I have been wanting to make a drill press drum sander for some time. We all know that sanding by hand is a hassle. And when we bought our first electric wood sanders, we usually bought sanders that are primarily for sanding flat surfaces.
Not long ago we saw how to make a disc sander for the drill, which apart from sanding edges is also useful for sanding outside curves. So in this post we are going to see how to make a spindle sander for sanding inside curves with the drill press.
This is a woodworking project that surprised me because of how easy it was to make. In addition, it is also surprising how easy it is to sand with this wood sander.
Then, to make the drum sander I have to cut the circular pieces that will form it. In this case, I use a 60-millimeter in diameter hole saw to cut five 14-millimeter thick plywood discs.
Although I decided to take advantage of having the drill press ready to make these cuts and I cut 10 pieces to make two spindle sanders for drill press. This way I can use two different grits of sandpaper: 120 grit sandpaper and 320 grit sandpaper.
And now it is a matter of gluing 5 discs together with an 8 mm threaded rod that passes right through the center of the discs. To do this I first have to drill an 8 millimeter hole right in the center of each disk. And it’s just that the centering bit of the hole saw is a little smaller than that 8 millimeters, so I had to re-drill that hole.
The plywood table on which I cut the disks has the hole saw mark, so I avoided moving the table and so it helps me to center the plywood disks so I can drill right in the center of the disks with the 8-millimeter bit.
Then, to assemble all the pieces of the spindle sander:
- I put a self-locking nut on the threaded rod.
- I applied epoxy resin and glued a large washer against the self-locking nut.
- I applied epoxy resin to the washer.
- I put the first disc against the washer.
- I applied carpenter’s glue and glued one disk on top of the other.
- I applied epoxy resin on top of the last disc and put a large washer on top.
- I applied epoxy resin on top of the washer and put a nut against the washer.
- And with two wrenches I tightened both nuts tightly so that the excess of glue came out between the plywood disks.
- I cleaned the glue and let it dry.
Thus I already have the shape of the drum sanders, although the surface leaves much to be desired. But with a piece of sandpaper clamped on a piece of plywood board and the help of the metal column of the drill pess, I can sand and straighten the spindles.
In the picture in witch I show the two drum sanders, we can see the difference between sanding and non-sanding them.
But in order to use this as a wood sander, I have to cover the with sandpaper. And the easiest way to do it I think it is to cut a vertical slot with the handsaw. Well, it wasn’t easy either, since holding the wood spindle in place with a pair of woodworking clamps wasn’t easy. But in the end I managed to cut the slot.
The width of the slot is just wide enough to fit one end of the sandpaper. And the sandpaper is glued with stencil adhesive spray. Use a strong stencil adhesive spray and make sure that you roll the sandpaper in the opposite direction to the direction of rotation of the drill press.
Now I can put a bearing on the lower end. I chose a 3-centimeter diameter bearing. I put it against the self-locking nut and put two nuts on the other side of the bearing so that they lock together.
The inside diameter of the bearing is slightly larger than 8 millimeters, so to prevent the sanding drum from rolling off-center I left it a little loose between the nuts.
I will also need a sanding table. Well, a table on which to put the parts to be sanded while I use the drill press drum sander as a wood sander.
As you can see in the picture, it is not at all complicated to make. I just stuck a couple of bolts into a small plywood board and screwed another small board on top. The bolts are positioned so that they fit into the grooves of the metal table of the drill press.
So I can clamp this table with some washers and wing nuts, just like when I made this drill press a drilling table with side fence.
Now I have to screw another slightly larger board on top, and drill the necessary holes to fit the drum sander. With a 68-millimeter hole saw, I was able to drill the top board. And with a 3 centimeters in diameter forstner bit I drilled a hole to fit the bearing.
I can now easily sand the inside curves or any other surface of the pieces of furniture that I make and other do-it-yourself projects.
See also how I made the dust collection system incorporated in the table of this DIY drum sander for drill press.
And so far so nice, but after a while of using this wood sander without major problems, suddenly in some very hot days the sandpaper began to peel off when the drum sander began to spindle in the drill press. However, after some testing I found a simple solution that works perfectly for me. If you want to know which one that solution is, don’t miss this video:
As you can see, I found a very simple solution just using some double-sided tape.