Sanding is one of the most important processes in carpentry or woodworking. It makes sure that there is no roughness left on the surface of the wood ensuring that the wood feels smooth and even. Manual sanding requires sandpaper which is manually rubbed on the wood with force so that it becomes smooth. However, with the technological advancements, you can now find many electric and automatic sanding tools that make the process of sanding easy and hassle free.
If you’re new to using the electric sanders then chances are you might face problems initially to get hold of them but once you’re through the initial stages you would be able to use the sanders very effectively. However, if you don’t follow good sanding practices then chances are you might end up damaging the product and the project.
This is why it’s important to have good sanding practices and now if you’re wondering what are the sanding practices you need to follow, here’s a list of it:
Know your goals
The first and foremost thing that you should be aware of before starting the sanding process is what you want to achieve at the end of it. For most of the furniture and cabinets, you’ll need to sand the wooden parts flat, but it’s also important that you should be open to stains. Sometimes you’ll have to tear and fracture the wood with rough belts to get a very fine scratch pattern.
If you’re doing cross gain then you would want the softest and sharpest scratch possible, which is why you’ll need to be more precise. This is why you need to focus on your aim and plan your sanding as per the need.
Know that your sander is working right
It’s obvious that you would never want your best 3×21 belt sander to stop in the middle of the sanding process, or the sander not being properly aligned leading to unwanted scratches. This is why it’s important to make sure that your sander is in perfect working condition before you start the sanding process.
To check the alignment and the level of your sander you can use two boards with a wrap. Set all the materials on an even table with the wrap in the middle. Then using a rougher belt, take a mild sanding pass on the boards run through the sanders together. Turn them over and take another pass, but run them through their respective sides. Then measure the center of the board, if both the passes match then the sander is accurate and ready to use.
Make multiple passes
Most people think that one pass is enough to level out a part, which is not the case always. There will be some situations when you will be required to do more than one pass to achieve desired results. However, it’s suggested that you don’t make more passes than required because that could lead to scratches and can also increase the depth which can create problems.
These are some of the best practices that you can follow with your best 3×21 belt sander to get desired results.