Abrasive Media Compounds

Abrasive Media We Stock

What chemical compounds are contained in our grit kits?

Silicon Carbide

One of our main components of the grit kits is Silicon Carbide. This material is used in phases one and two of the tumbling process to coarse and then finely grind the rocks. It is the material most effective in shaping and forming the rocks and producing surfaces that begin to be smoother.

Why we use silicon carbide is because it is a hard material and durable. On the MOHS scale which we refer to in our other technical documents, the Silicon Carbide has a MOHS hardness of nine (9). As you can see in our rock charts regarding many of the rocks suitable for tumbling their MOHS hardness is eight or less. So Silicon Carbide wins that battle every time.

What is Silicon Carbide Chemically?

Known by its chemical compound, SiC, Silicon Carbide contains silicon and carbon. While it occurs in nature, it is a  very rare mineral called Moissanite,

The joke here is that it is actually produced by a guy name Moishe who operates a great little deli in Brooklyn. While this is not actually the case the reality is the material can be produced synthetically.

Because  the material can also be produced synthetically, as it has been actually   synthetically been mass produced as an abrasive material in industry since 1893 it is much more affordable.

When its grains are bonded together in an electric arc furnace, the resulting product is an extremely hard material with excellent thermal conductivity, thermal shock resistance, and chemically inert abrasion resistance. What this means is that it is harder and tougher than the rock surfaces it will encounter. And when it does encounter them it shapes and carves them, resulting in smoother targeted rock. That is the reaction going on inside your barrel.

 Aluminum Oxide

The other big player in the grit kit is the polish. Our polish is Aluminum Oxide, also referred to as Alumina. It is a very fine material Measured with a range of between 1 and 3 microns.