How to Fix Over-Sanded Wood

If wood gets over-sanded in one spot, it starts to become uneven, with a distorted sort of appearance. This can happen to even the most experienced woodworker. Usually this starts simply by attempting to sand out a discoloration, defect, scratch or gouge. However, the more you focus on one spot while sanding, the more likely it is you’ll create an unattractive dip or divot in the wood. Unfortunately, the process of creating this dip is gradual, meaning you likely won’t notice that you’re doing it until it becomes too late.

Fortunately, you can bring over-sanded wood back to flush with a little bit of elbow grease, using the same sanding block you did to create the divot in the first place. Here’s some information from a lumber yard in Franklin County, MA that will help you fix over-sanded wood if it becomes an issue in any of your projects.

Draw out the problem area

Before you begin working on the problem area, it can be helpful to highlight it by creating pencil marks all over the over-sanded area. The marks should extend well past the defect. You might not even see the defects at first, but once you start sanding, the pencil marks inside the defect will remain while the marks outside the area will disappear with the sanding process. Woodworkers have been using this method for years to find these divots in the wood more easily and resolve them before it becomes too late to do so.

Begin sanding

To start with, use a hand block outfitted with 100-grit sandpaper. Use short, light strokes that run in the same direction as the grain—you’ll find this to be most effective. You should never sand across grain patterns, as this could cause permanent damage to the wood that you may not be able to repair.

When the pencil marks in the divot begin to disappear, it’s time to stop sanding. You should only need to use a moderate amount of pressure to get the job done—if you’re pressing down too hard, you’re not doing it right. Also, avoid attempting to force the hand block into the divots in the over-sanded area. The block should stay as flat as possible, as the goal is to flatten the surface of the wood.

Get it level

Sanding will leave some dust on the wood that can cover up the surface, making it hard to get a clear view. Remove dust or debris with a cloth or air hose. Keep repeating the sanding and highlighting process until the surface of the wood is level.

If you’re working with a wood that has a veneer, you need to be extra careful, as it’s only a few centimeters deep. This means it will be easy to sand through the veneer, which makes the problem even worse. If you see a clear line on the side of the wood, this is a sign that there’s a veneer. If the grain pattern begins to disappear while sanding, stop immediately.

For more information about correcting over-sanding in wood, contact a lumber yard in Franklin County, MA.