motors were rated a little more conservatively in the old days.

Yeah, you're about the building part.  I've had the neck glued up for about 1-1/2 years, and the plates glued up for a couple of months.  So far the orders for custom ukes have been a little slow, so my production schedule has been about right on track.  That darn thing called work hasn't been much help either.  Seriously though, this is strictly therapeutic, but when I retire in about 332 (but who's counting?) days I'm really gonna kick it into high gear.  I'm enjoying the process of acquiring tools and building jigs almost as much as working on the uke.  I'm also thinking the world might be just a little better place for me not having a finished uke in my hands to inflict aural torture on the rest of you.

Mark
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Thanks, Mike and Asa!
 
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