Successful product development depends on the ability to work alongside customers in the field to determine their needs. Understanding this, Arc Abrasives Inc., a long-standing abrasive products manufacturer, developed its Predator brand in 2008 to expand the company’s expertise. The goal for this range of products was to overcome the abrasive challenges of the metalworking industry. Since its inception, Predator, a proprietary hybrid grain, has provided cost savings through productivity enhancement and product life.
Over the years, this ceramic hybrid has morphed into an innovative, cutting-edge technology, showing optimal results on mild steel applications. Since Predator has taken off and grown, American manufacturing continues to evolve. As the industry evolved, so did the team at Arc Abrasives. Recognizing the changing marketplace, the company knew what had to be done.
Matching the right grain to the right application at the right stage of the process is critical for the bottom line for which industries strive – that much the team knew. The next phase, however, was finding the right abrasive material for stainless steel and exotic alloy applications to further impact the market, proving that no metal stands a chance.
Ceramic is the answer
To address stainless steel application needs, Arc Abrasives decided to take the Predator name to the next level, unveiling Predator Ambush. This new addition serves the metalworking industry with enhanced cut ratios, longer life and cooler operations. It is making a name for itself as a product that can deliver optimal results when used on stainless steel as well as other exotic alloys.
These results are achieved by combining the latest in abrasive grain technology. Ambush leverages a continuous breakdown of pink ceramic grains, creating a controlled environment that reveals wave after wave of hyper-sharpened grain fragments. This controlled environment ensures shorter cycle times and a cut rate that keeps on giving.
Ceramic abrasives were developed by mixing natural ceramic with powder abrasives. Ceramic has a high density that shows prowess in grinding and finishing. An advantage to using ceramic over other grains is its wear resistance, utilizing a longer lifespan than the conventional abrasive. Ceramic abrasives also have a long shelf life, and, therefore, don’t create the level of toxic waste that other less resilient abrasives do – making it safer in the long-term.
High-performing ceramic is used often in a variety of industries, especially in areas where surface roughness is a major focus. The aerospace and food industries are good examples as they require specific finishing ranges to meet market standards. Many of these finishing requirements are based on corrosion resistance requirements, operational capabilities and cost.
Recently, a representative of Arc Abrasives teamed up with an aerospace manufacturer to test the effectiveness of Predator Ambush belts against a competing product the manufacturer
had previously been using. The operators started trial testing using both abrasives on titanium bar stocks that were cut to length. After forging, the bar stocks must be free of any impurities left behind from the forging process.
After rigorous testing, the operators noted that the 50-grit Ambush material was very competitive against the current product. Because of their high-density and self-sharpening grains, the ceramic abrasive was able to remove the forging impurities and leave a nicer finish in the end. After trying a finer 80-grit material, however, the cut rate and finish exceeded the competitive material, driving the aerospace manufacturer to switch to the Ambush product line.
Arc Abrasives got its start in 1960 when Zerla and Si Stayman’s dream of starting their own business came true in the small town of Troy, Ohio. Using their garage as a headquarters, laboratory and testing ground, they employed their very own kitchen Mixmaster to blend the adhesive for the company’s first product – the PSA disc.
Following the success of the PSA disc, they continued to introduce new products, such as cartridge rolls and other specialties.
To accommodate their growth, a new facility was built in the mid-1980s. The new facility met the demands for more space, as the duo was beginning production of abrasive belts as well as quick-change and flap discs. Not long after, they cemented their reputation for outstanding customer service and expertise in abrasive applications.
In 2016, under the second-generation leadership of Anthony Stayman, the company relocated to its current 68,000-sq.-ft. facility in Troy. Here, Arc Abrasives continues to expand product offerings and has vertically integrated a line of non-woven abrasives named ZWeb.
Throughout its years in business, Arc Abrasives has not only become one of the nation’s largest abrasive converters, but the company has proudly graduated to become an American manufacturer that’s committed to innovate while staying true to its vision, mission and core values. From humble beginnings in the founders’ garage to its current home in a modern facility, Arc Abrasives has remained a family-owned business that’s focused on innovating and delivering quality abrasive products.