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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just wondering how you go about sanding a 200 year old building. I have been in this business for almost 14 years and have never heard complaints like I am now. We are working on an exterior of a church. Steps we took were your typical- p/washed- scraped- sanded- primed w/oil- then palm sanded- then primed again and now finish coating with S/W' Duration. To me we went overboard, but to the old man who is "in charge" we have not done enough. He asked why we used the machines to sand the church. He says that we made it look uneven. He is reffering to the waves from the 5 inch sander. Can somebody please let me know if I am missing a step here or if the guy is asking too much and waves are to be expected. I followed our specs that I gave to them on the estimate.
Thanks
 

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I hate to say this but if someone put divots in my building I'd be a little ticked off too.
I don't know what type of sander you are using (orbital?) but you have to be careful on flat surfaces. I think that an in-line sander might have prevented the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The building is 200 years old- The painter before used wood filler to fill all of his mistakes. After P/Washing all of the old filler came loose. We used Makita 5 inch sanders/grinders. We started with 50 grit and moved up to 100 grit. Then primed and used palm orbital and vibrating sanders. The finish is far better than the last paint job but is a little uneven. Hand sanding this church would not do anything but blow the budget. Belt sanders are good but the wood siding is not flat to begin with.
I am at a loss- I think it looks good. Stripping it would have been better but would have put the cost into the $60,000 range. They could not afford that and agreed to the sanding but now complain.
 

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I can't think of any reason why hand sanding would have resulted in a superior job to mechanical sanding. I can't think of any instance where hand sanding gives you a superior result over mechanical, in fact orbital sanding in many circles (no pun) is regarded as superior to hand sanding when it comes to fine finish work. However in this circumstance the difference between hand sanding and mechanical is irrelevant as long as proper techniques were employed.

If you got waves from a 5 inch sander I would say poor technique was employed. If spot sanding resulted in differences that are so noticeable then it points that some type of blending in using the sanders should have been undertaken.

However, I don't really know exactly what this looks like, one man's finish painting can be another man's starter sketch.

Is it possible to have the guy questioning you point out another building that under went similar circumstances as an example of what he was expecting the results to look like?
 

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I am assuming that proper care was not taken when sanding. 50 grit can take off a lot in a hurry if the operator is not dilligent.
I'm not going to say what I'm thinking.
 
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