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Thread: Scuff and level sanding?

  1. #1

    Default Scuff and level sanding?

    What grit do I use for scuff sanding after sealer coats and then what grits do I use for level sanding after lacquer coats? And are they both wet sanding?

  2. #2
    Registered User amowry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Gray Scotchbrite works well for scuffing after sealer coats. For sanding after initial coats I use 320 grit 3m Fre-Cut Gold (dry). Then I spray a few more coats and sand with 600 or 800. I don’t do any wet sanding until after my last coats of finish (lacquer or varnish) are on and have cured. I find dry sanding to be faster because I can see my progress more easily, and I don’t run the risk of swelling the wood if I sand through.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Any tricks for either process? I have basically two coats of sealer on although neither of them are very thick from what I can tell. Don't want to sand (scotchbrite) through them.

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    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Firstly, don't confuse sanding with Scotchbrite. Scotchbrite is basically a little coarse toothbrush kind of thing. It scuffs stuff up but it doesn't do any leveling like sandpaper. If you want to scuff at this point, you'll smooth things up a bit. You're unlikely to go through if you're easy on it. It's a worthwhile step. You won't be ready to do any leveling/sanding with 320 until you've got a few coats of finish on top of the sealer. That's when you will be at the most danger of going through because the finish will be pretty thin and you're going to sand it. Gently.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    #1 tip -- sand along the wood grain.

  6. #6
    Registered User amowry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Sorry, I may not have been clear—I wouldn’t sand the sealer coats because it would be extremely easy to sand through. The sealer I use is a light wash with basically no thickness. The Scotchbrite won’t cut through that but is effective at removing dust nibs and those errant maple fibers that sometimes pop up when you’re staining. It isn’t necessary but helps give you a slightly smoother base.

    I don’t do any sanding at all until after a full day’s coats (several single coats of lacquer), at which point I level sand completely with the 320P.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Ludewig View Post
    Firstly, don't confuse sanding with Scotchbrite. Scotchbrite is basically a little coarse toothbrush kind of thing. It scuffs stuff up but it doesn't do any leveling like sandpaper. If you want to scuff at this point, you'll smooth things up a bit. You're unlikely to go through if you're easy on it. It's a worthwhile step. You won't be ready to do any leveling/sanding with 320 until you've got a few coats of finish on top of the sealer. That's when you will be at the most danger of going through because the finish will be pretty thin and you're going to sand it. Gently.
    Dale, the only non-abrasive Scotchbrite is the ‘aircraft cleaning pad’. Everything else contains (different) abrasive, the white pad 7445 I think is the mildest,, with removal similar to 0000 steel wool. But they all do what sandpaper does, except for being more conformable. Like sandpaper, they wear into finer grades with use. On a lathe, they wear quickly, sort of automatic grade change. I keep ‘worn out’ pads handy for polishing.

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    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Richard500, I didn't say Scotchbrite wasn't abrasive. It is. I said that one doesn't use it to "level" a finish.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    Glad I asked the question. Picked up some gray scotchbrite and will try it tonight. Once I start on the lacquer coats and get into sanding, or screw up the scotchbrite portion tonight I’ll probably have more questions. Not really looking forward to the lacquer process, but I decided this first kit build is the place to just try things and make my major mistakes. Here goes nothin’........again.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Scuff and level sanding?

    So I need some help. I applied four light coats of lacquer and then let it dry for 24 hours. I’ve started to sand with 320 grit, but it’s causing the finish to get a little cloudy or dull looking. I tried a little 600 and that was actually worse. Is this normal? What am I looking for from sanding at this point?

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