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Old 01-02-2011, 03:14 PM
DonFromTX's Avatar
DonFromTX DonFromTX is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Feria Texas
Posts: 3,822
Default Scotchbrite Wheel Help

I know I need to get a scotchbrite wheel for deburring etc, but looking over the many choices of size (both diameter and thickness) and grit, I am lost. What have you found to be a good choice? Where did you get it?
A&P, PP-SEL, Pathological Flier, EAA Technical Counselor
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:22 PM
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Mike S Mike S is offline
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Location: Dayton Airpark, NV A34
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I used a 6" or so on my bench grinder, and a 1" on a die grinder.

I removed the rest on the bench grinder to make a more open access to the wheel.

These two worked for virtually everything I needed
Mike Starkey
VAF 909

Rv-10, N210LM.

Flying as of 12/4/2010

Phase 1 done, 2/4/2011

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Old 01-02-2011, 03:42 PM
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Av8torTom Av8torTom is offline
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Default I second Mike

Removing the guard from the bench grinder is important. I got my 6 inch wheel from Avery ( and the smaller polishing wheels for getting inside lightening holes from there too (
RV-9A (empennage completed, both wings completed, fuselage and finish kit completed, engine hung, panel and wiring complete, first engine start soon.

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Old 01-02-2011, 04:54 PM
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Rick_A Rick_A is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
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Same as Mike, except I put a Medium on one side of the grinder and a Fine on the other side.
Rick Aronow,
Flying 7A Slider;
Jacksonville, FL
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Old 01-02-2011, 05:05 PM
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scard scard is offline
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Location: Cedar Park, TX
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Medium on both sides for me! I stood in front of it for at least two hours today. Two wheels the same on each side, and it becomes a very nicely setup dance... Ok, I'll stop, sometimes my emotion for the aluminum and black buggers (eq. progress if you didn't know), get to me .
Scott Card
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Old 01-02-2011, 05:26 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
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Default Die Grinder 3M Wheels

Just some advice for the die grinder 3M wheels. I use to go through the 1" wheels like crazy until I backed off on the pressure and used lighter pressure and let the wheel do the polishing. I significantly increased the amount of grinding I could do with one wheel. They are expensive little wheels and I know I have wasted a few by being too aggressive.

Also, check Amazon from time to time. I have found them there cheaper than Avery (even though I love supporting them).
Scott Schmidt
Salt Lake City, UT

RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:28 PM
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Bullseye Bullseye is offline
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Location: Wichita, KS
Posts: 557

Hi Don.

I was researching as you were and saw the multitude of grades, etc., and was equally as lost.

I finally decided blindly (not having tried any) buy one from Avery. It was a "7A MEDIUM GRADE" six-inch wheel. I've been very happy with it, but admit that I might not know what I'm missing with other grades.

If I were you, I'd get started with the grade that Avery sells to everyone.

I assume it's the same as the Van's offering.

I'm happy with mine, and have no inclination to buy a different grade.

Hope this helps.
Andrew Z.
Engineering Flight Test Pilot/Engineer, CFI-A, CFII, ATP
RV-7 in work (See my build log.)
Empennage...Done (except rebuilding the rudder.)
Wings...Halfway complete.
2018 Dues Paid
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:50 PM
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BSwayze BSwayze is offline
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Originally Posted by Rick_A View Post
Same as Mike, except I put a Medium on one side of the grinder and a Fine on the other side.
I did this, too, and I'm really glad I did. I've used both wheels throughout the build.

The best buy I've found on smaller 1" wheels is this deal from Surplus Sales of Nebraska. You get a bag of 50 wheels for $15.00. They're somewhat softer than the more expensive 1" wheels, but still a very good buy!
Bruce Swayze
RV-7A Standard Build
First flight November 3, 2019!
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Old 01-03-2011, 04:58 AM
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Rick6a Rick6a is offline
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Originally Posted by DonFromTX View Post
.....What have you found to be a good choice? Where did you get it?
I find scotchbrite so useful, I have a rig set up at home and the hangar. If I could only have one grade, I would choose medium. Depending on what you are using it on, medium can remove a surprising amount of material, leaving the surface of the work nice and smooth. The fine grade has its pluses too and I usually follow up with that grade to enhance the finish even more.

Building an airplane or not, scotchbrite wheels continue to serve me well. Examples include a teaspoon that falls down into a spinning garbage disposal nicking it, or quickly polishing the surface rust off tools and hardware and of course all those innumerable small items found around the average home that have nothing to do with building airplanes.

Rick Galati
RV6A N307R"Darla!"
RV-8 N308R "LuLu"
EAA Technical Counselor
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Old 01-04-2011, 12:23 PM
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clevtool clevtool is offline
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Boone, Iowa
Posts: 343

The wheels are coded (ex. 7AMed).

The first is the density of the wheel (so a 7 is 3.5 times denser than a 2)
The second is the material type, A is for Aluminum Oxide, S for Silicon Carbide
The third is the abrasiveness, FN is fine, Med is medium grit.

I always explain it that if you have saw marks, punch serrations, or corner rounding to do, the 7AMed is the best as it is aggressive enough to remove material. This is most of the deburring in a kit. If you want to polish or do super fine deburring (similar to the feel that you get with a hand pad), then the FN is the correct product.

There has always been a debate about using the Silicon Carbide on Aluminum and I don't want to get that started again, but personal experience is that we used it 26 years ago on our non-primered parts and as of the last annual we have seen no adverse effects from it.
Mike Lauritsen
Cleaveland Aircraft Tool
mike.toolman (at)

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