Can someone recommend a good sandblaster for general shop use? Also, can you explain the type of sand, the equipment, the process and the costs involved? I am a novice when it comes to owning this equipment (or potentially owning)
I just finished sandblasting everything except the engine and
transmission on that ugly Bolens 1250 with FEL I bought on
e-bay. I used the sandblaster Northern Tool lists at $129.99
their item # 155341. Wait for it to go on sale, I paid $89.99.
I used size “00” sand ($7.00 / 100lb bag). I just told the guy
who sells the sand that I was cleaning paint off metal parts and
he told me which type sand to use. As far as I’m concerned this
is a great way to clean up old, painted parts. It’s fast but it’s
not fun. It’s loud and you get impregnated with an extremely
fine grit. Do it while it’s still cool outside. The first time I
sandblasted was last August and it was brutal under the sand
But the finish product is very clean and has a mild texture that
makes a great bonding surface. After primer and paint, the
texture is gone and you wind up with a smooth high gloss finish.
I have a el cheapo sand blaster like the plastic ones Sears sells, as well as a pressure type that Horrible Fright sells and both work equally well. They do require a good supply of air for them to work s well as a good supply of sand. While regular sand may work in it, you will not get as good of cutting action with regular old sand as you will with an abrasive grit or special sand for sand blasting. You will go thorugh a heap of sand and air in a short order, so if you place a tarp around three sides and the bottom you cn easily reclaim sand by scooping it up and running it through a screen to get the junk out of it, and it will remain dry.
Long sleeves, eye protection (preferably a full mask and h ood) and gloves are necessary unless you enjoy getting stung ( I hear osme folks are into stuff like that ;-),
Sand blasting is a good quick (if you have a decent blaster unit and suitable air compressor) to remove rust and paint.
You have to watch on some metals as if they are thin it is possible to warp them. As the sand is used and recylced it will get broken down finer and finer and after awhile it will make a lot of dust. Thats when its time to pitch that sand and use new again.
I often bring back a heap of nice pure white beach sand from the Gulf when I make a trip and have a nice supply of this fine sugar granule sized sand. It lasts pretty long in a sand blaster and makes a beautiful finish. Takes a considerable amount of time to make sure its all dry, but its free and my friend on the gulf has a loader so getting a load in the truck is a piece of cake. Its basically a silica sand. YOu may want to consider a respirator as well as sandblasting can lead to lung problems and silicosis.
Chipmaker pretty well covered it. I have the same Harbor Freight blaster. I use medium grit blasing sand and sometimes fine for really smooth finish work but medium seems to work best for me. A second with a great big :ditto: on the respirator. Silcosis is nothing to mess around with. Not to mention inhaling fine particals of blasted paint and surface finish. You are going to need an air compressor with at least a 30 gallon and preferably larger tank. If you have the larger tank, the cfm's on the compressor are not that critical if you allow a reasonable time between compressor runs to recharge the tank. Otherwise it will run all the time and you risk burning up the compressor or motor. I use a Craftsman 220 volt 5 hp. with a 30 gallon tank. Make sure you get PLENTY of air hose (I use a 100' length to get the compressor away from the immediate blasting area as you don't want the compressor to injest all of the fine grit and blasted particals.
I tried fine Mason sand but it's hard to dry out.
Any moisture in the sand and you start cloging.
Once you start cloging, you start cursing (*%#@*).
The processed sand comes on 100lb paper bags with plastic
liner. It's dry as a bone and never clogs. I used 6 bags of sand
to sandblast all of the parts of the tractor. Maybe I could have
done it with 2 or 3 if I recycled, but IMO in the damp months of
spring it isn't worth the agrivation.
I agree with the air volume issue. First time I used a 3-1/2 hp
20 gal tank and it took forever. This time 7-1/2 hp 60 gal, huge
I have one of the Sears suction styles and works good, but you DO need a lot of air. I was using glass bead, but the borrowed compressure was not cutting it. I got a frends small gas powerd one and we tapped the teo together. That worked well. REALY got to get me a compressure. Got my sisters little 8gal 2hp one now, and other then filling tires, it's useless.
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