Introduction: 20 Sanding & Scraping Workshop Tips - Featured Maker: Jimmy DiResta
Hi Instructables Community,
This time it is all about Tips and Tricks around Sanding & Scraping.
Please check out Jimmy Diresta's channel and feel free to subscribe if you like him and his projects.
Please give us a like and a vote if you learn at least one new trick from this Video or Instructable ;)
Step 1: Tip 1: Hook & Loop Pads
If you are a user of orbital sanders that use hook & loop pads to attach sanding disks you will have noticed that they wear out over time. Although the hook & loop pad won't be strong enough for a use with the sander you can still use it by simply hot gluing a wooden disk to the back.
This will give you a free sanding block that features quickly changeable sanding disks!
You can of course get fancy with this and buy a new pad and make a more ergonomic grip for it ;)
Step 2: Tip 2: Utility Blade Scrapers
Utility knife blades are a great tool as they are inexpensive and can be used for a wide range of jobs.
Instead of discarding old/used/blunt blades you can shape them with a band sander and use them as small custom scrapers. These scrapers are ideal for curved & concave surfaces. By tilting and turning the blade you can adjust it to the shape of your work piece.
Step 3: Tip 3: Longboard Scraper
Here is another trick involving utility blades. To create a simple longboard scraper I used a piece of lumber (1x2 should work fine). I used a bandsaw with a narrow blade to create a shallow slot with the depth of the bandsaw blade. Next I wrapped a few layers of masking tape around the blunt side of a utility blade until it fit snugly in the slot.
The leverage of this design helps with scraping but you should turn the scraper around regularly to roll over the burl on the blade for best results.
Step 4: Tip 4: Re-use Broken Sanding Belts
If you use belt sanders with long sanding belt don't throw them away if the belt rips/breaks.
They can be used by hand for lots of projects.
Here I demonstrated this on a pole that I clamped into my vise.
Step 5: Tip 5: Anything Can Become a Sanding Block...
Literally every item that you have in your work shop could be used as a sanding block.
Depending on what you need you can use soft or hard materials, they could be flexible or rigid depending on what you want them to use for.
A pencil can be used for sanding small curved areas whereas a spray can could be used for larger concave sanding areas.
Step 6: Tip 6: MDF Sanding Blocks
When making my own sanding blocks I prefer to use MDF since it is very flat which is just what I want for most projects. It is also inexpensive and can be easily cut to any shape I might require.
I usually use spray adhesive to attach the sandpaper to the MDF block. When doing so I will glue the sandpaper with a little overlap and then trim it. This way the sandpaper covers the block right to the edges. The last feature is that I cover one corner with sandpaper while leaving the other without. This way I can use the block in narrow spaces or corners without the risk of scratching/sanding areas by accident.
Step 7: Tip 7: Longboard Sanding
When sanding edges with a longboard I wrap a few turns of masking tape around the edge to avoid scratching other parts of the work piece by accident.
Step 8: Tip 8: Sanding on Glass Surfaces
Glass panels are a great backing for sandpaper since they are almost perfectly flat. This flatness can then be used to get a work piece perfectly flat by gluing the sandpaper to the glass. Placing the panel on your table and sanding the work piece on it will translate into nice flat surfaces.
I spray glue sheets of sandpaper to the glass panel. Over time the spray glue might loose its grip and to avoid tearing the sandpaper I suggest to keep the work pieces at an 45° angle to the joints of the sandpaper.
Step 9: Tip 9: Use Weights for Longboard Sanding
When sanding with a long board, especially when working alone, you might want to try this trick.
Place a few weights on top of the board and fix them in place. This makes the sanding process much easier.
Step 10: Tip 10: Wet Sanding With Soapy Water
For wet sanding I prefer to use rubber sanding blocks. I get them from a local supplier and use the bandsaw to cut them to the size I need.
I also like to use soapy water or window cleaner instead of plain water for the sanding.
Also when trying to get scratched Acrylic or other plastics back to a nice finish I recommend to go through the grits till 2000 and then finish with a polishing compound.
Step 11: Tip 11: Re-Use Old Sanding Sponges
Don't throw away old sanding sponges! Instead wrap some sand paper around it to continue using it.
Step 12: Tip 12: Flexible Notebook Sanding Block
As I told you before "everything can become a sanding block". In this example I use my note book as a sanding block. It is flexible and takes on the shape of the work piece which makes it ideal for curved objects.
Step 13: Tip 13: Long/Short Chisel Combo Tool
I recently discovered this combination tool made by DeWALT. Although it is not made from the highest quality steel out there it is still very versatile as it offers a long chisel, which I use for scraping, as well as a short chisel for detail work. The tool is even sturdy enough to get whacked with a hammer without problems!
Step 14: Tip 14: 3M Pro Grade Precision Sanding Sheets
I like to use 3M Pro Grade Precision Sanding Sheets. They have a rubber backing and are very flexible. They take on the shape of any object and can be bunched together just like steel wool. Over time they become even softer which makes them great to use with detailed projects!
Step 15: Tip 15: a Slightly Different Use for Sticky Sanding Disks
Although I do not use a sander for those sticky sanding disks I still have another way to put them to good use.
Although it is not by design the sanding disk stick perfectly to each other thus creating sanding disks with a grippy surface. Different grits can be used to be more flexible.
Step 16: Tip 16: Double Sided Sanding Sheets
I also like to use different grit sanding sheets and glue them together with some spray adhesive. This gives me more flexibility when working. I also use my Sharpie to write the grit on each side.
Step 17: Tip 17: Card Scrapers
Step 18: Tip 18: Give Old Planer Blades a Second Life
Don't throw away blades from your planer! Use some masking tape on one side for protection and use the blade as a scraper!
Step 19: Tip 19: Use Your Vise As a Tool Stand
You can use a vise as a stand for your tool. This way you can convert a handheld band sander into a mounted one!
Be careful though when doing this as to much pressure from the vise may damage your tools!
Step 20: Tip 20: Sanding Belt Sanding Blocks
You can cut a piece of wood to shape to fit into a sanding belt! The sanding belt can be quickly adjusted if parts have worn down too much!
Step 21: Fan Tips
This additional step is made for collecting the great tips readers of this Instructable have shared in the comments. Thank you all for sharing!!!
- Folding sandpaper into thirds, this will add strength to it and you will still have one side of fresh grit when the first two have been used up.
- Start to save scraps of wood and arrange them according to their size.
- The smallest shavings can be used as tinder or to make fire starters
- Larger pieces can be used to make small sanding block
- make a few blocks from scrap wood of similar size and use the adhesive-backed Velcro that comes with 1/3rd-sheet sander refills (sometimes-- if not just buy some), cut it to size, and apply it to the wood blocks. I use a sharpie to write the grit size on the back of the block, and then re-use my 4-1/2" random orbital sander abrasives. It's handy to always have a block in a standard size with each grit at-hand, and gets a lot more life out of the discs.
- Sanding Belt cleaners are a very useful addition to clean and dress your sanding belts & sanding disks
- After the hook & loop base wore out on my orbital sander, I sanded the face of it down with coarse paper and then spray glued a piece of 20 mil pvc tape to the base to create a smooth surface. It holds the sticky sanding disks like a champ. Been using it exclusively with sticky-back paper. It works great.
Step 22: Monthly Giveaway
You can win a Let's Prep Outdoor MakeKit v2.0 including a 1-Year Instructables Pro Account. I will also send out stickers to the runner ups again!
All you have to do is to subscribe to my YouTube channel and leave me a comment at this video and include "I want to go out and make something!" & your Instructables username. The winner will be announced on Mar 31st 2016 1800hrs GMT on my FB, Twitter & Blog. (Only entries from the EU, Norway, Switzerland, USA & Canada are eligible to get the full package mailed (please understand that I pay for this myself), residents of other countries may only receive the Pro-Account).