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Body/Paint Tech - Sanding Block Mod

 
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Old 09-23-2018, 03:20 PM
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Body/Paint Tech - Sanding Block Mod

Doing body work on fat-fendered trucks and cars can be a challenge. The rounded surfaces on the fenders, hood, doors, etc does not lend itself well for sanding with flat blocks. That said, I have amassed a broad collection of blocks over the years trying to find the perfect curved block for these compound curved surfaces. Some foam blocks work well but do not have a firm pad needed to flatten out orange peel and minor inconsistencies in the surface of the primer. Hard blocks have the firm pad but do not conform to the curves. For the past few years I have been using AFS foam blocks with some success...I like that they flex and I especially like the embedded spring steel pad that provides a perfectly flat sanded surface. The AFS blocks have 3 steel rods that can be inserted or removed to adjust the flex of the block...nice feature but I never use them as all the curved surfaces that I work on are too curved to need a more rigid block. I saw a photo on some website recently where a guy had made cuts in his AFS block that permitted the block to bend at a sharper angle. I tried this with one of my blocks and it works great. Right now I am working on the fenders for my 40 Ford coupe and they have VERY rounded surfaces which are a PITA to get straight. The block that I modified bent easily around the sharpest curves with ease and the mod does not preclude the use of the stiffening rods should I need them at a later date. This mod have saved me a lot of time and effort so I thought that I would share it with others on the forum.




 
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Old 09-23-2018, 03:54 PM
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What did you use to cut the slots and how far apart are they?

I have sanding blocks from Eastwood but I have not used them on anything as curvy as a 40.

Did you post this in the body & paint area yet as it may help someone who looks there.
Dave ----
 
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Old 09-23-2018, 04:56 PM
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Thanks for the info Charlie. As always you share and throw out great things to help us all.
 
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Old 09-23-2018, 05:36 PM
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Thank's Charlie, as always you provide great very helpful tips that have always made the impossible, possible, for me whenever I need to do anything to do with body and paint. You ROCK!
 
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Old 09-23-2018, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by FuzzFace2 View Post
What did you use to cut the slots and how far apart are they?

I have sanding blocks from Eastwood but I have not used them on anything as curvy as a 40.

Did you post this in the body & paint area yet as it may help someone who looks there.
Dave ----
I spaced the cuts at 1 inch intervals. I clamped the block in my Jawhorse and used a recip saw to make the cuts. I don't frequent the B&P area.
 
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Old 09-23-2018, 07:25 PM
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Great tip, that I will be using. Thanks for sharing!
zac
 
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Old 09-23-2018, 09:49 PM
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Good Stuff Charlie! Thanks for the tip! I need to buy some of those?
 
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Old 09-24-2018, 10:41 AM
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Thanks Charlie!
 
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Old 09-24-2018, 12:58 PM
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Would have loved to try this 2 months ago, rigid blocks just didnt do the trick a sanding sponge wrapped in paper was the best I could come up with on my fenders for the orange peal. Will add this to the bag of tricks for the future. thanks
 
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Old 09-27-2018, 02:46 PM
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Chapter 2 of this story...when I bought the set of AFS blocks, all but one had an embedded spring steel pad. The one in the photos came with a vinyl/rubber facing. I used it one time to block some clear on an F100 tailgate. After buffing I saw ridges in the finish...I was pissed. After inspecting this block I saw that the facing on the pad was curling up on the ends/corners and had gouged the clear coat. Yesterday I was at Direct Sheetmetal so I took this block with me and had Dave shear a piece of stainless to fit the pad. Some strips of double-sided tape and a bit of trimming later I now have a laser straight block. Not the best for curves but killer on flat surfaces with orange peel/nibs to cut down.



 
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Old 09-28-2018, 06:43 PM
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Charlie, This is a sanding block that my Dad made and used. It is made from 3/8" thick rubber and is sized for a 1/2 sheet of wet or dry. It is very flexible and works really well on compound curves. Dad was the head of the tooling department at Ranger Boat when he retired. In the early to mid '60s, we lived in Lakeside and he worked for Livesay Mfg. in Lakeside and Santee. At Livesay, he built a lot of tooling and parts for Mickey Thompson, including Thompson's 1964 Indy car bodies. Dad said they had the chassis with a Ford V8 Indy engine in the shop while they made the tooling and bodies.
Sorry for the ramble. Mark
 
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Old 09-29-2018, 12:16 PM
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Good stuff Mark. The best tools always seem to be those that are handmade to suit a particular application. I remember when Mickey Thompson had his store on Main St in El Cajon...that's been some time ago.
 
 


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