If you rip a board to width — that is, cut the board along its length — you’ll probably end up with saw blade marks along its edge.

These rough edges aren’t just unsightly; they also can cause problems if you’re gluing that board to another piece of wood. Either way, you’ll need a smooth surface.

Well, now you can smooth those rough edges, to perfection, with this do-it-yourself sanding block!

Joe Truini with rough boards and sanding block.
A saw blade leaves an unsightly rough edge when you rip a board. Fortunately, there’s a Simple Solution to this common problem.

How to Make a DIY Sanding Block

When you want to sand a rough board’s narrow edge, power tools aren’t the best option because the board often isn’t balanced (except with one of your hands — and that creates a hazard). In addition, it’s hard to position a power sander for such a narrow surface.

So, many people try sanding the edge with a block, but the same probably arises: nothing keeps the sanding block square on the narrow edge.

Here’s the Simple Solution.

Grab some plywood, a 3.25-inch piece — which serves as the sanding block — and a .25-inch piece, which, joined with the first piece, helps form a square.

First, fold sandpaper over the edge of the 3.25-inch piece of plywood. Make sure it’s the same thickness as the rough board.

Next, take the .25-inch plywood piece and cut it an inch or 2 longer than the 3.25-inch piece of plywood.

Then, line up both pieces of plywood’s bases and place them on top of the rough board’s edge. Make sure the thin piece of plywood rubs up against the rough board’s face so you can apply the edge of the 3.25-inch piece of plywood, which is covered with sandpaper, at a perfect 90-degree angle.

Now, you have a nice square sanding surface!

Watch the video above for more information!

Further Reading

Editorial Contributors
avatar for Joe Truini

Joe Truini

Radio Show Co-Host

Joe Truini is a contractor, author, and the host of “Simple Solutions” on Today’s Homeowner TV and the weekly Today’s Homeowner radio show. He has worked on both large commercial projects and residential remodeling, and has written for national publications such as This Old House and Popular Mechanics. He has also written eight books, including three best-selling shed-building books. Joe lives in Connecticut with his family and enjoys hiking, traveling, and baseball in his spare time.

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