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AEM sander rebuild

 
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crzypete



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 1689
Location: New York State

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 11:26 pm    Post subject: AEM sander rebuild Reply with quote

Was browsing through some old pics and thought I'd post a rebuild that I did a couple of years ago. Not really old iron- it's younger than I am, but It's seventies at least.

The machine is a 12" wide narrow-belt sander built by AEM in 1974, It was fairly compact when I bought it, but I had smaller plans in mind....

When I bought it on ebay it was coupled with another identical AEM machine. They were joined together to do top and bottom sanding at the same time- was in use by a model airplane building company in Florida, they used it to sand almost exclusively balsa wood. In fact some shims on the pallet they shipped it on were made from balsa. I cannot endorse balsa as a good skid material.

Here it is from eBay:


Here are the two machines in my driveway, the one on the ground is the upside-down one, that was moved down the road to a friends shop.


This is the best before picture I have, Not bad looking but in need of some mechanical work. And while I do mechanical work I am unable to control myself as usual, I see that I can make a few improvements as well.


Like the base is simply too wide, Fortunately I have a jigsaw,


and a welder


and I am obsessive so extra holes left over from the raising mechanism must go.


Last edited by crzypete on Sat Jan 13, 2007 11:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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crzypete



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 1689
Location: New York State

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't like the motor hanging off the side either, space is a problem and it was bulky. I turned it around and snuck it into the base.


Paint time, much better.


beginning to reassemble, I moved the electric box to the top, it now has a much smaller footprint.


All done with new stainless steel sheet metal covers- the butcher shop look.


Lastly, my favorite pic, all the parts that were left over.
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mystry_tour



Joined: 13 Mar 2006
Posts: 357
Location: Greenville Tenn

PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

laughing....that is a very nice job Pete. Looks like you have a bice sander as well. I would like to have a small sander but the prices they as are too far out of my budget
Reg



















pete
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crzypete



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 1689
Location: New York State

PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2010 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I received a Private message asking about my AEM sander. I figured I would post the question and response here so that the information might be useful to more people

Quote:
Hi Pete!
Many times I have looked at your posts about how you refurbished the 12" aem sander. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?
First of all I noticed in the pictures that your machine had dust collection ports on the front and the back of the machine. Do you think that was original or maybe one was added?
I also see in the pics that there is a red lever sticking out of the right side of the machine. Can you tell me what function this lever serves?
Third...okay sorry to ask this but I'm curious to know how much you bought the machine for (I know you techincally got two machines)
I'm guessing you replaced bearings in yours when you rebuilt it. Were the bearings expensive?
I ask all of this because I have come across what is essentially the 18" verision of your sander, and I think it would be prefect for my needs. It looks like a sort of a project machine though. I'm confident I can rebuild it, but I don't want to get into it for too much $$.
Any other info/insight you can give as to your experience rebuilding your machine would really help me decide what to do.


My memory is slightly fuzzy about the whole deal as it was six years ago. I think I paid something like $1800 for the machine and another 400 to ship it from Florida. I split the cost evenly with a friend who bought the upside-down machine.

I am pretty sure the back dust port was original, but have not missed having it in its new stainless steel door configuration.

The red handle is actually the tensioner for the belt. I have seen other machines that have air tension- in which case you would not need this handle.

I recall the bearings as not being that expensive- They are kind of an odd clamp bearing that I thought was going to be a bundle, but I ended up replacing the two drum bearings for certainly under $150. I replaced the upper ones as well and think maybe the four were under $200. I definitely don't remember much pain with the cost of the bearings, so they could have been cheaper. The conveyer was definitely the biggest investment I made.

An 18" sounds like a great machine. Now that I have more space I would love to get into a 18" or even a 24".

Good luck.

Pete
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nektai



Joined: 17 Dec 2004
Posts: 1019
Location: Long Island, NY

PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a 13" AEM. Its a slight variation on Petes. I cant recall which one is older? Mine has a single dust port in the back of the belt that exits straight out of the top of the machine. I have the pneumatic belt tension option that Pete mentioned in the above post. My machine had been used for metal so 'rough" describes the condition well. I cleaned and painted it, I had to reverse the direction of the drum and the pneumatic eyes had to to be flipped too. The drum on my machine looked like it had been recently replaced so no bearing job for me. If the rubber on the drum is in good shape and the price is right go for it. I paid $1,100 for mine. I love it!
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crzypete



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 1689
Location: New York State

PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nektai, good point about the drum. It is definitely the make or break point- way more than the bearings.

Pete
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