Many a time, we have been faced with a situation in which we need to smoothen a surface for various reasons. This could be before applying some kind of adhesive, painting or texturing a metal surface to fit in a specific mold. In all these cases, there is a technique that comes in handy, sandblasting.
So exactly what is sandblasting?
Cleaning By Propelling Fine Materials
In essence, sandblasting consists of a process of thrusting very fine materials, at high speed, against a designated surface. The desired outcome is to clean or carve the object. The choice of material can differ, but most often, sand is utilized.
The main advantage with this process is that it is capable of dislodging stubborn paint, coating and other debris for an extremely smooth finish. In order to get started, one will need some basic equipment as follows:
- Abrasive material [in this case sand]
- Air compressor
- Blaster nozzle
Methods of Sandblasting
While the methodology has evolved over time, there are two main methods that users opt for when it comes to sandblasting.
- Air-driven: This method works best with metal surfaces. A huge benefit with air-driven sandblasting is that it prevents water intrusion and / or moisture buildup on the material.
- Water-driven: As the name suggest, this process is facilitated by the use of water. As such, it has the benefit of cooling the application surface, thus reduce the degradation of the material.
What Is Sandblasting Best Practice
Like any other industrial activity, one needs to take some precautions to ensure successful implementation and safety at all times. Standard safety gear is a prerequisite as there may be flying chips and objects during the sandblasting process.
Failure to adhere to these guidelines may result in injury caused by fine particles that can irritate the eyes. Prolonged inhalation of these dust particles can also lead to silicosis a severe form of lung disease.