Grex Air Sander Users Here?

Discussion in 'Woodturning Discussion Forum' started by Tom Albrecht, Sep 25, 2017.

  1. Tom Albrecht

    Tom Albrecht

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  2. odie

    odie

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    Howdy Tom.......

    I have a Grex, and used it quite a bit about 10 years ago. I haven't had the need to use it very much in recent years, because I've found that sanding to a higher grit (600g) than what I was sanding to (400g) eliminated the necessity for it's use. Any leftover fine sanding marks remaining after 600g is easily taken care of by using some 0000 steel wool by hand......quick and easy.

    Can't say about the lifespan, because I didn't use it extensively. I can comment that it did have issues with bogging down a lot......so, you can't apply much pressure while sanding. It did do an excellent job of removing very fine sanding marks left by 400g and lesser sandpapers.

    Like many air powered power equipment, it does tend to spit oil out the exhaust.......and, I found this to be somewhat of a problem with the Grex. This can be dealt with by wrapping a rag around it during use.

    -----odie-----
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  3. Tom Albrecht

    Tom Albrecht

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    Thanks OD, when you say that you are "sanding to a higher grit (600g) than what I was sanding to (400g)", What are you using to sand to 600 grit? A drill, your hands?
     
  4. odie

    odie

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    Tom.......I normally use powered disc sanding up to 180g......sometimes 240g. From there, all my sanding is done by applying sandpaper by hand while the bowl is spinning on the lathe.

    This is for interior sanding, as I seldom need to power sand on exterior surfaces. (Meaning, I seldom need to start sanding any coarser than 240g on exterior surfaces.)

    -----odie-----
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2017
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  5. Hugh

    Hugh

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    Tom,
    I have owned a Grex sander for a number of years.....maybe more than 5 years. Love it. I use the 3" pad mostly.
    Get yourself a bottle of pneumatic tool oil.....you only need a small one......and before you use it, add a couple of drops. Not too much oil. It does not need a lot. Yes it will throw the oil out the back side. Just wipe it up as it comes out. After a bit of use, the oil spray will end. But the tool will stay lubed for awhile. It uses a bit of air....so a larger compressor is better. I run mine on a 110 volt 25 gal tank compressor.
    I mostly use the sander for finish sanding. I use a drill for 80 - 150 grit. Then put the 150 grit on the Grex and sand with that with the lathe off. Then go to 400 - 600 grit.....lathe off. Does not take too long. Does a nice job I think. Would I buy one again if something happened to this one? In a flash. But, if you oil it on a regular basis....it should last you a long time. I use mine all the time. Gets rid of scratch marks nicely.

    The only thing I do not like about power sanding ....either with a drill or the random orbital, is that it does not like to get close to beads. Those almost need to be sanded by hand....just that 1/8" of the bowl leading up to the bead.....both sides.

    Use good sanding discs.
    Hugh
     
  6. Owen Lowe

    Owen Lowe

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    I have heard/read that you can use just about any light-weight oil in pneumatic tools; walnut oil should be just fine for lubrication, not impart petrochemicals to the wood surface, and not interfere with oil-based finishes.
     
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  7. Zach LaPerriere

    Zach LaPerriere

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    As a guy who likes deeper proportioned bowls, it looks to me like you could run into clearance issues with the Grex—but that depends on your style, of course.
     
  8. Tom Albrecht

    Tom Albrecht

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    Can you say "Extension Bit"?
     
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  9. Zach LaPerriere

    Zach LaPerriere

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    :p Honestly, I don't want to. I hate em, and avoid em as much as possible. It's like working in gloves....

    Yes Tom, I am very particular.
     
  10. odie

    odie

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    Speaking of those "extension bits".......I've found a simple way to make them work well. They can be steadied easily by simply introducing a rotating dowel (or tube, or?) on the extended shaft. By hanging onto the dowel, it gives a way to greatly increase the control you have over sanding at a distance.

    ------odie-----
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  11. tdrice

    tdrice

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    I really like my Grex for finishing the bottoms of items after parting off. It is the fastest, easiest and smoothest way I have found.
     
  12. Donna Banfield

    Donna Banfield

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    I have been using random orbital air sanders for at least a decade. I have the Grex and use the Grex ROS, and love them. I begin sanding using a corded drill, up to 180 grit. I start using the ROS at 220, The lathe is not running at this point. If you try to use the lathe, the orbit of the sander will match the rotation of the lathe, and you will get a Spirograph pattern on the last bottom third (interior) of your bowl.

    I have 2 Grex ROS, one with a 2" pad, and the other with a 3" pad. It takes a bit longer to sand a bowl using them (because you can't use the lathe to rotate the wood), but in my humble opinion, the finish I achieve is superior to the finish I get using a corded drill to 600 or 800 grit. I usually stop with the ROS at 400 grit.
     
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  13. paulra

    paulra

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    I have 3 of the sanders (2 ", 3" and 1") they have lasted for several years.
     

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