What is a Shot Blasting Machine?


Blasting Machine

Used in blasting work, a shot blasting machine allows operators to safely and efficiently apply abrasive materials to the work items in question.

This can range from handheld devices that can be used to strip concrete flooring to room-sized units that are used for cleaning and stripping industrial machine parts or other work items.
No matter which shot or grit blasting machine chosen, the type and specification of shot or grit is extremely important for getting the results that you want. This can involve the use of steel or stainless steel spherical particles (shot) or highly abrasive steel and stainless steel grit; all of which allow you to get the best productivity and cost-effectiveness from your blasting machine.

How does an automatic blast machine work?

A blast machine works by propelling abrasive against the surface of a metal or steel product to remove any impurities. The benefits of doing this are:

1. It de-scales and cleans the surface removing corrosion and any metallic waste

2. It makes the surface uniform and provides a known surface roughness profile which helps with the adhesion of paint or other applications

3. It reduces maintenance by increasing the longevity of any coating which may be subsequently applied

Abrasive shot material is propelled towards the steel or metallic surface using a centrifugal wheel. When the wheel turns, the abrasive material is directed to the surface at high-speed to prepare the product for finishing. During the process, contaminants from the surface are captured in the dust collection system of the blast machine.

What are shot blasting machines used for?

Shot blasting machines are used in the direct application of abrasive shot to a material or surface of your choice.
This can involve the deployment of steel shot for peening actions, allowing metals to be strengthened for purpose, as well as desanding and descaling parts. However, shot blasting is perhaps most commonly used as a pre-treatment step for preparing surfaces for fresh layers of paint or removing imperfections. This allows for the application of a solid, consistent base coat, providing coverage and a high-quality finish.

Blast Cleaning Machine

What is blast cleaning equipment?

Blast cleaning is the use of an abrasive material that is fired at high speeds at a metal component to remove sand or scale. The blast cleaning equipment is the machinery needed to do blast cleaning. There are several parts to a blast cleaning machine.

These include-

a) Shot Delivery System: This controls how your chosen shot is physically applied to the metal you are working with. This comes in two forms, either through compressed air or through an enclosed centrifuge wheel. If the shot is applied through a compressed air unit, this can be mounted on a mechanical arm or applied manually. This helps with delicate work on smaller or unusually shaped objects, but can also allow larger more complex shapes that would not fit into a wheel machine. If a centrifuge is deployed, this involves the use of as many individual turbines as required to properly cover the object in question. This is commonly utilised in an enclosed system, providing maximum safety but potentially causing issues with full coverage if the object is irregularly sized or positioned incorrectly.

b) Material Recovery System: If shot is not continuously recycled, the process becomes highly inefficient and uneconomical. As a result, any shot blasting system should deploy a material recovery element that allows for ‘constant cleaning’. This is normally enabled through a collection mechanism that captures fallen shot, feeding it back into your blasting equipment. This is then filtered internally in the machine, using moving air, to remove contaminants from the metal shot before adding it back into the machine for repeated use.

c) Air Filtration System: One of the major risks of conducting shot blasting comes from the tiny particles that can fragment and enter the air. Without this, the blasting environment could become not only difficult to work in, but also unsafe due to constant inhalation of dust. This can involve the deployment of baffle, replaceable cartridges, or both. It is essential that you check your dust collector is fit for purpose as the production of high volume contaminants can result on a drop-off in efficiency and the introduction of risk to your work.

d) Blasting Area: This is normally handled by having shot blasting take place in a blast cabinet, preventing any risks of contamination or spillage from your work. These are also made from hardened materials to prevent high velocity shot from penetrating the cabinet or ricocheting around inside the space and causing damage to equipment or operators. These can also be sealed, reducing air pressure and preventing contaminants from entering the air of your workspace.

e) Container Unit: When shot blasting is undertaken, it is critically important that the material being blasted is safely and correctly secured. This normally involves tumble blast machines for bulk work or spinner hanger machines for larger, denser pieces. If the work involves high-velocity peening, it is important to seek out specialised equipment to ensure that it will not be damaged by the peening shot and that there is a way to safely ensure even coverage without placing the operator at risk.

f) Control Unit: This allows the operator to start, stop, and manage the shot blasting process. If automation is possible, it is still important for the operator to understand the process involved with manually starting the machinery and its safe operation for the task at hand. As with all industrial equipment, every operator should be fully familiar with the emergency stop functionality on the system and the location of the emergency stop button on your shop floor.


What are the benefits of using shot blasting machines?

Using a shot blasting machine can help ensure that your important project tasks are completed safely, effectively, and within budget, allowing for large quantities of work pieces to be cleaned at once either by batch or continuous processes.

Choosing the right automatic blasting machine can dramatically cut down the amount of effort required to finish out a product. And deploying a specialised unit can help you find innovative solutions for common complications on your production line and give you a more consistent result.

With a wide range of mechanisms and units available, there is always going to be an abrasive material delivery system that is right for you and your teams; optimising resource usage, energy, labour and abrasive material, ensuring the highest possible standards of compliance throughout your process chain.


How can Ervin help?

Working with a range of high-quality shot, our teams specialise in the production of cast steel and stainless steel shot and grit that meets independent international standards. These can allow you to better optimise your working processes and ensure the highest possible standards of operation for your machines. Choosing the right abrasive to use in your shot blasting machine can be the difference in achieving a high productivity, low cost process.

Find out more

If you want to learn more about how shot blasting can help add value to your work, our team at Ervin Industries are here to help. With many years of professional experience supporting a range of sectors, we are here to help you enjoy the highest standards of quality and service in your work.

You can review our list of products and shot blasting materials in full from here. Or, if you have any bespoke questions or queries about your projects, please do not hesitate to get in touch directly and let our team know exactly what you need.

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Our sales office can guide you through the quotation process. Please call +49 30 400 37846, visit the contact page or complete the form below.

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