Choosing the right abrasive is central to getting the best performance out of your machine.
Make sure you pay attention to attributes like the:
- Type (coated, non-woven, etc.)
- Grade (very fine, 120 grit, etc.)
- Mineral (ceramic, aluminum oxide, etc.).
Additionally, you need to consider the pros and cons of belt-, disc-, and brush-style abrasives:
- Belts: These run on drums that loop on a continuous basis. By feeding workpieces onto the belt at slight angles, operators can ensure that the sides as well as leading and trailing edges are effectively deburred. The chief downside of belts is that, while they excel at removing vertical burrs, they do tend to roll excess material over the edges of a workpiece to create lateral burrs. These are relatively easy to remove, but they do require additional processing.
- Discs: Discs are best suited for handling small and sensitive parts, including cladded or galvanized materials. The direction in which the pads rotate creates a swirl-like pattern on the workpiece. This helps to prevent the piece from fracturing when bent, making disc deburring ideal if you need to do subsequent work with a machine like a press brake.
- Brushes: Like discs, brushes work effectively with parts as small as playing cards and delicate parts since they are able to remove burrs without affecting surface coatings like cladding, zinc, or laser film. Brushes also excel at edge rounding—something discs have more trouble with—and are able to complete more complicated 360-degree deburring and finishing tasks.
What’s right for you will ultimately depend on your needs. If you simply need to deburr the sides of your parts, a straightforward belt sander could be ideal. If your needs are more complex or varied, you will need a machine ready to keep pace with those demands.