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3M Abrasives, Sandpaper and Sanding Products

3M Abrasives, Sandpaper and Sanding Products

If there’s any company that knows a thing or two about abrasives it should be 3M (Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing). 3M has been at the abrasive making game since 1902 and in fact that’s where they got their start. Despite being one of the leading innovators of abrasive technology they had quite a rough start and their story is a great example of refusing to take life’s lemons and make lemonade out of them. The original plan of 3M was to mine for corundum to make sandpaper, however the mine they had bought had mostly anorthosite. Anorthosite, while good for many industrial applications, is not that good for sandpaper and so 3M made sandpaper from other sources contributing to their growth. Their first early success was with the Three-M-ite abrasive cloth which led to a boom in sales thanks to “the Great War” and later the introduction of the 3M Wetordry Waterproof Sandpaper which is often used in automotive repair. 3M of course expanded to many other products since then, but their abrasive products continue to be one of their staple product lines.

Today, 3M’s abrasive technology doesn’t stop at sandpaper, it encompasses several other types of abrasive technology including general abrasives, sanding discs (and backing pads), sander belts, abrasive wheels, brushes, hand pads and finishing sanders all of which are able to be used across a variety of industries including the aerospace industry, automotive, woodworking, metalworking and more. Whatever you need 3M abrasives for, we carry the right one.

3M abrasive discs

Looking at the broad category of abrasives, there really is an overwhelming amount of stuff to choose from and even narrowing it down by the industry and types of abrasive within each industry is daunting. More than likely, if you work in a given industry you’ll know which abrasives you need and if you’re unfamiliar with abrasives you can explore more in depth on 3M’s website for information about abrasives used in each industry. Some of the highlights of abrasives we carry include, but certainly are not limited to, many various types of abrasive A/O Spiral Bands, 3M Roloc Radial Bristles (including disc pad assemblies, bristle discs, Fibre discs and more), a host of various Cloth Band grinders like this one, 3M cartridge rolls like this, Scotchbrite cut polish brushes and much more. Whatever 3M abrasive product you need, we have it.

Beyond 3M’s copious offering of general abrasive products, they also, unsurprisingly, continue to make sandpaper. While there are many types of sandpaper, it is somewhat easier to explore than the general category of abrasives. The most common uses for sandpaper are usually woodworking, automotive and various metal work. Home improvement expert Bob Vila gives some excellent guidelines for selecting the right sandpaper here and he gets into the nitty gritty details on the various grit sizes of sandpaper as well as the various minerals they make sand paper out of. One basic thing to remember is that the larger the number is on your grit size, the finer the grit and smoother the sand you’ll get. We carry standard sandpaper in various grit and weights, just a few example of this would be 3M 80 D-weight sandpaper, 3M 180 grit sandpaper, and unique sanding products like the 3M Microfine sanding sponge. We also carry many types of sandpaper on large rolls. Also available is the full line of 3M’s specialty Wetordry sandpaper which can be used, you guessed it, with or without water. Just a few of the options for Wetordry include this C-weight sandpaper, smaller packs like the 400 grit Wetordry or the 800 grit, 2000 grit Wetordry, and Wetordry sanding sheets. Many of these sanding sheets can also be used with 3M’s rubber sanding block to make sanding even easier.

3M sanding belt

Beyond sandpaper, there’s also sanding discs for use with the proper machinery to go with it. Many of these would be used with a disc pad holder kind of like this one, a Stikit (used with this abrasive disc roll or this pad) or this Hookit Disc Pad (used with this clean sanding disc pad) depending on the equipment and disc you’re using. 3M also makes Fibre discs, more Cubitron discs and more Roloc options as well. Each of these niche abrasive/sanding tools is meant for specific tasks and they are all great tools allowing you to get sanding and other work done with power and speed. Take a look through the full catalog of sanding discs to find the right one.

Similar to the sanding discs, 3M sander belts are also available. These replacement belts are intended for one of several machines like a benchtop motor, centerless grinder, file belt sander and inline sander. 3M’s website gives an excellent breakdown of the best belt for each material making it easy to choose the right replacement for working with aluminum, carbon steel, cast iron, nickel alloy, stainless steel and titanium. Since 3M made that one easy to buy for, you should probably be able to identify what you need on their site and then search for the one you need directly on our site.

3M has been in the abrasives game for well over a hundred years and while they had some early failures, they were able to learn from their mistakes to make products that have earned them a great reputation. If you need the best abrasives, sandpaper, sanding discs/belts and more for all manner of industrial applications come on by and check out our full catalog of 3M abrasive and sanding products!

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