Edge-Sanding Round Tops

Jigs and rigs for sanding the edges of solid wood round table-tops. March 31, 2008

We have a large order of round solid wood (red oak) tops 1" thick that we need to edge sand to 120 grit. We will be cutting them out on a Morbidelli U550. We do not want to use an orbital sander to do this. What do you recommend?

Forum Responses
(Solid Wood Machining Forum)
From contributor B:
I have not come up with a better way than either the orbital hand sanders or edge sanding on the oscillating belt edge sander. We use the edge sander until a moulding gets too large to do there comfortably. The only other idea I can offer is to try mounting a small drill press style sanding drum in the CNC and program a toolpath.

From contributor J:
Unless the spindle speed in the CNC can be dialed way down, I would strongly caution against installing any tool meant for a drill press on it. Might be okay, but it might result in damage or injury.

From contributor B:
Contributor J is right - I should have thought to mention that. My CNC spindle speed can be set to whatever I want at the frequency drive. If that is the case for yours, then you'd want it spinning no faster than 3000 rpm for a small sanding drum... perhaps even closer to 1500.

From contributor G:
Set up a pivot point on the edgesander, set into a pivot hole (put in by the CNC), slide up to a positive stop at the correct diameter, and spin it around. Don't wait too long between CNC and edgesander or wood movement could make the tops out-of-round enough to make edgesanding more difficult.

From contributor N:
You didn't mention the diameter of the tops. But if the size allows, take a piece of 1/2" plywood and trace out a sawblade. Drill your center hole and then rubber cement some sandpaper to your plywood disk (same size and shape). Mount it on your table saw like any other blade. Instant disk sander. I have done this with great success on an industrial table saw.

From contributor C:
If you can find one, a used Oakley R-99 will do the job better. The R-99 also has a tilting table, in case you get an order for a table where the tilt would be a help.

From contributor M:
I've used a television turntable/slide mounted on a table in front of the edge sander. It works great, and allows you to handle out of round tops. The same setup works next to the band saw for cutting the tops out.