Q: In a previous column, you suggested that a homeowner use an orbital hand sander to refinish his floors. Wouldn't using an orbital go against the grain of the wood and adversely affect the look of the finished floor? I have a similar small floor project to do and I want to be certain to use the correct sander. A: If you use the proper procedure and the right sandpaper, your floor will turn out as smooth and shiny as glass. Refinishing a small area of floor yields the same result as doing a large one, but the tools are different and the labor is lighter. On large jobs, three tools are used to prepare the old hardwood floor for a new finish. A large drum sander cuts a wide swath on each path it takes down the field of the floor. An orbital edging sander is used to sand the sides of the flo...
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