floor sandpaper rolls

Sandpaper Rolls for Drum Floor Sanders

Empire Abrasives carries quality floor sanding rolls at an affordable price. They are available in combinations of 8” or 12” widths with 25’ or 50 yard roll lengths. The rolls are extremely convenient for floor sanding jobs by allowing you to cut the sanding sheet to size for your drum sander’s specifications.

These rolls work well with large and small jobs for sanding, stripping, and refinishing the following surfaces:

  • Hardwood floors (zirc, silicon carbide, ceramic)
  • Concrete (silicon carbide)
  • Pre-finished floors, exotic woods (ceramic)

Different Abrasive Grains for Floor Sanders

Below are brief descriptions of the abrasives used on our drum sander rolls to help you decide the best sandpaper rolls for your job. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to an Empire Abrasives staff member on chat or phone.


Zirconia (aka zirc) is the most popular choice for these types of rolls. They are extremely durable and long lasting with their friable structure that allows sharp edges to emerge as the grains break down from use. Our zirconia rolls are also load-resistant which keeps you working longer without having to change out the sandpaper on your sander.

Common uses: Sanding, stripping, heavy stock removal, and refinishing hardwood floors

Silicon Carbide

Silicon carbide abrasive grains are extra sharp and strong enough to work on both hardwood floor and concrete surfaces. Silicon carbide is the hardest of the three abrasive grains here, nearly as hard as diamonds. More friable than zirconia, this abrasive will break down into tiny shards keeping the surface of this abrasive sharper throughout use, which is great for quick cutting purposes, but won’t likely last as long as zirc sandpaper.

Silicon carbide sanding drum rolls are available with options of either F-weight paper backing or X-weight cloth backing (more on that below).

Common uses: Sanding, stripping and refinishing hardwood floors and concrete floors


Ceramic is less friable than silicon carbide or zirc, meaning it won’t break down and self-sharpen as often, but it is stronger and stays sharper for longer before you would need it to. Ceramic is also the best choice when you need the fastest cutting abrasive and/or do not want to generate too much heat sanding a surface as it is able to stay cooler for longer periods of use. The 8”x25’ ceramic sandpaper rolls we carry have a lubricated top size coating that allows for even cooler cutting while also minimizing loading.

Common uses:

  • Sanding pre-finished floors, hardwood floors, exotic woods
  • Stripping and refinishing pre-finished or hardwood floors

X-Weight vs F-Weight Backing

All Empire Abrasives drum sander rolls have X-weight cloth backing, except for the 8" x 50 YD Silicon Carbide roll with F-weight paper backing.

F-weight backing is an extra heavy paper made for heavy duty grinding. It is the heaviest of the paper backings which provides extra strength and durability, but a less expensive alternative to the higher-priced cloth backed abrasives that offer more flexibility.

X-weight backing is a heavy-duty cloth backing that offers more durability and flexibility than the strongest paper backed abrasives. They are more tear-resistant and can be used for longer and more aggressive applications.