Hand Tools

Re: The role of sand paper in hand tool work

Warren in Lancaster, PA
I stopped using sandpaper in 1978, because it degraded the surface. At that time I had been using the double iron plane for about five years. If someone can't tell the difference between sanding and planing, it might be that their plane is not working that well. I don't sand flat surfaces, mouldings, carvings, or turnings.

I think it saves time to avoid sanding. I also have trouble imagining that someone enjoys that kind of work. I watched a guy sanding turnings at a hand tool event on Friday: brutal.

I also don't like pigment stains- they seem like thin paint to me, just making a cloudy surface with less clarity.

Of course clarity and liveliness of figure are not the only things to look for in a piece of furniture. The mouldings, curves, proportions and many other things contribute to a successful piece.

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