Materials and Grits Used in Sandblasting

June 28, 2017 11:17 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Having the right tool for the job goes a long way—especially when it comes to sandblasting in Colorado. While the process might look the same no matter what the job is, there’s actually a wide range of different abrasive media that can be employed depending on the surface being blasted. Choosing the right one will yield optimal results; choosing the wrong one could leave you working harder than you need to!

Let’s take a quick look at some of the most common abrasives and which applications they’re best suited for:

  • Crushed glass: Near the middle of the pack in terms of hardness, crushed glass is great for really aggressive sandblasting projects. It’ll strip away just about anything, from any surface! And, because glass is inert, it’s also widely applicable, making it one of the more common staples across jobs.
  • Aluminum oxide: Perhaps the most commonly-used abrasive, this solution is very, very sharp, making it highly desirable for a smooth, polished surface. It’ll strip away surface debris with ease. The best part is, it can also be recycled, making it an efficient option as well.
  • Pumice: A natural mineral, pumice is more of a mild abrasive that’s good for general surface cleanup. It has the power to remove a wide range of surface contamination, but does so in a less aggressive manner to preserve the underlying surface and protect it from accidental harm.
  • Silicon carbide: There’s no abrasive tougher than silicon carbide! This material is used only sparingly on the toughest jobs, since it has the power to actually cut right through dense mediums when focused. Because of its hardness, it can be recycled numerous times.
  • Walnut shell: A soft abrasive, walnut shell is more of a finishing material. It has the power to strip debris, but can’t harm metal materials, making it a popular choice for automotive projects or even wood cleanup.
  • Garnet: A type of mineral, garnet is a heavily abrasive material that offers optimal stripping performance. Garnet is a jack-of-all-trades option for many jobs because it’s inert and offers low dust while blasting.
  • Steel grit: As you might expect, steel grit is extremely hard and very abrasive. It’s often reserved for heavy blasting situations and is preferable in situations where high visibility is required, since it produces almost no dust. It can also be recycled over and over.
  • Plastic media: A general abrasive, plastic is a middle-of-the-road option that offers qualities like low dust, reusability and non-toxic properties. It’s ideally suited for removing finishes and moderate surface debris.

There are numerous abrasive options even beyond the above media, including coal slag, corn cob, soda crystals and various proprietary mixtures. Choosing the right one depends on the surface and the available grit of the abrasive.

For expert oversight in choosing the right abrasive for sandblasting in Colorado, speak with the professionals at DJC Enterprises Inc. We’ll advise you on the optimal abrasive for your project, so you can blast efficiently, effectively and without fear of damaging your underlayment.

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