Sanding Table




After I finish small woodworking projects there is a fine layer of dust over my workspace. I searched online and found a lot of information on homemade sanding tables. I used scraps from other projects to make one for myself.

In this instructable I will provide an overview of how I made my sanding table.

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Step 1: Gather Supplies

I used mostly scraps from other projects. I bought a vacuum port from Amazon and used several cuts of wood:

(1x) 18" x 24" section of 1/2" plywood

(2x) 1" x 8" x 18" long red oak boards

(2x) 1" x 8" x 16 1/2" long red oak boards

(1x) 1" x 2" x 16 1/2" long strip from red oak board

(1x) 1" x 1" x 2" long block from red oak board

(1x) ~18" x 16 1/2" section of 1/8" plywood

(1x) 18" x 18" section of pegboard

red oak edge banding

wood putty

wood glue

Silicon Caulk

Deck Screws

Pan head screws

As for tools I used a cordless drill, cordless 1/4" impact driver, impact bits, 2 1/4" hole saw, drill / countersink to match my screws, sandpaper in various grits, chop saw, hand saw, and rotary tool with a 1/4 round router bit.

Step 2: Base

I started by cutting out a 18" x 24" section of 1/2" plywood. I used my rotary tool and the top of a paint can (as a template) to fillet the corners. I did this by hand and corrected the many imperfections with sandpaper and wood putty.

I wanted to use the 1/4 round bit on another project so I decided to practice here. The edge came out OK. I decided after the fact to use edge banding as well, but I didn't get a clean cut due to the rounded edges. Next time I will either edge band first, or maybe edge banding and rounded edges are incompatible.

The box part of the sanding table will be square. I left the base long on the sides so I would have a convenient surface to grab when I move the table around and a good place to clamp the table to a workbench.

Step 3: Make a Box

I cut two boards to 18" long and two boards 16 1/2" long. The shorter bards account for the thickness so the box came out square-ish. I clamped the boards into position and pre-drilled and countersunk all screw holes, 3 per corner.

I used a 1" x 2" x 16 1/2" long strip of red oak as a reinforcing rib located in the middle of the box. I have it in the same direction as the slope, which will be seen in the next step.

I also added the vacuum port here. I centered it on a face in the direction of the slope and pre-driled and screwed it in place. Here I used short pan head screws. I screwed the port on first so I could use it as a guide with my hole saw, which worked well.

Step 4: Add Slope

I added a sloped board to help collect the dust down to the vacuum port, create some aerodynamics, and reduce the volume of air being sucked.

First I screwed a small 1" x 1" x 2" cutoff of red oak to the inside of the box just under the vacuum port. I then cut a roughly 18" x 16 1/2" section of the 1/8" plywood and test fit it. I had the bottom rest on the block by the vacuum port and the top just under the top of the box. To get a good fit without bending the plywood too much I cut a slot to go around the rib and adjusted the length. I secured the slope in place with a few smaller screws at the top and bottom. The plywood is so thin the screws support the slope so it does not slide down, they do not attach directly to it.

I then generously caulked the perimeter of the plywood slope.

Step 5: Attach Box to Base

I now laid the box upside down and placed the prepared base on top. After some careful measurements and clamping the base in place I pre-drilled and countersunk deck screws, 8 total.

Step 6: Add Pegboard Top

I flipped the assembly over and placed the 18" x 18" pegboard cutoff on top. I pre-drilled and secured it to the box with pan head screws.

Step 7: Finish

After my first test run I thought the suction was mediocre. One of these days I will change the filter in my shop vac and I should have better results. I will see if I can use this for vacuum forming or vacuum fixturing small parts as well.

Thanks for reading.

End of line.

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    10 Discussions


    2 years ago

    I can't help but wonder how sturdy the peg board is for sanding. It's not a very thick or a strong made material. I would think you couldn't use too much pressure while sanding or you might risk cracking the peg board.

    I LOVE the concept, but I am curious about the strength of the use you have made this for. Would like to know how well it actually works it you are sanding small items and turn them on their sides to sand the cut sides of wood projects where it takes more pressure to sand out the cut edge.

    3 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    That's why I added a reinforcing rib in step 3. I don't normally bear down too much when I'm sanding, but the rib helps support the work. I've seen sturdier pegboard, but this has worked fine for me. I would just avoid getting it wet.


    Reply 2 years ago

    Awesome, I understand now. I went blonde on that step I guess. (No offense to you other blondes who stayed with it, sorry.) I think I will make one and put a support both ways, just for safety's sake and make it a bit bigger since I make larger wooden crafts.

    Great instructable and I love the idea. Happy Woodworking, and Keep Sending Us Great Ideas!!!!!


    2 years ago

    Nice work on the build. The peg board you used for your holes, some videos on YouTube show the same peg board, but make the holes slightly bigger this apparently makes the suction a lot better. I have been meaning to make one myself one day, but on a bigger scale so that i can use it as an assembly table as well.

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks for the tip, I will give that a try! I have seen some integrated into a workbench, which would be great for assembly and all around utility.