Skip to main content

Abrasive relationship

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Most woodworkers seem to hate the sanding process, but not me. Unfortunately, I have some bad sanding habits.

For me, final sanding is when I can stand back and really see what my project looks like. Everything’s assembled, or mostly so, and everything looks exactly how it will upon completion. That feels good.

It also means that the most strenuous work is over – no more cutting, routing, jointing etc. – and I can just relax and take care of this last more-or-less mindless task while basking in the enjoyment of my finished work.

And while I’m real good about sanding up through the grits, I have a really bad practice of using garbage sandpaper. Not cheap, low-quality paper, but rather paper that should long ago have gone wherever sandpaper goes when it dies. (I like to think it’s a beautiful beach somewhere.)

I’m a big Jerry Seinfeld fan, and he once observed something about men and underwear. “Men hang onto underwear until each individual underwear molecule is so strained it can barely retain the properties of a solid. It actually becomes underwear vapor.”

OK, the analogy’s a bit strained, but I think it’s highly accurate: I keep my sandpaper and sanding discs so long that they become sandpaper vapor. It’s like I’m sanding with nothing. Maybe that's why I find the sanding process so relaxing.

It could also explain, I suppose, why it takes me so long.



Related Articles