Drum sanders are amazing tools for woodworking. They really are because if you want to sand a piece that you have finished, you must have the right equipment so that the item would look as professional as possible.
The problem is a lot of woodworkers, and I’m talking about particularly of a newbie or amateur woodworkers, skimp on the drum sander. As a result, the granularity of the finished product that they produce leaves much to be desired.
Are these items so scratchy and so obviously unprofessional that they can’t be sold? Of course not. They’re not that obvious, but to the eyes of a trained professional or worse yet a trained buyer the difference stands out.
In fact, the final finish of the arts and crafts wood item that you produce may mean the difference between a sale and that item spending more time on your shelf.
That’s going to gather more dust. Before you know it, you forget about it. Pretty sad, right? Well, that’s one of the consequences of going with a less than stellar drum sander.
Here’s a video that will help you decide if you actually need a drum sander:
The problem with “the best”
Before I go into the ins and outs of buying the very best drum sander for your woodworking business, let’s just get the 800-pound elephant out of the way. When people search for the phrase, “the best” on the internet, they’re making their search all that much harder.
Seriously, they’re making their jobs harder on themselves because the phrase “the best” is at best (no pun intended) subjective. Seriously, you might think that a product is the best for you because you have a set of needs.
You use it at certain times. You use it to do certain outcomes. All of these are important only to you. If you were to recommend that prior to somebody else who has a completely different set of needs, they probably would think you’re crazy for referring that product in the first place.
They might even think that you rip them off. The funny thing is both of you are correct. The problem is you were looking at the product in terms solely of your needs. You really can’t be blamed for that.
The problem is when people use the word the best, that’s what they’re really doing. It is a held captive to what they know and what their priorities and needs are.
Do you see the disconnect here? Do you see how this could be a problem? This subjectivity can get in the way and that’s why any discussion of “the best product” must focus on objective considerations.
These are the kinds of selection factors that people all over the world whether they’re beginner woodworkers or experts or even household names would agree on. Surprisingly enough, there are certain criteria that people instinctively look at when sizing up a drum sander.
As you probably already know, a drum sander produces a tremendous amount of dust. It must have some sort of feature that would manage this dust. Usually, there’s a whole sort of collection bag. There must be some sort of device that manages dust efficiently and unobtrusively.
Your drum sander isn’t going to be a much-used if you try to use it to sand very large pieces. In fact, in many cases, it’s a nonstarter because it’s just too small. So, you must look for a unit that would accommodate the normal sizes that you handle.
This is crucial. Otherwise, you shouldn’t buy the product because you’re probably not going to use it all that often. The total use-value for you is going to be very low.
Flexibility and ease of adjustment
Another key factor to consider involves how easy it is to adjust the product. This is essential because if you’re dealing with a drum sander, it should be very easy to adjust. Your wood sizes can vary tremendously, and you need a device that you can adjust very quickly.
You don’t want to have to disassemble the product or do something radical for you to adjust the larger pieces of wood that you would like to work on.
Easy sandpaper installation
A drum sander, of course, is all about sanding. You need sandpaper for this. So, it’s not unusual for a typical drum sander to go through many rolls of sandpaper in a short period of time. This operation should be quick and easy.
It shouldn’t be a hassle; it shouldn’t be an ordeal. It shouldn’t take much time at all. If you notice at the hardware store that the person demonstrating the drum sander must go through many different steps just to replace the sandpaper, you might want to think twice.
If you are working on an item and you’re too busy, you probably don’t want to be bothered to go through all the steps. You might even forget a step and you might create a safety issue for yourself.
Keep the selection factors in mind if you’re in the market for a new drum center. If you really want the best product, make sure that it fits your needs so you can use it for a very long time.