Learning how to use a cabinet scraper was one of the best decisions I ever made as a woodworker. At one point, I thought these were silly. I believed that there was a reason we have sandpaper now, and because it is new it must be better.
When I first bought my scraper, I neglected to buy a burnisher. I tried out the card scraper, it didn’t work well (big surprise) and it ended up in the drawer. I truly thought it was a useless tool, replaced a long time ago by better methods.
How to Use a Cabinet Scraper
Not only does it remove material faster than sanding, it leaves a very fine surface. This means there is no need to do anything more to the surface after it is scraped level.
With sandpaper, the grits have to be worked through until the surface is smooth enough to be finished. This means doing the same process several times.
With a cabinet scraper, the process is done once, and the surface will be the equivalent of about 800 to 1000 grit. This extremely smooth surface is ready to finish right away, and there is far less work involved.
My video on how to use a cabinet scraper can be seen below. It shows the use, sharpening, and technique for getting a smooth surface with the tool.
After you get the surface perfect with the cabinet scraper, it will be time to finish the project to beautify and protect it. My 10 Step Guide to Wood Finishing can help. This guide makes an expert out of anyone.
Hand applied finishes are great looking, and easy for beginners to apply. Finally, they require no fancy equipment, and they can be learned quickly by anyone.
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