How do you edge sand without an edge sander?

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Forum topic by opalko posted 01-24-2018 01:24 PM 4446 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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164 posts in 3915 days

01-24-2018 01:24 PM

Topic tags/keywords: edge sanding sander sanding

I have a long piece – roughly 48” that is convex along one edge (concave down) that I need to sand to a line. I do not have access to an edge sander. I do have a handheld belt sander that is impossible to hold perpendicular to the face of the board while sanding. I’d love a Jet oscillating edge sander but it won’t happen this month (!).

A friend has one of these ancient stationary Craftsman disc/belt sander he said I could use, but he added it does’t work well for doing this kind of thing and he uses it mainly for metal-working, so it’s laden with metal filings.

Would love some ideas from the great help here!


11 replies so far

View Don W's profile

Don W

19726 posts in 3447 days

#1 posted 12-21-2012 03:32 PM

A Stanley #7, 8 or similar. Not exactly sanding, but better.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2990 days

#2 posted 12-21-2012 03:36 PM

If you have a table saw: cut a piece of plywood that is wider than your board. Do not change the table saw’s fence setting. Fasten your board to the plywood so that the line you want to cut to is aligned with the edge of the plywood. You should now have the waste portion of the board hanging off the end of the plywood. Run the assembly back through the table saw. With a good blade you should have what you want.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View opalko's profile


164 posts in 3915 days

#3 posted 12-21-2012 03:44 PM

Sorry, I don’t think I made clear what is is I’m trying to do. I have a piece that is very long and has a curve along one edge like the top one on this:

Think of this same piece stretched out by pulling the left & right hand sides. I need to sand that top curved piece so that edge is exactly (or very nearly) perpendicular to the faces of the board.

I don’t think a #7 will work on curved pieces like this? And Jesse, I don’t follow what you’re recommending..?

View Don W's profile

Don W

19726 posts in 3447 days

#4 posted 12-21-2012 03:50 PM

I agree. A block plane might and so would a circular plane if you have access to one. If its only one piece, a regular old belt sander should work.

The other option would be to make a curved block and glue sand paper to it.

Depending on how much sanding your talking about, just a good old sanding block is what I’s use. I might hit it with the block plane to get it close (or my #113) then just sand it.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View frosty50's profile


46 posts in 3227 days

#5 posted 12-21-2012 03:57 PM

If you have a belt sander, take and make a jig of the snader laying on its side. Mount the cutout to a piece of 3/4” plywood that is 1 1/2 times the width and length of the sander, you then have an edge sander. I have one that I made 10 years ago and it works fine. You can adhere a piece of plastic laminate to it so things slide easily on top of it. Clamp to the top of your work bench.I use the curved end of the sander for doing curves and radius.

-- frosty

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2990 days

#6 posted 12-21-2012 04:00 PM

I misunderstood what you wanted. My idea would not work. Sorry.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 4038 days

#7 posted 12-21-2012 04:07 PM

Router and straight pattern bit. It’s a large pattern, but easily made out of 1/4 plywood.

-- jay,

View derosa's profile


1597 posts in 3715 days

#8 posted 12-21-2012 04:19 PM

You can pick up a spindle sander for the drill press foabout 20.00 that will do the job.
Make a plywood box with the top as big as or bigger then the drill press table and the bottom wide enough to easily clamp to the table. Drill a hole in the top a bit bigger then the sander so that you ca have the botttom of thethe sander sit inside the hole. Then drill one in the side to have a nice tight fit for you dust collector or shop vac.

If you lack a drill press just chuck it in your drill and clammp the board to a table.

-- A posse ad esse

View Ted's profile


2877 posts in 3091 days

#9 posted 12-21-2012 05:20 PM

Here’s what I did.. see the 4th and 5th photos for the belt sander jig.

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

View Loren's profile


10689 posts in 4528 days

#10 posted 12-21-2012 06:01 PM

Make a curved sanding block out of wood and glue 80 grit
paper to it.

I recommend pattern routing this as well. Takes about
an hour to make a template and set it up if you’ve never
done it before.

The template can be made from 1/8” hardboard if you
like, which is thin enough to cut the curve with a
trammel stick with a knife blade in one end and a 1/4”
pin in the other. Then you’ll have perfect pattern
to copy using the pattern (or flush trim) bit. Flush
trim bits cost about $10-$20 at a hardware store and
are among the most useful router bits.

View redryder's profile


2393 posts in 3981 days

#11 posted 12-22-2012 08:27 AM

I’ve gotten a lot of use out of these in tough situations. They will go around curves nicely….....................

-- mike...............

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