Being able to heat treat metal machines and parts is a critical aspect of keeping your tools and equipment in top shape. Over time, your soft metals may harden, your hard metals may soften, they may experience rust or corrosion—any of these factors will cause your equipment to falter, which could negatively effect your livelihood or your simple enjoyment of working with metal tools and parts. Heat treatment can restore damaged and degraded metal and return it to its prime condition, thus allowing you to work with your equipment without worrying about whether it’s going to last.
But, heat treatment has its own drawbacks. As the metal heats up and cools down, it can become discolored and carbon buildups can occur. In other words, your equipment may not look its best or function at its optimal level after a heat treatment. Fortunately, with abrasive blasting, your metal parts and machines can be restored to a uniform color and texture—and gain improved functionality—following heat treatments in Gastonia, NC.
Abrasive blasting involves the spraying of abrasive materials—frequently sand, fine particles of glass, water, air or even baking soda—with high-powered equipment as a means of smoothing rough surfaces, adding texture to smooth surfaces, giving shape to surfaces or removing contamination. Blasting equipment comes in a variety of forms, ranging from small and portable to large and multi-dimensional. Larger blasting equipment generally includes a component that allows for the recycling of the blasting material. Some blast rooms even have a mechanism for cleaning the recycled material. This makes abrasive blasting even more economical. In addition to the time saved by blasting, as opposed to cleaning parts and components by hand, the blasting materials themselves are often reusable.
Perhaps the most appealing thing about abrasive blasting is that it works without damaging the surface of whatever is being cleaned. It’s also possible to clean a large surface relatively quickly, reducing work time by anywhere from 25 to 75 percent, and the precision of the blast also means it can access hard-to-reach areas.
Another feature of some blasting equipment is that it comes with a collector for dust. While the most obvious benefit of this is that it minimizes the dust that will need to be cleaned up, it also prevents potentially harmful materials from getting into the air. Lead and silica, both of which are extremely harmful when taken into the lungs, can be mixed in with airborne dust, so abrasive blasting equipment that features dust-collecting components improves the safety of workers and the general public.
Given the variety of materials that may be used and its many possible results, it’s easy to see why abrasive blasting is used across industries and in a vast range of contexts.
Because there are so many different types of abrasive blasting, and different materials work better on different surfaces, being able to rely on professionals with decades of experience will provide peace of mind and free you from concerns related to the process. If you have questions about abrasive blasting after heat treatments in Gastonia, NC, visit J.F. Heat Treating Inc.