Types of Abrasive Blasting Technique and the Applications

Abrasive blasting refers to the process of propelling abrasive media like aluminum oxide, glass beads, steel shot, etc., upon a surface with applied force. Abrasive blasting is a key step in prepping for resurfacing and can be used for smoothing or roughening a surface, and even shaping or removing contaminants on a surface.

The abrasive blasting material, which is also referred to as the blast media, strips imperfections and paves way for a surface which would give durability. The process can enhance the aesthetics to a large extent and can be used on floors, walls, or anything which need some amount of resurfacing.

Abrasive blasting can be of several types and they are as follows. It is a labor-intensive process in general but today’s technology also makes use of capital-intensive equipment.

Bead Blasting

The process propels fine glass beads at higher pressures to clean the deposits on a surface in a way the surface won’t be damaged. They can be a fungus, strips of paint, or even calcium deposits formed on the walls due to temperature variances and evaporation.

Shot Blasting

The media can be steel shots, aluminum or even copper shots upon the surface in order to clean, peen or polish the same. Steel shots would resurface aluminum or zinc die cast components and is used to gently remove flash. The process can be of two types, namely wheel blasting and air blasting. The airless blasting makes use of inertial force to stream abrasives upon the surface without the aid of propellants. In air blasting, machines propel shots like glass beads against the surface using compressed air.

Sandblasting and Soda Blasting

The abrasive media is silica sand in sandblasting. The process makes use of high-pressure to propel shots against the surface and is done for clearing surface deposits or for resurfacing. Many professionals consider soda blasting process as abrasive although some do consider it as non-abrasive. The minor difference between the two lies on the blasting media, which is Sodium Bicarbonate, also known as baking soda.

Apart from the usage of blasting media, blasting equipment is also used in shot blasting. The abrasive media get blasted and formed into a desired structure in the blast cabinet even more quickly, and would aid the technical operator.