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post #1 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 12:46 AM Thread Starter
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hand sanding tips?

the project i'm working on is going to have some curves to it as well as rounded edges. i tried to run a ROS over a piece of the work (underside that won't be visible and it went OK, but i don't think it'll work to smooth the edges and corners that i want to 'blend'. it definitely won't work with the curves that i cut into the pieces. anyone have tips on hand sanding, or better yet, can direct me to an article or two on the proper techniques? anyone besides me get more satisfaction from hand sanding or am i crazy? thanks!
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post #2 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 01:31 AM
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There are many different foam backed sanding pads that work well for hand sanding like you described. I use Glit sanding pads.
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post #3 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 04:28 AM
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I've also used the cutoff with sand paper wrapped around it.
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post #4 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 09:36 AM
(clever wood pun here)
 
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If you go with sandpaper and a block, get some good paper. I like Norton 3x. It truely makes a difference in durability longevity. I use scrap wood for some sanding, but I tend to default to my cheap 1-2 dollar rubber composite sanding block.

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post #5 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 09:41 AM
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I have an el cheapo block from the home depot. Mine takes a half sheet of sand paper. If you keep equal pressure on the whole thing it aint to bad but if not you come out with little sanding divets. Phaedrus is right good sand paper is a must. Klingspor has a good deal on boxes of sandpaper on their website.

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post #6 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 09:45 AM
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For curves I use the 3M sanding sponges, and wrap sanding paper around these. The sponge is meant to sand by itself, but I find regular sand paper works better. The sponge is just to support the paper and follow the shape better than by hand alone.
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post #7 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 10:25 AM
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Suggestions for hand sanding curves? Well, for starters, flat blocks are of no use, I'm not sure why people suggest them for curves. For intricate curvatures, I use a combination of rasps, needle files, and sandpaper. Obviously, get all the scratches from one grit out with the next successively finer grit. Depending on how good a job you want done, and what kind of wood you are using, you can spend a lot of time on it. The usual rule of thumb is to go with the grain, but there are places where you cannot do so effectively. In such cases, swirl if you can, rather than straight across. Straight across is occasionally necessary, but it's much harder to remove the scratches. I find it far more effective to use only my fingers behind the sandpaper for delicate work. And I prefer smaller pieces of sandpaper for detailed curves.

Last edited by mmwood_1; 02-19-2013 at 10:29 AM.
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post #8 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 10:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmwood_1 View Post
Suggestions for hand sanding curves? Well, for starters, flat blocks are of no use, I'm not sure why people suggest them for curves. For intricate curvatures, I use a combination of rasps, needle files, and sandpaper. Obviously, get all the scratches from one grit out with the next successively finer grit. Depending on how good a job you want done, and what kind of wood you are using, you can spend a lot of time on it. The usual rule of thumb is to go with the grain, but there are places where you cannot do so effectively. In such cases, swirl if you can, rather than straight across. Straight across is occasionally necessary, but it's much harder to remove the scratches. I find it far more effective to use only my fingers behind the sandpaper for delicate work. And I prefer smaller pieces of sandpaper for detailed curves.
You caught me and that is my bad I just skimmed through the OP's post and somehow or another missed that it was about curves I thought it was just for sanding tips thats my bad guys

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post #9 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 02:51 PM
(clever wood pun here)
 
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Yes, curves! I forgot that part in my post. With concave curves, I sometimes make a scrap block with a similar convex curve to wrap paper around. It is similar, then, to using a OSS or a sanding drum in a drill press. For convex curves, I really just start with a flat sanding block and create the shape by controlling my pressure and the angle of contact. I tend not to use my hand or anything soft to back sandpaper at higher grits, but from around 320 or 400 on up I sometimes do.

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post #10 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 03:21 PM
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Scotchbrite non-woven abrasive pads, of the appropriate grit, are excellent to use for smoothing curved surfaces. Stay away from power sanders as they tend to sand very unevenly and can scar the surface.

A hint, periodically wipe the surface with alcohol or naphtha. This will highlight any sand miscues so you can fix them before applying any finish. These two solvents will evaporate quickly so you are not waiting to continue your sanding.

Howie..........
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post #11 of 15 Old 02-19-2013, 09:26 PM Thread Starter
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great tips. thanks! unfortunately, i had already gone to the hardware store earlier today and picked up some store-brand paper up to 220 grit. might as well practice on my test curve piece.
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post #12 of 15 Old 02-20-2013, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
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so i did a session of sanding in steps up to 220 on a test piece and applied a conditioner and finish just to see how it looked. i now notice that i can feel the wood pattern with my fingertips. should i have sanded those down too or is it OK to leave?
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post #13 of 15 Old 02-20-2013, 02:09 AM
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You haven't said what wood you are using. Often enough, the wood grain does come through when you feel it. That's not a bad thing, it just depends what you want. However, if the winter growth is much harder than the summer growth (such as with fir) you will be hard pressed to prevent it.
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post #14 of 15 Old 02-20-2013, 07:13 PM
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lots of curves on my avatar, all hand sanded. concave curves, convex curves and compound curves in and out, my truck had it all. check out your local autobody paint supply house. they offer lots of foam blocks, flexible blocks and self adhesive sand paper. for tight inside curves i have use foam pipe insulation. also a scotchbright pad cut down to the width of the sandpaper evens out finger pressure. along with all my da discs i also buy the rolls of 2.75'' self adhesive paper for my foam blocks.
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post #15 of 15 Old 02-20-2013, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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the wood i'm working with is Pine -- Radiata (?) according to the HD website.

Ogre, great tips. thanks! i just placed an order with Klingspor for some sheets and rolls.
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