DIY Thickness Sander

DIY Thickness Sander Is Good Enough For A Guitar Shop

[Pat] is a luthier and general guy that likes to build stuff. In order to get his guitars to come out the best they can, he needed a thickness sander. For those who don’t know, thickness sander is a machine that will sand off a small amount of material from the surface of a large wood panel. There are certainly commercially available thickness sanders but [Pat] thought that they were simple enough machines so he decided to give a go at making one himself.

Since [Pat] already had access to a pretty nice wood shop, it only made sense to build the thickness sander primarily out of wood. The frame is made from standard 2×4’s. The drum is made from many disks of MDF mounted on a shaft and spun by an AC motor. You might imagine that a bunch of MDF disks mounted on a shaft would not result in a very cylindrical shape and that is exactly what happened here. So before applying the sand paper to the drum, course sandpaper was applied to a sheet of plywood and used to sand the drum round. It’s a super simple technique that resulted in a true-spinning drum. Afterward, velcro is attached to the drum and velcro-backed sandpaper is wrapped around the drum. This allows quick and effortless changing of sand paper.


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Bicycle Powered Sander


[Andy] does a lot of framing and needed a way to sand down pieces at proper angles. He goes by the moniker [Organikmechanic] on YouTube, and as such is trying to rely less and less on electricity — so he’s created this hand-powered sander using components from a bicycle.

His first iteration just used the spindle off of a bicycle wheel as the main axle, but he quickly found it wasn’t rigid enough for the sanding disk. Instead he decided to make use of the entire crankshaft assembly off of an old bicycle. He cut the frame down to size, removed one of the pedals, and shortened the other one to a more useful hand cranking length. The main gear of the bicycle provides a large and sturdy mounting surface for his home-made sanding disk which consists of a large piece of rounded chipboard.

It’s a pretty clever use of recycled parts — but what do you think? Are you environmentally inclined enough to give up your power tools? A full video explanation of the project is after the break.

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HDD Power Tools: The Sander

At first we thought this looked hastily thrown together and quite possible useless. Then we watched the video, embedded after the break, and realized it is quite a handy bench sander. [Mhkabir] opened up an older hard drive, removed the read head, and added a piece of carefully cut sand paper. When you hook it up to your bench supply you’ve got a small sander ready to use.  We can’t wait to try it on some small PCB edges. Now that we’ve seen a sander and a chop saw, we wonder what’s next?

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