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Micron-Graded Abrasive Comparison Chart

  • FEPA: European abrasives are defined by FEPA (Federation of European Producers of Abrasives) by specifying a limited range of particle sizes for each grade. With this system, a P with the grit size indicates a coated abrasive while an F indicates a bonded abrasive. This is the most commonly used standard world-wide.
  • Mesh Grades : The most common methods used in the USA are mesh grades, which are screens of mesh that abrasives can fall through. The finer the mesh, the smaller the grit size, so a 120 mesh is coarser than a 180 mesh.
  • Micron sizing : With this system, the grit is measured in microns (one millionth of a metre), and a 120μm (micron) grit is finer than a 180μm grit.
  • CAMI: The USA measurements are defined by CAMI ( Coated Abrasives Manufacturers' Institute) and define a grade by the average particle size
  • JIS: The Japanese system for measuring abrasives is defined by JIS (Japanese Industrial Standard) document.

The designations given for abrasives are not consistent across the different grading systems. For example the FEPA P800 grade is very similar to the CAMI 400 grade, so it is advisable to confirm which grading system is being used when following project instructions.

The table below shows the abrasive grades most commonly used for metal clay, and has been compiled from information from FEPA, CAMI and 3M™  which is publicly available

 

EUROPEAN U.S.
FEPA
P Grade
(coated)
FEPA
F Grade
(bonded)
Particle size
range in microns
(μm)
Average particle
 size in microns
(μm)
CAMI
Grade
Grit 3M™ Sanding Sponges 3M™ Wetordry™
Polishing Papers
P120   125    
  116 120 3/0 Medium (Red)  
P150 F180 100 ± 2.0    
  93 150 4/0  
    78 180 5/0  
P180 F200 77 ± 2.0      
  66 220 6/0    
P220 60 ± 2.0      
P240 F220 58.5 ± 2.0      
  53.5 240 7/0    
P280 52.2 ± 1.5      
P320 F240 46.2 ± 1.5      
  44 280 8/0    
P360 F280 40.5 ± 1.5      
  36 320 9/0 Fine (Red)  
P400 35.0 ± 1.5    
P500 F320 30.2 ± 1.5   Green
  28.8 360  
P600 25.8 ± 1.0    
  23.6 400 10/0  
P800 F360 21.8 ± 1.0      
  19.7 500 Superfine (Red)  
P1000 F400 18.3 ± 1.0    
    16.0 600    
P1200 15.3 ± 1.0     Grey
P1500 F500 12.6 ± 1.0      
    12.2 800 Ultrafine (Blue)  
P2000 F600 10.3 ± 0.8    
  9.2 1000 Blue
P2500 8.4 ± 0.5      
  6.5 1200 Microfine (Green)  
  3 1500 Pink
  2   Mint
  1 2000   Light Green

 


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