We offer various cleaning services at different levels.

Process 1: Pre-Soak and Pressure Water Blast – an economical basic degreasing

This removes loose dirt, grease, etc. This will not normally totally clean engine cases but they will be ‘handling clean’, often suitable for routine reassembly work. Alloy castings if not corroded can often look very good.

Processes 2 to 4 – We normally only process stripped-down items, not complete assemblies. See additional links for further information:

Process 2: Dry Blast – matt finish usually for paint preparation

This process uses particles (usually fine smooth glass beads) in a jet of compressed air. This leaves a slightly matt finish that will finger mark and corrode readily. Usually used for components to be painted, but also used for general cleaning of ferrous items. Casting defects can be revealed. Heavily corroded items may need the use of abrasive grades rather than smooth glass beads.

Stage 1: Pre-soak and pressure wash if there’s loose dirt, grease or other adherents. Dismantle components if required.

Stage 2: If components with oilways or other passages – blow through with compressed air. Option for ultrasonic washing to clean interior of passages. Plug holes with hard rubber taper plugs and if necessary mask areas (abrasive particles occasionally can penetrate).

Stage 3: Dry blasting with mildest media appropriate for the job. Smooth glass bead gives a burnished or slightly matt finish depending on the type of metal being cleaned. Light to medium non-metallic grits result in a matt finish to all metals. Light to medium iron grits (used for heavy contamination) leave a progressively matter finish on ferrous items that are to be painted. Casting defects can be revealed with any type of media.

Stage 4: Blow-over with compressed air to remove as much grit or dust as possible.

Stage 5: Pack in heavy gauge polythene bag with silica-gel sachet to inhibit corrosion prior to painting.

Process 3: Vapour Bead Blast – for ultimate functionality and appearance

This process uses particles (smooth glass beads) in a jet of compressed air and hot water with special detergents (heavily corroded items may need preliminary dry blasting). Usually used for machine parts and alloy castings to render them clean and ready for inspection prior to refitting. This leaves a slightly burnished finish on iron, steel or high tensile alloy castings; softer alloys will have a more satin appearance. Not usually used for small components – see Process 4.

Stage 1: Pre-soak and pressure wash if there’s loose dirt, grease or other adherents. Dismantle components if required.

Stage 2: If components with oilways or other passages – blow through with compressed air. Option for ultrasonic washing to clean interior of passages. If necessary plug holes with hard rubber taper plugs and mask areas (abrasive particles occasionally can penetrate).

Stage 3: Wet bead blast to reveal clean base metal leaving burnished or satin finish. Polishing available if required. Subject to test, paint can be stripped or retained (if hard and firmly adhering). Plating will not normally strip.

Stage 4: Pressure flush and wash to remove as much glass bead as possible, remove plugs.

Stage 5: Dry with compressed air. Pack in heavy gauge polythene bag with silica-gel sachet to inhibit corrosion.

Process 4: Ultrasonic Wash – effective even inside small passageways, dull finish (can be enhanced with other techniques)

Uses hot water with additives and ultrasonic energy (abrasive particles are not used BUT it’s possible that components could pick up some). Usually used for machine parts including small components for cleaning prior to inspection prior to refitting. Cleans interior passages (examples: carburettors, complex cylinder heads). A dull finish results with original patina usually little affected. Surfaces can be brightened if required. May adversely affect paint, subject to type.

Stage 1: Pre-soak and pressure wash if there’s loose dirt, grease or other adherents. Dismantle components if required.

Stage 2: If components with oilways or other passages – blow through with compressed air.

Stage 3: Ultrasonic washing to clean interior of passages and all surfaces. This will leave a dull surface retaining the original patina as far as possible. Any stains, resinous deposits or oxidation will remain. Additional treatments are available which may remove these.

Stage 4: Surface brightening if required.

Stage 5: Blow through passages and dry with compressed air. Pack in heavy gauge polythene bag with silica-gel sachet to inhibit corrosion.

Many customers want a ‘best possible’ job, but others do not require this standard which will reduce the cost. For advice or other processes and services available, please phone George on 020 8766 7164 or e-mail george@icmhome.org.uk.