Choosing your pad
There is a question for all of you: what makes a good polishing pad?
There are many different sources, names, styles and prices for diamond pads on the market. This can be very confusing. And what happens is selection comes down to price in most cases. This is unfortunate, because in many cases a cheap pad will cost you more in the long run.
Shopping by price may be tempting, since many pads look alike and all are described similarly, often being sold “for granite, engineered stone and concrete.” However, choosing the right pad matters, especially if you want the pad to cut well, last long and not cost a fortune. Below we list you some matters for reference.
1. Diamond quality
Metal binders are generally for highly abrasive cup wheels, in which very coarse diamonds need a hard-wearing matrix to bind them. Metal-bond cup wheels are thick, rigid and designed for aggressive and rapid material removal.
Larger-diameter pads (such as 7inches) are much more stable on large and flat areas than smaller diameter pads (3 and 4inches). However, larger pads become unstable on narrow sections of concrete.
Small diameter pads are less stable and more likely to gouge when processing large areas on a big polisher, but with a smaller polisher especially a pneumatic polisher, they work very well for processing edges and narrow sections.
Diamond pads come in a variety of thicknesses, from around 2mm to 10mm thick.
Thicker pads will last longer, but thicker pads are stiffer.
Thin pads don’t last as long as thick pads, but they are more flexible and softer. This is a big advantage when polishing inside curved integral sinks.
The pattern molded into the cutting surface plays a role in the life span and cutting quality.
Generally pads used for coarse honing should have an open pattern with wide and deep channels which allow the abrasive cutting residue to be ejected quickly and effectively. Pads with many narrow channels are best suited for polishing.
As you can see, there are many factors to consider in choosing a diamond pad. Start with assessing what you plan on doing with it.
Then consider the variables I’ve outlined to make your choice. Only then should you look at price.
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