Barb's Sanding Table

Limited space influenced this smart design.

SHOP OWNER: Barbara Siddiqui
LOCATION: Wenatchee, WA

    I needed a downdraft-sanding table to help control dust when using my random orbit sander. I did not want a freestanding unit because I work wood in the limited space of a one-car garage. Since my shop space is at a premium, necessity dictated the design. Trying to utilize existing space, I decided to rig one under one wing of my contractor's tablesaw. It took a bit of head scratching before coming up with the idea for how to make a box that would fit beneath the webbed cast iron wing.
Barb's Sanding Table

    I simply held a four-inch board up to each side of the webbing and, using a pencil, marked for the cutouts. Then I made a lightweight box with -inch plywood for the ends that receive screws, which hold the acrylic inserts in place above. The webbed wings on my saw were recessed exactly 1/8-inch. This allows the 1/8-inch thick acrylic inserts to sit flush with the top of the tablesaw wing and not interfere with its use. I glued a one-inch wide strip of masonite along the bottom of the box to support the two angled baffles laid in to direct the airflow. Barb's Sanding Table

    To make the -inch holes in the acrylic inserts, I drilled them using a brad point bit and a fresh backer board for each hole. To avoid cracking the acrylic as the bit broke through, I was careful to go slowly and gently. Because the acrylic is slick, I use a simple piece of common rubber shelf liner to steady the work piece while sanding. A shop vacuum provides the suction to draw the sawdust down. The hose end fits into a 2-inch hole at the back of the box. Even though the box has a tight pressure-fit under the frame of the cast iron wing, I also used screws on the outside for added support.

. . . Barbara Siddiqui



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