How to Remove Those Sticky Sanding Discs

How to Remove Those Sticky Sanding Discs

I bet you, like me, have struggled before to remove a 12″ adhesive-backed sanding disc from your disc sander. Even when the disc is spent, that adhesive wants to keep sticking as you peel the disc off of the plate. The other day, I faced this task again but with a new approach: I dusted the backing with baby powder while using a putty knife to pry it off. The powder adhered to the adhesive to prevent it from sticking again, and it really helped. Make sure to vacuum the plate clean again before you install the new disc to keep it from coming loose.

-Bob Mohalski
Hebron, Kentucky

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  • richflynn

    I usually use Denatured Alcohol between disc and sandpaper to dissolve the glue. Then I use the Denatured Alcohol to clean the disc before applying the new disc.

  • Al Micucci

    Another method you might want to try is to fold the disc over on itself so it can’t stick. Then spin it and peel the remaining half off.

  • Harry Sorenson

    I place a piece of newspaper over the disc and use an old iron my wife doesn’t use anymore to “iron” sandpaper. The hot iron loosens the adhesive backing and the paper comes off easily.

  • Walt Kachanis

    They come off super easy if you apply heat. A heat gun or hair dryer, if you don’t have those you can use a propane torch. When using any form of heat keep the source moving. This also helps in removing excess adhesive that seems to collect on the backing plate.

  • Northerner

    if its really sticky and hard to pull the disc off just heat it up with a heat gun to soften the glue and then start pulling the disc and sprinkle your baby powder

  • Barney Fife

    you could probably also use some sort of alcohol or mineral spirits to dissolve the adhesive by squirting it at the intersection of the disc and sander

  • Jim Charron

    Good trick. Another way I found is to heat the disc with a heat gun and it peels right off without leaving any paper on the sander. Then you’re ready to apply new disc. No clean up.

  • Luis Oviedo

    If no denature alcohol, nor heat source available; you can use WD40 applied between the disk and sandpaper, it works as well as anything, but don’t forget to clean with mineral spirits and let dry before putting the next sandpaper.

  • Lee Oberg

    Powder is a great Idea. If no baby powder is handy a handful of fine dust from under your machine will do the job as well. A quick wipe with solvent afterwards and you’re ready to fasten the replacement.

  • James Marsala

    I have two hobbies. The first is restoration of collector cars, including all aspects:body, mechanical, paint and modification. In this hobbie I use a LOT of sanding discs. If I want to remove one that has been stuck in place for some time, I generally heat up the disc by sanding (even a scrap of wood) until the disc is warm and and easy to detach. After I remove the old disc, I simply use a solvent dampened rag and remove the remaining “PSA” adhesive; then I put on a new “PSA” disc. (PSA=pressure sensative adhesive)
    Although most people don’t like to “sand”, after learning how critical sanding is to the outcome of the new paint job or finish on your furniture (or other wood project), I have learned to do it without complaining or dreading the process.