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An Abrasive Topic


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I’ve been feeding my Random Orbital Sander a steady diet of varying brands of 5” sanding discs.  I’ve tried Shopsmith, Diabolo, Craftsman, and Norton ProSand blue discs.  I’m not totally pleased with any of them.  Which brand(s) do you prefer, and where do you order them from? Russel Brown prefers Norton sandpaper, but the blue stuff I can get at my local lumber yard doesn't last very long.  What do you use, and where do you buy it?

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I've had very good experience with the Shopsmith discs.  They are gray, available at Lowe's and sometimes at my local Ace.  They seem to last forever.  They are a bit pricey, but my rough guesstimate is that they come out ahead on a cost/disc basis since they last so long.  They also perform well.

 

Recently, tho, based on something I read either here or on WoodenBoat, I ordered a 50 pack Dura-Gold Premium - Variety Pack - 5" Gold Sanding Discs on Amazon.  The 50-pack has 10 each of 60, 80, 120, 220 and 320 grit (180 might be nice, but whatever).  I have used a half dozen so far on ply and 'glas, and they seem to be holding up petty well, or even better than that.  They may be close to the Shopsmith. They certainly do not throw grit like the cheapo discs.  Given that the cost for 50 is about the same as the cost for 10 or so of the Shopsmith discs, I probably will continue with the Dura-Gold. I'm using the lighter-weight Bosch 5" sander, and I am able to get both a quick cut and a fine finish with the grits provided.  

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Klingspor abrasives are excellent, and they make everything. Literally: discs, belts, rolls, etc etc. etc. Their GreenTec discs are targeted for epoxy but I have been using other types too. Some material made in Europe but much in Hickory NC.

 

Check out their website or if in NC you can go to 4 Klingspor’s Woodworking Shops. I am a huge fan. Also, you can buy roll ends and other manufacturing scrap by the pound.

 

FWIW, I agree about Shopsmith abrasives. I still have some of the garnet discs - when was the last time you saw that? Hoarding it ‘cause I still have my Shopsmith. 

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@Nick C— Thanks for the input.  I was given a gift of their 2-3/4” PSA rolls and a foam sanding block.  That paper was made in Poland.  It is pretty poor stuff.  Good to hear that they have other grades that perform better, because there’s a store 45 minutes away.  (I live in the country, so almost everything is at least 30 minutes away.)

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@Paul356 - I have also tried the Dura-Gold and agree they hold up well, and I like the price.

 

@Don Silsbe - I use their PSA rolls on other woodworking projects and think they are OK (doesn't load too bad on raw wood surfaces). Since they have lots of abrasive grains and grits there probably is a good option among them.

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