Blast Cleaning Contractor Shropshire and Mid Wales : Tel 01743 884 888

Abrasive Blast Cleaning

Abrasive blast cleaning uses abrasive media suspended in a high pressure compressed air stream to impact and remove surface coatings from a substrate (base material) in preparation for restoration painting , coating , or refinishing.

Abrasive blast cleaning is used in many cleaning, preparation, and restoration processes to remove paint, rust and general and surface coatings before refinishing or application of corrosion protection in many industries including:

Automotive applications for blast cleaning

  • Automotive vehicle bodies to remove rust, corrosion, body sealant, underseals
  • HGV Truck Bodies, Chassis, and Trailer
  • Commercial vehicle body preparation before refinishing
  • Classic and vintage vehicle panels
  • Autoelectrical Components
  • Engine parts
  • Gearbox and transmission components
  • Alloy and Steel Wheels
  • Aluminium
  • Classic vehicle components
  • Agricultural industry applications for blast cleaning

  • Tractor panels and Wheels abrasive blast clean to remove rust and paint before repaint
  • Vintage tractor components
  • Agricultural engines gearboxes axles wheels
  • Blast cleaning of farm machinery to prepare for repaint to increase the residual capital asset sales value
  • Waste Industry applications for blast cleaning

    Abrasive blasting of Waste Skips and Bins prior to prime and paint

    Abrasive blasting of Refuse Compactor Bodies

    Abrasive blasting of Municipal waste vehicle packer plate and carriage plate to prepare for welding and plating

    Construction industry applications for Abrasive Blasting

  • Buildings
  • Brickwork, Masonry and Stone
  • Fireplaces
  • Statues and Monuments
  • Timber Beams, Doors and Panels
  • Steelwork : Removal of paints,surface coatings, and rust from Steel girders, Gates
  • Architectural Wrought Ironwork
  • Graffiti Removal
  • Construction Plant and Machinery refinishing

    Blast cleaning of excavator components such as booms, dipper arm, buckets, before refinish.

    Blast cleaning of Dumpers and site machinery

    Food Processing Industry applications

  • Cleaning of commercial catering equipment
  • Print finishing machinery

    Blast cleaning has application processes for restoration of prining machinery to remove printing inks from rollers.

    Marine and Boat applications for blast cleaning

    Paint removal from Steel substrate

    Paint removal from fibreglass using Soda blasting

    Motorcycle restoration applications for blast cleaning

    Light duty sandblasting to remove paint and rust from motorcycle frames

    Soda blasting to remove paint from motorcycle fuel tanks prior to refinishing

    Soda blasting to remove corrosion from aluminium engine and gearbox casings

    Steel fabrication industry blast cleaning

    Blast cleaning to remove coatings of rust and paint prior to Non Destructive Testing (NDT) and crack detection.

    Shot peening to increase metal surface hardness

    Blast cleaning of girders before refinishing

    Wrought ironwork blast cleaning

    Blast cleaning of Wrought ironwork gates and garden furniture

    Surface preparation - Attention to detail

    Surface preparation is a key component affecting finish quality and longevity of the final surface coating. (See BS EN ISO 8501-1:2007 Standard for further information on surface preparation of steels
    Sa 1 : Light blast cleaning
    Sa 2 : Thorough blast cleaning
    Sa 2.5 : Very thorough blast cleaning
    Sa 3 : Blast cleaning to visual clean steel ).

    A clean contaminant free air supply is required from the air compressor used for blast cleaning. Oil and water is seperated from the air stream using filters and pressure seperator vessel.

    Dry abrasive blasting may leave traces of dust which may need removal from the surface to be refinished. Level of dust on the surface can be assessed using adhesive dust tape and magnifying lens. Dust can be removed by vacuuming, air blast, brushing, or wipe down.

    Surface finish

    The surface finish required is determined by many factors including choice of abrasive media for hardness, blast nozzle type and size, air pressure, hardness of the substrate, speed of blasting .

    Abrasive Media

    A wide range of grades of granulated abrasives may be used for blast cleaning including Alumina, Chilled Iron, Corn cob, Crushed Glass,garnet, Olivine (olive shells), Walnut Shells, Sodium Bicarbonate,


    Hardness of materials can be measured by various processes eg, Rockwell, Vickers, and Mohs. The Mohs scale relates the ability of one harder material to scratch surface of another softer material. Mohs is often used as a reference for abrasive hardness to select abrasive blast media dependant on the required surface finish of the item to be cleaned.

    Abrasives are either expendable or recyclable.

    Soda Blast Cleaning

    Soda Blasting or Soda Blast Cleaning offers low toxicity and is often referred to as a non-destructive cleaning process when compared to traditional sandblasting.

    The Soda blast cleaning process utiliises mild abrasive cleaning action of sodium bicarbonate granules suspended in a high pressure airstream. Sodium bicarbonate is blasted at the surface coating to be removed. As the Soda granules impact the material the granules disintegrate removing surface coatings such as corrosion, paint ,oil, and grease, in the surface preparation process allowing layer by layer strip to bare metal or substrate.

    SodaBlast Cleaning v. Sandblasting

    The Soda Blast Cleaning Process has many benefits over traditional Dry Abrasive blast processes.

    Advantages of Soda Blast Cleaning

  • Environmentally friendly process ; Sodium Bicarbonate is commonly known as Baking Powder therefore offers a cleaning method compatible with food process machinery.
  • Water Soluble ; can be washed off.
  • Soda blast media has lower Mohs granular hardness than traditional sandblasting sand and crushed glass, also avoids etching of glass.
  • Accurate pressure control of the Soda blast cleaning process can remove coatings in stages, layer by layer reducing risk of damage to substrate (base) materials.
  • Disadvantages of Soda Blast Cleaning

    Green vegetation can suffer leaf damage in contact with Sodium compounds.

    Dry Abrasive Blasting

    The traditional 'sandblasting', shotblasting or Dry abrasive blasting process is very effective at removing surface coatings but has disadvantages of dust creation. Crushed aggregates can potentially produce harmful crystalline silica dust which has been proven to cause Silicosis see also link after long term exposure therefore the materials used must be selected carefully and adequate respiratory protection used, combined with dust control .

    Dry abrasive blasting produces a more aggressive rougher surface finish. The rougher surface finish can provide a good 'key' for refinishing products. Milder abrasives suh as Walnut Shell, Olive Shell may be used .

    Wet Blasting

    Water is added either in the blast pot, or to the blast air and abrasive stream to produce an abrasive slurry. Abrasive slurry blasting offers a fast safer dust free blasting method and controllable method of surface coating removal.

    Soda slurry blasting produces a smoother surface finish with reduced risk of embedding blast material into the surface, ideal for Aluminium components.

    Advantages of Wet blasting include:
    Reduced abrasive consumption therefore lower cost
    Increased safety by reducing airborne dusts
    Superior surface finish
    Water added to the blast cleaning process acts as a lubricant reducing friction therefore allowing the blast process to operate at a cooler temperature. Reduced temperature also reduces the risk of distortion, warping and bending of delicate components such as vehicle body panels which can easily happen if sandblasted.

    Wet blasting may cause flash rusting of ferrous components though rust inhibitor additives (eg,Holdtight) may be used to reduce the effects of flash rust, or alternatively a light dry blast clean used as a secondary process.

    Aviation and Military

  • Wet blast cleaning has applications in Aviation and Military equipment where extra precision is required.
  • Vapor Blasting

    Accustrip Blasting System

    We currently operate Schmidt Axxiom Accustrip blast cleaning machines. Reports from users have claimed that the highly controllable Accublast system will remove a single layer of paint, print from an egg, print from newspaper.

    Health and Safety Policy

    Blast cleaning operations must be carried out in conjunction with safe working procedures: Risk Assessment , Operator Training, COSHH.

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    All information on this website is provided in good faith but no reliance on accuracy of information should be made for legal purposes.All trademarks and brands are property of their legal owners and used for reference purposes only.