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Sanding end grain

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by count_funkula, Oct 20, 2004.


  1. I have a problem when sanding the end grain on my bass bodies. I'm sure you all know what I'm talking about but I'm not sure what to call it. It seems that as I sand the end grain little patches will develop where the grain is plugged. I guess it fills with saw dust. As I continue to sand, those areas become discorlored and shiney. If finish is applied it looks really bad. What's the best way to avoid this or fix it once it happens.

    I usually have to get a rough piece of sand paper and go at the spot for a bit and then smooth it out all over again. It's a real pain!

    Thanks
     
  2. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    Try compressed air. Blow off the piece every once in a while when you're sanding it. Also the sand paper. Worth a shot.
     
  3. Can't avoid tear out on the endgrain. Mahogany is a nightmare...after I CNC it... Fill it with proper color filler, get it (sanding) in the ballpark (@ 300 grit) and call it a day. Finish away.
     
  4. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    I hate the finish sanding side of bass building projects. I use a lot of Mahogany/Sapele too. I wish there was an easier way too. Good thread.........t
     
  5. I'ts not tearout I'm talking about. I really don't know what to call it. It's like sections of end grain that I have acidentally polished or something.
     
  6. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    What grit are you using?
     
  7. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    not sure what we should go up to. I go to 220 or 320...........t
     
  8. I know what you're talking about and you've described it accurately. It's just the sanding dust filling the capillary pores on the end. That is quite difficult to remove but you might try some Naptha and a soft wire brush.

    You were also right about the effect it takes on when finished - an odd shiny spot when doing a satin finish or an odd colored spot under a gloss coat.
     
  9. I solved the problem. I found a section in Jewitt's book "Finishing" that talks about endgrain technique. I sanded the area back down with 100 grit to remove the shiney spots. Then I took a long piece of 220 grit paper and sanded the end grain like I was shining a pair of shoes. Worked perfect! I did a quick pass with 320 and I was done.

    I think the problem is too much sanding. Once the scratches are gone I can stop. No need to overdo it. Thanks for the advice everyone.
     
  10. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    Meaning what exactly? Light pressure?
     
  11. Picture a shoe shine boy holding a rag with both hands going back and forth. I did you light pressure to avoid digging in and causing deep scratches.
     
  12. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC