Automated sanding: greater precision with Arcos robots

Automated sanding: greater precision with Arcos robots

It is certainly no coincidence that automated sanding has become part of the finishing processes of the most innovative and cutting-edge companies. The advantages are numerous and concrete: from reducing cycle time, to increasing the quantity of parts processed to a very high level of quality. Sanding, in fact, is one of the most important operations to define the quality of a product, and its automation is a guarantee of this.

How does it work and what are the main advantages of introducing it within your production system? We discuss this here, with some concrete examples of Arcos robot applications.

Sanding, or grinding, is one of the processes that defines the shape and uniformity of a product and is one of the preparatory operations to other, even more specific surface treatments. In sanding, abrasive material is used to work the surface of parts, moving from coarser, to intermediate, then finer, grits. These abrasive passes allow the surface of the part to be smoothed so that it is suitable for further processing, such as polishing, or to make it suitable for its final destination.

To carry out sanding, the tools used are abrasive belts – cloth or paper – cloth flap wheels and discs. When the belt is used, the contact wheel plays a key role: it is its combination with the abrasive belt that allows unprecedented efficiency results to be achieved.

Why choose automated sanding

The reasons why robotic automation in manufacturing is extremely beneficial are many and all extremely convenient for a company.This is precisely why the shift from manual machines to automatic robots is an increasingly popular trend. Let’s look at the main advantages through the difference between automated and manual sanding.

Uniform finish

In manual sanding, the control of execution relies on a visual inspection by the operator. This, besides proving to be a tedious procedure, is also extremely subjective. The operator may be more or less skilled depending on years of experience and the level of fatigue at the time the inspection is carried out. The part, therefore, may be of lower quality than others with the risk of obtaining parts that are visibly different and, therefore, do not conform to the quality one wants to guarantee to customers. In addition, the health of the operator, who performs dangerous, repetitive, and high-load operations, comes into play (more on this here, in the light of the advantages of automated robotic grinding).

Through the automated process, on the other hand, robots carry out finishing with maximum precision over the entire area of the part, guaranteeing a flawless result.

Saving abrasive and reducing working time

The setting of the abrasive is also defined by the worker’s hand. If he places too much force, the abrasives wear out faster and unnecessarily; if the force is too low, the abrasive will not refract and the working time will be excessively extended. In the face of these execution possibilities, automated sanding is unparalleled. Workpieces processed are homogeneous with each other and encapsulate a better level of quality, while abrasive life is greatly increased, resulting in optimized working time.


Automated sanding tools are becoming more and more advanced: it is possible to configure the tool for each specific process and product. In this way each geometry can be honed as precisely as possible, without leaving out any point in the workpiece area.

Sanding with Arcos robots

For years, Arcos has guaranteed the most suitable robotic automation system for each reality. In fact, the needs for each company can vary from the type of product to be processed-the material and geometry-to the reference production sector and the environment in which the system will be inserted. One of the peculiarities of Arcos robotic systems is that they can be reprogrammed, turning out to be a highly beneficial investment for companies, even as time passes.

Here are some examples of automated sanding handled by Arcos technicians.

Sanding of metal components for exhaust systems

In this case, the workpieces to be processed are metal components of various sizes and lengths, intended as guides for loading systems. The robot makes it possible to safely process the parts, involving the entire product area, through the use of three different sanding tools.

The ultimate in efficiency for the aviation and aerospace sectors

The aviation and aerospace sectors are extremely specialized fields that demand the utmost perfection in the parts that are used within them. Automated sanding ensures a level of accuracy that embraces the quality standards required.

Here you can see sanding used with parts destined for the aerospace sector.

In conclusion

It is thanks to automated sanding that production departments achieve the highest levels of quality and efficiency. Production increases without affecting on the properties of the products to be processed, but saving on abrasive materials and the time needed to perform flawless processing.

What type of robotic system can enable you to perform the best automated sanding for your products? Get in touch with an Arcos consultant and access the most cost-effective and optimal solution for your company.


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