An oscillating sander is a machine with a large, flat sanding surface built into the base of the unit. This type of sander is used for sanding different floor surfaces, ranging from hardwood to patio desk flooring. The term oscillating refers to the movement of the sanding surface, which moves in an orbital pattern.
An oscillating sander weighs between 45 to 68 kilograms (100 to 150 pounds). Floor restoration services and hardwood floor installers commonly use them to complete their projects. An oscillating sander can be very effective at removing old finish or polish from the floor surface. Changing the sandpaper grade allows the sander to remove shallow cuts and superficial damage to the floor.
When using a sander, it is important to prepare the area first. This type of sander does not have a debris holding system, but leaves it behind on the floor surface. If you are using the sander in a home, all the doorways and windows should be covered in plastic and taped down to reduce the spread of sanding dust. All furniture should be removed from the room so that the floor is completely open.
Start in the far corner of the room and work in straight, even lines to remove the polish layer. Once you have covered the entire room, stop, and sweep up the debris. Take a close look at the floor surface and determine how many passes with the sander will be required to restore the floor. Resist the temptation to focus on a specific spot. The process of sanding removes actual wood from the floor and too much attention in one area will result in an uneven floor.
Change the grade of sandpaper on the oscillating sander to match the level of material that you need to remove. Make as few passes as possible and follow a simple pattern to ensure an even amount of sanding. Stop and clean the floor after each pass and take the time to inspect the floor carefully.
There are different types of oscillating sanders, ranging from professional grade to low cost models. When selecting a oscillating sander, consider the area that you want to sand and the planned frequency of use. For home renovations, look into renting a sander instead of purchasing. Make sure that you read the instruction manual and follow all the steps with care. A sander is a large, heavy machine and it can easily cause a significant amount of damage.