Media Blasting for Your Business
Media blasting is an aggressive, powerful technique for scouring surfaces. Similar to powder coating, it uses an air gun to fire media at a surface at high speed…but instead of coating the surface, media blasting removes any coating on the surface. It also obliterates rust, gunk, and other hard buildup.
Media blasting is an extremely effective cleaning technique for many applications. It is also useful for deburring, polishing, and prepping for powder coating or conventional paint.
Why Media Blasting?
When you’re cleaning or scouring a surface, your first thought might be to use a chemical cleaner of some kind. For most conventional applications, these chemicals can do a fine job.
But chemical cleaners have significant limitations. For one, the solvents and fumes they release can be extremely harmful. For another, chemicals by themselves lack the mechanical, abrasive action required for caked-on rust, carbon deposits, and stains. Many also have long working times.
This is where media blasting excels. By firing thousands of small, abrasive particles at a surface in rapid succession, it physically removes buildup through brute force in a fraction of the time.Media blasting is also an easy way to prep a surface for powder-coating or conventional paint.
The most important step in preparation is selecting the right media. Silica sand, walnut shells, crushed glass, and even baking soda can all be used. However, it’s not as simple as just choosing a material: particle shape, size, density, and hardness all have to be considered.
The choice of media primarily depends on two factors:
- What type of surface are you blasting? Glass and soft metals can be ruined by blast media that’s too harsh. Conversely, stainless steel, cast iron, and stone may require more heavy duty media.
- What is the goal of the project? For a light cleaning or polish, softer, smaller media may be ideal. For hard scouring or corrosion removal, a very strong material like steel shot may be used.
Media blasting is often performed in a special cabinet that both protects the user and enables recycling of media. However, it can be performed in the field; in these cases, additional prep and safety precautions are required.