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Ed, I think you will find changing the sanding belt takes a while. My understanding is you wind a strip around the drum. My guess is you can hone your planer blades and save a bunch of money over the cost of sanding media. However for finish sanding you cant go wrong. I wish I had the room and the money to add one to my shop.
If you have seen the big belt sander Norm uses on the New Yankee Workshop, that machine is made by Timesavers, Inc. It uses wide belts that slide on in a breeze. Air cushions adjust belt tension. Having used and repaired these machines in the metal processing industry I am willing to swear it belongs in your dream shop! Please let us know what you decide and how it works out.
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