One of the power tools that I cannot go without, is the spindle sander. Yes, indeed, a rather unusual choice for the most favorite tool. Many people don’t even know what this device does. In fact I find it extremely versatile – have a look at this overview of these sanders. It has many different applications, and there are some projects that I wouldn’t have been able to complete without this power tool.
One of the things that I used the spindle sander for, is for polishing a guitar body. The body of an electric guitar is made of solid wood. Yes indeed, wood. Many people think that it’s plastic, probably because of the colorful coatings they usually have. But actually it’s just painted wood. This is what gives the electric guitar its full-bodied sound.
Now, if you have ever seen a classical electric guitar, you will know that its shape is rather unorthodox. It’s kind of a squiggly contour that is partially convex and partially concave. It has several deep in-going curves. The edges of this shape need to be polished somehow. This is because nobody likes a sharp edged electric guitar, right?
Now, many guitar makers will do this polishing by hand. This is because they don’t have a spindle sander. Or at least I think that’s the reason. Because as soon as I started making my first electric guitar I realize that this is the perfect application for my brand-new sander that I had just bought.
As I was making that guitar, as soon as I had the body shape cut out, I simply fired up my sander with the appropriate grit. I then slowly sanded the entire contour of the guitar body and got the results that I needed within maybe half an hour. If I was going to do this by hand, it would probably take me all day.
This is why I find the spindle sander one of the biggest time savers in my woodworking shop – something that I would not want to be without. In fact, I’m planning to upgrade soon to a floor standing machine, as opposed to the tabletop one that I have right now, because there are so many more things you can do with the former one.