Sanding Walnut

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Blog entry by BigD1 posted 07-04-2014 01:10 PM 1540 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello fellow woodworkers. How in the world of GOD’S Walnut wood, do I remove hair line, so fine, sanding lines on my project, while spinning on the lathe. From 120 grit to 600 grit and also oooo steelwool…..I get lines. I can remove some of them with a cloth shop (rag), but not all of them. Can someone help me. Thanks

-- Donald Baty

7 comments so far

View rickf16's profile


392 posts in 3751 days

#1 posted 07-04-2014 02:24 PM

I’m guessing that you have lines that are running around the circumference of the turning. I turn pens and what I do to eliminate them is this:

I start with a higher grit sandpaper, say 220. After sanding with the lathe running, I will stop the lathe, and by hand turn the wheel and sand from one end to the other, all the while turning the lathe by hand. Then go to the next higher grit, for me it would be 320, and repeat the process. Now I use acrylic blanks, so I have to use girts from 220 through 12000. For wood turnings, you don’t need to go that high obviously, but I hope this helps.

Just my two.

-- Rick

View sras's profile


4913 posts in 3299 days

#2 posted 07-04-2014 02:35 PM

What Rick said, plus

As you are moving to finer grits, if you notice marks at any time go back to one coarser grit and try to remove them. If they won’t go away, then go to the next coarser grit, and so on.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View tarp's profile


5 posts in 1592 days

#3 posted 07-04-2014 04:03 PM

I’ve found the quality of the sandpaper can make a difference, Norton’s 3x is great, Mirka is great, I fooled around with some cheap stuff and it must of had inconsistent grain sizes…you also might try a scraper with the lathe stopped.

View NormG's profile


6260 posts in 3173 days

#4 posted 07-05-2014 04:54 PM

I agree with Rickf16, also use good grade sandpaper by all means, wet sanding and there are several liquid polishing compounds and/or rubbing compounds.

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View BigDumbAnimal's profile


65 posts in 1976 days

#5 posted 07-05-2014 09:52 PM

You can try giving the piece a quick wipe between grits with a little bit of mineral spirits on a rag or paper towel. If you’re like me and use cheap sandpaper sometimes pieces of the courser grit stuff come off and will scratch the work when you move on to the finer grit. Plus the mineral spirits will help show what the piece will look like with finish on it and highlight any significant scratches.

-- Semper Fi BDA

View BigD1's profile


79 posts in 3304 days

#6 posted 07-07-2014 04:58 AM

I didn’t think steel wool would leave lines, but it does. Evan 600 grit paper leaves lines. A coarse rag seems to be the answer at this point. If you’ve never sanded walnut on a lathe, it may be hard to understand what I’m talking about. I’ll just keep buffing and see what I end up with. Thanks for the input. BigD1

-- Donald Baty

View Roger's profile


20949 posts in 2974 days

#7 posted 07-07-2014 01:15 PM

Yes, yes, and yes to all thee above. I’ll add this: as far as a pen is concerned, after spinning one, I’ll just hand sand with the grain thru the grits while hand turning the lathe. Wood, I’ll start with 150 if needed, then go up thru 320 or 400. Acrylics, I’ll finish while the lathe is spinning at low speed of course, but, after getting to 400, then I switch to wet sanding from 500 to 12000 with Micro Mesh, and finish with a plastic polish. My ..02

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

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