How Does Sandblasting Equipment Work?

Sandblasting and bead blasting are a frequently used process for removing surface rust, paint and other debris from metal, concrete, bricks and plastics. As the name implies, blasting is a process by which sand, beads or other medium are blasted at high velocity at the surface of an object, to clear it or replenish the inner workings of the part.

How Does Sandblasting Actually Work?

Sandblasting or bead blasting in Perth uses an abrasive media and pulls it through an air gun at high speed. It literally shoots or ‘blasts’ the media at your material at very high velocity. It’s similar to a moving wall of sandpaper.  It gets into just about every nook and cranny imaginable, leaving surfaces smooth and clean.

A sandblasting gun often has two main lines or hoses. The first, and often the largest of the two, is the hose which provides the compressed air to the gun. The other line is what delivers the sand, beads or other media from where it is stored, usually underneath the sandblasting machine.

Sandblasting Health and Safety

Holding a sandblasting gun and working it with bare hands would no doubt end in misery and cause serious injury. You need to protect your hands from the abrasive action of the sand hitting your skin. Sandblasting cabinets take that into consideration, always providing a pair of gloves that are secured inside the cabinet. This allows you to work in safety when sandblasting.

Bead blasting in particular, is a process used to create a finish that has a rough feel to it, but which is consistent throughout the job. Apart from sand and bead blasting, there are a variety of different types of blasting available for different jobs or surfaces. Be sure to check the type of media you need for your job.

Examples of Common Types of Blasting

Some of the most common include:

  • Grit blasting – an almost infinite amount of grit sizes can be used to clean anything from industrial equipment to the hull of an oil tanker
  • Soda blasting – used to remove paint and other common substances without damaging the original surface
  • Glass bead blasting – this type of blasting is used to achieve a shiny, reflective sheen in metals such as stainless steel. This type of metal is often used in kitchen equipment that require a clean finish

There are strict regulations surrounding the use of sandblasting equipment. Anyone using a sand or bead blasting gun for private use should always get professional safety advice.