LumberJocks

Alternative to sanding paint?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by azlogger posted 07-15-2014 06:51 AM 1655 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View azlogger's profile

azlogger

37 posts in 1081 days


07-15-2014 06:51 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question finishing paint sign

This a little hard to explain…take a look at this photo and then I’ll try and explain my question.

To start with, I’ll explain how it’s made.
The lettering is CNC cut into Baltic birch plywood, about 0.1” deep. Then I spray paint the whole thing, and sand the paint off the surface. And I should mention that the sign shown turned out perfect—just how I want it.
Now on to the question. The part of sanding the paint off is a real pain. It clogs the sand paper almost instantly, so I’m stuck with having to pick the stuck-on paint out of the sandpaper using a sharp object of some kind, or throwing it away and using new sandpaper. You’re probably saying, “that’s why you mask it off and don’t paint that area!” Ya, that works. I can put some stickyback vinyl on the wood and cut through it. Works great, but we like the kinda rustic and weathered look of the paint-stained wood.
So here’s the question: What can I use instead of sandpaper to remove that surface paint? It’s fine if I have to sand once I get the bulk of the paint removed. There is usually a lot of paint on the surface too, it just happens when I’m trying to get it down in the letters.
I’m not opposed to other thoughts, like if you can think of a way to cut through a mask and add that weathered look afterwards…or something…

-- Who needs PLANS??!! Be original!!


24 replies so far

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2735 posts in 2040 days


#1 posted 07-15-2014 08:20 AM

How are you sanding and with what type of paper?
Sanding is how I’d do it.
I’d use an ROS and non-loading paper designed for sanding paint/coatings.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View sawdust703's profile

sawdust703

270 posts in 883 days


#2 posted 07-15-2014 09:57 AM

Well, you could try some stripper of some sort. there are several brands & types out there. I’ve had good luck with that. Scrape the paint off after the stripper does its job with a plastic blade putty knife, then do your sanding. The reason I’d suggest the plastic edge, is because it won’t scratch or mar your surface. And the stripper will remove the paint faster than sand paper, & is a lot less work. And with stripper, you can put it where ever you want to strip, without getting it in places you don’t want it. I don’t know if I’d use an orbital sander, simply because you may get swirls in your project. I would use a sanding block, & sand it.

-- Sawdust703

View Slemi's profile

Slemi

103 posts in 1004 days


#3 posted 07-15-2014 10:21 AM

You can get some cheap airbrush and just paint the routed-out areas. It’s not the cheapest option, but it’s good I do it that way.

View kaerlighedsbamsen's profile

kaerlighedsbamsen

1177 posts in 1176 days


#4 posted 07-15-2014 10:29 AM

Learn to use a card scraper!

-- "Do or Do not. There is no try." - Yoda

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

3668 posts in 1184 days


#5 posted 07-15-2014 11:20 AM

+1 to the card scraper. You can use it to removed the vast majority of the paint, followed by a light sanding to achieve the same look you currently have.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1832 days


#6 posted 07-15-2014 12:19 PM


Learn to use a card scraper!

- kaerlighedsbamsen

+2. Sharpened correctly, it’ll make for faster work, too. If you like this method, look into a scraper holder to save your thumbs.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View NoThanks's profile

NoThanks

798 posts in 992 days


#7 posted 07-15-2014 12:34 PM

Put on a coat of your finish, (let dry) then spray it with flat black paint and wipe it off with paint thinner.
Then put on your finish coats.
I do this with lacquer finishes all the time.

-- Because I'm gone, that's why!

View CharlesNeil's profile

CharlesNeil

1610 posts in 3333 days


#8 posted 07-15-2014 12:35 PM

The paint will have alot to do with it, if your using an oil based paint or even a latex, its going to gum up worse because it dries slow and remains some what soft for a good time, a lacquer would dry faster and sand easier, or a pigmented water base finish ..

View macatlin1's profile

macatlin1

78 posts in 2406 days


#9 posted 07-15-2014 01:05 PM

If the sign is not too big, just run it through the thickness planer…

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1832 days


#10 posted 07-15-2014 01:27 PM



If the sign is not too big, just run it through the thickness planer…
- macatlin1

Then he has to deal with the paint gumming up the knives.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Jake's profile

Jake

850 posts in 1094 days


#11 posted 07-15-2014 01:27 PM

I’d go with the scraper

-- Measure twice, cut once, cut again for good measure.

View Earlextech's profile

Earlextech

1159 posts in 2153 days


#12 posted 07-15-2014 02:20 PM

Pigmented clear coat is the way. Card scraper to remove the excess, then sand with ROS. Also, it sounds like are you trying to avoid working? You’re already using a CNC to make the thing, how little work do you expect to do and still get paid for “custom” woodworking? Not trying to be mean, I just don’t see this as a problem. Sandpaper gets clogged, toss it and use a new peice. I apprieciate efficiency and sure, there’s always a better way to do things, for instance, using the correct products for your application. I’ve been in custom and production cabinetmaking for 30 years. But if one of my employees came to me and complained about sanding, I’d hand him a broom.

PS I do like the sign.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2853 posts in 2694 days


#13 posted 07-15-2014 02:33 PM

It seems that you might get a similar result with a black gel stain. Brush it on, paying special attention to the details, then wipe it off immediately afterwards. Then sand if needed.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1832 days


#14 posted 07-15-2014 02:39 PM



Also, it sounds like are you trying to avoid working? You re already using a CNC to make the thing, how little work do you expect to do and still get paid for “custom” woodworking?

But if one of my employees came to me and complained about sanding, I d hand him a broom.
- Earlextech

I can see your point, and the OP does say it’s “a pain”, but I think from a business perspective it would be a pain. If he can cut his time on this task significantly, he can turn out more product and potentially make more money, which is what businesses are supposed to do. Whether he’s mass-producing this sign, or taking orders for individual signs, time is money.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Earlextech's profile

Earlextech

1159 posts in 2153 days


#15 posted 07-15-2014 02:50 PM

I agree BinghamptonEd. As I stated – “I apprieciate efficiency and sure, there‚Äôs always a better way to do things, for instance, using the correct products for your application.” And it does make a difference how he markets these signs. Example – “Custom Signs” is much different from “Custom Woodwork”.

Also, using the right tools for the job. Picking at sandpaper with a sharp object is certainly frustrating. Maybe you would have better luck with a sandpaper eraser. http://www.woodcraft.com/Product/2000271/8/Abrasive-Belt-Cleaner-2-x-2-x-12.aspx

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

showing 1 through 15 of 24 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com