The Recipe for Great Sanding Blocks

Why do some sanding blocks work better than others?  For a block to work great and produce great results, there are several necessary components. 

  1. Its material. The surface the sand paper is against is very important; It cannot have any ‘give’ to it. A hard material will allow the sand paper to cut as flat as possible, and not follow any texture. This means straight body filler, and the ability to sand primer very flat. 
  2. It’s flex. While the sanding block needs to be hard, that does not mean it needs to be rigid. As a matter of fact, every block needs to be able to flex, even if it’s a small amount. When a block does flex, it is very important it should bend and create a natural arch, and then go back to being straight. Bending in actual arches, and not being able to manipulate the shape the block bends in, will give your body work a whole new look.
  3. The right size. While it’s true a large variety of sanding blocks is usually needed, having the proper combination of length and flexibility is important.  
  4. Handles. A block should feel good to hold onto, you should feel plenty of feed back from the panel you’re sanding (a big piece of foam would absorb that).  And most important, the handle absolutely, no matter what, should interfere with how a block works and flexes. 

The bar has never been set so high for body work and paint. The proper sanding blocks are a crucial part of being able to produce great work.