Sanding Sticks

While sanding sticks are a routine part of my supplies I’m currently in the midst of a project requiring a varied inventory of them, and in large numbers.


When my usage is light I have no quarrel with buying the occasional package of emery sticks from the cosmetics section of the dollar store, but when I need a lot of them, and in different configurations, I set aside a few minutes to make some at the bench.  All I need is some flat sticks (or not, see below) sandpaper, spray adhesive, and a utility knife



I take the spray adhesive and apply it the verso of a sheet of sandpaper, and press down as many flat sticks as I can.  In this case I’m using tongue depressors.  The identical process can also be used when making sanding sticks from stirring sticks that I make by the bucketful from scrap.




Using a utility knife I cut these up into individual units, then take a second sheet of sandpaper, almost always a different grit, and repeat the process resulting in a pile of double grit sanding sticks.


For the current project I needed larger scale flat and round sanding sticks, so I took a 1-1/4 dowel and ripped it on the bandsaw, then glued the flat surface down to the sandpaper.  As soon as the glue tacked the paper down I rolled the whole sheet around the half-dowel.  Whenever a face gets worn I just cut it off and keep on working.


Donkey dumb simple, but a valued  asset in the shop.