It's a grinder! It's a sander!
My Favorite Power Tool
© Frank Ford, 2/20/98; Photos by FF, 9/7/96

It's a Rockwell 1" x 42" belt sander, and it does a variety of cool things for me. It was my only grinder for nearly 25 years, and is the most used woodworking power tool in my shop. Because it's so small and easy to work around it's the first tool I reach for when sanding small parts .

Here's a view of the sander's table and general setup:

The back wheel is 1" radius, which just happens to be the same radius as the cuts at the ends of Martin bridges. How handy!

Notice the adjustable platen I've made under the bottom wheel. It's just a simple aluminum plate with a hinge at one end and a threaded rod at the other. I calibrated the screw adjuster, and I get .012" per full revolution of the screw:

With a couple of push sticks I can safely sand small pieces to exact thickness. I now have a very accurate small thicknessing sander that's perfect for making nuts and saddles:

Follow me to see this tool in action:

Making a Saddle and Making the Fret Expanding Pliers

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