Sanders

Powermatic PM2244 Review: High-Performance and Durable Drum Sander

Powermatic PM2244 Review

Photo: Powermatic

What We Like

  • A high-performance 14A motor
  • Intelligent load and motor balancing
  • Strong tables for workpiece support
  • Simplified table parallelism adjustments
  • Heavy-duty and strong drum carriage
  • Convenient LED control panel
  • The closed stand offers storage space

What We Don’t Like

  • Pricey for the budget buyer

Bottom Line

A fine blend of motor performance, premium heavy-duty design, and user-friendly controls help bring out the strength and reliability of this drum sander.

Introduction

Woodworkers with high expectations of their drum sanders will find the Powermatic PM2244, its powerful motor, conveyor system, and convenient user controls the ideal fit for their projects.

An efficient 14.0A motor is optimized by an intelligent feed logic system to maximize on the drum sander’s capability to handle significant loads that characterize busy workshops. And its heavy-duty components support a steady workflow while boosting tool durability.

Powermatic PM2244 Review

Powermatic PM2244

Photo: Powermatic

Performance: A Heavy-Duty Motor and Optimized Adjustments

A rich blend of commercial-grade performance, heavy-duty and durable design, and enhanced usability are the highlights of the PM2244, a drum sander that promises to transform your workshop’s output and professional projects.

This high-performance sander is built for the busy workshop which demands tools perform enough to meet the demands of a continuous workflow. For this purpose, it is equipped with a powerful 14.0A, 1.75 HP motor.

The motor supports a drum speed of 1,720 RPM, which is quite impressive for such a massive tool. It also comes with a dedicated conveyor motor with a 1/30 HP power output, and a variable speed of 0-10 FPM to support multiple sanding techniques.

Because of this excellent power and speed combination, the sander supports significant workloads to match the demands of busing workshops.

You need not worry about the motor getting overworked. It is a totally-enclosed, fan-cooled unit that does an impressive job of maintaining heat output at the minimum to ensure consistent and optimal performance.

Speaking of heavy workloads, the sander comes equipped with an intelligent feed logic system, which actively monitors the load exerted on the drum motor. The system then regulates the conveyor motor speed such that it is kept constantly high without overloading the unit.

Since your sander will often handle large and heavy workpieces, its infeed and outfeed tables have been designed to provide a combined length of 37-1/2 inches. This space is sufficient for supporting sizeable and weighty workpieces.

To simplify table parallelism adjustment, the process is controlled by a single dial situated outside of the conveyer belt, effectively eliminating tedious adjustment to the whole drum carriage.

And when it comes to the drum carriage, this section has been specially strengthened to increase consistency in performance the tool’s lifetime.

You won’t need to keep making manual adjustments to the belt. The tool features a convenient belt-tracking system, which makes timely and effective adjustments that reduce the demand for the same from you.

Drum height adjustments need not be tedious and cumbersome. With the PM2244’s large chrome handwheel, you’re guaranteed smooth and simple drum height adjustments that would require much effort.

Design and Construction: Heavy-Duty Build for Long-Term Reliability

PM2244’s entire main construction is a metallic one to reflect the tool’s high build quality. Given the premium identity of this sander, it was built to offer you a lifetime of reliable service.

The sander’s main body is made of cast iron and steel, materials that are favored for their strength and durability. A paint coating on the metallic housing helps prevent rusting.

Switching to the drum, which handles heavy workloads, this component is made of extruded aluminum. The choice of material makes the drum strong, lightweight, and resistant to rusting.

All the other components that count, including the extension tables, hand wheel, and conveyer bed, are made of strong metals such as steel and cast iron. Durability is, indeed, guaranteed in the PM2244.

Because of the sander’s heavy-duty metallic build, it is significantly heavy at 328 pounds. During initial installation and assembly, the bulky tool may require an extra pair of hands to help ease the burden.

But when you want to move this drum sander around the workshop, its 4 integrated casters will kick in to simplify portability over short intervals.

Dust Management: A High-Performance and Reliable Dust Port

Expect a tool of this size and performance to produce a significant amount of dust, which requires to be managed effectively, a process that the PM2244 handles quite well.

The tool comes equipped with a 4-inch dust collection port, which easily connects to a high-speed vacuum, or dust evacuation system.

To ensure that dust collection is high enough to maintain a clean and safe work environment while extending the life of this sander’s abrasives, it is recommended that you use a high-volume dust vacuum evacuation rate of 800 CFM.

Powermatic’s choice of a 4-inch dust port on this sander was very deliberate and strategic because using a hose of a lesser diameter will slow down the evacuation process, potentially risking a build-up of dust that may affect the sander’s delicate internal components.

Finally, ensure you start the vacuum system before beginning the sanding process, and if you have a blower at your disposal, it’s advisable to blow away any residual dust that may be present in and around most of the tool’s core components, especially the motor.

Ease of Use: User-Friendly Controls and LED Panel

For such an advanced tool that bears some degree of sophistication, usability is vital to the maximization of its robust features, which is why it adopts intuitive and easy-to-use controls.

On the main panel resides the manual controls, whose usability is backed by a clear and detailed LED display for enhanced monitoring of the sander’s key functionalities.

At the bottom right of the panel, you will find 2 prominent power switches; the lower one is the main power switch, while the one above it is a dedicated drum motor switch. The separation is well-thought so that you can visually confirm the running of both components.

And on the top left of the panel’s bottom is a prominent emergency stop switch that is enlarged to maximize contact in case you need to engage in during the tool’s operation.

But it’s the LED display on the panel’s top that takes usability to a whole new level. On this panel, you can monitor the sander’s core components and their current status.

Key performance metrics that you can monitor on this LED screen include the feed logic indicator, the conveyer speed indicator, the drum height, and the drum motor indicator.

The real-time display is meant to help you keep track of the tool’s functions, make the necessary adjustments, and even troubleshoot any unusual behavior. 

Noise Level: Not too Loud for a High-Performance Tool

Another usability booster that matters to many users and is well-addressed by the PM2244 is low noise output.

Powermatic rates this sander for a comfortable noise output of 72dB at 100cm and 74dB at 50cm. What these figures mean is that the tool is impressively low-noise, given many other power tools run much louder than that.

Popular tools such as planers, belt sander, routers, and hand drills have noise outputs in the range of 90dB-100dB, so this one should be very comfortable to work with.

But because noise can get uncomfortable with prolonged tool usage, consider using some ear protection if you’re be operating the tool for extended periods.

Price: Costly, but Packed Full of Value

Admittedly, the Powermatic PM2244 is not cheap with its asking price of slightly more than $2,500. And while this price may be unfavorable to potential buyers on a budget, it is reflective of the value that the tool offers.

It is a high-capacity sander that accepts sizeable loads, so a busy workshop dealing with professional projects would benefit from its performance and reliability.

Also, you can operate this sander with the assurance that it will perform consistently across a wide variety of applications, especially intensive ones, thanks to heavy-duty metallic construction and components.

Finally, there’s the enhanced suability that’s made possible by simplified controls and a detailed LED screen that shows all the key functions of the sander, and even helps enhance on-the-job adjustments.  

If you’ll be using the PM2244 for professional projects, then you’ll find the tool capable of giving good returns on your investment.

Verdict

A heavy-duty and powerful sander that handles sizeable workloads while simplifying ease of use for maximum sanding productivity.

The Powermatic PM2244’s powerful 1.75 HP motor drives an elaborate drum sanding system that supports intensive loads for busy workshops that demand continuously-running tools. Its simplified user controls boost tool productivity and optimize workflow.

Specs

  • Product Name: Powermatic PM2244
  • Product Brand: Powermatic
  • Product Dimensions: 41.25 x 37.69 x 49.5 inches (LxWxH)
  • Power Input: 115V, 60Hz
  • Motor Power: 1.75 HP, 14A
  • Number of Sanding Drums: 1
  • Drum Speed: 1,720 RPM
  • Drum length: 22 inches
  • Drum Diameter: 5 inches
  • Conveyor Motor: 1/30 HP
  • Conveyor Speed: 0-10 (Variable)
  • Dust Port Diameter: 4 inches (Outside)
  • Dust Collection CFM: 800
  • Product Weight: 328 pounds
  • Warranty: 5 years

Key Features

  • A powerful 14A, 1.75HP motor delivers superior belt sanding performance
  • Intelligent feed logic system monitor drum motor load and regulates speed reliably
  • Table parallelism is enhanced through simplified single-point adjustment
  • The heavy-duty drum carriage is optimized for strength and consistent performance
  • Innovating belt tracking technology reduces manual adjustment demands
  • A combined 37-1/2 inches of infeed/outfeed tables for firm workpiece support
  • An integrated intuitive LED shows key metrics including power and belt speed and DRO
  • The closed stand offers handy storage for effective abrasives’ organization
  • Integrated caster wheels enhance the tool’s stability around the shop
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