If you plan on painting you will need to be sanding furniture before you can do anything with it. Here are a few tips that can help you through the process with ease.
1 - Choose the Right Sandpaper for the Job
Depending on the kind of furniture that you need to sand before painting you will have to use a certain kind of sandpaper. For wood furniture this type of sandpaper would be aluminum oxide, because not only is it efficient, but it also lasts much longer and can get the job done.
2 - Pick the Right Grit
Sandpaper has a number assigned to it and the number tells you the grit of the paper. Depending on what type of function your sanding is performing you will have to vary in grit number. For the rougher jobs that require you to remove paint from the furniture you will want a range of 50 to 80. When you just need to sand down a rougher wood to make it smoother you can go with sandpaper grit of 100 to 140. If you are doing a secondary sanding or have more of a soft wood then go with a 150 to 180 grit and if you are doing the final sand of your wooden furniture you can use a very fine paper with a grit between 220 and 280. Most of the time though you will be using the medium 100 to 140 through the very fine which ends with 280 when it comes to preparing your furniture for painting.
3 - Use the Right Tools
A sanding block is something that really can come in handy when you are trying to keep your grip. This tool allows you to both cover more surface area and to keep everything level while you work. Another great tool is an orbital sander. This type of sander is great for furniture and getting it ready to be painted. It works quickly because of the orbiting and can also get into those tight spots in your furniture design. While many people do not own this tool, it couldn't hurt to pick one up or you can rent one through a tool renting company.
4 - Sand in Direction of Grain
This is one of the most important tips that can be given when it comes to sanding. You never want to sand in a direction that goes across the grain. Keep with the grain in smooth straight motions. You want to make sure that each of your strokes is both firm and even so that each side is getting the same amount of pressure applied as you move on.
5 - Keep the Area Clean
Keeping the area clean as you work is also an important tip because once dust and debris comes off the piece of furniture you do not want it getting onto the sandpaper and being rubbed in to ruin anything. Every once in a while you want to sweep off the furniture, switch pieces of paper and then start up again.
Each of these tips can be used together or separate to help your sanding process go smoothly.