The grinding process

In one of our previous posts we covered the most  frequently asked questions about deburring. One way to remove burrs, among others, is the deburring process. Here we will look at it all, starting with the grinding process:

What is grinding?

In a few words, the grinding process is a machining technique that removes material using an abrasive belt or disc. This allows burrs to be removed, the surface to be smoothed or a certain polishing structure to be applied to the material.

Why grinding?

If you want to deliver products with an even and smooth surface, the grinding process is a must. Low surface roughness also determines how much dirt can adhere to the surface and how easy it is to keep clean. These are very important requirements when it comes, for example, to metal products for food and health care. In addition, a smooth surface is important for later processes such as welding or folding.

the grinding process

How to grind?

There are many options to choose from when it comes to grinding sheets metal. Although there are also manual machines, such as angle grinders, at Josep Muntal we have semi-automatic and fully automatic deburring machines. In all these applications, you can choose the type of grain and the roughness value to be used for grinding.

machines for the sheet metal finishing process

Which abrasive grain should I use?

In general, a distinction is made between coarse and fine grain. Coarse grit is usually used to remove damage, contamination, and hard scale from the surface of the sheet metal, such as 60 - 80 grit. After that, a surface finish can be considered, for which finer grits or scotch-brite such as 200 - 250 grit can be used.

Coarse grain is used when the surface finish is not essential for the workpiece, when a large surface has to be machined or when a finish such as powder coating (powder painting) is required for steel products. It is also called pre-grinding.

Fine grain, on the other hand, is used when surface finish is essential. For more precise machining of smaller surfaces, lower roughness values and products where visual appearance plays an important role, often stainless-steel sheet metal parts. This is called grinding.

What kind of grinding belt(s) should I use?

There are different types of abrasive belts to choose from. For the application we were talking about before, the surface sanding of flat sheet metal products, you can use coarse or fine grit sanding belts or a scotch-brite belt, as mentioned. But this is not enough to choose one or the other. There are several factors that influence the choice of the right abrasive belt:

  • Which material is to be processed?
  • What is the shape of the product to be grinding?
  • What base material should the abrasive belt be made of?
  • Is it to be dry or wet grinding?
  • Is the sanding belt waterproof?

To answer all these questions, at Josep Muntal we have a whole team specially prepared to provide advice and answers to all your questions.

The grinding of sheet metal pieces is just one of the applications in which our machines can help you.