7 Tips for Mastering the Drum Sander (Experts Guide)

Published on: January 9, 2022
Written by Eric Devin / Fact-checked by David Rowan

A drum sander is one kind of woodworking tool that is applied to the sanding surface. This sander size is bigger than the other type’s sander due to its use. It is usually used for large wood so that one can find a smooth finishing easily.

A large sanding drum is connected with this sander, which keeps turning in the working period. After adjusting the sanding machine, the operator inserts the wood to one side of a drum sander. The sander smooths it and sends it out to the opposite side.

Drum sander is very useful for woodworking projects. But handling a drum sander is not so easy. Some tips and tricks help woodworkers dealing with it. Here are 7 drum sander tips that turn you into a master of this work.

7 tips for mastering the drum sander

Tips for the Drum Sander

A drum sander is a modern choice for the wood industry. This makes your project faster than others. This is the heart of this article. Some tips of drum sander make it more useful and smart. A professional person who works in this field shares some drum sander tips.

Set on a Right Place

Since big wood projects can be done with this sander, it will take up a lot of space. You can easily feed a giant board on the drum sander. And it is taking a few moments to make a clean, flat finish of the board. Professional woodworkers know you need to set drum sander in the right place for getting a good result. Set your drum sander in a big room so you can work comfortably. 

It is impossible to get a good outcome without setting a drum sander in a suitable place. The drum sander operator feels uncomfortable working if it is not set in the right way because it is risky to deal with a giant board or task when you set it on a little region. So the first tips for a drum sander are found in a suitable and comfortable place for it.   

Appropriate Grit

Now, I will share the second tip of a drum sander. Use grit paper to match what you are doing. Different grits are used according to the types of work. It can be separated into three categories. They are coarse, medium, and last one of fine grit paper.  

The coarse 24-60 grit paper is usually utilized for abrasive work. That makes your raw wood smooth and polished. Another one is medium 80-120; this paper is leveling recently planned material or stuck-up entryways and face outlines. The last group is fine grit 150 and more than it. This grit paper is used for final sanding work. If the right grit paper is not used while sanding the lumber, you will not get a good result on your work. 

Feed Rate

When you sander through drum sander feed rate is a significant factor. If the feet rate is not set the right way, it will create lots of problems at work. When grit is coarser, you can quickly sander the speed. When you slow the feet rate, it produces more rotation per inch of the board, making a super smooth surface.

If the board’s surface is very rough and heavy, you then fast the rate because the slow feet rate wastes your time in this case. The fit rate depends on the types of material you are working with.  If you are a beginner and have little idea about feet rate, try to fix-rate between 40 and 50. This is a safe way for a new operator.

Clean properly

Drum sander creates lots of sawdust when it works, but an unclean drum sander decreases work quality. Even it has a specific place for garbage accumulation. The amount of dirt that has accumulated in the garbage center should be seen after the completion of work. And it needs to be clean regularly. 

Other parts of the sander like the drum, panel, and paper should be kept clean. The drum sander will lose its effectiveness if not cleaned for a long time. Many times the speed of work decreases, and the finishing of the surface is not suitable only for the dirt drum sander.  Cleaning is crucial for any kind of sander, especially for the drum sander.  

Height of the Drum

Set your machine at the right height; it is indispensable. Before starting, the work adjusts the height of the drum sander. Suppose you start passing wood without measuring the drum sander, then the wood will not set properly. The wood will move again and again, which is a big problem at work. Solve this issue this drum sander tips share with you.

To set the height at first, unplug the sander. After that, set the board on the sander panel and send it under the drum. Slowly lower the drum of the sander, then stop when girt paper touches the board or wood. Now your drum sander is ready to work.

Safety and Others

This is not only a drum sander tip for you but also a reminder. Sanding should be done at a certain distance. It is not something that is fatally harmful, but it is better not to come in contact with it. Use a pair of leather hand gloves when you handle the drum sander. It is safe for you from some unwanted accidents.

Drum sander creates a lot of noise, which is very annoying to work. To solve this noise issue, you should use a rubber earplug. Always remember it is a most vital matter to work with safety and comfort if you don’t like and don’t get Pease on work, anything goodwill.

Follow Instruction

Drum sander of different companies is available in the market. Although the entire drum sander is the same, sometimes their instruction varies from company to company. Read and follow the instructions well after buying the sander.

May you be an expert on this but you should follow the instructions first. These matters will save you from unexpected events. 

How to Select the Best Drum Sander

If you are interested in finding an accurate drum sander, then this part information may be useful for you—a set of good quality that should be justified for a drum sander that is great for work.  


A drum sander is an electric power machine. The motor is the heart of this gadget. How it will work depends on the power of the motor. Most of professional people said more than 1 horsepower (HP) is suitable for work. On the other hand, many give opinions about 5HP being great.

The main point is, you have to decide what you need. So think carefully.

Drum Size of Sander

For drum, we call it a drum sander, and it is another vital section of a drum sander. This is because the wood is sanding under the rolling drum of the machine. When you go buying, try to buy a drum sander that has a 10-inch drum fitted. You can work to handle it very easily.

Drum size makes your work easier or harder, so think about it.   

Sand Panel

Sanding is done by leaving wood on the sanding panel. Suppose you work with a wood door, and then you need a wider size panel to handle this. But just in case it is small, that time will be difficult to sand. The wider panel of the drum sander is suitable for any kind of project.  Remaining about the size of the panel before buying them.

What Types of Wood Are Best Suited for Use With a Drum Sander

The best types of wood for use with a drum sander are hardwoods such as maple, oak, and cherry. These hardwoods are denser and less prone to being damaged by the sander. Other woods such as pine, spruce, and poplar can also be used, but they may require more passes over the same area to achieve the desired result.


If anyone doesn’t like sanding, a drum sander is a perfect choice for him. In this, you just need to feed your object, then whatever comes will be the flawless and smooth that you want. You can feed completed work on a drum sander. It is too easy and affordable for all.  

And if you continue practicing according to the drum sander tips discussed above, you will soon become a master of a drum sander.

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About This Writer

author eric devin

Hi, I am Eric Devin and I am a professional interior architect. Since childhood, I've always enjoyed DIY projects! And, I have loved to solve simple household problems using essential tools and equipment. I have also acquired a lot of information about basic household tools settings by working with contractors.

Hi, I am Eric Devin and I am a professional interior architect. Since childhood, I've always enjoyed DIY projects! And, I have loved to solve simple household problems using essential tools and equipment. I have also acquired a lot of information about basic household tools settings by working with contractors.

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