By Bob Duncan
Imagine combining an eraser with a sanding sponge—the result is the Klingspor Sandflex hand block. I use these blocks to literally erase rust anywhere.
The blocks come in three grits: coarse, medium, and fine. Choose a coarse or medium grit based on how much rust you need to remove, and use the fine grit to remove any scratches left by the coarser grits.
The flexible rubber of the blocks acts as a binder to hold the grit. The grit removes the rust, and the rubber erases any marks left by the abrasive on the tool. The blocks are flexible enough to fit inside the curves of most gouges, and it is easy to trim or carve them to fit into even the tightest veiners.
The rubber is soft, which means that as you use the block, you are constantly exposing new abrasive and wearing it away over time. However, I’ve been using the same block for about three years to clean up tools in my shop. I wore away quite a bit the first time I cleaned my band saw and table saw tables, but I haven’t worn away much since, even though I use it to maintain my saw tables and all of my carving tools.
It is possible to use the blocks on wood or to remove stains from hard surfaces, but I save them for my tools.
The set of three Sandflex Hand Blocks are available for $18 plus S&H from Klingspor on Amazon.com.