Absolutely, but it's the part of the project I care the most about. I've made it so long so I can use a sanding belt as the conveyor surface. There's alot of information on drum sanders where you just push the wood through, but the few people that have built conveyor belts are tragically vague about how they work. Plus i've read a few people saying they were difficult to get working and they eventually gave up trying, and that sounds like a challenge.
Plus it's fun finding ways around problems.
Simon, hereís something else to ponder over.
With the infeed roller using a sanding belt to feed the timber through the drum sander, will this not create one sanding surface working against another sanding surface ? One action of trying to pull/push/drag the timber one direction whilst the rotating drum is trying to do the exact opposite action. Therefore creating a double sanding action and negating the effect of the infeed belt altogether, as it does require a bit of pushing pressure on the timber, to actually hand push the timber through the machine, against the rotating action of the sanding drum.
So one light weight piece of timber sitting on top of an infeed belt, without any downward pressure to hold it against that infeed belt, then the forward movement of the timber will stop and allow the drum sander to just either spit it straight back out, or, allow the front edge of the stationary bit of timber to be chewed away by the drum sander, whilst the infeed belt is chewing away at the the underside of the timber, until there is NO more grip/resistance from the belt underneath, and then just spit the timber straight back out anyway.
What does a normal blade thicknesses actually use, to push/drag the timber through the machine to "negate" the effect of the blades pushing/spitting the timber back out of the machine ?
Possibly some type of similar set-up, might be required for this design of yours as well.
Either more infeed rollers will be required to add downward pressure onto the timber work-piece, whilst it is on the infeed belt, to counteract the forces of the rotating sanding drum, or, forget that idea as others have done, because of the above problems.
The alternative to an infeed belt is to glue a piece of glass over the rise and fall table, this will virtually eliminate any resistance/drag on the timber work-piece, from the surface of the rise and fall table. By you using a push stick to control/maintain the infeed pressure, you can now have a definite feel for what is happening, when the timber is being mutilated by the sanding drum.
Itís your choice on what you do, just a few more ideas for you to mull over.