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Improvised Thickness Sander – Quick & Dirty

In a project I was working on (the tintin rocket) I had to flatten some segmented rings. I ended up using the thickness sander method I am showing you here, using a spindle sander or a sanding drum. I hope you find it useful and share it with your friends! Enjoy, and remember to be Inspired!

Ways to improve your thickness sander further

One major problem with this kind of sanding is that it is easy to push the piece faster than the sanding drum can remove material. Forcing it can cause the sandpaper to overheat and clog up with sawdust, which will in turn make it even harder to remove material – and ruin the sanding sleeve quickly. It can also cause deflection by pushing the axis out of alignment, resulting in skewed pieces.

The best way to avoid both problems is to take it slow. If it requires force to push a piece through, back off. Turn the screw back a notch and try again. Taking 10 light passes will get you better results than 2 heavy ones, and in the end it will not take you that much more time.

And while we are talking sandpaper, here is a neat trick to clean used sandpaper to make it last longer, and it works for any kind of sanding implement as well.

 



What not to do

You probably noticed already that you should always put in pieces against the rotation of the drum. Otherwise, your thickness sander turns into a workpiece accellerator, which means you either get shot at by your tool or have to play fetch every time you let go of your workpiece.

The same applies if for some reason you get the idea to use your belt sander for this, which is something I would not recommend. Although it is probably possiblbe with the right amount of care and accuracy.

Want more Dirty quick?

Have a look at my other Quick & Dirty projects for more inspiration and simple ideas in the workshop.

Thanks for stopping by, and remember to be Inspired!

 

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