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The process cleans by flow, and not impact, producing a 'soft' finish. The water acts as a lubricant, avoiding media impregnation and also extending the life of the blast media. The typical process is as follows:
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Where heavy items are to be processed it is often easier to load these items externally to the blast cabinet using an overhead crane or perhaps a fork lift truck. Vixen offer this facility on all the Aquablast range with standard and special load capacities where required. The turntable can be moved outside of the chamber, loaded and wheeled back in. In some cases where needed, the turntables can be linked to an electric drive inside the cabinet for operator ease.
Turntables are a very popular option. A fixed turntable inside the machine enables easy manoeuvrability of the components to be blasted. These turntables can also be electrically gear-driven if required, but in most cases can be manipulated by hand with loads of up to 50kg.
Where the integrity of the abrasive is critical and the concentration must be absolutely constant, it is often easier to use the media concentration monitor which enables the operator to check the abrasive mix periodically by simply pressing a button.
Vixen’s closed loop system allows the machine to operate without the need of a mains water supply or drain nearby. This system is a large sedimentation filter unit that filters the liquid sufficiently and uses a heavy-duty air operated diaphragm pump to recycle water for the rinse gun and window wash.
The closed loop sedimentation tank is supplied with a series of Vixen designed containers which have an overlap feature. These are Vixen’s tooling and are fitted with weirs to allow water to cascade from one container to allow fine particles of debris or broken abrasive to settle in the containers. These containers can easily be removed for cleaning individually and make maintenance of the closed loop system quick and easy.
This item comes complete on a stainless steel frame and is very light it can easily be lifted into the cabinet. Once inside the cabinet, a bucket is placed under the cyclone and the blast gun is connected to the cyclone. The operator simply depresses the foot pedal and the abrasive begins filling the bucket which enables easy emptying of the machine of abrasive.
With small components it is often easier for the gun to be locked into a holder and the operator simply manipulates the small part in the blast stream.
The wet cyclones are designed to automatically remove broken down abrasive and sediment from the blasting process. These are normally specified where the blasting process is critical such as aerospace applications. The benefits of the wet cyclone are that any spent abrasive is removed and the finish integrity does not deteriorate in any way as the abrasive remains consistent.