Abrasive Blasting

Abrasive blasting is a very diverse market and includes a large variety of different media’s from sand to plastic. The CMAXX Dust Collector System has specially designed features that are suitable for all abrasive blasting applications. For example, standard construction is of 10 gauge and 3/16” plate. Other features include abrasive resistant inlet(s), high entry inlet with drop out plenum, and an optional rubber lining kit. Because of these features,  the CMAXX is the best option for any of the following blasting processes.

Typical Abrasive Blasting Media

Abrasive material for blast cleaning includes:


  • Minerals (silica sand, garnet, magnesium, sulfate, kieserite, baking soda)
  • Agricultural (crushed nut shells, fruit kernels)
  • Synthetic (corn starch, wheat starch, sodium bicarbonate, dry ice)
  • Metallic (steel shot, steel grit, stainless steel shot, cut wire, copper shot, aluminum shot, zinc shot)

Recommended Equipment

Typical Abrasive Blasting Processes

  • Shot Blasting
  • Air Blasters
  • Blasting Rooms
  • Cabinet Blasters
  • Peening
  • Plastic Media Blasting
  • Sandblasting
  • Wheel Blasters
  • Bead blasting
  • Micro-abrasive Blasting
  • Automated Blasting
  • Abrasive Grit Blasting
  • Bristle Blasting

Case Study

Keeping Things Clean Indoors Leads to the Better Things Outdoors

Sometimes, your search for the best solution can end in familiar territory.CMAXX dust collector on an abrasive blasting application

Paul Arnold is the long-time vice president of operations for Keystone Ridge Designs in East Butler, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1995, the company produces premium-quality steel outdoor furniture. In other words, they make trash cans, benches, bike racks, planters, and other heavy outdoor fixtures. Typical installation sites include parks, campuses, housing developments, and various retail areas, including major shopping malls. All products are made solely in the United States.  Further, all expert continuous-seam welding and powder coating are done by hand.

“We have a sterling reputation, especially with landscape architects. Our uniquely designed furniture is contemporary. It also holds up well in even the most challenging high-traffic outdoor areas,” says Arnold. “So in short, we deliver great value over the life of a product. Our look remains ‘current’ no matter how often a landscape might change – West Coast, East Coast, or wherever.”

Keystone Ridge Designs employs a continuous inseparable weld seam during its welding process.  This step certainly prevents corrosion from moisture over the life of the furniture. In addition, each bench, rack, or steel piece is protected from significant damage by Keystone Ridge’s patented Keyshield® finish. This applies to every item composed of 25 percent or more recycled content. Above all, the special finish protects against chipping, cracking and sun damage.

Abrasive Blasting Produces Dust Issues

“The heart-and-soul of our fabrication excellence revolves around our powder-coating step,” claims Arnold.  “First, we sandblast our substrates to a white finish to remove all possible contaminants. Second, we electrostatically apply a zinc-rich epoxy primer. Finally, we apply a coat of colored polyester powder. Then both coats are oven-cured to ensure an optimal finish.”

But such detailed production also yields a massive amount of dust and fumes during manufacturing. This is especially while workers, during two shifts per day, sandblast the substrate material.

“In any blasting environment, things get dirty and dusty in a huge way,” begins Justin Pyle, shop manager.  “Sometimes, our worker can stay in the booth for no more than 20 minutes at a time. This is due to the heat and dust produced.  Also, the refuse pot fills quickly and needs to be emptied.”

Poor Dust Collector Design and Performance

Keystone Ridge uses small dust collectors within its powder-coat booth. They had a much larger unit to remove air contaminants from the overall fab shop. However, Arnold, Pyle, and crew were not satisfied with the performance and some features of its prior larger system.

“Our basic issue was the horizontal arrangement of the filters within our old collector,” begins Arnold. “The filters were literally on top of one another. So that meant the top one would stay relatively clean. But it would dump material, when purging, onto the filters below it. Consequently, this led to what we thought was very premature filter failure throughout the system.”

Searching for the Right Dust Collector for Their Abrasive Blaster

Arnold then conducted a vast search into collectors that offered non-traditional vertically hanging filter placement.  He also needed a unit that would fit nicely within a somewhat limited space on the firm’s property.  He found the perfect solution (and a familiar face) not too far away. 

“I kept hearing good things regarding the CMAXX® compact collector from Imperial Systems,” says Arnold.  “I then learned that one of my Grove City High School classmates, Jeremiah Wann, was president of the company.”

Wann and his installation crew soon performed an onsite inspection. They ensured that the CMAXX unit would do the job for Keystone Ridge’s demanding conditions.  They also determined where the collector would best reside for maximum performance.  Neither decision took long.

Trust in Jeremiah and CMAXX

“Jeremiah made me extremely comfortable from the start,” says Arnold.  “Imperial was willing – and able – to do whatever it took to meet our requirements.  It also helped that I knew him. A purchase this large involves significant financial risk, obviously.   But Jeremiah made me 100% confident that Imperial would stand behind its product.”

The CMAXX compact modular cartridge collector uses Imperial’s renowned DeltaMAXX™ vertically hanging filters. Their unique NanoFiber Filtration Technology uses a very fine surface layer of synthetic fibers. This prevents dust particles from embedding into the premier-quality media.  As a result, the filters provide twice the service life versus competitive models. At the same time, they yield an extraordinary MERV 15 ASHRAE efficiency rating.  When tested against other filters in its class, the DeltaMAXX style pulses 94% less and emits 97% less contaminant.

“We installed our CMAXX unit with DeltaMAXX cartridge filters in September of 2012.  In nine months, we have not had to change out a single filter,” begins Pyle.  “The air is remarkably clean throughout the abrasive blasting area – and the entire shop, in fact.   The only maintenance I’ve done on the CMAXX is to apply some grease to a few screws around the compressor.  Best of all, material from one filter doesn’t fall down onto another filter because of the vertical arrangement.”

The trouble-free operation of the Imperial products is not a surprise to Arnold.  His thorough research had yielded only positive feedback about his former classmate’s company and offerings.

“A few of Imperial’s local installations were actually written about in our newspaper,” says Arnold.  “All the press was completely favorable – and now you can add us to the list of completely satisfied users.”

Reaping the Benefits of Their New Abrasive Dust Collector

The CMAXX dust collector has a unique Pulse Distribution technology. It delivers 100% even pulsation across the DeltaMAXX filter wall.  This results in maximum dust collection performance and filter life. It also comes with a 15-year warranty. At the time of this writing, Keystone Ridge has yet to change out the filters. Removal and replacement are fast and easy when required.

In addition, the CMAXX dust collector has no external bolt holes.  That’s especially critical for Keystone Ridge because the company’s unit is located outside.

“The CMAXX dust collector has amazing suction power, it draws air from everywhere,” states Arnold.  “Its construction ensures that contaminants do not get back into the airstream and blown back at our workers. Plus, water cannot get into the unit to damage the filters because there are no bolt holes.”

When Arnold and Pyle reflect on their Imperial purchase and brand experience, not a single negative enters the conversation:

“Consistency is the first descriptor that comes to mind,” begins Pyle. “Consistent and exceptional performance of the CMAXX collector and the DeltaMAXX filters. In addition, we receive outstanding customer and technical support from Imperial.”

Connecting Key Components and Processes for Their Product

“We can fabricate the nicest park bench in the world. But if the finish is no good, then our final product is no good. The key to a perfect finish is proper substrate pre-treatment. This leads to a superior powder topcoat.  First-class abrasive blasting equipment is essential to such pre-treatment. Dust and fume collection is critical to keeping our blasting system operating at optimal levels. Bottom line:  The Imperial products play an extremely important role in our overall production and ultimate success.”

Keystone Ridge Designs prides itself on continually exceeding customer and self-imposed expectations.  It didn’t have to look far to find a partner with the same core values and reputation.