How to Use an Air Belt Sander

What You'll Need
Air belt sander
Face mask

An air belt sander is a hand-held type of sander that can smooth and contour the interior and exterior corners of any material. This handy tool is easy to use and requires minimum preparation. If you are able to properly control the air belt sander, you can maximize this lightweight tool. You can strip layers of paint or rust, clean and smooth the surface of a material, or create contours to a piece.

Step 1 – Preparation

Safety is always important when using any tools. Although an air belt sander is lightweight and handy, it is still imperative that you wear your safety gear including goggles, gloves, a face mask and earplugs.

Next, mark the areas on the material where you want to use the air belt sander. This is to determine which areas needed sanding. To set up the air belt sander, first connect the air hose to the tool. It is important that you connect the air belt sander to a suitable air supply machine or compressor, otherwise the tool might not work properly. You can use almost any size of air compressor for the air belt sander.

If you will be working on a large material or piece, make sure that the air hose is long enough to allow you to go around the piece. Make sure that the air filter, or regulator, is in place as well. This serves as the air belt sander’s dust extraction unit.

Step 2 – Turning on the Air Belt Sander

To turn on the air belt sander, you need to turn on the air compressor first. Once the compressor is turned on, you can now turn on the air belt sander. Hold the handle with one hand and press the operating lever. It is usually more comfortable to use your thumb to switch on the air belt sander. This will help you grip on the handle of the air belt sander, thus having more control on the tool.

Step 3 – Using the Air Belt Sander

Lightly press the belt sander of the tool to the area of the material you want sanded. Although this sander is lightweight, it is significantly delivers more power than an electrically-powered sander. Due to this, extra attention is needed when using the air belt sander. Move the air belt sander over, around, or under the areas you want sanded. Make sure that you are aware of the location of your fingers to avoid accidentally touching the sander.

Since the air belt sander is capable of a 360-degree rotation, you can use any portion of the belt sander. Also, different types of air belt sanders operate on different belt speed.

Step 4 – Changing the Sanding Belts of the Air Belt Sander

You can use the air belt sander with different grades of sanders. It will only take you a few seconds to change the sanding belt. First turn off the air belt sander, remove the sanding belt from the rotator, and replace it with the grade that you need.