Types of Sandblasting

December 18, 2018 9:17 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Sandblasting is a process frequently used in industrial applications for polishing or smoothing out rough surfaces. Many pieces of machinery, tools and metal parts you use have likely been sandblasted to give them their finished appearance, but there are plenty of other applications for sandblasting as well, including sandblasting surfaces in preparation for repainting or refinishing. We frequently perform tank sandblasting in Colorado, for example, as a means to prepare storage tanks for a fresh coat of paint.

“Sandblasting” is a colloquial term for abrasive blasting, a process in which an abrasive medium is used to blast a surface to make it smoother and remove any existing impurities. This medium gets blasted with a significant amount of pressure, which can be fine-tuned to determine how fast the material will be removed and what quality the results will be.

Many people refer to any type of abrasive blasting as sandblasting, because in the past sand was the only medium used in the process. However, there are actually many different types of abrasive blasting used today.

Here are just a few examples:

  • Silica sand or dioxide: Silicon dioxide is ordinary sand, also known as silica or quartz. This type of sandblasting has been used for many years to remove impurities from surfaces, because sand particles are generally the same size and the edges of the particles are sharp, making it highly effective as an abrasive. Today, though, it is not used quite as frequently as other types of blasting, because there are other abrasive media that have been found to work better. In addition, long-term exposure to silica can result in respiratory issues.
  • Steel grit: Steel grit is used as an abrasive to remove paint and rust off of steel metals. It results in a highly smooth finish on metal, and is particularly fast.
  • Soda: Soda sandblasting uses baking soda or bicarbonate of soda for blasting. It is frequently used to strip rust from metals without resulting in any damage or depression to the metal underneath the rough surface area. It is also very popular as a grit to use on more delicate types of materials that would be more likely to be damaged by tougher abrasive media.
  • Glass bead: For a matte and satin finish, you can use glass bead sandblasting. This type of medium has some extremely fine materials that polish the surface of the object you intend to sandblast. It is most frequently used in cabinets and other similar types of applications.
  • Bristle: No separate medium is used with bristle blasting. Instead, it features the use of steel wire bristles that get rotated on a surface, brushing off impurities and resulting in a smooth surface. It is most commonly used to remove rust and corrosion from metal surfaces.

For more information about the various types of sandblasting and which might be the best fit for tank sandblasting in Colorado, we encourage you to contact the team at DJC Enterprises Inc. with any questions you have. We look forward to assisting you!

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