ROS;PSA or H&L

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I'm thinking of purchasing a random orbital sander and am curious what the consensus is on the advantages of buying the pressure sensitive adhesive sanding pad model vs. the hook and loop type. What are the advantages and disadvantages? Some of the things that I imagine wouild be important would be cost per sheet, availability, ease of application and removal, and inadvertant slippage of the disc on the sander. What experiences have people had with this. Thanks.David Mahoney
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DJMahoney asks:

There may not be a consensus, but in my experience, hook & loop is slightly more expensive, easier to attach correctly, easier to remove and re-attach, and doesn't leave a mess on the pad. PSA is cheaper, reasonably easy to attach, may tear on detachment, doesn't re-attach for squat, deteriorates over time (got any 6-7 year old PSA discs? Use them for hand sanding in too many cases), leaves bits and pieces of paper and adhesive on the pad if left in place and not removed for too long.
Charlie Self "Inanimate objects are classified scientifically into three major categories - those that don't work, those that break down and those that get lost." Russell Baker
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I have some PSA 3M Gold 5" disks that are probably 10 years old and still hold like new. Oddly these were orriginally a roll of 250, 180 grit IIRC with NO protective backing. That said, If I leave the disk on the sander for an extended number of days, I simply sand with the pad to warm the paper up and it comes off with out much effort. I wonder if being stored in a rather humid envirinment keeps these disks in good shape.
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I have to agree with some of what both Charlie & Leon have said. Instructions with my PSA ROS warned about leaving the paper on the pad after sanding, as the generated heat makes the adhesive *set* so it is hard to remove. Never tried Leon's trick of warming it up again to loosen it. I frequently clean the pad on mine with thinner or alcohol to get rid of old adhesive & bits of paper.
Leon, not trying to start a war, but I feel comparing *our* needs to autobody is a tiny bit like apples vs oranges. Autobody you tend to "use up" the paper & discard it, where with us we have more need to not necessarily use up the paper before switching to a different grit, and this is where the H&L really works for us.
My $.02
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Nahmie
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Exactly,,I think that I mentioned in another post that production needs would be better suited with PSA and for those that don't use up the paper before removing would be better suited by PSA.
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OOOOoooouuuuuupppppppssss
For those that do not use up the paper before removing would be better suited by using "H&L".
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I use H&L simply because it's the easiest to get, the only store that sells PSA that I know of is 30 miles away. I got a home depot 8 miles away, and it's on the way home, and all there ROS disks are Norton H&L. I could mail order them but the added cost of shipping for the amount of sandpaper I use kind of kills any savings.
on another note anyone use Norton 3x ROS sanding disks? I love the regular Norton Disks, wondering if I should special order some, the 3x sheets are far better then any thing else I've found well worth the extra cost, if any they last so much longer, just wondering if there is any experience with them
Leon wrote:

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Richard -
I have started using the Norton 3x disks in my ros, and I don't think I can go back to "regular" disks. :-) The 3x disks are just as good as the 3x sheets. Fast and long lasting.
Wayne

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Sweet, where are you getting them, Depot and lowes don't seem to carry them
what's the cost?
NoOne N Particular wrote:

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Hmmm. Now that I think about it, the last ones I bought were at a ww show in Sackatomatoes. I will have to find another source too. Crap! Good thing they last a long time. :-)
Wayne

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You don't have a sander for each grit?
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wrote in message

Well... um I primarily use 2 grits 98% of the time. I use 150 on my ROS and I always finish up with 180 on my SpeedBloc. So uh I guess I have a sander for each grit. LOL
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote...

(G) Hey, that's not as extravagant as it sounds!
I use a Dynabrade ROS, which is, IMHO, the best ROS out there. Unfortunately, they require a pretty beefy compressor to run, so they're not suitable for a lot of home shops. They are also a bit expensive. Having one for each grit would take a bigger crowbar than any I own.
Also, I prefer the PSA disks, for several reasons, but often do not use a disk up before needing to switch to the next grit. To avoid the horrendous expense (big grin, here), I simply keep a separate BUP (back- up pad) for each grit. They're only a few bucks apiece, and I only need two: one for 100 grit, and the other for 150.
When the project calls for coarser sanding, I use a belt sander. For finer sanding, I switch to the Speed-Bloc. The Speed-Bloc is the only sander that I frequently switch sandpaper grades on.
So, to make a long story even longer, I *almost* have a sander for each grit.
Jim
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Yup! I made my post before seeing yours.
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Nahmie
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personally i don't understand the draw to PSA. to me, glue and sawdust just don't mix - what a mess. i like PSA. be prepared to purchase replacement hook pads for the sander.
good luck,
--- dz
DFM & JCM wrote:

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whoops. i like hook and loop. not PSA.
this is all part of my master plan to confuse you!
--- dz
David Zaret wrote:

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It may be environment or humidity but I have used PSA paper for more than 15 years and absolutely have had no problems with it. That said, for many years I was in the automotive business and had access to "Free" 3M sand paper. I choose and prefer PSA to H&L as did all the body men in the body shops. We probably sold PSA over H&L at a ratio of 50 to 1. Typically dust is not a problem with PSA unless you set the adhesive side down on dust.
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If you are going to be an occasional sander or work on small projects that require changing grits before your paper is worn out, H&L will be your best choice. Obviously the added expense of the H&L over PSA is in the attachment system that affords you the ability to reuse a piece of paper that is not yet worn out.
If you will use a lot of sand paper or work on large projects where you actually wear the paper out before changing grits PSA will be a cheaper choice. Typically production shops use PSA to save money.
Some believe that PSA is more hassle or does not stick well. I have never witnessed this problem after using the PSA paper for 15 years. Some of my paper is 10 years old.
H&L is simply more expensive and there seem to be more complaints from regular users of H&L that the pads do not hold up and begin to melt along the outer edges when used for extended periods of time. Basically there seem to be more complaints from H&L users than from PSA users.
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Leon - your points are well taken and I do not dispute them, however I can't help but chuckle some when I read so many posts here from people who absolutely must spend hundreds of dollars more for a table saw or a cabinet saw than they really need to, just because it's the thing, or who will spend tons more on a particular sharpening stone, or set of chisels, yet they puke at the thought of throwing away a sheet of sand paper that's worth only cents, just because they can get another 1,000 swirls out of it. Sorta like looking to make your own tack cloth instead of spending 79 cents on one in the store.
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-Mike-
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Who says it has to be a problem? You have your way of doing things and I have mine. You have your opinions and I have mine. I'm fine with you doing things your way and I'm equally fine doing things my way. That I may get a chuckle out of it is no real big deal. I'm certain you would find some of the things I do to be something you just can't understand - I'm simply expressing the same. It's not really that big a deal.
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-Mike-
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