12" Disc Sander attachment for my Lathe

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Project by JamesVavra posted 12-27-2010 06:02 PM 11523 views 33 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I finally got around to building a disc sander fixture for my Lathe (Jet 1442). The disc and table are 3/4” MDF while the rest of the pieces are 1/2” MDF. I mounted two discs on two 6” Harbor Freight faceplates that I have owned but not used for at least a year (the extra thickness is there to allow the plate to clear the motor).

The table top is 12” x 15” (I had a 15” piece of t-track leftover from my drillpress table which helped determine the size) and it’s about 7” high. There is a gap of about 3/16” around the bottom half of the disc for dust collection. Right now, it’s not clamped in place in any way but I plan to extend the guide that slides between the bed rails all the way to the headstock so that, when clamped against the headstock using the banjo, it keeps the table at the correct distance from the plate.

I’m still waiting on 12” sandpaper discs arrive but it tested well with the 6” PSA disc I had laying around.

The only problem I ran into is that the vertical piece of 1/2” MDF in front split a bit on one side, despite my pre-drilling for the screws.


14 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

23554 posts in 3647 days

#1 posted 12-27-2010 06:25 PM

Nice job. That looks to be real handy for sanding and you don’t have to buy another machine!!
Thanks for sharing.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View RetiredCoastie's profile


999 posts in 3725 days

#2 posted 12-27-2010 06:29 PM

Nice work. Well thought out and great execution.

-- Proud Supporter of Homes For Our Troops

View brianinpa's profile


1812 posts in 4265 days

#3 posted 12-27-2010 06:33 PM

That is a nice addition to the lathe.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View rickf16's profile


392 posts in 4123 days

#4 posted 12-27-2010 06:42 PM

Now that is a slick idea! Makes one tool…two! I’ll have to make that an addition to my shop, which is small, so this will help save space and money. Thanks for the post.

-- Rick

View jeffthewoodwacker's profile


603 posts in 4346 days

#5 posted 12-27-2010 07:25 PM

Great project and addition to the lathe.

-- Those that say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

View stefang's profile


16821 posts in 3876 days

#6 posted 12-27-2010 07:41 PM

Well done James. A very useful accessory. It could be even more useful if you could also build a tilting table for sanding angles.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View JamesVavra's profile


304 posts in 3858 days

#7 posted 12-27-2010 07:52 PM

Mike – I had considered that, but could not come up with a good design that allowed for a tilting table and dust collection – with the lathe bed so close to the disc and the location of the motor, it would be difficult to replicate the type of dust collection that is typically found on a disc sander – a sleeve that covers the bottom third of the disc. I figured that 90% of my usage would be at 90 degrees, so I decided to keep it simple.


View bigfish_95008's profile


250 posts in 3645 days

#8 posted 12-27-2010 08:23 PM

What a great use of an existing tool.

-- bigfish "I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it." Vincent Van Gogh

View Bricofleur's profile


1466 posts in 3735 days

#9 posted 01-01-2011 12:45 AM

Great job. I’ve been planning to build one of these for a while, but didn’t get to it yet. You’re inspiring me!

I use MDF a lot and I found out that you never use fasteners closer than 2” from the ends. Second, always use cylindrical screws, never tapered screws. Third, always predrill for longer screws and use bigger drill bit than you would use with solid wood. My ratio is to use 7/64” drill bit with #6 screws and 1/8’’ drill bit with #8 screws. I use the same ratio when using particleboards. Since the hole is wider than normal, the longer screws compensate to get tight joints. Fool proof. Since I came up with this ratio, I never seen MDF splitting. Another thing: Shallow dadoes would have help at lot in your project to prevent the 1/2’’ MDF from splitting.

I was wondering why you added a curved piece down below the disk, behind the table. I believe it is meant to improve dust collection?

Best, and thanks for sharing.


-- Learn from yesterday, work today and enjoy success tomorrow. --

View rance's profile


4271 posts in 3702 days

#10 posted 01-26-2011 03:24 PM

Nice work. One of the things that I’ve never seen posted about using your lathe for something like this is the additional advantage of having Variable Speed(if you have a VS lathe). There are times when this would be a great advantage. This project is on my ToDo list.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View Dusty56's profile


11852 posts in 4230 days

#11 posted 01-30-2011 05:14 AM

I made a similar item and need to finish the table soon ….Mine is for my Jet mini lathe with VS control ….of course I was limited to a 10” disc on it.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View dbhost's profile


5772 posts in 3774 days

#12 posted 06-27-2011 05:16 PM

I am working a project like that right now. I have the disk cut, need to get busy with the table… Except I am using 3/4” cabinet grade plywood. (MDF and humid Texas shops are NOT friends…)

I really like the way you pulled this one off…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View SugarbeatCo's profile


142 posts in 2810 days

#13 posted 06-13-2012 06:57 PM

Great Job, Consider your idea borrowed!!!

-- Always one more tool away from being an excellent woodworker...

View Acts65Woodworks's profile


70 posts in 1084 days

#14 posted 09-25-2018 02:42 AM

nice, what do you use the t-track for?

-- Steven, California,

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