sandblaster question

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Forum topic by sarahss posted 05-11-2012 01:01 PM 1566 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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258 posts in 2648 days

05-11-2012 01:01 PM

my husband wants to strip and paint his motorcycle. i was wondering if anyone had one of these HF blast cabinets? We have a good size air compressor, and it looks like that’s all we need to run this. my questions are 1. is this the right tool for the job 2. is this all we need (other than nozzles, blasting media, quick connectors and moisture trap)? 3. is this one an “ok” quality for this job? 4. i don’t see how the air compressor works here to get the blasting media picked up. in the second link, I get how that one works, but not in the first one. do I need both? any other thoughts, comments welcome.

another option is this one, but the cabinet seems safer, and you can recover and re-use the media.

9 replies so far

View patron's profile


13603 posts in 3340 days

#1 posted 05-11-2012 01:16 PM

it all come down to the air recovery cycle
and volume in the air compressor
as it takes a lot of air to sandblast

i have bought and used two different nozzles
but sent them back
as they just used up the air in 30 seconds
even with a 60 gallon tank
(single stage compressor)

i now have a double stage 60 gal one
(continuous air)
but even it might not be enough

check the volume and recovery rate
of the one you have
against the tool needs specks

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View sarahss's profile


258 posts in 2648 days

#2 posted 05-11-2012 01:36 PM

our compressor is single stage—about 130 psi max, i believe—it’s one of the oil less ones on wheels—coleman, i think—maybe 25 gallon. sounds like it might not have the muscle to do the job.

what about option #2 in my original post? since that’s a dedicated unit, would it be more likely to do the job?

View Roz's profile


1699 posts in 3785 days

#3 posted 05-11-2012 02:09 PM

A sand blaster will get the paint off. It will also score and puncture sheet metal if used incorrectly. Many bikes have a rust inhibitor coat under the paint that is pretty effective and the sand plaster will take that off too. Unless the paint is in very bad shape the best approach for a repaint is hand sanding. After the sanding coat the bear metal areas with rust inhibitor and primer coats following any dent repairs and then final sanding with about a 320 grit wet dry paper. Use your compressor for spraying on the paint.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

View sarahss's profile


258 posts in 2648 days

#4 posted 05-11-2012 02:54 PM

thanks Terry. i’ll pass that along to him.

View patron's profile


13603 posts in 3340 days

#5 posted 05-11-2012 06:11 PM

top link requires 6 cubic ft at 125 psi
and can you get like say the frame parts
in the cabinet

bottom link requires 10 cubic ft at 100 psi
it is just able to hold 110 lbs of material
but still needs air

it’s like opening the air hose full blast
to work them

why they need lots of air and recovery

terry got it right for blasting
even with crushed shells
you can cut through the primer
and pit the metal

it takes good air
and a delicate touch
they are good for that rippled wood figurines
like those owls and ‘driftwood’ lawn carvings they sell

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View sarahss's profile


258 posts in 2648 days

#6 posted 05-11-2012 07:06 PM

sounds like this might not be the best way to go with my compressor. Thanks David & Terry

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20483 posts in 3104 days

#7 posted 05-14-2012 12:47 AM

I had one of the HF portable units and I had 2 air compressors running to sandblast they barely kept up. I gave it away because of that and because I don’t so much of any sandblasting. I have a friend that has a cabinet sand blaster and a big vertical 10 hp compressor to run it. I go over there now when I really have to do it and I can’t get the paint off with torch and wire brush.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View PutnamEco's profile


155 posts in 3285 days

#8 posted 05-14-2012 11:52 AM

For a one off project, I believe you would be a lot better off taking it to a professional dry stripping company. I’m paying about $40 to have a frames striped. One thing most don’t consider, used blasting media is considered toxic waste, as such it can be hard (and expensive) to properly dispose of, and many non professionals resort to less than legal disposal methods.The blast cabinet you linked will not be large enough to fit many motorcycle components. I know you not going to fit a frame in that and I doubt a gas tank will fit. Blasting in open air…., Depending on the media, you have no idea the mess this can create. I hope it’s done on a windless day and hope the neighbors live far enough away to escape the dust cloud. Luckily that is a small blaster and should only leave about a 20 foot circle of media and old paint on the ground for future generations to enjoy.

A word on media, soda blasting is most often recommended for motorcycle components, walnut shell for more delicate components.

It is my understanding that automotive finishing is a system that works best when matching components are used, primer, undercoat and topcoat should all be compatible, therefor stripping to bare metal should provide the best results

On a side note, it often is worth having a pro do the painting as well, they have easy access to both materials and equipment that will produce a much better job than what can be done in the typical home shop and they can do it for a price that will be a fraction of the cost of what it would take to stock and equip a proper spray booth. Imron is a fairly common quality paint for motorcycle components, and can be a little tricky to mix and apply properly. While it can be done by someone in a home shop (I have heard HVLP works acceptably, a pressure pot is recommended), for one project it does not seem to me to be economically feasible. Even when I was making my living restoring vintage motorcycles, I always chose to leave the painting to people who are dedicated to the trade rather than invest my limited time and resources towards another trade, as they did a better job, much more affordably than was possible for me to easily achieve.

TL:DR If you expecting professional results, hire a professional, or be prepared to invest considerable time, money, and effort, to achieve the same results.

-- “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.” ― Franklin D. Roosevelt

View DrDirt's profile


4424 posts in 3741 days

#9 posted 05-14-2012 05:21 PM

For the toxicity – I see a lot of folks using a soda blaster – - so basically filling your sandblaster with baking soda.
Which you can then clean up the area with a garden hose.

Doesn’t solve the issue of the paint itself though as far as toxicity

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

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