Note the highly polished, highly spherical surface and
Total size range of only 0.2 mm!!!
NEW!!! EVEN LOWER WEAR
Click here for lab results that show QBZ-58A has less than
1/2 the mill wear and twice the life of electrofused Zr-Si beads!!!
Media are available in both QBZ-58ATM
(Zirconium Silicate) and a higher density QBZ-95TM
(95% Pure Zirconium Oxide) variety. Both represent the
in high-specific gravity ceramic media. They perform exceptionally well
with high-solid dispersions where contamination from steel media is
and where the specific gravity of glass media is too low. Other uses
the dispersion of medium- to high-viscosity paints, inks and chemicals
such as herbicides and insecticides.
Questions and Answers About Using
QBZ-58A Zirconium Silicate Media
Q: I've heard that zirconia media must be conditioned before use. Why?
A: This is NOT true with Quackenbush QBZ-58A. Our media does not contain "fragile" beads that must be crushed during a conditioning procedure. In addition, our beads do not contain undersized adherands that must be knocked off. QBZ-58A generates no EPA-controlled fluids that would be created during a conditioning process because no conditioning is necessary. It is true other zirconium silicate manufacturers recommend conditioning their product. QBZ-58A is made by the "drip" process which creates uniform bead sizing and eliminates the possibility of air pockets and "fragile beads". The new QBZ-58A beads are already conditioned and polished at the factory thereby eliminating the conditioning step required by other bead manufacturers.
Q: I believed the hype and tried zirconium silicate beads in my mill. We did increase production, but the media really wore the mill. Why?
A: This happens if your formulation was optimized for use with glass beads and you made no changes in your product to allow for the higher density of zirconium silicate. We recommend a minimum mill base viscosity of about 1500 cps. With proper size and mill base formulating, QBZ-58A can be used with lower viscosities, but just how low has not yet been determined.
Q: I am currently using glass beads in my mill and I want to use the higher density of zirconium silicate to increase the efficiency of my mill. What adjustments do I need to make?
A: QBZ-58A has greater than 1.5 times the density of glass and can perform considerably more work in a given time period. We suggest that you test the media in a lab mill to re-optimize the formulation. You may want to increase the mill base viscosity to maintain adequate bead separation and prevent bead and mill wear. Depending on the mill, you may need to load the mill with a different amount of beads. Call your Quackenbush distributor or Quackenbush Company for the correct loading quantity. Make sure that your mill has enough reserve horsepower to run with higher density mill media and the higher viscosity.
Q: I want to change to zirconium silicate because it is much harder and will last much longer than glass beads. Will this really happen?
A: This is true if your formula falls within the optimum running parameters for zirconium silicate beads. Media life is also determined by a number of factors not directly related to the media. The life of your beads can be greatly extended by running formulations of correct viscosity and by keeping wash up times as short as possible. Because of the variety of factors beyond our control, we cannot say with certainty exactly how long a media will last.
Q: I'm already using a competitive zirconium silicate media and I am seeing media fragments clogging the screen. Why?
A: You are seeing "fragile" beads that have been broken by the forces in the mill, adherands that have been knocked off, beads worn to below the screen opening size, and/or the beads fractured by loose or damaged parts in the mill. Eliminate each problem one at a time and you will find the solution. Click here to go to our free on-line mill troubleshooting guide, "Bugs? In Your Bead Mill?"
Q: I am interested in switching to Quackenbush's QBZ-58A from another brand of Zr-Si beads. Is is OK to mix the two brands in the same mill?
A: Never mix zirconium silicate
They will quickly destroy themselves, create an enormous amount of
beads, and ruin your batch of beads. The reason for this is that there
is difference in density between QBZ-58A and other Zr-Si
Q: I am using Coors "M" media which costs significantly less than zirconium silicate media. Why should I consider changing?
A: Coors "M" media is very abrasive. It wears expensive mill parts much more rapidly than zirconium silicate. Zirconium silicate washes up more quickly and completely, and can perform more work due to its higher density.
Q: What companies are using Quackenbush's QBZ-58A?
A: Active users include Valspar, Sherwin Williams, Morton International, Rhone Poulenc, and many, many others. We can provide references upon request.
Q: If I run light colors with zirconium silicate media, will gray-off occur?
A: Some slight gray off will occur due to the wear by products from the metal mill parts. The amount is small, but you should verify its acceptability in your end product.
Q: What changes should I make to my wash up procedure?
A: It is important to keep the wash up cycle as short as possible because the greatest amount of bead and mill wear will occur when the beads are not well separated and are being agitated.
Q: I tried zirconium silicate and I am still not getting the grinds that I want. What are my alternatives?
A: Some factors to be considered are bead size, bead density, amount of milling time, temperature, and amount of media in the mill. Your formulation needs to be re-optimized to take full advantage of the high density media. Some products really are best milled with glass beads or sand. Most milling can be improved with the use of zirconium silicate.
Q: What media size should I use in my mill?
A: It depends upon your application and your mill. In general use larger beads for light colors and smaller beads for dark colors. We recommend that you select media based upon laboratory tests. Most users find that a medium sized bead of 1.4 - 1.6 mm is a good place to start. Many applications benefit from using the smaller sizes such as the 1.0 mm 0.8 mm or even 0.6 mm, as these offer the most beads per cubic inch to disperse your product. In no case should a media size smaller than 1.5 times the the screen opening be selected.
Q: When should I change the media in my mill?
A: Change when the screen starts to clog and/or you begin to find small round (worn) beads coming through the screen. During operation, you should add beads to keep the mill at it's normal fill level. When changing the mill load, the old beads can be sorted and reused, or simply discarded.
We are reallyinterested in your milling applications. Contact us to discuss your needs!