I didn't see the earlier post.
I owned one of these. Got it off off eBay for $500 and sold it on
craigs list 9 months later for $600. I sold it because I gained access
to a wide belt and could use the cash.
It worked pretty well.
- Getting the paper attached into the clips at the ends of the cylinder
is a bit tricky but once you figure that out it's not too bad.
- Getting the feed belt to track properly is a bit sensitive. You have
adjustments at the exit end with spring loaded screws. I found that
having the adjustment too tight would make the tracking more sensitive
so I ran it pretty losse and the feed belt stayed centered better.
- The biggest problem is actually avoidable if you use good technique.
The way you adjust the depth of each pass is by lowering the head unit
toward the table with a screw mechnism. However lowering it turns out
to be a little problematic. On mine, even if you lowered it exactly 1/4
turn for each new pass every now and then the sucker would drop too far
and the piece would stall out on the next pass becuse it was cutting
too deep. Once it stalls it cuts even deeper and it takes 4 or 5 passes
to sand out the gully. However, if you lower it say 3/4 of a turn, then
back up 1/4 turn, you are always on the up stroke and having the head
drop too far on the threads is avoided.
- On my unit, the feed mooter would stall out sometimes too. It just
wouldn't start. I would just crank the speed upt to the max and push
the belt by hand and it would start running. The feed motor looked like
a standard motor that could easily be replaced so I didn't sweat it.
- Finally, if you are going to try sand boards that are wider than
unit, you need to adjust the head so it is slightly higher on the
outside (the open side). You have to take very shallow passes and you
end up with a piece that is just slightly thicker in the middle. Trying
to get it perfectly flat is impossible, you will always get a line at
the end of the cylinder unless is is just slightly high on the outside.
I left mine setup like that all the time because it was so minimal I
never noticed it on typical pieces.
If I was deciding between the Ryobi and Performax, it would just be a
price thing. If I could get the Ryobi for significantly less, I would