Sanding the maple floors

Working late tonight on sanding the floor. We rented a large square pad orbital sander because even though it’s not exactly the right tool we can use it in place of the three or four different floor sanding tools that you would normally use for this job. It’s also fairly user-friendly but you end up working harder for that privilege.

Working our way up from 24 grit (and vacuuming between grits) we were just barely able to get most of the little ledges sanded out. The Big Leaf Maple sands well and doesn’t load up the paper too much so by the time we’re done we will have used 1 red pad, two sheets of 24, 36, 60, 80, and 120. The 24 is really aggressive and it’s hard to get all the swirl marks out so if not for the little ledges at the edges of some boards we would have rather have started at 36 grit.

After our first pass with 36 grit we spot filled any cracks, knots, and face nail holes with Timber Mate. I don’t have anything to compare it to but it seems to work OK.

We used a cheap random orbital sander with 120 grit paper to sand the filler out of any spots that were still a little low and therefore missed by the big sander.

– Brian

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