I make some shelving, cabinetry, picture frames, and so forth using both
soft woods and hardwoods. In building these, I do some ripping on my
table saw. Up until recently I had been sanding the ripped edges by
clamping my belt sander upside down in my woodworking vise and having at
it. This worked well because the sander is an older 3 x 24 Sears
Craftsman unit with an all aluminum diecast housing and clamping it in a
vise didn't seem to hurt the sander.
I recently splurged and went out and bought a 4 x 36 bench top belt
sander from Sears, model number 351.215140. You can view this sander at
When I originally had the old belt sander clamped in the wood vise I had
full access to the belt so that I could lay the edge of the ripped board
flat on the sanding belt. In doing this I get a nice smooth edge, and
if I am careful I can keep it reasonably perpendicular. With this new
bench top belt sander (it is hard to see it in the photograph) there is
a dust collector shroud that wraps around one end of the belt that
prevents me from putting the edge of boards flat on the belt. I have
tried using this shroud as a guide to hold the board vertically.
Because the edge of the board is now touching the belt at one point at
the far end of the belt when I do this, this tends to leave ripples in
the board edge surface. I have also tried running the board
perpendicular to the sanding belt with the belt in the vertical
position. When I do this the edge of the belt seems to occasionally dig
into the board and leaves an uneven edge. I've tried using the disk
sander on the side of the unit, and that didn't work very well either.
I can lay the edge of the board flat on the belt by running it at a
slight diagonal so it misses the dust collector shroud, but this didn't
seem to make any sense to me.
I don't see any way to remove the shroud, nor is this mentioned at all
in the instructions. What is the best way to run this unit for edge
standing? Am I missing something?