How to Choose the Right Bristle Blaster Belt for Your Project
When it comes to bristle blasting, you have a few different belt options to choose from. We will guide you, to help you decide which belt is right for your project. There are three main factors to consider when making your decision: the type of material you are blasting, the size of the job, and the condition of the surface. Let's take a closer look at each factor!
The material you want to blast
First of all, you need to choose the substrate you want to blast. Whether it is a pipeline, an offshore structure, a train or a car, it really makes a difference if it is made out of bare metal (pure iron) or a mixture of different metals (alloy) such as stainless steel, or other non-ferrous materials. It is very important to use the right belt for the substrate.
There are two options you can choose from:
b) Stainless steel belt
a) Steel (Fe)
The steel belts are only intended for substrates of steel (Fe). Think for instance about pipeline steel qualities like X65 or X70 pipeline materials. Steel usually has other mixed elements limited to a very low percentage: Cu ≤ = 0.50% Ni; ≤ 0.50%; Cr ≤ 0.50%; and Mo ≤ 0.15%.
b) Stainless steel (Fe/Cr)
The stainless steel belts are intended for substrates of stainless steel (Fe/Cr). Stainless steels usually have a minimum of 12% chromium content. This gives the material its corrosion resistance properties. The composition of the other mixed elements is different per type of stainless steel and can contain, for example: Cu, Ni.
The stainless steel belt is also used on a variety of other non-ferrous materials, such as aluminum (Al), brass (CuZn), bronze (CuSn), and titanium (Ti).
It's very important that you don't use a regular steel belt, as this will contaminate your substrate and trigger for instance galvanic corrosion at a later stage.
Both stainless steel and steel belts are available for 23mm and 11mm wideness. Mounting two 23mm belts on a double machine, will give you a working wideness of 46mm.
The Bristle Blaster® belts have wires that are 0.7mm thick. The wires will remove a layer of the substrate with every blast. The amount of material that is being removed, is depending on the pressure and the speed at which you are bristle blasting. The newest generation of electrical machines are controlling the RPM to about 2250 rotations per minute, providing 10.000 impacts on the substrate per minute. Depended on the hardness of the substrate, it will give you a surface roughness of 40 up to 120 microns (Rz).
The bristle technology has no problems to remove old coating layers from FBE, PE, polysiloxan or other existing coating layers. You can view an interesting masterclass about this topic for Free.
If the substrate has undergone a surface hardening treatment like quenching and tempering (Q&T), it might be worth to consider brushes and machines from the MBX® range. The smaller wires can in some cases enhance the surface profile. This is however really depended on the properties from your substrate. Ask our experts for help, if you need any support.
The size of the job
Secondly, you need to take into account the size of your project. If you are bristle blasting a small area, you can use a smaller belt and even an axial tool. For bigger projects, it is recommended to use a double bristle blaster® belt. It is also relatively easy to switch between the 11mm and the 23mm belt during the job on the regular machines, such as the cordless.
It is cheaper and more efficient to use a Bristle Blaster for jobs that require up to 19 hours of work in comparison to traditional methods, such as grit blasting.
The surface condition
Last but not least, you need to consider the condition of the surface you want to bristle blast. If the surface is in good condition, you can use a less aggressive belt, like machines from the MBX® range. If the surface is in bad condition, you need to use a more aggressive bristle blaster belt.
Now that you know the three main factors to consider when choosing a bristle blaster belt, it will be easier for you to make the right decision for your project! If you have any questions, our team of experts is always here to help. Contact us today and we will be happy to assist you.