How to Sand Chair Spindles

Are you looking to add new life to your furniture? One way to do this is by sanding the chair spindles. While it might seem intimidating, with a few simple steps and some extra guidance, anyone can achieve results that make old chairs look like brand-new pieces. Read on for all the information you need about how to sand chair spindles.

How to Sand Chair Spindles

Sanding is one of the most essential woodworking techniques that can bring new life and beauty to your project. In this blog post, we are diving into how to sand chair spindles—a common task for furniture makers and hobbyists alike.

From understanding the tools required, preparation tips, and best practices for sanding within tight crevices –– by the end of this blog post you will be equipped with all you need to know in order to effectively restore your chair!

Why May You Want to Sand Chair Spindles?

1. To Add New Life to Your Furniture

One of the main reasons why you might want to sand chair spindles is to breathe new life into your furniture. If the spindles have become dull, worn, or scratched, a little sanding can make them look as good as new.

2. To Remove Unwanted Paint Build-Up

Another reason why you may want to sand chair spindles is to remove any unwanted paint build-up. This can help you to get a smoother finish when refinishing or repainting the furniture, and it will also make the job easier in general.

3. To Prepare For Staining

Sanding your chair spindles is also necessary if you want to stain them for a new look. Sanding helps to remove any old finish or buildup, which will allow the stain to penetrate better and give you a more even finish.

4. To Create a Smooth Surface

Finally, sanding your chair spindles can help to create a smooth surface for the new finish or paint that you’re applying. This will give you a more professional-looking result when all is said and done.

How to Sand Chair Spindles in 6 Easy Steps

Once you know why you may want to sand chair spindles, it’s time to learn how. Here is what you need to do:

Step 1: Gather All The Materials

Use a Damp Cloth to Clean

The very first step is to make sure you have all the necessary tools and materials before you begin. You will need sandpaper, an electric sander or a piece of sanding block, safety goggles, a dust mask, and wood glue.

Step 2: Prepare The Spindle For Sanding

Before you actually start sanding, take some time to clean and prepare the spindle. Use a damp cloth to clean off any dirt or debris that may have accumulated on the surface of the spindle.

Step 3: Begin Sanding

Once you have done all of your preparation, it’s time to begin sanding your chair spindles. Start by setting the sander to a low speed and use the coarse sandpaper to remove any dirt or debris from the surface of the spindle. Slowly move the sander in a circular motion until you have removed all of the dirt and debris.

Step 4: Move On To A Finer Grit Of Sandpaper

Once you are finished with the coarser grit, it’s time to move onto a finer grit of sandpaper. Move the sander in the same circular motion, but this time move it faster and with less pressure to achieve a smoother finish.

Step 5: Apply Wood Glue

Once you have completed your sanding process, use wood glue to secure any loose parts back onto the spindle. Make sure that the glue is spread evenly along the entire length of the spindle.

Use the Coarse Sandpaper

Step 6: Check For Smoothness

Before you finish up, take a moment to check for any rough or uneven patches you may have missed during sanding. If there are any, use your electric sander to smooth them out before you move on.

Once all of these steps have been completed, your spindles should be ready to go! Now all you need to do is enjoy the beautiful furniture that you have created. Sanding chair spindles may seem daunting at first, but with the right tools and a little patience, anyone can achieve stunning results. So don’t be afraid to take on this DIY project – you won’t regret it!

Some Tips to Sand Chair Spindles

1. Do Not Use a Belt Sander

This is one of the most common mistakes people make when trying to sand chair spindles. A belt sander is too aggressive and will ruin the delicate shape of the wood. Instead, use an orbital sander or a palm-grip detail sander for more control over the pressure you apply.

2. Use Coarser Grits First

When sanding chair spindles, start with coarse grit sandpaper to remove the finished surface and any imperfections. Then work your way up to progressively finer grits until you achieve the desired smoothness.

A Belt Sander is Too Aggressive

3. Sand in Circular Motions

To get an even finish and maintain control over the pressure you apply, sand in circular motions instead of long strokes.

4. Keep the Sandpaper Moving

It’s important to keep the sandpaper moving in order to avoid burning or damaging the wood. If you notice any rough patches, move to a new area and begin sanding there.

5. Finish with Fine Grit Sandpaper

Once you’ve achieved the desired level of smoothness, finish with a very fine grit sandpaper to remove any remaining rough patches. This will give your spindles a professional-looking finish.6. Clean Up Afterwards

6. Avoid Using Too Much Pressure

When sanding chair spindles, use light pressure and let the weight of the sander do most of the work. Applying too much pressure can cause damage to the wood and ruin your finish. Also make sure to keep the sander flat against the surface of the wood.

7. Clean Up Afterwards

Be sure to clean up any sawdust or debris that accumulates during the process with a shop vac or damp cloth. This will help protect your furniture from any dust that might have come off during sanding.

By following these tips, you can easily and effectively sand chair spindles to achieve the perfect finish. With patience and practice, you’ll be able to transform any piece of furniture into a beautiful work of art.

Shop Vac or Damp Cloth

Precautions You Should Take While Sanding Chair Spindles

1. Wear a Dust Mask and Safety Glasses 

One of the most important precautions you should take while sanding chair spindles is to wear a dust mask and safety glasses. This will protect your eyes from the wood particles that may fly up during sanding, as well as prevent inhalation of any harmful particles or dust.

2. Use the Right Sandpaper Grit 

Using the right grit of sandpaper is essential for a successful sanding job. Choosing too low of a grit will leave your spindles too rough while using too high of a grit could damage the wood. Choose medium or fine-grit sandpaper and be sure to start with light pressure when beginning to sand.

3. Use Sanding Blocks and Sponges

Using sanding blocks and sponges instead of hand sanding around the curves and contours of your chair spindles can provide a smoother, more even finish. Sanding blocks create an even pressure on the wood which helps ensure a uniform result when finishing the job. Sponges are ideal for getting into any hard-to-reach places.

4. Work Slowly and Methodically

When sanding chair spindles, it’s important to take your time and work slowly and methodically. This will help ensure you get into all the small crevices and corners of the spindle for a more uniform finish.

If you rush, you’re likely to miss areas or cause unevenness. Also, make sure to keep the sanding block and sponge moving at all times while sanding to avoid creating indentations in the wood.

Using Sanding Blocks and Sponges

5. Finish with a Vacuum Cleaner 

Once you’ve finished sanding, it’s important to use a vacuum cleaner to remove any dust that may have accumulated during the process. This will help to prevent any residue from causing staining or discoloration on the wood. Additionally, a vacuum cleaner can be used to remove and debris or splinters that may have been left behind.

By following these precautions while sanding chair spindles you’ll be able to achieve a professional and even finish on any project. Sanding is an important part of the furniture-making process so taking the time to make sure you’re doing it right will pay off in the end when you have beautiful new chairs or tables. Happy sanding!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Precautions Should I Take When Sanding Chair Spindles?

It is important to exercise caution when sanding chair spindles. Make sure you wear protective gear, such as safety glasses and a respirator or dust mask, to avoid inhaling any wood particles that may be released during the sanding process.

Additionally, consider wearing gloves to protect your hands. Additionally, work in a well-ventilated area to prevent the dust from becoming overwhelming.

What Is the Best Way to Sand Chair Spindles?

The best way to sand chair spindles is with an orbital sander. Start out using a coarse grit of sandpaper and gradually move up in grit for finer sanding. Be sure to sand in the direction of the grain to avoid any visible scratches on the spindle. After you have finished sanding, use a vacuum or soft cloth to remove any remaining dust.

What Other Tips Can I Follow for Sanding Chair Spindles?

Before beginning your project, be sure to carefully inspect each spindle for any defects or damage. If you notice any issues, it is best to address them prior to sanding. Additionally, when sanding, be sure to maintain consistent pressure and avoid applying too much pressure in one area as this can cause uneven results.

Finally, after sanding is complete, use a wood conditioner or sealant to protect the spindles and add a layer of shine. Additionally, be sure to apply a light coat of furniture wax for added protection.

How Much Time Should I Allot for Sanding Chair Spindles?

The time you allot for sanding chair spindles depends on the size and condition of the spindles. Generally, it takes approximately 30 minutes to an hour per spindle. Additionally, if you are starting with a rough surface, you may need to apply more than one round of sanding to achieve the desired results.

Can I Sand Chair Spindles by Hand?

Yes, you can sand chair spindles by hand. However, this process is much more labor intensive and time-consuming than using an orbital sander. Additionally, it may be difficult to maintain consistent pressure and ensure even results when sanding by hand. Therefore, it is recommended that you use an orbital sander for the best results.

Can I Paint or Stain Chair Spindles After Sanding?

You Can Paint or Stain

Yes, after sanding chair spindles, you can paint or stain them as desired. Once your desired finish has been applied, it is important to protect it with a sealant and possibly furniture wax depending on the type of finish you have used. This will help to ensure that the spindles remain in good condition for years to come.

Overall, sanding chair spindles is an easy process when done with care and attention to detail. With the right tools and materials, you can have your spindles looking like new in no time!


By taking the time to sand chair spindles, you can give your chairs a unique and modern design that will set them apart from anything else. With a bit of patience and a well-thought-out strategy, it’s possible to significantly improve the look of your chairs and yet still remain time-efficient.

Whenever you do refinish furniture with spindles or other parts, don’t be afraid to experiment with different tools and techniques – you never know what you might discover! 

Now you know how to sand chair spindles! Whether it be a new favorite approach or even a whole new finish that you’d never considered before, you could end up with a beautiful result that is uniquely yours. As long as you take safety precautions and work carefully and slowly, just remember that there is no wrong way to enjoy creating something by hand!

Photo of author

Adrian Green

Adrian is a woodworking hobbyist and has loved Woodworking since he was 10 years old. Back then in childhood, his father used to have a furniture shop. He used to help his dad and learned a lot from him about how to fix woodworking furniture, basic carpentry knowledge and also about how to work hard and take care of business. He enjoys woodworking as a hobby. He loves the feeling of creating something with his own hands, and the satisfaction that comes from seeing his finished products used by others.

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