There are many types of abrasive blasting and they all have advantages and disadvantages when compared to other media. The right type of blasting should be selected based on the specific scenario of your project. In this article, we will discuss these different types of methods and what they can do for you!
The Different Types of Abrasive Blasting
Abrasive blasting is a process by which an abrasive material (known as medium) is used to blast through the surface in order to make it smooth or remove impurities. A lot of pressure needs to be applied, with the amount determining how fast the job will take and what kind of results you’ll see.
There are many types of blasting you can use, soda is just one. There are three other common types of abrasive blasting: water, sand and glass beads.
Silica or Sandblasting
Silica sand is a type of abrasive grit that was commonly used in the past for removing impurities from surfaces. This technique, however, has fallen out of favour as it can cause respiratory diseases and other materials work better than sand when blasting contaminants off an object.
Steel grit is often used in the process of removing paint and rust from a steel surface. The wide variety of granules on this abrasive make it ideal for fast cutting, leaving you with smoother surfaces than other materials could achieve.
Glass bead is best for cleaning a surface without leaving much of an impression. This grit has very fine materials that polish the object being blasted, which makes it perfect for matte and satin finishes.
Plastic abrasive is a less aggressive media than most other types of abrasives, making it perfect for blasting on softer substrates. It’s commonly used for plastic components and mold cleaning because that type of surface can’t withstand the wearing force of other methods without breaking down.
In a process called Soda Blasting, sodium bicarbonate particles are propelled on to surfaces using compressed air. The propulsion of the soda crystals causes them break up on impact and clean surfaces in an otherwise non-damaging way. This is done by hitting just enough so that paint or grime can be removed without any damage
Choosing the Right Abrasive Media
|Media||Silica||Steel Grit||Glass Bead||Plastic||Soda|
|Description||Silica is aggressive and abrasive way to cut through hard surfaces quickly. It can be used for deep etched stone, glass or other materials that are tough to break down.||The abrasive granules in this compound make it perfect for aggressive striping and fast removal.||Glass beads have the perfect size and shape for cleaning without leaving much of a mark. The grit has very fine materials that polish an object, which is perfect for matte or satin finishes.||Plastic abrasive is more gentle than most other materials which makes it the perfect type of media for blasting softer and fragile surfaces. Used to clean plastics and remove paint from molding parts.||In a process called Soda Blasting, sodium bicarbonate particles are propelled onto surfaces using compressed air. The propellant causes the crystals to break upon impact which cleans in an otherwise non-damaging way. This is done by hitting just enough so that paint or grime can be removed without any damage|
|40 - 65|
Rockwell C Scale
|5 - 6|
|Surface Profile||Very High etch||High etch||Low etch-Satin||No etch||Low etch|
As you can see, there’s a lot of variety in the types of abrasive blasting methods available to suit your specific needs! Which one will be right for you? We suggest that before deciding on what type of process to use, it would be wise to consult with a professional from Pure Blast who could help analyze your project and recommend which mediums will work best.