A sandblaster is a high powered tool that can be used to remove paint and coatings from certain items. Since a lot of the time, you cannot paint a lighter color over a darker one, it is a lot simpler to use something such as a sandblaster to remove the previous paint from the item before painting over it with the new one.
Also, some coatings can have bad reactions with others but if it is removed first, it can stop your item from being ruined. This equipment can be used for other things too, such as etching, glass work and blasting away anything else that might need gotten rid of.
You do not need to be a professional or even have a lot of experience with these types of machines. Sandblasters are handy for workmen such as builders and redecorators as they can use it to their advantage within their professional work.
On top of that, there are many different brands of sandblaster. Here are some examples of sandblasters and the types of work they perform.
Sandblasting Media for Different Platforms
Sandblasters can be used on many different things. Take glass as an example. Sandblasting glass can now be considered a form of art. Many people who are handy with one of these machines can make brilliant pieces of glasswork and sell them to people to make a few bucks. These, when sold, can make brilliant decorations for houses and kitchens.
You can make thousands of different beaded shapes on glass and, although it isn’t incredibly precise, it is a lot faster and cheaper than etching out everything with a screwdriver.
Another thing you can use a sandblaster on is aluminum. You can use the machine to get rid of rust and fix any wear on your aluminum items, such as a bike or wheels. It saves you having to buy a whole new set of items because they rusted or chipped; you can fix it for little or nothing and easily, too.
The sandblaster can be, and often is, used on boats. It can be used to stop rust in its tracks or for a repainting job as you can remove paint and coatings. The possibilities for the sandblaster are endless.
Silica sand is a common type of mineral abrasive. It usually falls apart fast and can cause a large amount of dust- this can cause lung disease, so the sand is often partnered with resins to stop the dust. Though, using silica sand for sandblasters is illegal in some European countries, such as Germany and Britain, regardless of these precautions.
Another mineral media would be garnet, although this is more expensive. Garnet produces far less dusts and it isn’t harmful to consume the dust either. It also has pretty much the same results as silica sand, and is a good alternative if you can afford it.
Examples of this would be cornstarch, wheat starch and dry ice, along with sodium bicarbonate, also known as baking soda. These are ‘soft abrasives’ and are used to remove writing from walls of brick or stone as they don’t cause much damage to the materials underneath.
You can use the sodium bicarbonate and it causes absolutely no damage, making it a cheap and perfect solution to your lighter sandblasting needs.
Steel shot, cut wire, aluminium shot, steel grit, copper shot, zinc shot, stainless steel shot - all these are rougher media to use with your sandblaster. It can cause energy giving off sparks when it hits the surface; they range from bright orange to low blue. Still, it’s a good form of abrasive.
Usually, agricultural sandblasting media consists of crushed nut shells or fruit kernels. These are soft abrasives and don’t harm underlying media, similarly to the synthetic media.
You can also use walnut shells as an abrasive also. These are durable and angular, making them a perfect abrasive for just about anything. These are still a soft abrasive and are especially useful if the undercoat is of carbon, paint or dirt, but can be used on practically everything. It gives of no harmful dust and is a rather brilliant form of sandblasting abrasive.
Brands of Sandblasting Media
Sadly, this company has since shut down, almost a decade ago, but people still talk very highly of the abrasive blasting equipment they used to provide to the masses. They made glass abrasive blasters as well as the sand ones and sold all the parts separately as well.
It is still possible to find them hanging around on eBay now and again, and I’m sure you can find one in good condition if you search around a bit. Their old website is http://www.san-blast.com/.
Taz’s tools are an online store centered on eBay that sells all sorts of tools including, and similar to, the sandblaster. They are considered a top rated seller by eBay and seem to have an abundance of excellent products for sale, and customer reviews highly recommend this seller.
Their eBay page is conveniently located at this site, http://stores.ebay.com/Tazs-Tools.
Tools Unlimited is another internet store where they sell almost an unlimited number of tools, surprisingly enough. They have a top seller’s rating on the eBay version of their site and they have many good ratings, but seemingly no written reviews.
Their online store is located at the following site, http://www.toolsunlimited.com/default.asp
Supplies for Sandblasters
Any store that sells sandblasters also sells the parts, at least they should. Trueman’s Inc. still sells parts for their sandblasters, which is handy if a second hand one you buy is missing something. Tools Unlimited and probably most local shops around you also sell simple parts for your equipment, so you needn’t worry.
So, now you know the basics of sandblasting, its methods, mediums and sellers. You know what you can do with them, where to get one and how to fix it up when you get it. So what are you waiting for? Go out and get yourself a sandblaster toda