What do you think caused this?

I went to help someone sand down their cutting board yesterday, opened up the sander to take a look at the belt and it looks like someone ran some rusty metal through the sander. The picture doesn’t show it well enough. There are bright rust-colored streaks on the sand paper and the paper is mostly gummed up hard. It has been absolutely trashed.

Looks like pitch or melted epoxy to me. I think we have too high a grit on the drum sander, and shouldn’t be sanding anything but hardwood on it. I’ve only used it once, had to have someone show me how to change the belt. Have looked at the belt occasionally, never seen it in what I would consider ready to use condition.

The belt is a pain to change. The pinchers on either end require great strength in the tips of your fingers to hold back, which my old hands don’t have anymore. I have to use a screwdriver to help, but unless you put in exactly the right spot, the screwdriver gets in the way.

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Check the cameras and find the culprit! We should make a contest of it.

Sadly, this happens all the time with the drum sander. It takes more care in using than most expect. Too often people overload the sanders. The drum sander requires more attention to height and feed speed.

Could be a nail, epoxy, or high spot that was forced thru.

And I agreed it’s a pain to change the paper.

Shaming is a poor approach to teaching and making the space better. It is a great way to continue the decline in membership.


While I understand the sentiment, I don’t completely agree. Some misuse a tool because it’s the one they are familiar with, or they don’t complete understand the ramifications of what they’re doing, or they simply don’t know any other way to get something done. I completely agree that first offenders of this type should be contacted privately and offered assistance or additional training and not publicly shamed.

But there are some repeat offenders that insist on doing things their way. They insist on skirting or stretching the rules to the detriment of the tools and the rest of us that use the shop. And there is absolutely no excuse for not cleaning up after yourself, leaving your mess for the next guy to deal with. I have no problem with publicly shaming these inconsiderate types, and I think it wouldn’t take but one or two users to be called out and the rest would get the message.

Finally, I think more members have quit DMS out of frustration because a few members are allowed to tear up the tools with impunity than have ever left due to public shaming.

My two cents.


It was you with the drum sander, wasn’t it! J’accuse!!

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Just wanted to say a quick thank you for helping me with that board! Im a novice at best and there have been many people who have taken time from their projects to help teach me best practices on the machines and ive noticed each piece of mine getting progressively better in craftmanship and process.

Thanks for taking the time to teach!



I have no problem with publicly shaming these inconsiderate types, and I think it wouldn’t take but one or two users to be called out and the rest would get the message.

“Public shaming” is a violation of the DMS privacy policy, in that it exposes a member to potential harassment from other members. DMS shouldn’t engage in activities that violate its own policies.


My pleasure! I’m happy to help in any way I can.


This is why no names were mentioned in this post. Policies are made to be changed or adapted as circumstances change. I’m guessing the “no-shaming” policy was put in place because some took “public shaming” too far and it crossed over into harassment, which I am emphatically against. But perhaps in addressing this problem the board swung the pendulum a bit too far, and now it is time to consider swinging it back a bit.

Allow “public shaming” but disallow “harassment.”

I would love to read that policy proposal, once it’s written.

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Calling someone out publicly doesn’t have to be shaming. Calling people out is peer accountability and it can be done respectfully. If we are to be excellent then doing this to tools is not that. Could be for a variety of reasons. Finding out what happened and taking personal responsibility to not have it happen again is being excellent.

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Finding out what happened and taking personal responsibility to not have it happen again is being excellent.

And doesn’t have to involve the membership at large. Discipline happens in private as a rule in the corporate world.

Maybe I’m wrong, maybe the membership of DMS has changed. Until someone proposes changing the policies, we’ll never know.

I was joking about making it contest. But I absolutely believe checking recordings is necessary for accountability. At the very least the guilty party could help mitigate the damage by leading to change the belt, or some other helpful task.

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I am not talking about discipline. Sure, if the person who did this did it again after it was brought to their attention then maybe discipline would be needed.

I for one would have much more respect for someone if they acknowledged their actions caused this. Maybe they don’t know and it needs to be brought to their attention. This could cause a change in how the classes are taught. Maybe something wasn’t covered. We don’t know.

Lets have an open conversation with everyone about it. It doesn’t have to be confrontational.


In the corporate world there isn’t community ownership (using the term loosely) of tools and equipment. Every dollar spent on borked tools costs all of us in terms of reduced something somewhere else.

In any case, I’m not a fan of public shaming but there should be consequences for crappy behavior toward our tools. It’s usually pretty easy to tell the difference between a novice mistake or “accident” (I don’t really believe in accidents) and stuff like using a screwdriver as a chisel or using a sander without sandpaper.

An anonymized list of enforcement actions might be helpful:

“This week one member was expelled from metal shop after welding a steel cage around a napping member’s head.”


No, that’s not it. @jswilson64 is just being disingenuous for some reason.

This is a tortured interpretation of the policy, at best:


You are referring to the line (bold italics emphasis added):

This includes all information as identified by Section 521 of the Texas Business and Commerce code. In addition, the Dallas Makerspace will not provide or display any information which may subject a member to fraud, identity theft, harassment, or provide a means for subjecting the member to increased risk of fraud, identity theft, or which may enable another person to engage in Internet fraud or attack, or may enable another to identify, contact, or distinguish any member, without the express written consent of the member(s) owning the data.

The obvious intent is to ensure that DMS and it’s D&Os, not any individual member, not provide member’s name, address, etc. to just anyone. If your interpretation were correct, DMS couldn’t ever expel anyone for bad behavior because the public humiliation/shaming involved might cause >gasp!< “potential” (not actual) harassment thereby.

@mdittenber is completely correct: calling people out for bad behavior detrimental to the organization is not == shaming or harassment. This is why governments (the most regulated groups of all) have no problem making police blotters available for online use and “most wanted” pics in post offices: https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/topten. If one member harasses another member, for any reason, the second member can file a complaint just like always…that’s the remedy.

1 – We are not really in the corporate world.
2 – No one has suggested “disciplining” anyone in public for minor offenses, or even major ones or repeat offenses. The only real suggestion here is identifying who ever did it and doing some to ensure it doesn’t happen again. Making these incidents and the resolutions public is a good thing for the organization, not a bad thing.

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I think an anonymized list of corrective actions (and what brought it on) would be great.

Singling a specific member out for “shaming” by the membership? Not helpful.

I understand DMS isn’t the corporate world. Which brings up an interesting point: All members are equal (except for O&D and chairs), right? So Member A is in no position to “shame” Member B, and Member B is under no obligation to listen to an unsolicited “mentor” and is free to tell Member A to GTFO. We like free speech, so this could be great!