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Step-by-Step: Homemade sanding sticks

Agape forum member Ken (icekj) shared this handy technique for building your own sanding sticks. It lets you get exactly the grit you want, and saves you money. Thanks for sharing this Ken!

Store bought sanding sticks are costly.  They are hard to find in the 800+ grits that I prefer to work with.  Some sanding sticks do not hold up well to water either, this makes it a pain to wet sand. So the other night I decided to assemble my home made sanding sticks.

The materials:

  • Craft sticks from Wal-Mart.  I picked 1/4″ by 2 1/2″ ones because I work on 1/72. (I prefer the popsicle sized ones myself… banana flavored popsicles, preferably…. Ed.)
  • 3M spray adhesive.
  • 800 and 1200 grit wet/dry sand paper
  • Scissors
  • Piece of newspaper to spray on (don’t want to get spray adhesive all over the spray booth)

Here you can see all the materials ready for action.


Next I marked the back of the sandpaper with the size of the craft sticks (1/4″ by 2 1/2″)  This is to allow for neater sandpaper aplication and less waste.  4 of each grit.


Next I cut out the pieces of sandpaper with the scissors.


Then I simply sprayed the craft sticks on one side with the spray adhesive.  Let it dry for a couple mins until it was just tacky.  Added the sandpaper to each stick and let dry completely.


After everything was completely dry I cleaned them up a bit with some lacquer thinner on an old rag.  This got the inevitable spray adhesive off the back side of the craft stick.  I then used a sharpy to put the grit on the back of each stick.


20 mins and less then $10 later and I have plenty of sanding sticks for both wet and dry sanding.  I personally find I go through 800 and larger grits the most on my models.

And of course, you can use any grit you want in making your own sanding sticks. My favorite grit? Why cheese grits, of course!