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The history of sandpaper is really INTERESTING!!

recently I mentioned in a sanding tutorial I made how I think that 3M cubatron sandpaper is the best I have ever used this they're not the sponsor of this video I'm just saying that try a pack the difference in durability and cutting speed is going to blow your mind you're going to look at it I know and say oh that stuff's not cheap but because it's so durable and fast working it saves money overall I'll link below to the place that I get mine it's a great family business if you want to try it up but my point is that every time I talk about sandpaper someone tries to shame me for not using just hand planes and scrapers to smooth every surface like a real woodworker these people are under the false impression that sandpaper is a modern invention which the great masters of the past would never have touched because you just can't get the beautiful surfaces that you see on these masterpieces by Townsend and Goddard and Chippendale and others without laborious scraping and planning and a lot of skill I usually just laugh at those comments because they show that people making them don't know half as much about the craft as they think they do well today I'm going to tell you the real history of sanding a practice that stretches back to the beginning of recorded history and which has been an important technique utilized by the finest Woodworkers in history whether it be with actual sand or with fish or horsetails I know you're going to find this video far more fascinating than you ever thought a sanding video could be now the first sanding was probably done with coarse rocks that included Sandstone there are ancient Egyptian murals that depict workers rubbing wood with sandstone sand itself was also used as an abrasive stone for example could be cut by sprinkling loose sand in a Groove and then rubbing it back and forth with the edge of a copper plate to create an abrasive saw among the first all-in-one abrasive sheets were natural shark and other rough scaled fish skins another natural product was made by boiling and drying a plant called horsetail both these methods were used by the time of the Romans and they were used in the far east as well and the practice still survives to some extent today abrasive coated paper seems to date back to at least the 13th century that's when the Chinese use natural gum to adhere sand and seeds or crushed shells to parchment that may have been the earliest example of something we today May recognize as sandpaper and as the centuries progress other types of abrasives were used including crushed Flint quartz Garnet by the 15th century the Swiss were using paper coated with crushed glass than the Industrial Revolution came and new adhesives were developed in 1833 it was a piano maker named John Oakey who developed a better process for gluing abrasives to paper that allowed him to create a more durable sheet that could be mass produced in larger quantities so the cost of sandpaper which at times had been more than a day's wage per sheet started to become more affordable for everyday shops now as these products made their way into the mainstream they were often generically called glass paper even though any number of natural particles may have made up the actual grit the problem with natural particles though is they are limited to what you can collect an industry consumed so much of these natural abrasives so people had to start experimenting with other man-made particles around the end of the 1800s synthetic silicon carbide and aluminum oxide were developed these abrasives are still used on a lot of sandpapers today because they're synthetic particles that can be made by man sandpaper became much more abundant and more affordable now that's the lineage of sandpaper but when was it first adopted by Woodworkers it's impossible to pinpoint exactly when wood was first sanded as I said the ancient Egyptian sanded wood with stones early woodturners were known to use Cattails to smooth their work and various other plants have been used as well a French manuscript from the 1400s indicates that a form of sanding was used at that time to refine a Surface after using the Edge tools it said first make the wood very flat and smooth by scraping it and lastly by rubbing it with that herb which is called shave grass another manuscript from the 16th century describes polishing wood with burnt pumice stone well rubbed with a coarse cloth and with said powder another 16th century manuscript makes it clear that the practice was by that time already an old one in woodworking for the final smoothing of woodwork the medieval equivalent of sandpaper seems to have been the rough skin of a dogfish while it's trendy today to think of the popular 18th Century Masters using nothing but finely tuned hand planes Andre rubose 1769 Treatise on the craft explains how to make a palisois or a polisher from a bundle of stems which was used to both a braid and to burnish wood to a fine finish Anthony hay the 18th century cabinet maker of Williamsburg Virginia was known to use sharkskins to smooth his work surviving texts from the 1700s even teach how to make your own sandpaper by gluing fine sand to brown paper the result was said to be equal in quality to fish skins so clearly the practice of sanding has ancient Origins and some of the finest woodwork that survives in museums today was smooth at least in part with some form of natural or man-made abrasive sheet so the next time someone tells you that the old-timers just scraped and planed everything and would have rejected our modern sandpaper you can just laugh knowing that great Craftsmen like Townsend and Goddard and Chippendale and others would have killed for a sheet of today's sandpaper now check this out this is a Koenigsegg Sweden's Finest Sports Car this is a joburg's Sweden's finest workbench there are things for people who appreciate quality and high performance something they can pass down to their grandkids grandkids you can't afford this but this will cost you less than a good cabinet saw check out what showbricks has to offer at the link below this video

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