Choosing the Right Grit of Sandpaper

Using the right sandpaper is the key to project success. The right sandpaper can make the job quicker and easier. Soft plastics and metals can be permanently damaged if the wrong sandpaper is used.

Sandpaper is made by tying an abrasive material to a pad of paper or cloth. 3000 grit performance sandpaper is available in sheets, rolls, tape and discs. Tool sandpaper usually has a heavier bearing than hand sandpaper.

The material used to hold the abrasive grains is called a bearing. There are different types of dressings, each with its own characteristics.

Paper is the most common sandpaper material. Sandpaper with a hard paper base is suitable for large flat surfaces or for use with power tools. Sandpaper with a more flexible paper base works best on curved or textured surfaces.

Waterproof pads are used for wet / dry applications. The waterproof adhesive supports abrasive materials, which stick to the surface when wet sanding or when using grease.

Cloth pads are used to make sandpaper which is very flexible. Towel-coated sandpaper is best used for heavily sculpted or detailed surfaces.

The degree of abrasive sandpaper is known as grittiness. Sand grades are usually printed on sandpaper using the following scale:

40-60 rough

80-100 medium coarse

120-150 moderate

180-200 is good

240 Very good

Sandpaper with a grain size of more than 600 is suitable for fine sanding on soft surfaces.