Sanding Sponges, a Small Table, Clamping Squares and whatever else :)

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Blog entry by Jeremy Greiner posted 06-17-2012 01:40 AM 2515 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I meant to do a blog updated a week or so ago, but I’ve had a friend stay with me all last week since Tech-Ed was in Orlando, I offered to let him stay in my guest bedroom instead of an expensive (or cheap who knows!) hotel. I didn’t get much done on any of the projects I was working on that week, but I did make him a carpenter bee trap based on since he complained that carpenter bees where eating his deck. I forgot to take any pictures of it before he left this morning, maybe I’ll make him take a picture of it once it’s all hung up and trapping the bees too an eternal doom.

Some updates on my dust collection, I need to make 2 connections for my hammer jointer/planer machine .. I use a very long flex house that allows me to rotate the dust collection hood, but it’s cumbersome and makes an otherwise smooth process considerably more clunky. Instead what I’ve decided is I’ll use some small flex hose and a quick connect adapter with 2 ports, one on each side of the machine, so I just have to unplug the dust collection, flip the hood and plug it in on the other side. I’ll get some pictures of this once It’s done.

I like sanding sponges, but the ones you buy in the store usually have crap sandpaper on them. I really like the porter cable adhesive backed sandpaper you can get some good deals on an entire roll off amazon that will last a very very long time. I use it on some sanding blocks, and I decided to try sticking it onto a sponge and see how that works. Well it didn’t work very well the adhesive on the back of the sandpaper doesn’t stick very well to the sponge. So I decided to epoxy some construction paper to the bottom of the sponge to act as a carrier, and then the adhesive sandpaper can stick to that (and it does) and it also means I can peel off the sandpaper and replace it and still keep the sponge. Here is how I made them

Step One, get some kitchen sponges from the grocery store and some construction paper and cut the paper slightly larger than the sponge (we’ll trim it down later). Some 2 part epoxy and something to mix/spread it with (I like a plastic spoon) and a marker to write the grit on the sponge.

Step Two, mix and spread out the epoxy onto the construction paper. (the more epoxy you use the less flexible the sponge will be keep that in mind if you want firmer or more flexible sponges).

Step Three, Apply the construction paper to the sponge and let it sit for 10 minutes or so. Afterwards trim the edges of the construction paper with scissors or a box cutter.

Step Four, apply the sandpaper and optionally trim the excess sponge part with a box cutter.

Then you have some sanding sponges.

I’ve also been working on my end table for my couch I wasn’t sure what I was going to do because I sorta messed it up. Before glueing together I decided “Hey lets sand all the parts first that will make it easier to sand and less sanding later right? Well of course idiot me sanded off all my joint identifying marks so I wasn’t exactly sure which joint lined up with each other. This produced a not so flat table with a not so flat top. The legs wobbled and the top of the stiles and legs didn’t line up.

I sat on this for several weeks then I had the idea to make this sled to ride against the fence of my table saw. that would make the top perfectly flat.

This worked out perfectly, the top was perfectly flat, then to make the legs even with the top and the legs all the same distance I just nudged the fence in and ran the top of the table base against the fence and nibbles off the bottoms of the legs. This worked out great I now had a table base that was flat and had no wobble.

I sanded the base down today, got it all nice and smooth up to 220 grit or so I plan on using wipe on poly to varnish it. Yes those are pocket holes you see in the table. I forgot to create slots for the table top fasteners so I decided this should work as well as anything else and you can’t see em once the top is on.

Here is a picture of the top, it’s a board of cherry that I cut in half, rounded and chamfered the edge and applied several (like 8 or so) coats of wipe on poly to give it a nice gloss to it.

I had an idea to use up a bunch of the plywood scraps I had laying around I could make my own custom clamping squares like the rockler clamp-it squares but bigger.

I cut a bunch of 2 inch wide strips out of 3/4’’ and 1/2’’ plywood I decided the 1/2’’ would be the center part and the 3/4’’ would be the top and bottom. I glued the strips down using the table as a reference surface to eliminate any possible warping that may exist in the plywood.

Once glued together at a “rough” right angle it was time to square everything up. First I needed to trim away the excess 1/3’’ plywood parts.

Then I needed to joint 1 edge, I could have used my jointer but after seeing what happened to Mattias Wandel’s jointer blades after jointing some plywood. (It dented the knives so it actually left plywood like grooves in future jointed woods). I decided to use an ad-hoc system with the table saw to joint 1 edge. I used a piece of scrap OSB and glued a strip of plywood to act as a fence that was square to the table saw fence (this didn’t have to be perfect we’re just trying to get a good flat edge nothing more) This offered a secure base which I could hold against the fence and allow for a smooth cut. It would have been better if the OSB went all the way to the blade, but I didn’t have any big enough so what can you do.

After you “joint” the edge on the table saw, you can then use your miter gauge with the jointed edge against the miter gauge fence to square up the other edge. As long as your miter gauge is tuned properly (or you have a well tuned cross cut sled, I so need to make one) this will produce a square with a 90 degree corner that can be referenced with on glue ups.

I’ll most likely sand it some, and varnish it or something and maybe add some packing tape, these will make some handle clamping pieces. The downside is the inside edge is NOT square I don’t know how to properly square that up, maybe if your bandsaw is well tuned you could use that to cut a parallel face to the outside face I don’t know.

That pretty much sums up what I have been up too :)

Have fun everyone and I’ll see ya in the shop.


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

3 comments so far

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4142 days

#1 posted 06-18-2012 02:01 AM

Good work Jeremy. I especially liked your fix on the table top and legs (ingenius). I like sanding sponges as well but I just stick new paper to the old sponges with some contact cement. It can be removed when worn out with mineral spirits or a heat gun. Keep posting your shop tips as I think they help others even if they don’t reply. I assume your chip separator is still performing as advertized. And you were skeptical!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Jeremy Greiner's profile

Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 4224 days

#2 posted 06-18-2012 02:05 AM

Heya gfadvm,
Actually the chip separator has turned into a major disappointment. It does a great job separating large shavings from the planer, jointer .. but anything else just flows right through. To make it worse it has a bad habit of actually sucking up the dust that has already settled on the bottom of the trash can .. and pulling it into the dust collector anyways. The major reason I wanted a dust separator was to protect a filter I wanted to buy for my DC, but right now too much is making it into the dust collector.

I presume this is why the thein baffle is so popular as it’s supposed to prevent the dust collector from sucking up dust already settled into the bottom of trash can. I haven’t decided what I’m going to do yet. But I’m sure I’ll let everyone know :)


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4142 days

#3 posted 06-18-2012 02:53 AM

Jeremy, I’m sorry to hear that your separator is disappointing you. I still love mine and I thought ours were very similar so I can’t figure out why mine is great and yours not. The only time mine lets stuff through is if it is over half full.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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