How to Choose the Right Sandpaper Grit and Size

The sandpaper can often be the most important factor when completing a project. It gives whatever you’re working on a nice smooth finished look and is necessary in many cases before paint or varnish can be applied. Though most sandpaper is now labeled as to its usage, here are a few more in-depth guidelines to help you make the right choice.

Starting with metal, the following types are available: steel wool, aluminum oxide and emery. Steel wool is used for removing rust or smoothing surfaces between finishing coats. Aluminum oxide is the middle of the road sander giving you a variety of coarsenesses ranging from extra coarse to extra fine. For extreme fineness, emery is used for the final polish. It also comes in various coarseness codes to fit whatever your needs may be.

Most wood projects can be tackled using aluminum oxide, (good multipurpose sandpaper) which, as mentioned above, comes in many degrees of coarseness for use in a variety of projects. For sanding fine woodworking projects, garnet sandpaper should be used. It comes in a range of coarseness from extra coarse to extra fine.

For sanding floors, glass, hard plastics, and fiberglass, silicon carbide will get the job done, in coarseness ranging from very fine to ultra-fine. Smoothing finishing coats can be accomplished with either pumice or rottenstone available in coarse to a fine powder finish. For removing stubborn finishes, tungsten carbide sandpaper will succeed where others have failed.

Whatever your project or need, there is sandpaper out there that will fit your need. So shop carefully, review all the varieties, and choose the sand paper that fills your criteria and fits your needs.

Whatever your project

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