Microplane Steel "Sandpaper"

WOOD magazine rating
Brand:
Microplane
Model:
[Varies By Grit]
Price:
$30

Description

Microplane stainless steel sandpaper sands 9 times faster and lasts 30 times longer than conventional sandpaper. Made from 400 series hardened stainless steel with a patented etched blade technology, each disc has hundreds of razor sharp teeth which cut the wood instead of scraping like conventional sandpaper. Fits 5'' random orbits sanders with 5 hole or 8 hold vacuum configurations and 1/4 sheet sander. Use only on bare wood. Available in course, medium, and fine grit 10 pack.

WOOD magazine review

Stainless-steel discs cut fast, not fine

Review Summary

Staring into the teeth of these Stainless Steel Sanding Discs for 5" random-orbit sanders, they look mighty scary. And they are—if you’re a piece of wood. The idea behind them: Each razor-sharp hole acts like a tiny hand plane to shave the wood, rather than scratch it smooth, like the grit on sandpaper. But do these hook-and-loop discs leave a surface as smooth as sandpaper?
To find out, I compared Microplane’s coarse, medium, and fine Stainless Steel Sanding Discs head-to-head with a fresh set of conventional 40-, 80-, and 120-grit sanding discs. Using the same sander, hand pressure, and an equal number of strokes with each abrasive, I worked my way up through the grits on pieces of red oak and hard maple. The coarse Stainless Steel Sanding Disc devoured the test boards, leaving tiny wood shavings in its wake. It removed material faster than any sandpaper I’ve ever used, but the fuzzy and frayed finish wasn’t as smooth as the swirly scratches left by 40-grit paper. As I proceeded up through the grits, the Stainless Steel Sanding Discs always left a surface that felt rougher than that made by sandpaper. I figured that stain would reveal flaws left by either abrasive, so I brushed on a dark stain. Not surprisingly, the wood shaped with the Stainless Steel Sanding Discs took the stain darker and more unevenly than the sanded wood. However, I always sand a project to 180 grit before staining, so I sanded both the 120-grit sandpaper area and the “fine” Microplaned area with equal strokes and pressure, and again applied stain. This time I couldn’t tell one board from the other. Here’s the bottom line: Microplane’s Stainless Steel Sanding Discs won’t replace your sandpaper, but they will hog away a lot more material for the same effort. And, at about $5 a disc, they’ll last a lot longer before needing replacement. —Tested by Pat Lowry

Detailed Ratings

3.3
out of 5

Performance

3

Features

3

Ease of Use

3

Value

4

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