How To Sand Wood (Things To Consider)

For quite a number of years, I looked for a great tool that could boost my speed at doing super cool home repairs; and I did when I finally found my best electric sander. Because I work with wood a lot, an electric sander was definitely going to cut my time to half or less. Typically, they work way quickly and give a smooth touch on wood than just that normal sandpaper ride.

What Does The Sander Do?

If you are looking for the best way on how to sand wood, an electric sander will help you to quickly clear bumps on wood and in no time give you the perfect surface for staining, painting, or drilling.

A sander is amazingly easy to use. You only need to hold it in your hand like computer’s mouse and slip it into hard to reach areas. Hand held sanders are in fact great at working small time wood projects. They are nifty and more importantly, quite affordable.

How To Sand Wood With A Sander

Sanding wood using an electric sander is no brainier really. In fact some folks have doubled their work rate speed by using two sanders with one on each hand. This simple step by step guide will be of help.

Step I: Lay Down Your Wood/ Piece

Whatever it is you want to sand, lay it out in a place with enough space for movement. You can even choose to keep it on the work bench if it is a piece of wooden plate.

Step II: Switch On Your Sander

Take your sander and plug it on to the power source and then switch it on. Once you have done this it will be time to find your wooden surface and start out on sanding.

Step III: Time To Sand

If you look at the Best Oscillating Spindle Sander Reviews you will realize that once you sander is plugged it will be time to start the main job.

How to Sand Wood

On a closer examination, you may realize that your wooden surface has pattern like pores. These are usually called the grains.

To properly sand your wood you should work in the same direction as the grains. Don’t sand against it or at an angle too.

Even when you are working on the edges, it is much more important to still focus and work along the grains of the wood.

NOTE: If you work against the grain, the surface will look so much unattractive, and will be so much noticeable when done.

Getting The Best Finish

If you want the clean finish for your wooden surface, you must make sure that you hold the sanding black flat. This will help you to firmly apply an even pressure while moving in the same direction as the grains.

The reason why you need to make sure that the pressure is even is; it will help you to curb out unwanted depressions.

REMEMBER: The same rules will apply for people who also love to work with palm sanders too.

Removing The Dust

In order to remain with a clean and smooth surface that’s ready for staining, you will have to remove the wooden dust that had been created by the sanding process.

The best way to do that is to use a tack cloth – this you can find within the neighboring hardware. It is a special piece of the “cheesecloth” that’s made specifically for this same purpose.

Using The Tack Cloth

Fold up the tack cloth in a comfortable shape and size. Then wipe it along the wooden grain too. This will easily remove the dust in no time. If you find the side you are using to be saturated, you can fold it on another side.

DO NOT use dry brushes or dry rags. In many occasions, you will find out that they aren’t the best tool for removing dust on wooden surfaces that have just been sanded or which are yet to get the right type of staining too.

If you don’t have a tack cloth, you can also take a small piece of cheesecloth and soak it up in a small amount of “tung oil” to work with. Storing tack cloths in sealed plastic bags is also advisable in order to prevent the cloth from drying out in-between your work.

What You Must Know About Sanding

  • Orbit sanders are efficient and easy to use when you intend to get the smooth touch on any sanded wooden surface.
  • These sanders often produce squigglies when being used. In order to reduce this effect you can always use a light touch on the sander.
  • Don’t press the sander down. However, you should hold it so firmly! This allows the sander’s weight to do the work rather than your own effort.
  • It is important to move your sander slowly over the wooden surface while following the pattern of the grain so that you avoid tearing the wood and giving a rough finish.
  • Wood with an “open-grain” pattern such as oak or even walnut normally have very coarse grain patterns. This means that sanding them up to a fine grit will probably be a waste of time unlike the “closed-grain” woods such as maple or cherry which have a smoother and uniform texture.

Can’t I Use the Sandpaper?

Well anyone who is looking at how to sand wood can easily use a sand paper with the right type of grit (the roughness of the sandpaper).

However the sandpaper works slowly. It is also quite tedious and you may not love the experiences of the aching joints at all.

Nonetheless, if you choose to go with sandpaper, it is important to remember that the sandpaper grit is denoted in numbers. The higher the number on it the finer the sandpaper grade and vice versa.

Final Note

The biggest challenge that I faced when I first started using sanders was how to know when to stop.  I didn’t quite understand when the scratches and the flaws were done. However, I would like to point out that this takes time.

As time progresses, you will develop a keen eye for details and get the right level of experience to know when your finish is very right.

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Last Updated on September 13, 2020 by Robert Patrick

Author Profile

Robert Patrick
Robert Patrick is the Chief Editor of Tools Adventure.He spent around 25 years in the construction and woodworking industry as a professional worker.Based on his experiences with the different type of tools; he is sharing his opinion about various tools so that a beginner can get started right away.Happy reading!