Belt sander - tuning and adjustments?

Reply

  #1  
Old 05-14-05, 10:50 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 24
Belt sander - tuning and adjustments?

I'm having trouble with my 3 x 21 belt sander. The belt tracking really sucks, and the (mylar?) joint on the belts gets worn and breaks. The sander is a low-cost Craftsman, and I've been using Craftsman (brown grit) belts and Norton (blue) belts. I'm looking for advice on adjusting or "modifying" the belt handling area.

The front roller is slightly tapered and has a screw-tension adjustment for tracking. I get belts to track no-load, but when I start sanding they wander back and forth, and eventually shred the inner side of the belt. The taped joint always wears out and breaks before the grit is dull, so I'm wasting belts. I see scraping marks on the joint, but can't find a sharp edge anywhere in the path. The spring tension on the belt seems tight enough, I don't notice any slippage. It does get hot when sanding hard oak.

Comments? Is the heat buildup eating the belt joint? Do I need a better quality guide roller? Do I need a better tension adjustment mechanism? Can I improve the cork-thin metal platen? Should I throw this Craftsman-quality unit in the trash, and replace it with a better quality tool?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-14-05, 05:38 PM
GregH's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 9,693
kbright,

Has this tool ever worked properly for you?
Often a problem such as this has a very simple solution.
Are you installing the belt in the right direction?
A belt will get warm but are you using the correct grit?
A warm belt could indicate too fine a grit.

If you give us the model number we may be able to get a schematic for it.
 
  #3  
Old 05-16-05, 06:16 AM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Cape Cod
Posts: 4,320
Originally Posted by kbright
I'm having trouble with my 3 x 21 belt sander. The belt tracking really sucks...
The sander is a... Craftsman, and I've been using Craftsman (brown grit) belts ...
...I get belts to track no-load, but when I start sanding they wander back and forth...
The spring tension on the belt seems tight enough...
Comments:
I just edited your post and it now describes my Craftsman belt/disc sander
I've gotton to the point where I'll tweek it so it wanders one way, then tweek so it wanders the other way while I'm working on a piece
It wasn't a real cheap one...and it is my first
I assumed it was some adjustment I never got the hang of
 
  #4  
Old 05-16-05, 06:24 PM
XSleeper's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 20,239
In my experience, tracking problems seem to be the result of dropping the tool just once. It must bend the roller and make it wobble slightly as it runs.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'