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Drum or Orbital Sander - Hardwood Refinishing

I've watched an TOH episode where they used an orbital sander, and it looked like they took it down to bare wood. But, other articles suggest using a drum sander for taking down to hard wood.

My floors are pretty worn in some places and okay in other areas. Orbital sanders seem to cause less problems for first time floor refinishers (like me), so I'd like to use the orbital instead.

So, if I'm taking a fairly worn floor down to bare wood, is an orbital okay to use?



Re: Drum or Orbital Sander - Hardwood Refinishing

The orbital sander is great and easy. You usually only need the drum sander if the floor is very uneven and it's hard to handle for a beginner plus you have to do aroud the edges with and edger. If the floor were snaded and finshed generally all you need do is remove the finish and smoothen it out, the orbital handles this quite well and sand right to the edges.

A. Spruce
Re: Drum or Orbital Sander - Hardwood Refinishing

I would opt for the orbital sander as well, unless the wear is severe (visible "trough" worn in the traffic areas). Even then, it would depend on the type of flooring. Solid woods can handle the severe and brutal sanding that a drum sander puts out, however laminate flooring cannot, and ONLY the finish can be removed in many cases, as the thickness of the surface wood is not thick enough to take more than minor sanding - if any at all.

Which ever method you use, use extreme care and try to start in an obscure location until you get the hang of using the equipment and determine the extent to which the floor can be sanded.

Good luck and please report back with your progress. :)

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