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Thread: What type of abrasive belts for steel?

  1. #1
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    Default What type of abrasive belts for steel?

    I have been using the abrasive belts made for wood on my old 6" x 48" Delta floor-mounted belt sander to occasionally work steel and iron. They do the job but soon wear out, plus they pretty much ruin a belt for wood.

    I am wondering if there are better belts made for steel and iron that last a long time. Any thoughts from you guys? And where do you buy them?

  2. #2
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    3M cubitron, Norton Blaze or other ceramic belts from other makes. Zirkonia belt if you want mid-range price/performance

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattiJ View Post
    3M cubitron, Norton Blaze or other ceramic belts from other makes. Zirkonia belt if you want mid-range price/performance
    ^^^ yes... good belts cost a lot more but are well worth it.

  4. #4
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    The blue Zirconia belts are the best value for your money. We run a couple different brands from
    Europe--can't remember the name offhand but they're very good. We've tried the 3M Cubitron stuff
    in sanding discs, grinding wheels and sanding belts and the extra cost is't worth it--they just don't
    last that much longer. And, as far as I'm concerned, you should stay away from Norton. In 40+ years
    of running our shop I never found a Norton product that I liked or that performed as well as the
    European offerings...
    Keith
    __________________________
    Just one project too many--that's what finally got him...

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys! Blue Zirconia belts! I am going to search for them now!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Planeman41 View Post
    Thanks guys! Blue Zirconia belts! I am going to search for them now!
    And if you're going to run the Zirconia belts--which I think is a very wise choice--run 24 or 36 grit if you really want
    to remove some material. Don't mess around with 60 or 80 or 100 grit unless you are truly trying to get a super
    fine finish. A 36 grit belt will soften up pretty quick as the edge wears off the abrasive. We just keep a few of the
    older belts around for those times when we want a finer surface finish...
    Keith
    __________________________
    Just one project too many--that's what finally got him...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by LKeithR View Post
    The blue Zirconia belts are the best value for your money. We run a couple different brands from
    Europe--can't remember the name offhand but they're very good. We've tried the 3M Cubitron stuff
    in sanding discs, grinding wheels and sanding belts and the extra cost is't worth it--they just don't
    last that much longer. And, as far as I'm concerned, you should stay away from Norton. In 40+ years
    of running our shop I never found a Norton product that I liked or that performed as well as the
    European offerings...
    Defiantly these ones. I have some on a small belt sander in my home shop, I don't remember the brand. There is a tear down the middle of one which hasn't affected its operation in the least. It's been there for many months now and since I'm retired and cheap I haven't changed it. Still going strong. Still cuts very well.
    The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

    Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

  8. #8
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    Where is the best place to get belts from?
    Andy

  9. #9
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    Camillus, NY (Syracuse)
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    Quote Originally Posted by LKeithR View Post
    And if you're going to run the Zirconia belts--which I think is a very wise choice--run 24 or 36 grit if you really want
    to remove some material. Don't mess around with 60 or 80 or 100 grit unless you are truly trying to get a super
    fine finish. A 36 grit belt will soften up pretty quick as the edge wears off the abrasive. We just keep a few of the
    older belts around for those times when we want a finer surface finish...
    I’ve found that the 50 grit seems to be a great choice, aggressive enough to cut, but fine enough, where I do not have to change belts to get a good finish. I have been using Carborundum 2” x 48” 50 grit belts on my Jancy RaduisMaster, for about 8+ yrs, at about 4000 fpm, they work great.
    jack

  10. #10
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    Dec 2016
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    Atlanta, GA, USA
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    "Run 24 or 36 grit if you really want to remove some material"

    Thanks for the tip! I looked into the Zirconia belts but haven't ordered yet. Was thinking about 100 grit but will follow your suggestion when I order. I usually buy coarser wood abrasive belts to be able to use the worn down belts for finer work. I should have been thinking this way when I was looking.

    Ain't this website a great place!
    Last edited by Planeman41; 04-15-2019 at 12:03 PM.

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