Cutting Board Sanding Jig

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Project by rdjack21 posted 06-04-2012 04:27 AM 4816 views 12 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

As we all know one of the pains of making cutting boards is all the sanding. The other royal pain in the rear for those that do not have a drum sander is getting the darn thing flat and smooth at the same time. While belt sanders will and do make all the sanding less of a pain it is hard to keep your board truly flat when you use one. Shoot if you are not careful a ROS will also make your board not flat and I really don’t want to put rubber feet on my boards to compensate for a board not being flat.

So I’m in my shop finishing the rough sanding on the board in pic 5 and well that picture shows every thing that is wrong with doing it by hand on a belt sander. It is so not flat that I’m not a happy camper and I have the board in pic 3&4 in the clamps drying up. So I have to come up with something to fix this situation. I don’t have time to make a drum sander right now (I’ts on my list but I have other things I need more right now) and to be honest I don’t have the room for another tool right now. So I’m sitting there thinking about this issue and I think about the V-Drum sander and I think hey why not think of the belt sander as the drum and build some support tables on either side of it! And this is what I came up with. I’ts not pretty, I’ts not super sturdy, but it is a proof of concept and as such I have to say that it did a great job and the prof is shown in pic 3 & 4. Pic 3 & 4 show a strait edge on either side of the board after initial rough sanding that board I had in the clamps. After I took the pics it took me about 15min a side to flatten the board in pic 5.

So now that I have proved that the concept will work and a sanding station is one of those things I really do need now I know one concept I will be incorporating into it.

-- --- Richard Jackson

18 comments so far

View cannondale's profile


54 posts in 4310 days

#1 posted 06-04-2012 06:40 AM

You’re a genius !!! Thanks

View Hawaiilad's profile


3382 posts in 4267 days

#2 posted 06-04-2012 08:42 AM

What a great idea. I’m not very good at building tools, but this I think I can do…thanks for sharing

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View Ken90712's profile


18067 posts in 4435 days

#3 posted 06-04-2012 02:18 PM

Nice job, now you tell me after I have purchased 2 different drum sanders! LOL But for real great thinking!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View rdjack21's profile


268 posts in 4174 days

#4 posted 06-04-2012 02:49 PM

Thanks everyone for the kind words it is appreciated..

One note:
the cheap belt sanders like mine don’t have leveling pads so you have to level the sander with shims to get it flat. Do this before you start to figure out what height to make your supporting tables. Oh and don’t forget the fence it will keep your board from flying off the back if it slips out of your hand.

Now that I’ve proved that this works I’m going to beef mine up some because it is a little wobbly right now because those legs are not very robust :) But so far for some thing I just threw together it has made a real big difference in my ability to get my boards flat and smooth at the same time.

-- --- Richard Jackson

View Jeremy Greiner's profile

Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 4018 days

#5 posted 06-04-2012 03:07 PM

That’s pretty impressive in it’s simplicity, and it’s effectiveness.

Well done.


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

View Dusty56's profile


11866 posts in 4934 days

#6 posted 06-04-2012 04:26 PM

I was thinking to install leg levelers so you could make fine adjustments as your paper wears or if you use different grits. What a great idea you have here !! : ) Thanks for sharing !!

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

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 5128 days

#7 posted 06-04-2012 05:10 PM

Just proving there are many ways to skin a cat.
I like it.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View rdjack21's profile


268 posts in 4174 days

#8 posted 06-04-2012 05:42 PM

I’m thinking of doing something like that when I incorporate this idea into a sanding station. Think sander lift so you can use it as a normal belt sander then lower it to use as a flatting sander. HaHa man the ideas are flowing right now on how to implement this as a more finished out jig or fixture. Yea I know that is going over board but it is fun to just think about it. Most likely I’ll do what you suggest and put some kind of levelers on the sander and beef up the tables such that you just drop it over the sander when you need it.

Yes that is one of the things I like it is so simple and very easy to make why oh why did I not do it sooner.

I like my cats with hair :) But I know what you mean. One of the things I really like is that I have one sander that is now far more versatile getting more bang for my limited bucks..

-- --- Richard Jackson

View bigbuddha's profile


200 posts in 4466 days

#9 posted 06-04-2012 05:47 PM

That is brilliant!!!!!!

-- helen

View j_c's profile


68 posts in 3690 days

#10 posted 06-04-2012 08:40 PM

So simple, yet so effective!

View Kevin's profile


575 posts in 3545 days

#11 posted 06-04-2012 09:40 PM

That is one of the simplist yet most effective jigs I have ever seen. Great job, and also great job on the boards they look great (especially with a flat surface).

-- Measure twice, cut once, then sand a whole bunch

View lew's profile


13428 posts in 5002 days

#12 posted 06-04-2012 11:26 PM


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4550 days

#13 posted 06-05-2012 01:37 AM

well ill be, your one smart fella…lol…now that must be a 5 or 6 cup of coffe idea…and i bet if you drink it straight, you will have more and better ideas…lol….i really like it, you did a great job , and it does what you need, and you dont have to go out and buy one of them big 2,000 dollar sanders…well at least the one i was looking at was…great idea…keep at it

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View cwdance1's profile


1164 posts in 4506 days

#14 posted 06-05-2012 02:02 AM

Great Idea, thanks for sharing

View Oldtool's profile


3325 posts in 3437 days

#15 posted 06-05-2012 02:13 AM

I like it. Good old American ingenuity.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

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