Published on 13 July 2011

Posted in Floor Sander Hire

“I’ve moved! After months of searching for the right place, I finally took the plunge and I vacated my old flat for a three bedroom, Victorian style house. It’s a nice old place, but needs a fair bit of renovation work and in particular I am keen to get the wooden floors up to scratch.

So, I decided that this is where I will start my restoration project, by firstly sanding the softwood floor in my lounge and then varnishing it into a gleaming finish.

From my previous experience in sanding wooden floors, I recalled that the Hire Tech HT8 drum floor sanding is ideally suited to sand most types of softwood floors and with an accompanying edge sander, I should expect a nigh-on perfect finish.

I popped over to my favourite floor sanding hire shop and the hire desk manager agreed with me that the HT8 floor sander would the ideal floor sanding machine for my task in hand. I made my reservation there and then, whilst ordering a selection of floor sanding sheets and edge sanding discs on a sale or return basis. I made sure that I ordered some coarse 16 grit sanding sheets and sanding discs, just in case I really needed to get right into the wooden surface. I also asked the floor sander hire manager to set aside some finer, 120 grit sanding sheets and discs, so I could get a nice smooth finish to the softwood floor.

The floor sanding hire shop confirmed that they did the HT8 sander and edge sander in one ‘floor sanding bundle’, which was economically priced, and hence, would save me a bundle!

I decided to collect the sander in my own car as the HT8 breaks down into three separate components – floor sander drum, handles and dust collection hose and bag. This made the floor sander easy to transport from the hire shop and into my house.

When I was ready to start floor sanding, I inspected the HT8 and discovered that its 8-inch wide drum was is coated in a special type of rubber with a reversible sanding sheet clamp bar designed to make fitting floor sanding sheets very simple. This means the floor sanding paper will remain firmly in place and the sheet will not fly across the room the minute the floor sander is switched on!

The Hire Tech HT8 sander is powered by a heavy-duty electric motor that has been designed to maintain its speed even when under load. This will be particularly useful because some of the areas on my wooden floor have a waxy build-up and there is evidence of ingrained dirt, which, naturally, I want to want remove completely.

When I used the HT8 on my wooden floor, I couldn’t help but be impressed with the design of this floor sander. It’s plastic moulded side panel and drum guards had been thoughtfully shaped so not to scuff or chip the walls or skirting board at the edge of the room.

The HT8 floor sander is fitted with a dust collection system with a disposable paper bag that takes in the dust residue and the hire shop had thoughtfully provided me with a number of these bags again on a sale or return arrangement. However, when I was piloting the HT8, I made sure that all the windows were open, because I soon discovered that a fair amount of dust residue was generated. I was told that it is essential the paper dust bag is properly disposed of when it is about a third full, as the dust from a floor sander has been known to spontaneously combust, potentially causing all sorts of damage.

I switched from coarse sanding sheets, to medium and finally to a fine grade sheet to give a smooth finish to the top surface of the floor. Using the same process; coarse ~ medium ~ fine, I completed the floor by guiding the edge sander right up to the skirting boards, leaving a really great finish all round.

I found that the HT8 floor sander and edge sander is an uncomplicated and easy sanding machine for sanding my softwood flooring. Now, it’s back to the hire shop to see what varnish they recommend to give me that gleaming finish!

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