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Old 11-30-2006, 10:50 AM   #1
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


Hi, just came across this forum, and not sure what section to put it in, sorry if in the wrong place.

I have several pieces of different wood that I want to keep and use, and they were to be used in a project that got abandoned at literally the last second. The epoxy adhesive cured on them. I went out and bought a Rigid (Home Depot) brand random orbit sander, model R2600. The roughest disks I could find were a 60 grade. I tried the sander, on the highest speed, and it only sanded the wood with the lightest amounts of epoxy, and that still took some time and doing and several sandpaper disks. I had to apply a little pressue, even though you're not supposed to.

I tried the heavier epoxied pieces and the sander just won't do anything with them. Should I take the orbital back and get a belt sander? Wish the guy at the store would have recommended a belt sander, if needed. I since read belt sanders are much more aggressive. I need to stay in the same budget range, the orbital was $69, and I see there's belt sanders for that price. Should I exchange for a belt sander? The epoxy is like a thick plastic coating on some pieces. Any other recommendations? I want to keep the wood, as the other side of the pieces is art related. Thanks.

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Old 11-30-2006, 12:50 PM   #2
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


Belt sanders are VERY aggressive. You may need the orbital sander to smooth out the wood after using the belt sander. Have you tried using a scraper to remove most of the epoxy before trying to sand it off?

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Old 11-30-2006, 07:59 PM   #3
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


Belt sander with 60 grit belt,, the step to 80 grit, but you will need to do finer sanding with a random orbit to remove belt scratches. Be sure to sand with the grain, and pay attention...S**t happens fast with 60 grit on a belt sander. FYI, they do make 40 grit pads for random orbit machines, but they are not easy to find.
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Old 12-01-2006, 12:22 AM   #4
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


A scraper won't even dent the epoxy. My ROS claims to have a high speed of 12,000 RPM. Guess 40 grit may be better, but now I'm leaning toward the belt sander. The side of the wood that has the epoxy doesn't have to look great as it's not exposed, so guess I should just plan to swap a belt for a ROS at Home Depot? I read somewhere a hair dryer will help melt the epoxy, I may try that too.

First time I owned a ROS, just wondering, if I look at the spinning pad while still turned on, it hardly seems to be moving, seems slow, but maybe that's an optical illusion? Then when I switch it off, it slows down, and then seems to turn slowly in the opposite direction until it stops completely. Is it supposed to look like that? I can tell by the holes in the pad that's supposed to let air thru so it can grab the dust. But still send out lost of sawdust.

Thanks much.
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Old 12-01-2006, 01:55 AM   #5
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


Actually, I just tried with a 1200 Watt hair dryer and a utility knife. Actally worked somewhat, the heat loosened some of the epoxy, and then it was softer so I could get the knife under and pull up little pieces at a time. Gouged the heck out of the wood, and still plenty of epoxy on the piece I was trying, but I probably removed more than half so far. Will try more later. Now I have a bag of epoxy chips with some wood splinters for extra fiber. Still wondering if a belt sander will get the rest? Thanks.
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Old 12-01-2006, 03:08 AM   #6
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


A belt sander will be much more aggressive. However a ROS is much more versatile. If you ever plan to do any other projects with wood, keep the ROS
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Old 12-09-2006, 01:02 AM   #7
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


Thanks everyone for the help. I'll probably keep the ROS, but still concerned a question I asked " ... if I look at the spinning pad while still turned on, it hardly seems to be moving, seems slow, but maybe that's an optical illusion? Then when I switch it off, it slows down, and then seems to turn slowly in the opposite direction until it stops completely. Is it supposed to look like that? I can tell by the holes in the pad that's supposed to let air thru so it can grab the dust. But still send out lots of sawdust." Thanks.
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Old 12-09-2006, 09:33 AM   #8
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Remove epoxy with ROS or belt sander?


If you think it's not working correctly, turn it off and immediately set it on a piece of scrap wood and hold it very lightly. You should feel the sander trying to spin.

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