Mirka CEROS sander or Abranet hand sander for lacquer?
80 grade Abranet on a hand sander rubs down lacquer faster than a Mirka CEROS sander with 40 or 60 grade HD abranet! I’ve said it before, and it bears repeating. The hand sander for small areas is phenomenal and on walls and wood outperforms even the super nice Mirka CEROS review. The mechanical CEROS however opens new possibilities for sanding in bulk.
This worktop is being refinished. It was clear lacquered over stained mahogany and the surface was in a bad way, scratched and ring marked.
Default option is to take a CEROS sander, 80 grade abranet and rip the living daylights out of the lacquer before nicely sanding the timber finish. Knife through butter job, in many past cases. In this case, that proved a wrong option.
Ceros and 40 grade Abranet. After some trial and error, the best approach was to start with 40 grade abranet HD to break down the lacquer. (HD is not a sophisticated net abrasive, it is vicious rigid and super coarse!)
Ceros and 80 grade Abranet wasn’t really tough enough. The lacquer clogged the net, and the heat melted the lacquered dust. On a trial metre-long section, I used 3 discs. It was relatively easy work with the 80 grade on a CEROS, and almost no dust created, but it wasn’t cutting like a knife through butter.
80 grade abranet on a hand sander block. The section in the next photo was sanded by hand. 80 grade abranet on a sander block attached to a vacuum. It works like a vacuum extraction rasp. It cuts like a knife through butter.
Faster than a CEROS with 40 / 60 grade abrasive!
This is the whole section, (minus edges) – started with 60 grade HD abranet, struggling on a CEROS, then “mid sanded” relatively easily by hand with 80 grade abranet.
The worktop is super smooth already, but the edging needs sorting and some TLC is required with stains, before being finished off with 2 coats of clear Patina wood care finish.
When sanding off the edges, even though the CEROS struggled somewhat, it was still in a different league to a Feins tool using cloth backed 80 grade Aluminium Oxide. The Al oxide lasted a couple of inches before becoming completely clogged with melted lacquer. The Abranet did clog but went on and on.
Hand sanding the whole worktop with 80 grade abranet, some 8 metres in all, is pound for pound the most efficient and effective approach. Faster than a CEROS and less abrasive used because less heat is created, less clogging. But in practical terms, hand sanding such a large area was a workout too far. So a combination of the two tools it was.
On small sections of painted woodwork, or wall area, you should consider ripping surfaces down by hand with abranet on a vacuum sanding block. On large areas, however, it is CEROS all the way, producing mountains of work and minimal dust, as you literally mechanical sand all day without too much hassle and fatigue.
There has been talk that the Festools sander with the new Granat abrasive outperforms the Mirka CEROS with abranet. Maybe this hard lacquer surface is that scenario? What is your experience?
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