Sand v. other media
Traditionally sand has been the blasting media of choice. It's cheep, can be found everywhere and does a fairly good job on heavy materials.However over the past 20 or 30 years specialized blast equipment and other media have virtually replaced sand. It was discovered that sand, like asbestos, will cause harm or even death if breathed. The silica dust that is created from sand as it crushes during blasting is harmful. Dust masks help but simply do not give adequate protection. Sand also heats up the surface being blasted due to friction and can cause metal to warp. This can cause irreversible damage to metal surfaces such as auto body panels.
Enter the modern age. It was discovered that processed sand, crushed glass, minimizes the silica dust to a safe level. Dust masks and breathing devices are still used to protect the operator.
Even more recently other media have been developed along with specialized equipment to allow media stripping of any surface without damage, when properly used.
Some of these media are industrial baking soda, corn cobs and crushed walnut shells. Any of these can clean the surface without breaking the surface of the material being blasted. These media can be used for automotive body stripping/preperation, graffiti removal, oil and grease removal and industrial cleaning.
Pro's, Con's and application of the different media.
- SAND: cheap, plentiful HARMFUL if BREATHED, warps metal, dusty and requires control of the dust.
- CRUSHED GLASS: About the same price of sand, plentiful, SAFE to USE, won't warp metal, cleaner than sand, can be used safely in urban areas
- INDUSTRIAL BAKING SODA: plentiful, WILL not warp metal or break the surface, if required can be used with dust control in urban areas.
- WALNUT SHELLS: can be used for a number of application's that require cleaning/stripping without surface damage, PLASTIC WOOD
- CORN COB: same as WALNUT SHELLS for even more delicate surface's
Our equipment is specialized to use all media except sand. It is infinitely adjustable for all applications from plastic's to cast iron.
We have mobile media blasting and power washing rigs, so we can come to you or you can save money by bringing your projects to us.