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Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?


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  #1  
Old 05-23-2008, 11:28:44 PM
smgussey smgussey is offline
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Default Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Bought a cheapo blasting cabinet off eBay and finally got it assembled and bought some glass beads. Boy oh boy does it clean things up fast!! I really like the way it works, but what a mess of glass and dust around the garage - and me.

I'm planning on hooking a vacuum to the port on the side to help with some of the dust problem. I think I may go pick up some sort of respirator as well since I've already got some breathing problems from my young (stupid) painting days...

I'm just wondering if anyone has some real good tricks to making the job a little cleaner and safer.

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old 05-23-2008, 11:40:09 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

You can have a look at what I've compiled:



The whole story: http://www.old-engine.com/abrasive.shtml
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  #3  
Old 05-23-2008, 11:48:42 PM
smgussey smgussey is offline
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

The bag of media I got says "Glass Oxide" on it and has may cause respiratory irritation on it as well.

Is this the same as silica??

I read through that whole page and don't really understand what #2 glass beads are or what my other options for media might be that would be safer...

Would sand ultimately be safer for my health?

I'll definitaly be picking up a respirator of some sort tomorrow.
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Old 05-23-2008, 11:53:18 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Sand IS silica. That's the bad stuff. Anything is bad for your lngs if you get too much of it.

I got my glass beads from TP Tools. A little goes a long way and in a cabinet, you get to recycle the beads. READ the email comments on my web page. Then read it again. There's a lot there.

http://www.old-engine.com/abrasive.shtml

A thread from the Archives:

http://www.smokstak.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4653
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:08:14 AM
Kevin O. Pulver Kevin O. Pulver is offline
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Good lighting and a vaccuum dust collector will make it a lot more fun. It can get to where you can't see anything if you blast dirty parts with no vacuum.
Kevin
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:13:12 AM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

How big of an air compressor do you fellers need while running a cabinet the size of Harry's there? i ask cuz im in need of a blaster. I seen a nice compressor at sears...17 gallon...then for a bit more...a 22 gallon....then i was told i need an actual 30 gallon to do anything which would force the garage to be wired 220 instead of 110...which will be expensive...but the 17 and 22 gallon at sears runs 110....now im in a crunch with the money too so i cant go big and industrail...........come to think of it....i just red Harrys link...so i guess that answers my question......i guess?

Last edited by Sky; 05-24-2008 at 01:19:28 AM.
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:43:30 AM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Just like the gas engine hobby itself, everything in it grows and grows from small to large.

As in one of the above posts mentioning lighting. My cabinet started out with one 150 watt flood. It wasn't long before it was apparent that I "needed" one for each side of the cabinet.

A small vacuum cleaner won't get the job done. The one that came with my cabinet didn't get the job done. I switched to an even bigger one (5" hose) and that doesn't get the job done.

Same deal with compressors. 220 volt is a must. Go by the amperage of the motor and totally ignore the inflated horsepower ratings. More is better.

There comes a point where you have to consider electrolysis and a good parts washer or pressure washer and let it go at that. I can see why some guys simply rub 'em down with mineral spirits and boiled linseed oil.
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:10:35 PM
Pat Barrett Pat Barrett is offline
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I've used a Tip Cabinet for the last 15 years, It's a great thing, complete with vacuum. I just had to replace the vacuum motor after many years of use. One tip I've learned is if you are cleaning a part with a seal in it, you will need to replace the seal. The glass media will get on the back side lip of the seal and it's almost impossible to get out. It will get in what ever is inside, oil, intake etc. Close fitting parts do not like that media between them. it makes things really bad. Also as afore mentioned get a compressor larger than what you think you need, 220 is a must.
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Old 05-24-2008, 08:53:46 PM
oldtool53 oldtool53 is offline
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Hi,
Make sure your blast cabinet is well grounded. Static electrical charges can build up, mostly on very dry days and give you a good "zapping" which can lead to a lot of ##!@&!!.

Mark
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  #10  
Old 05-24-2008, 09:24:21 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

well i got a question for ya'll. Im in need of a blaster BAD....but we absolutly cannot go 220 to run an industrail compressor...it would just cost us WAY to much....the biggest i can find is a 33 gal. compressor sold by sears..it's a 110 with a 1.60 horse motor...ya i know...small motor...noted for slow recovery...but the blast cabinet will only be running 95 PSI or around in there...it says dont run the cabinet over 100 and the compressor is rated at 150 PSI....so other then the thought of "puny motor" comes to mind....but thats the only thing we can run....Will it do the job or not? im aware that i may have to let it set and build back up now and again...but i'd rather do that then spend over a grand getting wired up for some industrial use when were not an industrail shop therefore it wouldnt really pay for it's self over time. I mean were talking about a 30 x 33 shop here that was built in 1937.
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Old 05-24-2008, 09:29:26 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I ran mine today on my 30 gallon compressor from Lowe's, 110 volt. 85 psi is what was recommended for this cabinet and I had no problem blasting continuously - of course the compressor also ran continuously while I did that.

Did it work? Yes. Would I use it this way every day? No. For small projects like my Maytag parts it worked fine... although I'm going to try electrolysis for a couple of the parts that are left.
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Old 05-24-2008, 10:05:37 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

whats the biggest compressor i could get before it changes to 220? Someone at Lowes said it goes to 60 gallon which is a twin cylinder which is great and they said they're 110 but i cant find it on their site there.
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Old 05-25-2008, 01:59:11 AM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I also have a TP Tools blasting cabinet. They have in their catalog 'Reduced Flow' blasting nozzles specifcally to allow using smaller compressors. Naturally, it will take you longer to blast your part, but at least the compressor should be able to keep up with the demand. Also, get a water/condensation trap & a regulator to put in the air line just before the cabinet. Wet air means wet sand and a clogged gun. The regulator will help conserve air. Aluminum parts clean up just fine without excessive pitting at about 40# pressure. Badly rusted cast iron will clean up good at about 80#. Look for a big wet/dry shop vac at garage sales, flea markets or re-sale shops to draw the dust out of your cabinet. If possible, run a hose from the vac's exhaust out a door or window. Wear a mask! They are in the paint aisle at Home Depot, Lowe's, etc. The dust that makes it past the vac's filter (and it will...) is extremely fine and will do real damage to your lungs.
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Old 05-25-2008, 10:49:25 AM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I was wearing a mask and had the shop vac hooked to the cabinet with an exhaust hose leading outside. It worked OK - if I covered the hole completely with the vac hose it would suck the gloves right into the cabinet!

I really like the way the glass beads cleaned up the rust, and quickly. Of course, anywhere there was grease or even some oil residue they did nothing but stick. Cleaning a part is extremely important prior to blasting...

Sky - as to air compressors, I'm willing to bet the only difference between the 30 gallon and 60 gallon would be the size of the tank... If that is the case, you can simply buy the 30 gallon and another tank to add capacity.

Also, if your clothes dryer is electric and reasonably close to where the air compressor will be, you can have a 220 volt compressor - just build an extension cord to the dryer plug in.

I had my shop wired with two 220 plugs in the even I ever want an industrial compressor and also for an arc welder if I ever get one.
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Old 06-10-2008, 11:48:59 AM
Kevin O. Pulver Kevin O. Pulver is offline
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

Sky,
In your case, what you need is tank volume. You could run that blaster with a hand powered bicycle tire pump if you have a big enough tank to store some air. LIKEWISE, you could run it with no tank at all IF you have a big enough compressor. But blasters will dump your tank in a big hurry. It's like cutting the end off the hose and letting 'er blow. You can use several smaller tanks at once all hooked into your air line IF they're in good condition. Your small compressor will run forever to fill them, but you will have more blasting time- which still won't be very long. Even the biggest compressor found in the average shop is not going to keep up with a blaster. The large commercial air compressors sometimes use a V8 Ford with a special head that turns four of the cylinders into a compressor. It will be worth the trouble to have a blaster, even without a large compressor. Get some dead compressors and salvage the tanks (make sure they're sound) or an old 500 gallon propane tank would make a nice tank. Might make the shop stink though, or be dangerous if you fill tires up with propane. DONT use old water well pressure tanks- they rust inside, and my neighbor saw one mis-used this way go through the roof of a building! Kevin
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Old 06-11-2008, 11:53:53 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I picked up a Skat Blast 60" cabinet by TIP after useing a Harbor Freight bench top and an outside Brute blaster for my cleaning needs. Air was always a problem both volume and pressure over time.. I set a 45 CFM Quincy on a axle and frame and added a jack shaft and PTO shaft and now I can run it up to the rated speed (900 rpm) at an idle with our AC-C, Air is no longer a problem and I can roll it away until I need it again..

I've seen many large compressors with 3 ph motors sell cheap.. If a fellow would find the unloading kind ie: Quincy
and install a gas engine it could be done with a lot less money than a large high volume compressors.
Why power up a big compressor for every day use when a smaller unit can pump up the mower tire, Then when it is blast day drag out the big boy.

The next battle is water.. Heat up air in the compressor and then cool it in the lines and moisture forms.. then the sand starts to slobber out of the blaster tip and plug up the lines.. sand wont feed and you dont blast!

I've done the 50' coil of 1/2" copper tube in the drum of cold water followed by the series of water trap filters and had some success. I have another setup cooking that should help a bunch when assembled.. I found a 25"x 5" tube and sheet heat exchanger and a small circulation pump. I can go one of two ways with this.. 1- pipe it to the garden hose and cool the air as it double passes the bundle or 2- make a glycol loop and put the circ. pump in line along with a small radiator and fan. This followed by series of water traps should work.

I've blasted or tried to blast for 30+ years and if you watch for, and catch the deals you can do all the above for a small % of new. Randy Hart Ohio
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Old 06-11-2008, 11:58:14 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

I ran 3/4" iron pipe across the shop ceiling and then down at the end to a drain tap. A side L goes to a water separator and then a regulator. I'm in the humidity capitol of the US and I haven't had any moisture issues, except my own.
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Old 06-12-2008, 08:00:23 AM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

On my previous job we had about 6 bead blasting cabinets. For longer glass life you might want to cover it with plastic. Our experience was a "lefty" always got the glass so caution any left handed users. Glass beads is excellent for rust but not hard paint. Plastic beads is good for paint but not rust. On aircraft wheels the Federal Aviation Agency allowed us to bead blast wheels using plastic beads but not glass beads. I paid more for a satisfactory dust collector than the cabinet.
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Old 06-15-2008, 06:14:12 PM
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Default Re: Bead blasting cabinet tips, tricks?

If any one's looking for a BIG blasting cabinet there's a "Vacublast" cabinet 4'X5'X6',, said it was BIG,,was used for beading aircraft parts..He's asking $250......He say's it's not a hobbyist cabinet!
It's on CraigsList in NJ..If you're interested send me an email and I'll fwd the link to you..
It's not mine, have no connection to the seller, just want to pass it to a Stacker that might be interested....
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