Non-woven abrasives consist of a web of nylon fibers impregnated with abrasive grains bonded with synthetic resins.
To understand the cutting action of non-wovens, you need to know that the force applied to the non-woven product is not transferred directly to the workpiece. Some of the force is absorbed in the fibers.
Non-woven products are less aggressive than coated products and tend to give a finer finish.
The web of fibers and grain keep the non-woven abrasive’s surface constantly in contact with the entire surface, unlike a coated product which would skip over the valleys and remove too much metal from the peaks. Non-woven abrasives uniformly finish contoured surfaces without compromising critical tolerances obtained in earlier machine or molding operations.
This feature is especially important during a finishing process. The conventional method for removing deep scratches is to use a progression of coated abrasives grit sizes each giving a progressively finer finish while removing the previous deeper scratch. The conforming nature of non-woven allows deeper scratches to be removed while providing a fine finish. This reduces the number of steps in the process which lowers labor and production costs.
The grit rating of non-woven abrasives does not utilize codes and numbers like coated abrasives. Instead, non-woven abrasives can be classified into a simple rating and color system:
- Micro-Fine or Grit-Free (Gold or White)
- Very Fine (Grey or Blue)
- Fine (Blue or Green)
- Medium (Maroon or Black)
- Coarse or ‘Extra Cut’ (Tan or Brown)
There are multiple forms of Non-Woven Abrasives:
- Hand Pads
- Flap Wheels
- Convolute Wheels
- Unitized Wheels & Discs