How Does Using Oscillating Sanders Help in Wood Projects?
If you are a professional carpenter or a DIY enthusiast, an oscillating sander is a must-have piece of equipment in your arsenal. Even if you already own a power sander, like an orbit sander, you’ll often come across profiles and curves where you’ll find your sander not performing up to your expectations. That’s precisely where an oscillating sander shines!
The Use of an Oscillating Sander for Wood Projects
The cylindrical sanding drum hosted on an oscillating sander allows you to perfectly smooth out curved wood surfaces where a standard orbit sander would fail. Not only will the oscillating tool perform a better job, but it will also save you a good chunk of time and energy.
That said, cylinders on oscillating sanders come in various diameters that need to be utilized depending on the type and profile of the curve you want to sand out. For example, if you’re going to smooth out a wood surface with a gentle curve, you should swap in a wide drum on your sander to achieve the best results. On the other hand, if you are working on a piece of wood with a tight curve that needs sanding, a skinner drum would be a far better option.
How To Operate an Oscillating Sander
Oscillating sanders are perfect for smoothing out rough cuts on a wood surface created by a bandsaw. With that said, you should know how to use an oscillating sander so that you don’t damage your wooden board while smoothing it out.
Here are some general steps you can follow to achieve optimal results with your sander:
Step 1: Start by placing the board you want to sand on the sander’s table, safely away from the cylindrical drum, and switch on the motor.
Step 2: Next, ease the board forward towards the rotating drum until they come into contact. When they are in contact, make sure not to push the board towards the sander as these machines are very aggressive and can damage or chip away too much wood from your board in a flash.
Step 3: Then, gently slide the board along the rotating drum while the board is lying flat on the tabletop of the oscillating sander. Make sure you work long, smooth strokes to ensure you don’t end up with an uneven surface.
Safety Tips for Using an Oscillating Sander
When working with powerful machines like an oscillating sander, it’s crucial to follow certain safety precautions so that you don’t end up hurting yourself or your sander. Here are some essential tips you can start implementing right away in your workshop:
- Wear safety gear, including gloves and goggles, to protect your eyes and hands from any flying debris
- Connect and turn on the dust extractor to ensure the debris does not make a mess in your workshop and damage the sander as well.
- Keep your finger at least an inch away from the sander at all times.
- If anything gets caught in the rotating drum, always turn off the sander and wait for it to stop rotating to clear the jam.
If you are struggling to smooth out the rough surface on a curvy edge, an oscillating sander is a perfect tool to help you out. Not only will it save you from the hassle of having to manually sand down those curved edges but also save you time and do the job more effectively.