Person holding random orbital sander

The Best Sandpaper Discs for Wood

Sanding discs are commonly attached to random orbital sanders via hook and loop, and are simply circular cuts of sandpaper built to withstand the rigors of motorized application. Sandpaper discs that have holes in them are intended to collect dust through the holes when used with compatible random orbital sanders, and is a popular combination. The quality of your sanding disc determines how effective your tool can sand through a material, durability and how often you have to replace a disc (read: long term cost), dust collection efficiency, print quality (can you read what grit it is?), and the finish quality on the product you are sanding.

The Results

Brand/ItemCost (120 grit x50)
Best ValueKlingspor Stearate$15.95
Best for Dust CollectionMirka Abranet$39.73
Honorable MentionsBosch, Gator Power, Makita, and Norton 3X or MultiAir

How were these selected?

Research Summary

Klingspor Stearate

Klingspor Stearate sanding disc

A potent combination of cost and productivity that is the preferred muscle on most woodworking projects.

Key points

  • Very effective material removal. $0.50/gram of material (Wood Magazine)
  • Great cost comparative to competition
  • Stearate coated discs mitigate clogging/capturing dust on the disc surface
  • Some prefer discs that aren’t as hard or durable as these are for final finishing.

Mirka Abranet

Mirka Abranet

Durability and efficiency at a price.

Key points

  • Very effective material removal
  • Very durable
  • Very effective dust collection and does not clog easily
  • Comparatively expensive


Wood Magazine – Tool Review: Sanding Discs

Best performer: Klingspor Stearate
Best for dust collection: Mirka Abranet or Norton MultiAir
Best finish: Bosch, Gator Power, Makita, Mirka Abranet, Norton 3X, and Norton MultiAir

Klingspor’s Stearate discs, with the most aggressive and durable abrasives in the test and the lowest cost per disc, proved the perfect storm of material removal…

…for our money, we’d use Klingspor Stearate for initial sanding and then switch to one of the disc brands that left no visible scratches at 180 grit: Bosch, Gator Power, Makita, Mirka Abranet, or Norton 3X or MultiAir.

Wood Magazine

Fine Homebuilding – Torture Test: Sanding Disks

Best endurance: Mirka Abranet (80 grit), Klingspor VD980 (120 grit), Klingspor VD900 (180 grit)
Best stock removal: Klingspor VD900 (80 grit), Klingspor VD980 (120 grit), Klingspor VD900 (180 grit)
Best cutting speed: Klingspor VD900 (80 grit), Klingspor VD900 (120 grit), Klingspor VD980 (180 grit)
Best cost efficiency: Klingspor VD900 (80 grit), Klingspor VD900 (120 grit), Klingspor VD900 (180 grit)
Best overall: Klingspor VD900 (Stearate)
Best value: Klingspor VD900 (Stearate)

…the clear overall winner was Klingspor’s VD900 series. The stearate coated, aluminum-oxide disks in this series cut aggressively, resisted loading, and were the most cost-effective of the group.

Fine Homebuilding

Anecdotal Recommendations

Data sourced from online forums and discussions posted by anonymous users.

DiscussionKlingsporMirkaNorton3MShop SmithOther
Woodworking Talk – Best Sanding Discs?211102
Woodworking Talk – What are your favorite sanding discs?440030
Woodworking Talk – Need good 5″ sanding disc (2019)142103

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