View Full Version : Recommended Belt Progression

03-26-2013, 08:23 PM
I'm starting to set up a few tools in order to fabricate my own handles for rehandle purposes and also for small metal work like rounding spines, fixing tips etc.

What type of belt and what would be the recommended progression for wood handle work? I was thinking aluminum oxide for wood. Is this correct? Keep in mind I would like to play around with metal spacers and corby bolts, mosaic pins etc. Also what material belt would be best for strictly metal work, ceramic?

Does anyone have a tried and true formula they would like to share?

03-26-2013, 11:17 PM
Most knife makers I know, including myself, grind or rough out with a 50/60 grit. Then a 220, next a 400, after that see what works best for you. The finer the belt or disc, the slower you go. (fewer feet per minute) After that I use some of the following: 500, 600, 800, 1200, and 2000 grits. You should be able to buff after 1200 grit for most things.

Good luck, If you get too far into this thing, there is no turning back.


03-28-2013, 06:56 AM
I will say on my 1x30 belt/disk sander there there is no way I could jump from 60 to 220 grit. That thing... It is not fast at removing material... Also the 220 will load up with oily/oiled woods.
Not to disagree with you Devin, but I do have about 10 hours experience on the belt grinder :tongue: :justkidding:

03-28-2013, 07:43 AM
Rick try the blue alumina zirconia belts from Klingspor for metal. They cut fast, are self cutting and run cool. They also have what they call sharpening belts, but I've never tried those. When I'm making a handle I start at 80 and go to 120/150 - (150 loads up fast). Get a couple belt/disc cleaning sticks too. At some point you'll have to hand sand & polish. A buffing wheel on the drill press works great. Micro mesh pads for stabilized woods are great.