There’s no end to what can be accomplished with precision blasting. Whether you’re cleaning, deburring, or etching, our Micro Abrasive Blasting Units are designed for ease, flexibility, and control. But like any tool, they perform at their best when handled and maintained right.
Here are five simple tips to help master the machining process and improve your blasting work, every time.
1. Prep before you blast
Talk to any experienced blast operator and they’ll tell you a successful job starts before you turn on the blaster. For some applications, power-washing the area you’ll be blasting to remove excess grease and dirt can significantly reduce blasting time. Protect bolt threads by using clear plastic tubing of the same diameter to slide over the bolt. In short, make sure you’re set up properly for the task at hand before you start to prevent time wasted later.
2. Invest in the right equipment
The key to effective media blasting is maintaining constant pressure. If your unit can’t produce the pressure required to keep pace, you’ll have to constantly run it at max capacity. This in turn will cause excessive heat, create moisture in the lines, and possibly clog the blaster.
Whether you’re shaving micrometers off an electrical component or finishing metals and removing burrs, you can’t achieve blasting success without the right equipment. Make sure you read the model’s specifications or contact the manufacturer directly to ensure your equipment is right for your task.
3. Shorten your hose
A big mistake that many inexperienced blast operators make is choosing a long air hose simply out of convenience. Sure, it’s nice being able to reach any area, but excessive hose length is actually detrimental to your work. Bends and kinks can cause your unit to work harder and drop in pressure (around 5-10 psi), so it’s best to work with a hose that’s the right length for your task.
4. Adjust your angle
Proper technique is the hallmark of any good blast operator. The position of the blast hose in relation to your body can drastically improve comfort and efficiency. If you’re ground blasting, hold the blast hose in front of your body or over your shoulder, using your body weight to absorb pressure. If using 100 psi air pressure, position the nozzle 90° to the work surface to allow the abrasive to properly impact the surface.
5. Choose the right variable
There are six variables that can be altered to achieve different outcomes based on the type of work: air pressure, powder flow rate, nozzle size, nozzle distance, and angle of contact. It’s important to familiarize yourself with all of them, but possibly the most important is the type of powder you choose to work with.
At Airbrasive, our powders are blended from a wide variety of different materials, and you’ll need to choose the right powder to get the most out of abrasive blasting technology. We’re always happy to advise you about which type of powder will work best for you challenge.
To find more tips and advice for your next blasting project, contact us today.