Plane restoraton question:

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Forum topic by poopiekat posted 08-15-2011 12:22 AM 806 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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4356 posts in 3759 days

08-15-2011 12:22 AM

I’m seeing lots of used benchtop sandblasting cabinets for sale, and wondering if anyone is using them for de-rusting planes and other rusty tools. So, my questions, for those who are getting good results with their sandblasting equipment, are: What media are you using? What air pressure? I would like to achieve a nice shiny clean surface, without an abraded texture, and the Evaporust method leaves a surface far less than satisfactory, and sandpaper makes a plane look..well.. sanded!. I can get everything from Black Beauty to walnut shells at a retailer nearby; I just don’t know what to buy to get the results I want. Any expert help appreciated.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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1287 posts in 3084 days

#1 posted 08-15-2011 06:31 AM

I did use a sandblaster to clean up a plane once. I used the sandblaster at a friends auto shop. If I remember correctly, the medium was glass bead. It left a clean finish, but not the shiny machined looking surface that is sounds you are looking for. In trying to get back to a new look, my favorite method has been to use my 48” stationary belt sander. It creates a fresh machined look with consistent machining marks. With a relatively fine belt such as a 220, you can get an almost polished look. You can see a couple that I did this way, here and here Also, unless you plan to strip all of the japanning off and start over with new paint, I would not recommend using a sandblaster to clean a plane casting, regardless of the medium. Sandblasting will never leave the shiiny, fresh machined look that it sounds like you are looking for. My personal preference now is to try and leave as much patina as possible (mostly because I don’t want to work hard enough to make it look new). I just want to clean it enough to make the plane function properly.


-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

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