Safely restart your shot blast equipment

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Take extra care when restarting shot blast equipment after longer pauses in production – to avoid machine damage or worse.

Here are some key checks to make

If machines – wheel blast equipment in particular - are left switched off for long periods of time, corroded shot, dust and abrasive left in the system can form solid clumps. If not cleared before start-up, these clumps can destroy the machine as well as posing a serious health and safety risk. 

The following checks cover the biggest areas of concern when restarting shot blast equipment after a longer production break. Contact the Wheelabrator team for a more detailed check list and expert advice.

Not checking your blast machine before start-up can be seriously dangerous

 

What to check

In general, make sure to always check safety features like emergency stop buttons, light barriers, etc., as well checking the PLC for loss of blast programmes due to empty batteries.

After carrying out below checks and once the machine is running again, pay special attention to any unusual noises, error messages or incorrect settings when monitoring operation.

For wheel blast machines:

  • check the movement of each blast wheel by moving it by hand, it should turn easily;
  • remove condensation from pneumatic systems and clear tubing with dry pressurised air;
  • check and, if needed, adjust the tension of the belt on the bucket elevator
  • check abrasive quality, remove any clumps
  • check abrasive levels and refill as needed
  • test all drives by operating them manually
  • check and clean sieves in the abrasive recycling system
  • check the filtration system for dust deposits (in clean room and on fans), run off any condensation from the air pressure tank and check the dust collector
  • ensure the transport system is working (correct chain tensions; smooth running of drives)

 

For airblast machines:

  • check that all machine components are in good condition: no fire traces, no abrasive leaks, no oil leaks, no excessive wear, no broken window, no evidence of collision, no partially dismantled units;
  • check that nozzles are properly installed and secured;
  • check abrasive levels in the storage hoppers and refill as needed;
  • check for foreign parts presence, such as tools left inside blasting cabinet;
  • check the level of lubricant in drives, refill if needed and according to manufacturer's recommendations;
  • check and adjust the tension of chains and belts;
  • depending on the machine’s construction, check that moving parts can work without interference;
  • check that the machine is properly connected to electricity, compressed air, water (where applicable);
  • check that the filtration unit is connected to the machine;
  • empty all dust and refuse bins;
  • check abrasive quality, remove any clumps
  • test all drives by operating them in manual mode;
  • check and clean sieves in the abrasive recycling system, including in blasting cabinet hoppers;
  • check the filtration system for dust deposits (in clean room and on fans), check that cartridge cleaning system is running and properly adjusted;
  • before starting the machine, ensure that nobody is present inside blasting cabinet.

Contact us today to plan your safe restart

Contact us today to plan your safe restart

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