An abrade upgrade

So, remember when I was left with a divot after planing some cherry on the lid of my latest project?

Yeah, I was hoping you’d forget, but I knew you wouldn’t. But, that’s cool!  I’ve got this one nailed here. I went out and bought some new, fresh 80 grit belts for the sander and got ready to set to work.

Nice stuff, dude

But, safety first!  You will also notice that I’m wearing my full safety complement – which really needs to be dusted. But, hey, there’s no substitute for safety.

The rig

I also took the time to attach the dust collector hose directly to the sander. This way, all of the sanding dust was going to get picked up at the source instead of floating all around the shop.

I clamped the lid down to the bench and took the time to mark a pencil line across the piece. This way, it would help ensure that my sanding would be nice and even. The clamping? Well, that was to make sure the lid didn’t become airborne…


As I had explained in my should-have-been-award-winning 2011 post My Abrasive Personality, I started the sander across the grain, which just so happened to be with the grain on the breadboard edges, and worked it evenly across the surface. Surprisingly, it took very little effort to level out all the little imperfections in the lid, and fix the divot I dug with the hand planes. I even used a straightedge along the surface just to make sure I wasn’t sanding hollows into the lid.

Now, that's straight

To ensure I was sanding with maximum efficiency, I stopped every few minutes and ran the sanding belts against a crepe rubber sanding block to remove any sanding dust that embedded itself on the belt. Sure, I could have used a crepe rubber soled shoe, but a) I didn’t have one and b) I bought this crepe rubber block on a stick about a decade ago, and it still has plenty of life in it. Cost me a whopping $6. Woooo…..

The crepe rubber block

With the heavy leveling done, and the kids needing help to get their homework done, I decided to call it a night. But, I wanted to make sure I had the next tool ready to roll in the prep process.

Random Orbit Sander

Yup, the random orbit sander is going to get a workout, followed by a little scraping to get a nice, smooth finish on this beauty.

Then, the embellishment, followed by a finish and – hopefully – the presentation to a happy niece…

2 thoughts on “An abrade upgrade”

  1. I know great Italian guy the “Mixologist” who can give you some great finishing advice. Time to introduce the formula for the guild and the newer blog members. I still use the formula and still get smashing results. Ask Iggy. He knows guy, the “Mixologist”

  2. Those crepe belt cleaners really do the trick and add extra life to the belts.
    (And it’s always smart to use that safety equipment)
    Good job Tom !

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