Sanding and Buffing

A lot of sanding happens in the course of building a guitar; Jim has a whole room of his shop practically full of sanders of various types and sizes (including his custom-made thickness sander). The photos here show some of the tools used for the sanding and buffing before the final assembly and finishing.

This "downdraft table" draws air downward into a filter while sanding, keeping the fine sawdust produced by sanding away from the workpiece—and from the worker! Arrayed above the table are several pneumatically powered sanding heads; several grits of paper are kept quickly accessible this way.

On the front edge of the downdraft table is this radiused dish that was made on the Fadal. Used with a vacuum, it securely holds a guitar body for sanding.

Here you see the dish holding a body.

A look at the buffing area. Jim made this buffing setup, which features variable speed motors giving Jim a lot of control over the buffing process; this helps him achieve his high gloss finishes. Jim nicknamed this one "Beelzebub" because it has been known to catch an edge of a guitar and toss it across the room before you can blink your eye!