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What is wet abrasive blasting


One of the original pioneers of the wet abrasive (vapourmatting) process was Norman Ashworth who found the advantages of using a wet process a strong alternative to sandblasting which is banned in many countries.
 

Common features include: the ability to use extremely fine or coarse media with densities ranging from plastic to steel, the ability to use hot water and soap to allow simultaneous degreasing and blasting, elimination of dust—so silicacious materials can be used without worry, hazardous material or waste can be removed without danger—e.g., removal of asbestos, radioactive, or other poisonous products from components and structures leading to effective decontamination.
 

The process is available in all conventional formats including hand cabinets, walk-in booths, automated production machinery and total loss portable blasting units.
 

Process speeds can be as fast as conventional dry sand blasting when using the equivalent size and type of media. However the presence of water between the media and the substrate being processed creates a lubricating cushion that can protect both the media and the surface from excess damage. This has the dual advantage of lowering media breakdown rates and preventing impregnation of foreign materials into the surface. Hence surfaces after wet blasting are extremely clean, there is no embedded secondary contamination from the media or from previous blasting processes, and there is no static cling of dust to the blasted surface. Subsequent coating or bonding operations are always better after wet blasting than dry blasting because of the cleanliness levels achieved. The lack of surface recontamination also allows the use of single equipment for multiple blasting operations—e.g., stainless steel and carbon (mild) steel items can be processed in the same equipment with the same media without problems.

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