All the details are cut and it’s time for the final sanding before applying finish. This is a really large surface to sand, so I pop on my earmuffs and get started because it’s just over an hour per grit!
My tools of choice are a new Festool 6″ ETS 150/3 hooked up my Festool CT 36 Dust Collector. It’s a great combination. I added the 6″ sander to my collection because it has 44% more surface are (than the 5″) and this is one large table!
I go slowly back and forth across the grain first – about 1′ every 10 seconds, overlapping each stroke about 1/3. I then go with the grain, end to end with the same motion. I use maybe 3-4 sanding discs per grit. You can see that when I go across the grain, the sander does leave stroke marks (pic below). This happened with all grits actually. You can’t see it once I went with the grain.
After using the 220 paper, I switch to hand-sanding. I made a small MDF block the same size as the new Festool Granat Handsanding Pads. I ran this over the table with the grain. I used 320 and then did a quick scuffing with a 400 also.
Whew, OK. Time for finish! Oh, and I did all that only on the top. The underside just got some scuffing where I wanted to smooth it, no more than 120 grit by hand. Just enough to make it smooth to the touch.