Sunday, March 27, 2011

Drum Sander Pt. Two

My friend Stacey sent me an e-mail, a little confused by my last post. She had a few questions about a drum sander, having difficulty understanding what it does, without ever having seen one.

So I thought I'd clarify it for her - and you.

A drum sander pretty does what a planer does - it makes the top surface of a piece of wood smooth and parallel with the bottom of the board. See, here is a planer, cutting the board with knives.

An here is a sander, sanding the board smooth, instead of cutting it. They look pretty much like the same tool.

Why would you choose a sander over a planer? The best answer is that it eliminates any possibility of chipping the wood. See, chipping occurs when the wood has weird swirly grain, or when there are knots on the surface. Sometimes, there is just no way to get around the chipping that occurs. Hence - the need to sand the board smooth, as opposed to planing it.

Sure, you can sand with a hand sander, but how much time to you want to spend sanding? Plus, you'll never get it as flat and even as you will with a drum sander.

Got it? Stace?

OK, on a whole different topic - here is my current favorite song. You'll hear it blasting from the woodshop if you wander by. Thanks, Stace!

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