How do you buy your abrasives? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 Old 06-11-2013, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
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How do you buy your abrasives?

Hi! I'm trying to better understand the small custom woodworking market (30ish employees down to 1) better. If you wouldn't mind answering a few questions either through replying on this thread or sending a private message, I would really appreciate it.

1) How many employees work at your shop?
2) How do you currently purchase abrasives?
3) What brand(s) do you currently use?
4) Approximately what percentage of your total revenue goes towards abrasives?
5) Is there anything that currently frustrates or wish were better you about your abrasive products or the way you purchase them?
6) Is there anything we should know about the current custom woodworking market?

Thank you so much for your time!

Full disclosure: I am working for 3M this summer and this information will help us understand the needs and wants of the custom woodworker. I have no intent to sell anything or persuade anyone to change their existing buying habits. Thank you!

Last edited by Toddat3M; 06-11-2013 at 11:32 AM.
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post #2 of 14 Old 06-11-2013, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toddat3M View Post
Full disclosure: I am working for 3M this summer and this information will help us understand the needs and wants of the custom woodworker.
I personally PREFER the 3M sandpapers... EXPECIALLY their beltsander paper...



We have tried a pile of 'other' brands to save money and most just piss me off. Those don't get bought again...

Little stuff like beltsander belts separating at the seam before they are anywhere NEAR wore out - Or those stickyback orbital papers that occasionally you have you spend ENTIRELY too long just to get the clear plastic off the paper before you can stick them on the sander (SHOULD take only a second with 'good' paper)...


I have not used ANY 3M paper that was what I would call 'garbage' yet... Not for ANY of our sanders...

It has all been 'good to go' so far.
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post #3 of 14 Old 06-11-2013, 11:52 PM
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I prefer 3M sheets, standard and the gray in the higher grits. I use Mirka Gold discs on my ROS( hook and loop). I use Klingspor scalloped discs on my drill for turning. All because I seem to get the most life out if these brands for these applications. 3M I buy mostly at local paint stores. The others i buy online. The big box stores around here carry Norton which I hate and will not buy. I'm a one man shop doing small items for sale and personal use.

Hope this info helps you.

That bowl was perfect right up until that last cut...
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post #4 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 01:16 AM
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I also work for 3M, and our office has a "pallet sale" once a month or so where they sell sandpaper and other 3M products at very good prices. So I stock up on paper there.

Naturally, I prefer the 3M abrasives and adhesives.

Last edited by Chris Curl; 06-12-2013 at 01:19 AM.
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post #5 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toddat3M View Post
Hi! I'm trying to better understand the small custom woodworking market (30ish employees down to 1) better. If you wouldn't mind answering a few questions either through replying on this thread or sending a private message, I would really appreciate it.

1) How many employees work at your shop?
2) How do you currently purchase abrasives?
3) What brand(s) do you currently use?
4) Approximately what percentage of your total revenue goes towards abrasives?
5) Is there anything that currently frustrates or wish were better you about your abrasive products or the way you purchase them?
6) Is there anything we should know about the current custom woodworking market?

Thank you so much for your time!

Full disclosure: I am working for 3M this summer and this information will help us understand the needs and wants of the custom woodworker. I have no intent to sell anything or persuade anyone to change their existing buying habits. Thank you!
This is your first post? Something doesn't sound right here.

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post #6 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Midwest Millworks View Post
This is your first post? Something doesn't sound right here.

Mike Darr
+1. Actually it's his second.






.
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post #7 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 09:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midwest Millworks View Post
This is your first post? Something doesn't sound right here.

Mike Darr
Sorry, what doesn't sound right? It seems to me he is being very open and up front about his purpose.

At 3M, integrity is probably the most important value they preach, because they (we) realize that if people do not trust us, then it is very hard to earn their trust again.
Quote:
Full disclosure: I am working for 3M this summer and this information will help us understand the needs and wants of the custom woodworker. I have no intent to sell anything or persuade anyone to change their existing buying habits.
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post #8 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toddat3M View Post
1) How many employees work at your shop?
2) How do you currently purchase abrasives?
3) What brand(s) do you currently use?
4) Approximately what percentage of your total revenue goes towards abrasives?
5) Is there anything that currently frustrates or wish were better you about your abrasive products or the way you purchase them?
6) Is there anything we should know about the current custom woodworking market?
I am a hobby woodworker, so just one person.

I purchase most of my abrasives on-line mostly from the Klingspor site. I like the one-stop shopping for just about all of my abrasive needs.

I use mostly Klingspor since I like the quality, and no surprise, it is the brand the Klingspor site sells.

My first frustration with abrasives was how fast I could ruin a wrap on my drum sander. I then switched to the Klingspor Blue Zirconia product and found this lasts much longer.

My recent frustration has been sanding woodturnings, especially the inside of bowls. This is the first time flat sheets are not the best form. I then purchased the round scalloped discs. Expensive for the small size, and still not a perfect solution. I tried the 3M sanding blocks, but they do not abrade for long. I end up wrapping 2in wide abrasive around the 3M sanding blocks so that I do not burn my hand while sanding.

Has 3M ever thought about abrasive mittens for sanding inside e.g., wood bowls. Need to be insulated, but the flexibility of a mitten may solve my frustrations of sanding inside bowls.

I use abrasives for sanding my wood projects, and also for sharpening my blades/chisels.
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post #9 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 11:41 AM
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[QUOTE=Chris Curl;487940]Sorry, what doesn't sound right? It seems to me he is being very open and up front about his purpose.

At 3M, integrity is probably the most important value they preach, because they (we) realize that if people do not trust us, then it is very hard to earn their trust again.[/QUOTE

I could be wrong, but I don't think 3M needs Suggestions from some woodworkers. What does the number of employees some of us have to do with 3M's marketing? Sounds like he isn't employed by 3M yet, so I doubt 3M asked him to do this. He could be a competitor of 3M for all we know. Posts like this aren't fair to the companies that pay to advertise on this site. I know people will say he isn't advertising, but he is. Maybe he is ligit, but it could have been handled better. As a first post I am suspicious.

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post #10 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 01:22 PM
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I must say I'm confused by the suspiciousness when he straight up says that he's from 3M and trying to do some market research, when the worst case scenario is that he's a consultant looking to sell the data to 3M.

I suppose Todd could sweeten the pot with some freebie sandpaper for respondents, but what else would you have him do?
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post #11 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 02:13 PM
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My guess is that he is an intern as he states he's working there for the summer. Is data collection is probably part of a project (if in fact he is an intern) for school.

That bowl was perfect right up until that last cut...
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post #12 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 04:07 PM
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sandpaper supplier

I buy my sandpaper from my "Finish Supplier" and am very happy with it. I used to use "Sandcap" but can't find it any more. I now use "Inca Blue," it is from Sweeden and I have found nothing better. I use the sheets and also the 6x48 belts, price is good too.

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post #13 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Wow! Thanks for the replies so far everybody! I've been in meetings most of the morning, so I haven't had a chance to jump on until now.

OnealWoodworking: That's great to here! Would you mind if I asked where you buy them? Through a sales rep, catalog, online, etc.?

sawdustfactory: Thank you! That's exactly what I'm looking for!

Chris Curl: Small world! I hadn't heard of the palette sales yet. I wonder if interns are allowed to take advantage.

Mike Darr (Midwest Millworks): I apologize if I have come across as suspicious. As sawdustfactory guessed, I attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison and I am an intern in the marketing department at 3M this summer. No one at 3M asked me to post here, but I did run it by them before posting. 3M does well in the larger sized woodmills and manufacturers market but as one of my projects for the summer is to find out more about the needs and desires of smaller woodshops (that's why I asked for employee size). As I was looking around online, I came across this community and thought it would be a great opportunity to hear from people that are currently working with wood. I have no intention to persuade or advertise and only posted that I work for 3M because I thought it would be more suspicious if I didn't. I completely understand and respect you if you don't feel comfortable giving the information I asked for away.

Dave Paine: Thank you!

Gilgaron: I can possibly ask for free samples next week, but I want to be sensitive to not appear like this is a promotion.

bandman: Thank you!
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post #14 of 14 Old 06-12-2013, 09:13 PM
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For me an the school I use Klingspor, reason is they have a rep that comes out an fills our shelf's with extras with our purchases, we buy by the case, school does it all turning, carving, fine furniture, marquetry, inlays, intarsia an anything else that comes along. I have 6 instructors in 4 different building (shops) that specialize in any of those areas. Our school is for persons with disabilities an walk ins.
Link to the school is below if this helps

All Pictures Posted by Bigcouger are owned by Roy Millsaps an is not to be copied or used with advertisements without the written consent of said person. Pictures are here to help guide you in your woodworking abilities an to encourage you in your wood working hobbies, not to be copied
Thank you
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