Wire and Cable Wet Blasting

We’re leading the way in wire and cable finishing with our unique in-line Profelis wet blasting machine

Wet blasting (also known as vapor blasting, vapour blasting or aqua blasting) is highly effective at cleaning and finishing a wide range of wire and cable products. Applications are numerous ranging from cleaning feeder wire prior to extrusion and the removal of graphite and heat scale to the application of a non-specular finish on overhead power cable.

Click on the subject area relevant to you wire and cable operation to lean about the associated wet blasting applications and benefits.

Contact us if you already know your wire and cable wet blasting requirements


The automatic Profelis wet blasting machine

The Vapormatt Profelis automatic wet blasting machine

Designed for wire and cable

Our Profelis wet blasting machine (or vapor blasting machine, or aqua blasting machine) is specifically designed for the surface finishing of wires, cables, round bars and other types of continuous products like bandsaw blades.

At the heart of the Profelis is a specially designed blast gun manifold. Four powerful blast guns are located at 90 degree angles to give complete 360 degree finishing.

This highly effective configuration of blast guns in the manifold can be boosted further by specifying eight blast guns located at 45 degree angles for maximum productivity.

The versatile Profelis is capable of processing wire 1mm (0.04") in diameter to cable 54mm (2.13") in diameter 

In-line production

The Profelis is designed to work in-line with existing manufacturing lines, further improving productivity – especially when compared with pickling and dry blast finishing operations that are usually off-line from the main production line.

Rinsing and drying is included within the Profelis to ensure all blast media is removed from the wire or cable and then rapidly dried to help prevent oxidation and prepare the wire or cable for the next production process. If needed, inhibitors can be added to the blast slurry as an additional step to prevent oxidation.

Blast manifold of the Profelis automatic wet blasting machine

Wire and cable finishing perfected by our unique in-line automatic Profelis wet blasting machine


Contact us to discuss how the Profelis can help your operation


The benefits of wet blasting different types of wire and cable products

All sorts of wire and cable products benefit from having a wet blasted (otherwise known as vapor blasted or aqua blasted) finish including:


Overhead power cable
overhead power cable

Essential for transmitting power over vast distances, overhead power cable needs to transmit electricity as efficiently as possible to help reduce running costs.

As well as thoroughly cleaning the cable, removing all contaminants, wet blasting (or vapor blasting, or aqua blasting, to give the process its other names) overhead cable creates a non-specular finish.

A non-specular finish gives the cable higher emissivity (approx. 0.8) compared to the specular finish of an untreated cable (approx. 0.5)

Higher emissivity leads to more heat being emitted at the same air temperature. So, a cable with higher emissivity, in the same environmental conditions, with the same structure and current range, operates at lower temperatures as it can more easily emit excess heat.

And a power cable operating at a lower temperature typically has a greater ampacity compared to a cable operating at a higher temperature. Hence power cables with a non-specular finish are more efficient at carrying electricity compared with unfinished cables with a specular finish.

An increase in current carrying capacity of around 5% can be achieved due to the increase in surface emissivity.

Overhead power cables with a non-specular finish have the additional advantage of reduced visual impact, thanks to their matt appearance compared to shiny unfinished cable, in fact, a non-specular finish is a pre-requisite for overhead power cable on US Federal land.

Scroll to the bottom of this page to download our white paper which goes into a lot more detail on the subject.

overhead power cable

Contact us to discuss your power cable finishing needs


Aluminium feeder wire

Aluminium wire is used in various applications due to its favourable properties, such as being lightweight, durable and recyclable, having good conductivity, and being relatively inexpensive compared to other metals like copper.

No matter what the application, high quality aluminium wire needs to be clean and free from imperfections. Wet blasting cleans the surface removing all contaminants and oxides, leaving the feeder wire perfectly clean for extrusion.

It also produces a smoother surface finish by cushioning the impact of the abrasive particles with water. This reduces the risk of surface damage and results in a more uniform finish that is free from imperfections and is better for extrusion because…

aluminiu electrical wire
  • Surface finish - The final extruded aluminium wire has a higher quality finish, important for both aesthetic and functional purposes
  • Consistency - Uniformity in the surface texture and diameter of the wire ensures consistency in the final product, crucial for applications where precise dimensions are necessary.
  • Strength and durability - Surface imperfections like scratches, dents, or roughness can act as stress concentrators, which may lead to mechanical failure under load or during use. A smooth surface helps maintain the mechanical integrity of the wire.
  • Fatigue resistance - A uniform surface reduces the likelihood of fatigue cracks developing, enhancing the longevity and reliability of the wire in applications where it is subjected to cyclic loading.
  • Reduced electrical resistance - Surface irregularities can increase the electrical resistance of the wire. A smooth surface helps maintain optimal electrical conductivity, which is particularly important in electrical and electronic applications.
  • Minimised signal loss - For applications in telecommunications and data transmission, a smooth surface helps minimise signal loss and interference, ensuring efficient performance.
rolls of aluminium wire
  • Reduced wear and tear on extrusion dies - Surface irregularities can cause increased wear and tear on extrusion dies and other processing equipment, leading to higher maintenance costs and downtime.
  • Adhesion of coatings: A smooth and uniform surface is essential for the proper adhesion of coatings or plating materials. This is important for applications requiring additional protective or functional layers, such as insulation or corrosion-resistant coatings.
  • Appearance and performance: For wires that are coated or painted, a smooth base surface ensures that the coatings are applied evenly and perform as intended, enhancing both the appearance and functionality of the final product.

Contact us to discuss your aluminium feeder wire finishing needs


Copper feeder wire
copper electrical wire

Copper wire is widely used in electrical and telecommunications applications due to its excellent electrical conductivity, flexibility, durability, and resistance to corrosion

Wet blasting cleans and finishes copper feeder wire in one operation, removing imperfections, oxides, scale and other contaminants before it is drawn into the extrusion process.

The process produces a uniform and consistent surface finish, especially when compared with dry blasting. It is also less aggressive than dry blasting, which helps maintain the structural integrity of the copper wire by preventing pitting or other surface damage.

The contaminant free and uniform finish helps ensure maximum strength, conductivity and corrosion resistance of the final copper wire product.

Contact us to discuss your copper feeder wire finishing needs


Steel wire
steel wire

Steel wire has a vast range of applications in the construction, manufacturing, packaging, agriculture, automotive, medical and many other industries.

Wet blasting cleans steel wire leaving a uniform surface that is entirely free from graphite, oxides, scale and other contaminants in preparation for forming, machining and heat treatment.

Clean and uniform steel wire is a better conductor, more resistant to corrosion, stronger and safer.

The process can also produce a range of different finishes depending on the specific aesthetic or functional requirements. This includes surfaces that are perfect for the adhesion of coatings and paints.

Contact us to discuss your steel wire finishing needs


Carding wire

Carding wire – Used in carding machines, carding wire is used to clean, align and mix textile fibres. It can also be used in other industries for example, during the production of filters, gaskets, and other components. Clean carding wire can help improve the quality of yarns, prevent the spread of contamination and extend the life of carding machines.

Wet or vapor blasting removes all heat treatment discolouration and burrs from carding wire whilst carding teeth are precisely honed for additional durability. Heat scale and grease is also removed.

Contact us to discuss your carding wire finishing needs


Submarine communication cable
bandsaw blades

Used to transmit vast amounts of information for thousands of miles, submarine communication cable features layers of tough outer protection to ensure continued uninterrupted transmission.

Wet blasting thoroughly cleans cable, removing all contaminants, and produces a highly uniform surface to a specific Ra surface roughness tolerance that is perfect for bonding with outer sheath layers.

And thanks to the cushioning affect of the water in the process, blast media embedment issues, that might otherwise affect the cable’s performance, are eliminated. The same cushioning affect avoids damaging the cable, ensuring the integrity of the cable is maintained.

Contact us to discuss your submarine communication cable finishing needs


The right finish every time

Wet blasting (or vapor blasting, or aqua blasting to give the process its other names) has more controllable variables than any other type of surface finishing.

Such a comprehensive range of controllable variables allows manufacturers to achieve the perfect finish on their wire or cable products.

Automation then delivers that desired finish every time via the touch of a button on the Profelis’ simple to use colour HMI.

Another factor critical for consistent high-quality results is controlling what comes out of the blast guns.

Vapormatt is second to none when it comes to controlling the consistency of output from blast guns.

The blast flow must always remain consistent and thanks to our world leading technical expertise, our patented technology and regular maintenance we can achieve a consistent flow year in year out without change, even when components start to wear in the normal course of operation.

Watch our video on the controllable factors of wet blasting and how we control them...

How we control the controllable factors of wet blasting



Environmentally friendly

Wet blasting is significantly more environmentally friendly than other finishing processes commonly used for finishing wire and cable products.

Pickling operations typically use strong acids or alkalines to clean wire. In addition to the environmental impact of using chemicals like these, they can be difficult and expensive to dispose of. It's also a finishing process that typically uses more water than wet blasting too, despite water being a key constituent of the wet blasting process.

Dry blasting results in airborne particles that can be a health hazard to operators and an explosion risk. Wet blasting traps dust and debris, eliminating hazards whilst keeping the finishing process in-line with existing production.


Our patented micro-gun technology

Our micro gun technology is especially efficient when it comes to the use of compressed air, frequently the costliest component of the wet blasting process. So efficient in fact, that we’ve patented the technology.

Another benefit is that micro guns can run together with a common slurry feed, so multiple lines of wire can be processed at the same time for maximum efficiency and productivity.

Find out more about this new technology in our white paper below.

Contact us to discuss how our micro gun technology can help your operation


In conclusion...

Highly controllable and automated to provide precisely the finish required every time and with complete in-line 360 degree environmentally friendly finishing, the Profelis wet blasting machine represents a major step forward in the finishing of wire and cable products.

Contact us to discuss how our technology can help your wire and cable finishing operation



Brochures, white papers and case studies

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