removing pencil marks

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How do you remove pencil marks from wood before sanding/finishing? How do you mark wood when you're planning the cuts and doing the initial layout?
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I usually just make the marks with whatever's handy (I keep pencils in the shop so they're usually handy) and sand them out. I've been known to erase the marks, though. Erasers work just as well on wood as they do paper.
Puckdropper
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Ummm, doesn't sanding remove the pencil marks?
I mark with a pencil normally unless I'm really looking for a perfect fit in which case I use a marking knife. Cheers, cc
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On Sun, 16 Sep 2007 20:34:39 -0700, "William Andersen"

Alcohol.
Depends. Dovetails and fine marks: knife. Others: Pencil
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What a bunch of idiots. Thats what they make erasers for.
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AMEN !!! Lou

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William Andersen skreiv:

Naphta works fine.
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Don't press so hard, and then sand it off.
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name wrote:

As does denatured alcohol.
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Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
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William Andersen wrote:

They come off automatically as I plane, scrape and sand. I try to make them on the light side, and not crush lots of fibers as I mark. I make my most precise marks with knives, not pencils.

Chalk, crayons, and pencils, maybe even a Sharpie on ends that I know will get cut off. I use a lot of crayons on rough lumber.
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By sanding. Or with a card scraper.

Mechanical pencil with 0.5mm lead for most purposes, marking knife for dovetails and fine details.
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Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Thanks for the ideas. I think the lead in the pencil I used was too soft, and the pine was soft, oo. It was easy to see, but an eraser didn't remove it all and it took more sanding than I intended. Sanding just seem to push the lead further into the wood and spread it.
wrote:

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wrote:

If it's taking more than a few of passes with a sander to remove the marks then I would think you are marking too hard (and maybe with a soft lead). I typically use No. 2B or 2HB lead in my mechanical pencils and can remove sanding marks in no time with the ROS. I might add, the most time spent removing pencil marks for me, is on the first grit. I suspect this is because I'm essentially getting the piece flat. Subsequent grits remove pencil marks much quicker. On a side note, when I am sanding, to make sure I'm hitting all the spots evenly, I mark "squiggles" across the work with a pencil between each grit. This way, I can make sure that I'm hitting all spots evenly (ie. no pencil marks left anywhere). Cheers, cc
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Thanks for the answers. I guess the lead in the pencil was too soft, and the pine was soft, too. The eraser diddn't do a good job and I had to sand more than I wanted to, as the lead just seemed to get worked deeper into the wood and spread a bit to the sides of the initial mark.
wrote:

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With softer woods you can use masking tape on the wood when possible. It makes it easier to get a cleaner mark, and it prevent splintering in softer woods like pine or cedar. It also makes a blind cat like me see the lines easier on tape when I use a .3 or.5mm pencil. A cautionary note, get the tape off as soon as you are done with it. Tape can leave a residue especially if left too long.
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Rich Harris

"William Andersen" < snipped-for-privacy@cox.net> wrote in message
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For most of my marks, things like direction to plane, part numbers, and alignment marks I use chalk instead of pencil.
For layout lines where chalk would be too wide I use pencil but bear down very lightly.
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If I'm using pencil I sort of hold it so it's nearly parallel to the surface of the wood and then the point doesn't jab in as much. This is also helpful when marking open pored woods like red oak or really checky wood like a lot of the jarrah/kari I see. White chalk is good too, but for some reason I never seem to have it around.
JP
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Measure with a micrometer. Mark with chalk. Cut with an ax.
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And hammer to fit.
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Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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