Blasting a surface with abrasive materials like sand, glass or metal shot means to forcibly propel such materials under high pressure using specialised machinery that is intently made for this purpose. Sandblasting is the name we use to identify and abrasive blasting process that uses sand as the media (a term used to identify the blasting material), and is perhaps the most widely used form of blasting nowadays.
The reason for this is that sandblasting has quite a lot of uses, some of which you may already know and some that you don’t. All of them are quite essential processes, and are required to be able to maintain our day to day life:
- Paint or Rust Removal – One of the most common applications of both dry and wet blasting equipment is for the purpose or removing paint or rust from certain surfaces, mostly metallic ones. Along with paint and rust, blasting can also remove other types of contaminants and debris to prepare a surface to get a fresh coat of paint again. As you would have already guessed, this is useful for repainting car bodies and metal surfaces during home restoration projects.
- Altering the Shape of Small Parts – Small parts used in machinery, like nuts and bolts, may sometimes be produced with inaccuracies or with small defects that make them unsuitable for use. In cases like this, abrasive blasters can be effectively used to shape such materials, removing any irregularities and imperfections on their surfaces.
Cleaning Work Tools – Sandblasting also sees use as a method to clean heavy duty equipment and tools much more effectively than other conventional cleaning methods. This is especially true of metallic equipment that have rusted on the surface, such as screwdrivers or wrenches, as it allows us to just remove the rusted layer to make the tool look like new again.
- Outdoor Cleaning Purposes – You may have seen that workers may occasionally use blasting equipment to clean up streets and the exterior surfaces of old commercial buildings. High-pressure blasting is much more effective than using water to clean concrete surfaces, mostly due to its rough nature. Sandblasting, for example, can easily dislodge anything that is attached on concrete surfaces without the need for scrubbing that is required when using water.
- Other Industrial Uses – Most forms of blasting are common in the industrial sector, but they are implemented mostly for the correct preparation of metallic surfaces such as aluminium sheets or panels. Blasting can remove small imperfections that are a result of the production process, thus making it easier to apply a coat of paint or any other form of protection on top.