Which type of bead blaster?

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  andyfrost 1 month, 1 week ago.

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  • #38100

    rowan-bradley
    Participant

    I have some pieces of machinery to clean prior to painting. They have a lot of old paint, rust and dirt on them. It seems pretty difficult and time consuming to get them clean enough with a rotary wire brush or with sandpaper, so I am considering buying a bead blaster to help with this. But I’m confused about all the different types available. There seem to be gravity feed guns, with a little container for sand on top of the gun (which presumably makes the gun a lot heaver). And there seem to be siphon guns which suck the sand up from some kind of container below the gun (although sucking sand up through a pipe seems a dubious concept to me), and there seem to be ones with a tank which presumably contains compressed air, and possibly also sand, but I don’t really understand why I need an additional air cylinder (in addition to the one on my compressor). Some of the guns come with a range of different size nozzles, and others do not. Some of the guns come from China and are very cheap, others from European or US manufacturers are a lot more expensive. Which of these do I need? What are the pros and cons of each type?

    Thank you – Rowan

    #38101

    wristpin
    Participant

    For a start, no sand, silicosis.
    Cabinet size, what sized parts do you have in mind?
    Bench mounted or free standing? Top or end loading
    That will affect the sized compressor that you need – you can never have too much air.

    Now to practicalities. I mess about with domestic mowers and have a cheapish Sealy bench mounted with home made additional dust extraction – a Henry vac with a cheapo Chinese cyclone interceptor to protect it. Additional LED internal lighting . Both necessary to see what I’m doing. Compressor, belt driven, iron bore pump , 14cuft min free air delivered on a dedicated 20amp circuit. Does most of what I need – anything bigger goes down the road – £60 per hour.

    #38103

    rowan-bradley
    Participant

    Thanks for your reply. Yes, I understand not to use sand. The parts I’m thinking of blasting are rusty parts of machines, e.g. a mower, a space heater, an air compressor, a power hacksaw, a lathe. I may also have a go at the rusty fence outside my home. I was thinking of not buying a cabinet, just the hand held gun, and doing the work outdoors. I can wear an air fed mask. So what are the rps and cons of gravity feed, syphon feed and pressure guns for this sort of use? Is there anything I should watch out for? Doe sit need to have replaceable jets? Does it need to have jets in a range of sizes?

    Thanks – Rowan

    #38116

    wristpin
    Participant

    No cabinet? So unless you are contemplating a dedicated blasting room or confined area where you can scoop up the used media for reuse it will be a total loss operation and appropriately expensive. In the circumstances that you have outlined you would probably need a blasting pressure pot to contain the media fed by a sizeable compressor to a pressure fed gun.
    I think that you need to investigate and define what you can afford in terms of space, capacity and cost, versus what would be better farmed out.
    You mention the possibility of doing railings etc . An acquaintance of mine does a lot of that sort of work using a trailer mounted road drill compressor . He recently did all the internal beams in an old timber framed house – family moved out, house emptied,
    and a week’s work . Then fifteen tons of media to shovel and vacuum out of the house – another week’s work.

    #38117

    rowan-bradley
    Participant

    This is all a bit of an experiment, since I have not done this before. Maybe you are right, and I need a cabinet, and/or a pressure fed gun. But first I’d just like to see what I can achieve with just the hand held gun. If it’s ineffective, or uses too much media, I will consider subcontracting the sand blasting, or buying a cabinet.

    Thanks – Rowan

    #38118

    andyfrost
    Participant

    Small components = blasting cabinet, Larger components= various wirewheels and elbow grease.

    Andy

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