The Scabbling Process

What is scabbling?

Scabbling is the mechanical process of removing a thin layer of concrete or sometimes masonry from a structure. This is achieved through the use of compressed air powered machines known as scabblers, planers, groovers or scarifiers. Whilst most commonly used on concrete, there are numerous surfaces on which this unique technique is ideal, especially when removing material that is in excess of 1mm thick. It is a cost efficient method that quickly and safely removes marks and contaminants from surfaces, making them ready for floor installation. The many benefits of scabbling make it the most widely recognised method of preparing surfaces in modern construction.

What is involved in the process?

A scabbling machine is a pneumatic device that pounds the desired surface with either pointed rods or rotary devices that ‘flail’ the surface. The ‘flailing’ action is created by the loose fitting of multi-point circular cutters across a cylindrical drum. These machines then hammer and scratch the surface of the wall of floor to reduce the level of concrete or screeds. They also remove the stubborn deposits often found on commercial or industrial walls and floors. It usually takes several takes with the machine to achieve the desired effect.

What is it used for?

Scabbling is typically used for levelling surfaces and for reducing levels but is also effective for a range of other purposes including roughening surfaces to improve grip, creating decorative effects on surfaces, preparing surfaces for necessary repairs (grouting, painting, coating and sealing) and for removing adhesives, coatings and markings from surfaces. For this reason, scabbling is the preferred method for removing road markings when they are no longer needed, for removing ice from surfaces in cold stores and also for treating surface contamination in the nuclear industry.

What are the main benefits of scabbling?

  • Cost efficient
  • Quickly produces results
  • Useful for many construction tasks
  • Produces results that

Who to contact?

The process involved in scabbling concrete or other surfaces can produce high levels of silica-containing dust. This dust can become dangerous when inhaled and had been linked to the development of lung disease. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) categorise scabbling as a high risk procedure, which should therefore be carried out by a professional team who can complete the scabbling through safe methods. This means completing the necessary assessments, prevention and control such as on-tool extraction and also having Respiratory Protective Equipment.

Here at Diamond Drilling UK Ltd (Diamond Drilling London), we have a team professionally trained to complete the scabbling safely whilst producing excellent results. We offer our scabbling services to our customers at reasonable prices and guarantee that you will be satisfied with the results we produce. If you are interested in our scabbling services or would like more information, please do not hesitate to get in contact with us.