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Sponge-Jet, Inc.

Basic Equipment Exposure Course

Sponge-Jet Feed Units All Models

For Safe Operation of

All Sponge-Jet Manufactured Equipment:
Always review and understand all operational manuals and instructional videos, prior to
any equipment operation.
Inspect all hoses and couplings for wear.
All hoses must be restrained with coupling pins and cables, (whip-checks).
All operators, tenders and laborers, as well as local trades must be equipped with all
necessary P.P.E. including but not limited to, eye ear and respiratory protection.
Never perform any maintenance to the unit while under pressure.

2008 Sponge-Jet Inc. All rights reserved.

Benefits of a Feed Unit over a common Pressure Vessel

Sponge-Jet Feed Units are specifically designed and engineered to flow Sponge-Jet
Media. Sponge-Jet utilizes components such as Augers, Actuators, Tree Assemblies
and advanced pneumatic logic to facilitate the flow of media through the Feed Unit,
allowing for consistent and reliable operation.
Unlike a conventional abrasive blasting machine, which uses gravity as its primary
feeding mechanism, assisted by a compressed air flow through the pressure vessel.
Sponge-Jet Feed Units rely on an automated mechanical device called the Actuator
which assures that the media flows from the vessel, to the Auger and is then fed
into the blast hose rather than dropped into the air stream through a cone valve.

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Sponge-Jet medias change in size and density as they progress through their life
cycle, the ability to adjust and compensate for those changes are critical. The
designed components engineered into Feed Units allow for this compensation in
simple and mostly autonomous ways. We accomplish this through adjustment of the
Auger Speed/Media Feed Rate. Recommended pressures are listed on each unit.

Why Not A Standard Blast Pot?


Control Valve


Air Motor


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All these components are needed to reliably flow SpongeMedia

Two component, open-cell, particle

- Pliant, polyurethane carrier

- Abrasive particle/cleaning agent

Wide range of abrasives

Multitude of performance characteristics
Grit size can vary within the base color group
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Sponge Media Grades

Sponge-Media consists of the unification of a composite, dust and contaminant
controlling agent, Sponge and an encapsulated cleaning or abrasive agent.
The composite structure of the medias provides the dust control benefit as well as the
contaminant control for all grades. While there are some minor differences in cell
structure as a result of the abrasive or cleaning agent embedded, the general composite
is the same throughout all of the grades.
Media choice is based on several conditions that must be evaluated prior to final
selection. Too frequently, the decision of what media has been based on how fast do you
want to go? While speed and efficiency are important components to a successful
application, they can also be manipulated to a point where they contribute more to failure,
than they contribute to success.

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Good painting practices dictate that the profile should never exceed 50% of the primer
coat thickness. It is certainly mechanically sound to expect that bigger abrasive particles
will cut through a coating faster than will smaller abrasive particles. However one of the
items to consider though is with any abrasive smaller, finer, abrasive particles produce a
denser grouping and remove coatings or contamination more efficiently than do larger
abrasive particles. This can easily result in a larger abrasive requiring more dwell time to
produce equal cleaning results.

Sponge Media Grades

The most critical consideration when choosing the abrasive grade is the profile
requirement of the follow-on coating. Producing a profile, that exceeds the data sheet
requirements of the future coating system leads to pinpoint rusting, added paint and labor
costs and the greater potential for immediate or premature coatings failure.

Being able to achieve these consistent readings is why Sponge-Jet medias are classified
and named utilizing specific numerical designations, S-120, S-30 S-16 or R-G40. This
tight sizing also helps limit the human error factors associated with media feed rate
settings or nozzle pressures.

2008 Sponge-Jet Inc. All rights reserved.

Conventional abrasives are commonly sold in varying size ranges, Fine, Standard,
Course and Extra Course for example. While these ranges do produce both ends of the
speed and efficiency spectrum previously noted, they do as well provide the opportunity
to produce both inadequate and excessive profile results. Often times these blended size
combination are based on the lower, or expendable abrasives overhead cost limitations.
Utilizing a tight and consistent size of abrasive, results in a consistent and repeatable
profile generation. This condition is not only known to produce improved coating
performance, but is often times a noted and documented testing procedure, required for
the acceptance of the coatings process by both the owner and the paint suppliers quality
control standards.

Sponge Media - Recyclability

Sponge Medias are intended to be recyclable. While there are other recyclable
medias on the current open market, these abrasives are all suspect to degradation
in size after each collision with the substrate. This degradation in size can obviously
produce inconsistent profile depths, negative changes to the angular quality and
orientation of the profile and potentially leaving fragments of the abrasive particle
embedded in the substrate. Depending on the type of abrasive used, these
remaining deposits could contribute to the corrosion condition or hinder the
successful mechanical bond of the coating to the substrate.

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As Sponge-Jet bonds multiple pieces of quality and tightly sized abrasive or cleaning
agents into each granule of Sponge media, even as multiple recycles of the media
are attained, the degraded material that separates from the granule is removed and
segregated by the Recycler unit, leaving only the appropriately sized abrasive
resident for the remaining blasting cycles. This helps assure that the profile
consistency remains at a high level from beginning to end of media lifecycle.

Primary Requirements and Components

Air volume requirements are specific to the nozzle size utilized, balanced against
the desired blast pressure. Larger nozzle diameters require increased volumes of
compressed air to sustain desired pressures.
Current units utilize 2.0 inch piping components so as to have the lowest pressure
drop internally. Any reduction it the supply air fitting below this 2.0 inch diameter will
defeat this benefit and limit the system throughput to that size fittings capacity.
The smallest fitting or coupling supplied to the unit will ultimately determine the
success or failure of the required production regardless of the pressure the supply
source can produce.
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Standard supply connections are

attached to a supplied Chicago 4 lug
coupling with a Primary Supply Air
Ball Valve behind it. This isolates the
machine from the customer supplied air

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This fitting is mounted to a 2.0 inch National

Pipe Thread Straight nipple. This fitting can
easily be removed or adapted to a fitting more
broadly accepted in your geographic region. IT

Moisture is removed automatically from
compressed air source by a Secondary
Moisture Separator.
It utilizes a 40 micron element as its
It is equipped with an automatic dump
mechanism to expel accumulated
moisture into an appropriate collection

Most compressed air sources have

independent moisture and temperature
control devices, but this cannot be
assumed as always existing.

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It is not intended to fully dry or clean the

supply of air, but to simply remove
moisture accumulated in the last length
of supply line.

After moisture is removed, the full volume
of supply air is held at the Main Air On Off
Valve until the operator depresses the
Deadman trigger on the hose.

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The inbound pressure from the source is

measured and displayed on the Line
Pressure Gauge. This should be the
highest reading gauge on the unit.

Once the Main Air On/Off Valve is
opened the air passes through the
Blast Pressure Regulator, which will
determine how much of the pressure
of the supply air is utilized.

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The operator determined Blast
Pressure is displayed on the Blast
Pressure Gauge and adjusted by the
Panel Mount T handle regulator below

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Media is prevented from passing back

into these valves and control items by
a one way Check Valve. It has no
adjustment or maintenance.

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Media inside the vessel is fed out the
bottom of the vessel by a Media Actuator,
which is controlled by various valves and
timers on the back of the Control Plate.
This Media Actuator moves in 45 degree
back and forth segments (Nor Continuous
Rotation) and keeps the pressure in the
vessel from compressing the media to the
point of poor or no flow.

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A welded cross or Tree Assembly

attached to the Media Actuator forces
media into the Auger Assembly in the
Lower End of the Feed Unit.

Augers are intended to feed media into
the blast hose.
They control the volume of media, which in
turn manages dust and media
They are durable units, but are the point
where any foreign matter allowed into the
reclaimed media is likely to lodge and
inhibit flow.

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The Auger is adjusted by the Media Feed
Regulator, which is mounted on the
control plate.
The pressure provided to the Auger is
represented on the Media Feed Gauge.
The recommended pressures are
suggested in the chart below the regulator
and gauge.
They are based on how many times the
media has been reused.

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The activity of the Media Actuator inside

the vessel can be monitored externally by
the activity of the Media Actuation
Indicator Eye. It will alternate from Neon
Green to Black as the unit makes its 45
degree rotations.

Exhaust of the unit occurs when the
Deadman handle is released. Automatically
the unit vents any pressure inside the vessel
through the Exhaust System. This includes
the Exhaust Valve itself, the Exhaust
Muffler, which diffuses the escaping air and
catches any media that is ejected with this air.
The Exhaust System also houses an OverPressure Relief Valve, which will open
automatically if the inbound pressure in the
pot exceeds approximately 150 psi.
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This Valve is supplied to relieve the volume

and pressure of air supplied to support up to a
#10 5/8 inch (16mm) standard abrasive blast

Operational Overview/Summary
1. Assure a complete understanding of all Safety and Operational procedures before
pressurization or utilization of this equipment. Read and understand all manuals
2. Attain and utilize per manufacturers instructions all PPE required based on the
specific activity, local and or other guidelines.
3. Confirm air supply valves are closed and Emergency Stop Systems are engaged.
4. Connect adequate sized supply (Bull) hoses and Blast hoses with safety pins and
hose restraints.
5. Charge the system with compressed air and assure it reaches and maintains the
pressure requirements for this activity.

Prepare the surface to the desired condition.

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6. Pressurize the system and adjust the Blast Pressure and Media Feed Rate to
desired settings, based on media type, lifecycle conditions and activity specific

System Depressurization
1. Release the Deadman and allow the system to fully depressurize before
relinquishing control of the Deadman and Blast Hose.
2. Discontinue the supply of compressed air from its source.
3. With this supply confirmed as discontinued, with the Main Air Ball Valve of the
Feed Unit open and the Emergency Stop Button disengaged, activate the Deadman
Handle and expel any remaining pressure inside the Sponge-Jet Feed Unit.
4. Once all gauges read 0 psi, release the Deadman trigger, activate the
Emergency Stop Valve, close the Main Air Ball and disconnect the machine from
the compressed air supply source.

2008 Sponge-Jet Inc. All rights reserved.

Course Complete

This Course qualifies for a completion certificate based on a passing result to an

online exam.

2008 Sponge-Jet Inc. All rights reserved.