A Beginner’s Introduction Into Sand Blasting

Worker sandblasting at an industrial plant

A Beginner’s Introduction Into Sand Blasting

Mobile sand blasting (aka abrasive) refers to the process of smoothing a rough surface, roughen a smooth surface or remove surface contaminants. It involves using pressurised fluid (usually compressed air) to propel the pressurised stream of material into the surface. Mobile sand blasting is by no means a modern invention; in fact, the first process was patented by an inventor called Benjamin Chew Tilghman in October 1870!


Breaking down the process

By forcing solid particles across the surface at an incredibly high speed, small contaminants can be removed, while smoothing the surface. Think of it as an automated form of using rough paper; however, the results are far superior and reliable.


The equipment

Mobile sand blasting equipment consists of a small electronic chamber where both grit and air mixed. Once the gravel and the air have been mixed, it then travels through a hand-held nozzle (like a gerni). The nose is then directed at the surface. There are many different types of nozzles, which come in different sizes, shapes and materials.


Dry mobile sand blasting

Dry mobile sand blasting is one of the most common methods of abrasive grit smoothing. It is often used for steel surfaces, like trailers, cars and large cargo trucks. The purpose is to remove rust or corrosion that has formed on the surface of the steel or metal. It’s also vital that you remove any coatings on the iron if you want to repaint the metal surface. If you want to remove paint or retile a pool surface, then dry grit smoothing should be your priority.


Wet mobile sand blasting

The wet version of this process is practical for a variety of different scenarios. It works well when removing paint from wooden structures or brickwork, smoothing pool surfaces and grit smoothing concrete, like on your driveway. Wet abrasive smoothing is preferable if you want to remove dust from the process, which means you won’t have to deal with toxic dust clouds. It also saves you time, since you won’t have to worry about cleaning up dust particles after you’ve finished the project.


Safety is vital

The operator of the sandblasting machine is wearing a safety helmet and mask.

Mobile sand blasting can be a dangerous venture, posing a range of risks to worker health and safety. Dry grit smoothing generates a tremendous amount of dust, which should not be inhaled by the labourer or those in close vicinity. Consequently, face masks are crucial when using smoothing equipment.

There is also a chance of more severe injury, especially to the operator of the device. If the device is not operated safely and with care, there is a chance of burns due to projections (causing skin lesions) and heat exhaustion. Noise pollution is also a concern for operators, which is why noise-cancelling hearing protection is significant (earmuffs or earplugs).

Wearing a helmet while operating the device is also a regulatory necessity. A construction hood also works well, especially if you fall over while operating the equipment (since it will prevent head injury). Body protection usually consists of long, thick overalls; however, this is largely predicated on the scale of steel abrasives.


Benefits of mobile sand blasting

There are many great advantages of grit smoothing. Firstly, using it on your driveway will ensure that your driveway is as smooth and safe as possible. It works very well for surface preparation when you need to clean the surface for a new coating or layer of paint.

Wet mobile sand blasting is also easy to execute, and clean-up is easy. This is because there is minimal dust produced by the equipment, while the machine itself does a flawless job of removing any contaminants or marks on the surface you are smoothing.


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