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Need help figuring out which abrasive belts to buy

Discussion in 'Grinders' started by Lincoln, Jan 16, 2015.

  1. Lincoln

    Lincoln New Member

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    I'm new to metalworking, and pretty well all my machine experience comes from working with wood. I have a 1x42 belt sander that I'm hoping to get by with for the time being, even though that limits my belt choices.

    I'm preparing an order from Lee Valley, and I see that they carry a number of different 1x42 belts. It would help me out if I could just add some belts to my order, rather than placing another order somewhere else.

    Here is the link to the LV abrasive belt page:
    http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/page.aspx?p=48040&cat=1,43072,48040

    Oh, and in case it makes a difference, I plan to start making my first knife out of a file that has seen better days.
     
  2. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    Hi Lincoln,

    40, 80 and 120 grit in the Blue Zirconia looks to be your best bet. Although they don't specify grain, belt weight or material, they looks to be closed grain, Y weight, polyester, but I can't be sure from the photo. The 40 would be quite aggressive and good for bulk removal, profiling etc. The 120 for more finesse work and the 80 somewhere in between. (I use 60 for most of my rough work.)

    Only one way to know is to give them a try.
    Good luck! Let us know how they work.

    Dan
     
  3. Lincoln

    Lincoln New Member

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    Thanks, Dan. I put those on order, and will plan to report back with how they perform. Any recommendations on what to use after the 120 grit? (It's hard to imagine using a file to shape or smooth a file.) It's really tempting to get a set of the aluminum oxide belts, too, but I can't throw money at my little projects forever. I may just have to wait, or do it by hand with wet-or-dry sandpaper.
     
  4. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    Sorry, I couldn't recommend anything in higher grits. Personally, I have been disappointed with AO belts on steel. I guess it wouldn't hurt to try them. You can use them for sharpening when the abrasive wears out.

    I always seem to find uses for sheets of wet/dry sandpaper. On steel use them with a lubricant.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015

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