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Coated Abrasives Grading Systems

Here are the grading systems for coated abrasives from VSM and General Cutting Tools aka Cutting Tools Chicago.  A grade number identifies the size of the coated abrasives’ mineral. There are several systems used to assign a grade number. Some of the most common include:

  • FEPA, Federation of European Producers of Abrasives;
  • ANSI, American National Standards Institute
    (Formerly, CAMI, Coated Abrasives Manufacturers Institute)
  • JIS, Japanese Standard

The chart below shows the conversion between some of the most common grading systems.

Abrasives Grading Systems Chart

Splices and Form Codes

There are two categories of splices, lap splices and butt splices.

Lap Splices

The overlap splice is a single directional splice that should be run in the direction of the arrows printed on the backing. This splice has three variations: un­skived, light top skived and full top skived.


Retains a full coat of mineral on the top lap.

Form Code: V13

Light Top Skived

Part of the mineral is removed from the top lap.

Form Code: V13-LTS

Full Top Skive

The entire mineral is removed from the top lap.

Form Code: V14

Additional Form Codes

B: Manufactured sheet

BPSA: Manufactured pressure sensitive adhesive sheet BSTFL: Flutter sheets (cloth only)

RBGKR: Slashed loading

R: Roll of material

RGKR: Slashed roll-Designated by a drawing number

RPSA: Pressure sensitive roll

RSPA: Economy or Shop roll of KK114F

SAO: Round disc with an arbor hole

SAGE: Round disc with an arbor hole packaged in shrink-wrap SAO131: Round disc with an arbor hole banded in 100 pieces

SAOD8: Delappe dics – 8 wing configuration

SAOD1 6: Delappe disc-16 wing configuration

SAOD24: Delappe disc-24 wing configuration

SCI: Round disc with slotted arbor

SFO: Plain or Velcro discs (see SFOK)

SFOF: Round disc with pressure

SFOK: Velcro discs

SXO: Disc with a rosette edge sensitive adhesive

ZRV13: An overlap or lap joint used exclusively for pump sleeves

Butt Splices

The butt splice is able to run in either direction. The butt joint has three variations: butt splice, sine wave splice and top butt splice.

Butt Splice

The ends of the belt are angle cut, butted together and joined with a filament tape.

Butt Splices

Paper Belts

Standard Splice

  • EV13 standard for 18″ wide and under
  • EBRV1 3 standard for greater than 18″ wide

Available on Request

  • EV06 for 18″ wide and under
  • EBRV06 for greater than 18″ wide

Cloth Belts

Standard Splice

  • EV07 standard for 18″ wide and under
  • EBRV07 standard for greater than 18″ wide


  • Portable Belts – EV14
  • Pump Drum and Sleeves – ZRV13




9″ wide x 7-15/32″




9″ wide x 10-5/8″




9″ wide x 13-3/4″




9″ wide x 20″




9″ wide x 26-5/16″

Special Application Splices

Mold Sanding Belts – EV14

Edge Sanding Belts

  • Cloth – EV14
  • Paper – EV13

Stroke Sander Belts

  • Cloth – EV14
  • Paper – EV13

“Dead-Head” – EV14

Planetary splices – Use Drawing Number B-118

Drawer Sander – Use Drawing Number B-117

Storage & Handling

Storage and handling are the two of the most important factors in obtaining the best usage and maximum life from coated abrasives.

Storage Facilities

The ideal storage (stock) room for coated abrasives would be one in which all the walls are inside partitions, rather than the outside walls of the building.

  • A constant temperature of 60 – 80 °F
  • A controlled relative humidity of 35 – 50 %
  • Coated abrasives should be kept off concrete floors and away from hot air ducts and all sources of dampness.


  • Coated abrasives should be kept in closed original containers until the product is ready to be used.
  • Rolls should be piled on curved side, not on roll ends. Narrow rolls may be stacked.
  • Belts not in original boxes can be draped over large cylinders or racks.
  • Keep large paper and cloth discs in their original package.
  • Keep resin fiber discs in their original package.
  • Keep carton stock in their original packages to facilitate handling and stocking.


  • Using coated abrasives safely necessitates adhering to guidelines these principal areas: Personal Protection and Equipment Precautions.

Personal Protection

  • Eye protection – Impact-resistant protective glasses with side shields should be worn at all times on all operations, including hand sanding, without exception. On abrasive disc and offhand belt grinding, a full face shield should also be worn.
  • Body protection – It is recommended that safety shoes, arm guards, leather gloves and aprons should be worn.

Equipment Precautions

  • Always observe safety recommendations supplied by the equipment manufacturer.
  • Never remove safety guards from machines.
  • The machine should be disconnected from the power source before making any abrasive or machine adjustments.
  • The sparks created by grinding should be directed downward and away from face and body.
  • All grinding machines and power tools should be operated in a well-ventilated area, preferably with an exhaust hood. Dust masks are recommended as a practical means of minimizing dust inhalation.

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One comment

  1. Excellent work. Almost covered all the aspects of Coated Abrasives Grading Systems. Good Luck