Metallic blasting abrasives

Abrasives can be roughly divided into metallic and non-metallic types. The most common metallic grades are:

High carbon steel granules
Is used in blast wheel blasting systems (e.g. hanger-type blast machine) and is used in various applications, including de-sanding, descaling, cleaning of cast parts made of cast iron and steel as well as shot peening.

Low carbon steel granules (stainless steel granules)
Stainless steel grains (Fig. 1, e.g. CHRONITAL, (VULKAN INOX GmbH) is suitable for use in centrifugal wheel blast machines as well as air blast systems and finds use in
cleaning, deburring, hardening, descaling, roughening and surface improvement of:

  • Aluminum, bronze, brass, zinc and stainless castings
  • Aluminum, brass and stainless forgings
  • Aluminum and stainless profiles
  • Stainless wire
  • Stainless and steel components
  • Titanium or nickel-based alloys
  • Concrete paver and natural stone

When using rustproof aluminum- or light metal castings, there are no contaminating iron residues and the blasting performance is convincing. Stainless steel abrasives are very resistant.

Technical Data, example (VULKAN INOX GmbH)

Stainless blasting abrasives offers the following advantages (VULKAN INOX GmbH):

  • Great durability
  • Short blasting times
  • Bright appearance
  • Rust-free surfaces
  • Reduced wear of blast cleaning equipment
  • Low waste disposal costs
  • Dust-free blasting process

Stainless steel abrasives are manufactured by melting selected scrap and stainless-steel scrap in induction furnaces. The desired chemical composition is reached by adding additional alloys, such as chrome and nickel. The molten metal is then subjected to an atomizing process. The resulting spherical abrasives is dried, screened and packaged.

Chilled cast iron grit
Chilled cast iron granulate (Fig. 2) is a hard abrasive, but it has a lower impact resistance. During the blasting process, the chilled cast iron granules break up at an angle and a permanent mixture with sharp-edged grain is created. Chilled cast granulate has excellent cleaning properties but has a decidedly shorter lifespan than cast steel blasting media. Chilled cast granulate is suitable for use in free jet blowers for quick cleaning and grinding, but should not be used in centrifugal blasting systems, as this leads to faster wear of the parts.

Stainless steel wire shot
Cut stainless steel wire (Fig. 3). The cut steel wire grain is used for cleaning blasting applications. Steel wire grain is very aggressive and therefore very effective for heavy impurities. However, there are very strong signs of wear, particularly on the centrifugal blades of the system. Treated steel wire is used for shot peening.

Aluminum oxide
Electro-corundum blasting abrasive with a very hard and solid grain, which makes it very wear resistant (Fig. 4). It is also offered as an aluminum wire grain and aluminum shot and is usually iron-free.
Aluminum wire grain is mainly used for cleaning blasting, surface finishing and deburring of cast and forged parts made of aluminum. It is very resistant and does not leave any ferrous residues on the part.

Zinc cut wire
Zinc wire grain (Fig. 5) is a relatively soft, high-density abrasive that is characterized by good kinetic energy. It generates less dust than steel or aluminum abrasives and causes relatively low wear on blasting machine components. Zinc wire grain is used among others when deburring die-cast parts made of zinc or aluminum alloys.

 

Additional references:
Blasting abrasives
Wire mesh conveyor shot blast machine
Hanger-type blast machine
Nonmetallic blasting abrasives

  • Fig. 1: Stainless steel blasting abrasive CHRONITAL® (VULKAN INOX GmbH)
  • Fig. 2: Chilled cast iron grit (Arteka)
  • Fig. 3: Stainless steel wire shot (Rewa)
  • Fig. 4: Aluminium Oxide (Arteka)
  • Fig. 5: Zinc cut wire (Airblast B.V.)