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Steel wool? ScotchBrite? Which one and Why?

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Forum topic by Lee Barker posted 12-02-2012 08:47 PM 3092 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Lee Barker

2169 posts in 1570 days


12-02-2012 08:47 PM

Do you have both in the drawer?

If not, which do you prefer and why?

If so, which do you use where and why?

Kindly,

Lee

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"


19 replies so far

View Deycart's profile

Deycart

392 posts in 977 days


#1 posted 12-02-2012 09:13 PM

I have used both and I use steel wool for oil finishes and scotchbrite for water based finishes. Steel wool is way cheaper so I tend to use oil finishes mostly. Plus it is way easier to find and find it in different grades.

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Terry Ferguson

203 posts in 1387 days


#2 posted 12-02-2012 09:29 PM

I agree with the previous post. I mostly use scotch brite or similar and less expensive sanding/abrasive pads from the big box stores. 0000 steel wool is kept around for metal parts and tools – steel and brass, although I’m not fond of little particles that come off in use. I don’t apply danish oil finishes with either one, but prefer to use rags and wet or dry sandpaper. I have used both wool and pads, along with various products, to remove rust.

Lee: I’m wondering what your experience is?

-- Terry Ferguson, Bend Oregon

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jumbojack

1203 posts in 1344 days


#3 posted 12-02-2012 09:29 PM

I hate steel wool. the only thing I find it useful for is plugging up holes so vermin do not get in the house.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

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jumbojack

1203 posts in 1344 days


#4 posted 12-02-2012 09:30 PM

I hate steel wool. the only thing I find it useful for is plugging up holes so vermin do not get in the house. Give me 600 grit wet/dry any day.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View waho6o9's profile (online now)

waho6o9

5193 posts in 1296 days


#5 posted 12-02-2012 09:36 PM

Bronze wool doesn’t rust.

Steel wool is for metal IMHO.

Not into Scotchbrite. Sand paper rules!

View greg48's profile

greg48

304 posts in 1477 days


#6 posted 12-02-2012 10:14 PM

Generally have 1-2 grades of steel wool around. Mostly to clean saw tops, ways (shop smith), etc. and apply wax thereto. Never tried ScotchBrite on anything but the kitchen sink.

-- Greg, No. Cal.

View vipond33's profile

vipond33

1405 posts in 1217 days


#7 posted 12-02-2012 11:31 PM

Steel wool, 0000 grade (made in USA only) can’t be beat for rubdowns as it will flex down into the pores on open grain wood and is great generally as you can touch up and instantly see your progress. It conforms easily to curves and works great on small bevels without cutting through like sandpaper. I use it with wiping varnish, oils, wax and also dry for a “furniture” finish (pre-scratching). Having said all that I simply hate the problem of breakdown and bits of steel. Still, I’d never give it up, you’ll have to pry it out of my cold dead hands.

-- gene@toronto.ontario.canada : dovetail free since '53, critiques always welcome.

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Moron

4702 posts in 2613 days


#8 posted 12-02-2012 11:34 PM

I stopped using steel wool after noticing micro small bits of it, left under or in the finish, then oxidizing and leaving small greenish dots. Now I use it to apply a wax coat only

Started using a product that looks like scotch brite but it isnt. Available at speciatly abrasive and finish suppliers in rolls approx., 6 “ x 50 ft. Comes in different grits and is perfect for sanding between coats of lacquer where crisp edges from coping are, cant sand through the stain.

Cheers

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View bobasaurus's profile

bobasaurus

1383 posts in 1904 days


#9 posted 12-02-2012 11:35 PM

000 or 0000 steel wool is great for in-between finishing stages, but the steel dust drives me nuts and I always end up with some in my finish. The synthetic steel wools (scotchbrite-like pads) work okay, but they don’t scuff up surfaces to the same degree as real steel wool and so subsequent coats don’t really build as quickly. I have yet to settle on one or the other… seems like I alternate every time I finish something.

-- Allen, Colorado

View Deycart's profile

Deycart

392 posts in 977 days


#10 posted 12-02-2012 11:42 PM

Moron, Could you post a link to your supplier?

View Tedster's profile

Tedster

2271 posts in 931 days


#11 posted 12-02-2012 11:50 PM

I keep both on hand, of all different grades, for way to many uses to list here. As for scuffing between finishes, I prefer sandpaper, sanding sponge or steel wool. Scotch bright starts off too scratchy and quickly turns to not scratchy enough.

-- I support the 28th Amendment. http://www.wolf-pac.com/28th

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112499 posts in 2297 days


#12 posted 12-02-2012 11:51 PM

I have never had a use for steel wool ,sand paper does the job for me.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist's profile

Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist

5218 posts in 2028 days


#13 posted 12-03-2012 01:05 AM

I use steel wool and solve the fne particle problem by putting a couple of magnets inside a piece of fine cloth and lightly rubbing over the work. works like a charm.

-- We all must start somewhere in our journey of doing what we love to do.

View Terry Ferguson's profile

Terry Ferguson

203 posts in 1387 days


#14 posted 12-03-2012 01:33 AM

I’m just looking through the Lee Valley catalog (page 209) and I see a product that I’m unfamiliar with. It’s called “Siawool” – nylon fiber impregnated with silicone carbide abrasive particles, so no steel fragments. Right next to that are Norton 3X contour pads – aluminum oxide on high density foam. Anyone tried these?

-- Terry Ferguson, Bend Oregon

View Moron's profile

Moron

4702 posts in 2613 days


#15 posted 12-03-2012 01:47 AM

@ DayCart

Cant help you. I gave up woodworking several years ago in favour of guiding people through it

Google it, U Tube it

Abrasive suppliers/Specialty finishing supplies

Merry Christmas

: ))

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

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