In cooperation with Hüttenes-Albertus, a leading manufacturer of chemical products, ASCO Carbon Dioxide’s dry ice blasting technology is setting new standards for the removal of coatings on moulds.

Mould and tool cleaning has great importance in foundry operations. This is especially true when it comes to requiring optimal cleaning results of moulds and core boxes since an efficient cleaning process does not only increase quality but also boost productivity while optimising costs.

In open dialogues with foundries, both companies figured out that there is still no efficient overall solution for partial or complete removal of the coating of moulds. Currently, heavy metal casting foundries need to remove the mould´s finishing coating several times a day. In addition, a regular removal of the base coating and an occasional roughening of moulds, is required. The last point there is an important criterion for the adhesion of the coating.

The removal of the finishing coating is mostly unproblematic and can be done efficiently with pure dry ice blasting which is a common practice in the foundry industry. However, when it comes to the removal of the base coating or the roughening process, pure dry ice blasting is of limited suitability, as the procedure takes too long or the desired effect cannot be reached due to physical reasons.

Pure abrasive blasting with sand or glass beads is too aggressive and would damage the surface of the moulds. In addition, pure abrasive blasting causes high secondary pollution and/or clean up requirements.

This reason was enough for both companies to pool their joint expertise to offer an optimal overall solution to the end user. HÜTTENES-ALBERTUS is working on a special coating composition for smoothing porous moulding surfaces. For this purpose, finely to highly grounded base material is used. The coating isolates the mould´s ground and protects against thermal stress.

The common aim is to provide foundries not only with a high quality coating but also with the perfect complementary cleaning method. This is where ASCO steps in because the recently launched ASCOJET Combi blaster 1708 can close this application gap in the cleaning process.

The new ASCOJET blasting unit is the perfect combination of gentle cleaning with dry ice pellets and the additional, abrasive effect of a specially selected additive.

Udo Hinze, Area Sales Manager Dry Ice Technology for Northern and Eastern Germany at ASCO, explains the advantages of the ASCOJET Combi blaster 1708, “Depending on the process requirements, the abrasive material can be added to the dry ice stream. The cooling effect of the dry ice offers an optimal material protection even while blasting with dry ice and additive.”

“As persistent contaminations like the basic coating can be removed effectively thanks to the added abrasive material. In addition, moulds can be roughened optimally so that the newly applied coating adheres perfectly.” Further, Hinze points out the low need of blasting material which results in almost no secondary pollution. The higher cleaning performance of the blasting unit also allows it to work with less compressed air resulting in a considerable reduction of noise emission.

Another unbeatable advantage of all ASCOJET blasting units: The application can be used directly on the moulds without disassembling them which is why the production can be continued immediately after the cleaning process and the method can be integrated into the working process easily. This eliminates costly production downtimes and quality losses and increases process safety with little effort.