What Kind Of Finish Is Best For Hardwood Floors? Be advised that if it eliminates problems, then it is well worth the time it takes. The fact is that the flatter and smoother a dense floor becomes, the more critical the application of the finish coats becomes. Answering your question — His biggest concern on this job is not his abilities, but his customer's occupation — he happens to be an attorney. Avoid sanding maple too smooth. And although this is know- the system remarked above develops a very acceptable uniform color when staining maple on the job site. Hand-sanding between coats with used sandpaper,screens or abrasive pads in the direction of the grain helps to avoid screen marks.