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Thread: Interface pads

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Clarks Summit PA

    Interface pads

    I am mostly a hand sander, but I have been doing several chairs with mildly concave slat seats and backs using bent laminations. The hand sanding is laborious. I have been looking at palm sanders with interface pads. Are they effective or are there problems with them that make them just OK? Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    So Cal
    How about a card scraper. If the wood isnít soft a card scraper is pretty hard to beat.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    You can buy small-diameter random-orbit sanders. The small diameter conforms to mild curves. For instance, Metabo offers a 3" ROS.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Peoria, IL
    I use soft interface pads all the time on my wood turnings. I would warn you that it takes a very, very light touch with the sander. Put too much pressure on it and you will put too much heat into the interface pad and it will sling off the velcro or affect the foam.

  5. #5
    If you sand the faces prior to glueup the finish sanding afterward will be minimized. I usually bandsaw laminates and then run them through a widebelt. You can go to finish sanding at that point and after glueup you are left with only removing glue spots and handling marks. As Andrew said, a card scraper is useful.

    Power sanding options for concave curves include a hand-held belt sander with a wood platen shaped to match your concave curve, spindle sanders, mandrel-mounted sanding pads used in a drill and orbital or random orbital sanders with a soft pad. Beware of heavy sanding on narrow pieces with a soft pad- it can lead to mushy results.

    You may already be doing this, but laying up a wide panel and ripping your parts from it can be more efficient, especially if you have a vacuum press available.
    Last edited by Kevin Jenness; 08-01-2021 at 1:29 AM.

  6. #6
    We use 5" and 6" soft/low density interface pads on some contour work and cleaning up 3D work off the cnc. The 3" sander would be necessary for deeply contoured work as even the low density pads on the RO are not able to conform to much more than a radius about half the thicknes/diameter of the pad. But they are very handy for shallow/gradual concave and convex.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Averill Park NY
    since I do a lot of furniture refinishing. I recently purchased a surfprep 3x4 sander. So far so good, it makes doing curved pieces much easier. The initial upfront cost is high. Long term I think it will pay for itself in time saved. They also sell their pads, configured for festool and other sanders.
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