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Discussion Starter #1
For the past several Years (about 10) I have seen the V Drum Sander by Stockroom Supply at the Indy WoodWorking Show. I have always been interested in it but there has always been other thing higher on the priority list. This past year I also saw for the first time the Sand-Flee (nice but pricey).

Having limited funds (and more importantly being of Scott decent) I have decided to Scratch build a V-Drum Sander. It looks like I can totally build (less motor) for about $125.
My questions are:
1: What diameter drum, 2 inch or 4 inch?
2: What length drum 18 inch or 24 inch? I am pretty sure I do not want the 30 inch.

What have you used and what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Thanks
tom in indy
 

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I would say the larger diameter drum the better. How long is a factor, in part, of how large and stiff the metal shaft is inside it. Too long and it will wobble and vibrate if the arbor isn't stiff enough. Haryysin (Harry Sinclair) posted a thread on a home made one about a year ago and these ones I just googled are similar. https://www.google.ca/search?q=v+dr...bHZK6oQThuoGIBg&ved=0CDEQsAQ&biw=1280&bih=861
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I would say the larger diameter drum the better. How long is a factor, in part, of how large and stiff the metal shaft is inside it. Too long and it will wobble and vibrate if the arbor isn't stiff enough. Haryysin (Harry Sinclair) posted a thread on a home made one about a year ago and these ones I just googled are similar. https://www.google.ca/search?q=v+dr...bHZK6oQThuoGIBg&ved=0CDEQsAQ&biw=1280&bih=861
Thanks Chuck,
I tried to find the thread that you mentioned by Harry but I could not. I will try some more.
Interesting that Harry and I have similar last names, Harry Sinclair and Tom St.Clair

I am planning on making the axel out of 1/2 inch rod, I can go in size if needed. I thought 1/2 would be fine but I could very easily be WRONG.

once again thanks
 

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It took me a bit to find it but here it is http://www.routerforums.com/tools-woodworking/7561-drum-sanders.html

I wouldn't go very wide with 1/2" shaft, even if it was proper axle shaft steel. You might be okay at 12", I'm not sure about anything longer than that. You could test it with a dial gauge by supporting it at different lengths and putting pressure in the middle. I'm only guessing here but I would say it needs to be able to support around 20 lbs of weight or pressure without deflecting to be good enough. Maybe one of the members with more machining experience will join in.

I don't have one but I've used a few drum sanders and I would say the drums are min 2 1/2" and more like 3" but the steel drum is part of the structural support. I don't know how your welding and machining skills are but a used pickup or heavy truck rear axle shaft might work.
 
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