When studying any recently completed project, one’s eye naturally focuses upon the fine details that comprise a work’s fit and finish. When it comes to any DIY woodworking project, attention generally turns to the manner in which a particular surface has been finished.
This is a feat that is typically accomplished with the use of specialty abrasives.
There are many different sanding tools available on today’s market, the majority of which are designed to expertly surface a number of different materials. While many reach for a sheet of sandpaper when such a need arises, there are many other options at one’s disposal, such as a sanding block.
But what, exactly, is a sanding block? Simply put, a sanding block is a specialty hand sander, used to fine tune various surfaces, from wood to drywall.
This ergonomic sander, also known as a sanding sponge, fits in the palm of one’s hand and can be used to treat flat surfaces, or to sand around tight corners.
Sanding blocks are known for their versatility, as they can be used for both wet sanding and dry sanding. These specialty hand sanding blocks are also excellent for beginners, and relative newcomers to the world of home improvement, due to their simplicity of use.
What Is A Sanding Block Used For?
A sanding block is used to finish various surfaces that require subtle touch-up work. This includes such sanding surfaces as drywall, wood, and plastic.
The abrasive material found in a sanding block is molded directly into its build. Because of this, a sanding block can be substituted in place of a piece of sandpaper, under most circumstances.
Of course, it is important to note that not all sanding blocks are exactly the same. Sanding blocks, or sponges, come in many different grits, sizes, and shapes.
This makes it possible to locate the exact sanding block that best meets your particular needs.
What Grit Do Sanding Blocks Come In?
Like sandpaper sheets, sanding blocks come in several different grits. In general, fine-grit, medium-grit, and coarse-grit sanding sponges are all available for purchase.
However, several specialty-grit sanding blocks are also available for certain industrial uses, such as those used by auto body specialists.
By rule, fine-grit sanding blocks are used to achieve an ultra-smooth finish, while coarse-grit blocks are designed to take away greater amounts of surface material. Medium-grit sanding blocks fall somewhere in the middle, serving as perhaps the best all-around option for most applications.
What Can I Use If I Don’t Have A Sanding Block?
In the absence of a sanding sponge/block, you can use a sheet of sandpaper backed by a small block of wood, to complete the bulk of sanding chores. Alternatively, a store bought backing block, such as a rubber sanding block or cork sanding block can also be used.
One can also select any grit of sandpaper that they see fit when using a backing block of this nature.
Are Sanding Blocks Better Than Sandpaper?
In many cases, a sanding block proves favorable over the use of standard sandpaper. This is especially true when attempting to sand large areas, to a high degree of uniformity.
A sanding block is also easily manipulated to achieve the amount of force necessary for meaningful surface prep. One can easily leverage their weight against a sanding block, when attempting to remove gouges, saw marks, and other surface imperfections.
What To Look For In A Good Sanding Block?
When attempting to find the perfect sanding block, one should strive to locate a product that is ultra-durable, versatile, and reasonably priced. Based upon these criteria, it would be difficult to go wrong with the purchase of Sandflex’s 3-Piece Sanding Block Set.
This comes with a sanding block for almost any occasion, including those of various grit patterns.
Contained within Sandflex’s 3-Piece Sanding Block Set, are blocks of fine, medium, and coarse grits. This ensures that you will never go without the exact sanding block that is needed to complete the task at hand.
Perhaps even more appealing, is the reasonable retail price attached to this set. The Sandflex 3-Piece Sanding Block Set costs little more than what most spend on lunch.
In the DIY world, a quality sanding block is every bit as valuable as a cabinet full of sanding paper. The use of a sanding block makes surface-prep chores a breeze and can save a significant amount of effort in the long run.
For a modest fee, one can outfit their tool box with a variety of sanding blocks, and be better equipped to tackle almost any task that comes their way.
In any event, the purchase of one or more sanding blocks will serve as money well spent. After all, there are few better ways to achieve such a heightened level of fit and finish, than through the use of quality abrasive products, such as those described above.