Removing Pressure Sensitive Adhesive Backed Sandpaper

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Adhesive backed sandpaper is very convenient, right up to the point where you need to take it off so you can put on a new piece of paper. The good news is that adhesive backed sandpaper sticks pretty well while you’re using it. The bad news is that it continues to stick pretty well when you’re trying to take it off. Here’s a very cool trick that will help you peel your paper in one large piece, instead of a hundred tiny ones.

Preparation is key

Whether you’re using adhesive backed sandpaper or hook and loop; a random orbit sander or belt sander; stearated paper or non-stearated paper, knowing how to get your projects ready for finish is as important as the finishing step. Using the right abrasive, and knowing how to use it, is key. It may seem simple, but knowing how to sand wood is critical. If you don’t do a good job sanding, you can’t do a good job finishing.

A variety of projects

Looking for ideas on what to build next in your shop? WoodWorkers Guild of America has you covered. We offer a huge variety of woodworking projects. Some can be completed in a few hours, some will take longer. But they all have the material and procedures spelled out, part of our mission to keep woodworking projects as simple as possible for you.

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11 Responses to “Removing Pressure Sensitive Adhesive Backed Sandpaper”

  1. Steve

    That’s a great way to get it off, however, if you take your heat gun or a hairdryer to the disc it will also come off cleanly and easily. That work especially good on metal disc and you don’t have to disassemble the tool to place it in the freezer.

  2. Wayne

    Another alternate idea is to heat the metal mounting plate with a heat gun or hair dryer. Works pretty slick.

  3. Wayne

    Another alternate way to remove PSA sandpaper is to heat up the back of your metal mounting plate with either a heat gun or hair dryer. Works really slick.

  4. clutions

    Great for the glass on the Work Sharp! Any tips for metal discs as on belt/disc sanders? Thanks.

    • WWGOA Team

      You can follow the same grit recipe for shaping/grinding and honing as is used on the glass plates on the Worksharp, but you’ll probably run into a problem when using fine abrasives. The rpm on belt/disc combo machines is generally high, so with a fine abrasive (anything over 180 or so, depending on the speed of your machine) it’ll be very easy to overheat and burn the tool you’re trying to sharpen.

      • clutions

        Yes, I understand that, but my question is regarding PSA paper on a metal disc, as in a disc that I came upon for the tablesaw. It has probably been sitting around for years. I really don’t want to use any thing metal on it, including sandpaper or a grinder, as that would most likely take it out of balance. I’ve tried mineral spirits, denatured alcohol, laquer thinner, goo-off … all with a plastic scraper. Haven’t tried it yet but I wonder if I could get away with sticking it in the freezer?

        • WWGOA Team

          You could try the freezer but I would try a heat gun first. I wouldn’t use a torch, as that might distort the metal, but I think you should be fine using a heat gun on the disk. If nothing else works and you are ready to throw it away, I would try a torch and metal scraper as a last ditched effort

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