Delta 12in Disc Sander

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Delta 12in Disc Sander
Name Delta 12in Disc Sander
Zone Wood Shop

Owner Dave Scholl
Make Model Delta 31-120
Part Number S/N 00013
Date Acquired
Storage Location
Authorization Required No
Status Departed

Other References * Disc sander consumables are on this list: Wood Shop Consumables


For shaping/sanding wood. A very versatile tool good for removing small amounts of material and splinters. Within limits (see below), plastic and aluminum can also be sanded.


  • When sanding plastic, use the lightest possible pressure. Only do touch-up sanding, not bulk material removal. If the contact temperature gets hot enough to melt the plastic, solid plastic deposits will block the grit and the sanding disc will be ruined. Make sure to clean all traces of plastic dust from the disc when you are done. If you leave plastic dust on the disc, it can melt and ruin the disc when the next user sands wood.
  • When sanding aluminum, use the lightest possible pressure. Only do touch-up sanding, not bulk material removal. Structural aluminum alloys are harder than the adhesive used to hold the grit to the paper. This means your aluminum workpiece is capable of scraping the grit off of the paper, which ruins the disk.
  • Don't sand or leave anything wet unless you meticulously clean up afterwards, the table will rust.
  • For safe control, rest your workpiece on the table if possible. If this is not possible, hold your workpiece and rest your hands on the table (but away from the disc!). The danger is that the disc could grab your workpiece and jerk your hand onto the disc. Please be aware that any part of your hand that gets sanded will be removed, not smoothed.
  • The table should be close to the disc, but not touching the disc. If a thin workpiece gets jammed into the gap, both the workpiece and the sander could be damaged. If you must hand-hold a thin workpiece, try sanding on the side of the disk that moves upward.


  • Let your workpiece touch the disc and have the disc do the work. If you have to use force to press your workpiece into the disc, the disc is worn out (and unsafe).
  • The table can be adjusted anywhere between 90 and 45 degrees.
  • Sander can be used with a miter gauge for more precise sanding.
  • The small black lever just behind the top of the disc is a brake. Use this lever when you need to stop the disc.

Maintenance Info

  • Periodically cleaning the sanding disc with the big natural rubber stick extends the life of the disc.
    • White plastic-sanding dust must be removed from the disc as soon as possible.
    • Solid plastic deposits cannot be removed from the disc with the big natural rubber stick; this just wastes rubber.
  • The sander takes 12" adhesive backed discs.
  • To change the disc; loosen the table to allow easier access to the disc, peel off the used disc, clean the metal platter with denatured alcohol, peel backing off half of new disc, carefully slip the exposed half of disc between the table and disc, align sanding disc on platter and peel remaining backing off of disc, press disc onto platter to ensure good adhesion, readjust and tighten the table, SAND!
  • If the power switch fails in the ON position, try taking it apart and cleaning the burned sawdust out of the contacts. This technique returned the switch on a similar sander to working order on 12/21/2012.



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