5 posts / 0 new
Last post
Contour Sanding

I am going to be refinishing a two wooden garage doors. The belt sander will take care of the rails, stiles and flat panels.
My concren is the contoured profile between the rails, stiles and panel. I did not really want to drop $340.00+ for the Festool LS 130,
which is the only sander I could find that would take much of the labor out of hand sanding. Are you aware of any lesser priced sanders that can do the same thing?
Or do you have any other suggestions? I will be removing old spar urathene over stain. I have 48 panels, with 4 sides each. PHEW!!
The only other option I thought of was to cut my own wooden profile to match the contour, wrap with sand paper and go at it.

A. Spruce
Re: Contour Sanding

Given the amount of time and effort it will take to make your own profile sander, $340 sounds like a bargain. An easy way to justify it is to figure about how much time it will take without the tool and again with the tool, then multiply that by what it would cost you to hire someone at minimum wage to stand there and sand it out. While your time and labor are "free", it's still worth something. You'll quickly find that sander will be worth it's weight in gold. The added benefit is that you'll then have the tool to use on other projects, further defraying its costs.

Or the easier route is to think like I do. Any job worth doing is worth buying new toys for. :D:p;)

Re: Contour Sanding

An easier way to make a sanding block for hand contour sanding, lay a piece of seranewrap (sp) or wax paper across the contour, mix up a batch of Bondo and dab it on the wrap and set a wood handle into it. Let it set up and you have a solid contour shaped block to wrap sand paper around.

You also have the Dremel http://www.dremel.com/en-us/Tools/Pages/ToolDetail.aspx?pid=6000-01+Tool

and several other detail sanders http://www.squidoo.com/detail_sander?utm_campaign=search-discovery&utm_medium=greet4&utm_source=yahoo


Re: Contour Sanding


You are going to have some really strong arms by the time you are through. Those belt sanders get pretty heavy when being held out in front of you

Over the years, I have stripped many wooden garage doors using one of the water rinsable strippers and have had good results. A vigorus rinsing with the power washer cleans the gunk out of the corners of the panels. I would then follow up with a light sanding to knock down any grain which was raised.

On the back of many manufacturers' doors were warnings not to use urethane varnishes on their doors. To do so would void their warranttee. I think the worry is that urethanes are very brittle and will not flex when the panels shift. Door panels are not glued in place, but are designed to move with heat and humidity changes. Also, overhead doors are stressed every time they go up and down. The varnish bead is broken and then water can enter the panel and deterioration soon follows. The lower edge of the panel where it meets the rails is always the first to go.

I personally like old fashioned natural resin spar varnish on overhead doors. McCloskey's Man O' War is one such brand. It forms a pliable film which always feels somewhat gummy.

Spar varnish gives that high gloss look which is very attractive. However, another product which I have used is Sikkens Cetol1 and Cetol 23. I used these products on my own garage doors and it held for over 10 years with minor touch up. It was still holding on those doors when I sold the house.
The Cetol finishes are more breathable then conventional varnishes. Cetol does call for periodic refresher coats.

Re: Contour Sanding

There is a model by Porter Cable dubbed the "detail sander". I have one; certainly a least-used tool, but nice to have . IIRC I paid about $170.
You could also carve a sanding block, like from rubber, wood, etc., and wrap it with self-stick sandpaper that comes on a roll.

Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.