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002 Soda blasting a suspension component

Here we blasted a portion of a 50-year-old suspension component with Bicarbonate of soda. It was done at around 85psi in a 40-year-old COMET machine.

As you can see it has removed the cad-plating from the surface and did so with ease. The surface is now a matte surface and the soda has cleaned the surface nicely. To get a bright finish on this part you would use a glass bead instead and we may blast the other side of this part later to show a comparison. Cadmium plating is a relatively easy surface to remove but soda is aggressive enough to remove paint from surfaces too. The water cushion provided by the wetblast process means the media-life is extended greatly compared to a dry process and because the soda is already wet, we don’t need to worry about moisture clumping the soda together as it would in a dry set up.

As you can see in the pictures the part was pretty filthy to begin with. We didn’t pre-clean, we just masked it off with some cloth-impregnated tape, threw it in the machine and hit it with the soda. The rubber insert was partially blasted too and the blasted area came up brilliantly. If trying to blast a rubber surface, the media will bounce off but it will also take with it any dirt and filth leaving the rubber in a very clean state. You don’t need soda to achieve this however, all media will bounce off rubber surfaces in a wet process and produce the same result. It is a point to note that the same will happen if there is remaining gasket material on a surface and this will need to be removed to get adequate cleaning on the mating surfaces.