Frequently Asked Questions
Why not use sand?
While abrasive media blasting is universally known as sand blasting, there’s actually no sand being used in our shop. The reason is that sand can have a high silica content. Fine silica powder, when inhaled, settles in the lungs and can create a potentially fatal condition known as silicosis. There are a great number of safer alternatives, natural and man made, to sand. Worksafe BC also proscribes the use of silica based abrasive media, so for those reasons, we don’t use it. Check out¬†the Wikipedia article on Silicosis for more information, and be sure to check out the MEDIA TYPES section for a description of the medias we do use.
Can I remove powder coating?
Yes, but slowly. Powder coating uses heat to melt the powder into a hard impermeable layer. Our experience is that our equipment manages to melt the coating rather than shatter it, and consequently it takes quite a bit of time to remove it. It can be treated in advance with Aircraft stripper and scraped off. Confer with a staff member if you would like to test blast a piece before committing to an entire project.
Can I remove chrome?
Yes, No, maybe, we’re not sure… Seriously, removing chrome can be a problem. Old chrome from “the good old days” is nearly impossible to remove. Cheap chrome from offshore can sometimes blow off like poorly glued tin foil. The best way to remove chrome is to reverse the electro-chemical process that put it on, but that can be expensive in BC. As long as the chrome is in reasonably good shape, you can etch the surface to prepare it for paint or powder coat, but keep in mind the outer coating is only as strong as the underlying chrome’s ability to hold onto the substrate. Confer with a staff member if you would like to test blast a piece before committing to an entire project.
Why does my project have to be oil and grease free before blasting?
Our MOD-U-BLAST cabinets re-circulate the media and a cyclone filter pulls blasted coatings, rust and spent media into a cotton filter array. This system depends on dry media to function correctly. Introducing liquids or grease into the system binds the media and clogs the filters. We simply cannot tolerate dirty media and clogged filters so we insist on “clean and dry” before you can blast.
What does cabinet blasting cost?
See our RATES page.
Do you blast large items?
Yes! We have a large blast booth and a We-Blast service. Check the¬ BIG BOOTH¬†page for details.