Making Sanding Belts
From contributor C:
First, you'll need to plant several acres of high quality cotton. While that is growing, you'll probably want to set up a factory to produce either Rayon or Dacron or some other fibrous reinforcement for the cotton weave. The looms should be pretty basic, depending on whether you are making sheets, 4x24 or wide belts.
The abrasive you choose will affect your decision as to whether you'll be mining carborundum or garnet, or setting up to produce synthetic abrasives. After mining, processing and grading are straightforward. You'll have to choose whether you are going with the English/American grading or the European. You may even opt to set up your own proprietary grade scale. The glues will be easy to formulate, considering the amount of research and production you have already accomplished up to that point. Don't get discouraged, and good luck!
From contributor D:
This was common practice in the UK at one time. The ends were joined by cutting them at 45 degrees and gluing linen cloth (old blueprints were ideal) across the joint at the back. Two strips were used - a narrow piece about two inches wide and another 4 inches wide, the wider piece being applied last. PVA glue is okay, as it is fairly flexible. A piece of polythene with weights on top will give a good joint, when left to dry. A slight knock will be heard as the joint passes the sanding pad, but this will not affect the finish. It's easier to buy belts.
From contributor P:
I have glued belts together for years for a homemade stoke sander I built. I just cut the joint about 30 degrees on each end then use a belt sander to taper the edges and remove a half inch or so of grit on both ends to avoid a hump at the joint. I glue them together with cynoacrylate, cover the joint on both sides with a sandwich bag, and clamp them with a couple of small blocks and two heavy duty pinch clamps. The glue won't stick very good to a Ziploc bag or baggie.
The comments below were added after this Forum discussion was archived as a Knowledge Base article (add your comment).
Comment from contributor S:
1. Cut the ends of the sandpaper under 30 degrees.
2. Try to remove the grain with a piece of glass and with a woodworking chisel and leave only paper in both sides.
3. Connect the ends with a Polyurerthan glue. Ponal PU construct works for me and itís a very strong and elastic glue.
4. Use a baking paper and insert the glued part inside.
5. Iron the glued part for one minute.
Then you should be ready to go!
Comment from contributor M:
I agree that it is less expensive cost and otherwise to just buy one's sanding belts but the problem is that every once in a while one runs out of a belt and then cannot find a replacement from a local hardware or home store like the 14" belt for the hand-held Porter-Cable belt sander. I carefully remove the tape from the old one and glue it back with a good quick-setting glue and under pressure from a hand screw or spring clamp.
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