View Full Version : Cutting Sanblast Mask

03-10-2004, 08:38 PM
Our latest attempt to cut sandblast on our SB turned good. I thought some of you might be interested.

We applied the mask directly to the primed HDU, chose a small 1/8" roundover bit. We picked this bit as it had a tiny tip. Perviously we had used a 60 degree V bit which failed on Anchor mask but did well on Hartco Sandblast material.

Hartco is a vinyl material, that holds up very well under the blaster. The edges of the mask looked a little rough at the end of routing, but once the panels were blasted the letters were very, very sharp and clean.

Our compressor is an electric, 50hp, Quincy which delivers 185 CFM at 100psi. It took approx 10 min. each, to sandblast 4@ 36"X36" 15 lb. HDU panels with white silica.

We made our own Grain Frame from 2X4's and scrap wire. Every kind of wire, from barbwire to elevtrical scap stuff. The purpose was not to save money, rather the desire to get a beautiful irregular grain pattern.

We have the commercial grain frame. Would make someone a good buy.


03-10-2004, 10:02 PM
Joe, thank you for your post. It is the sharing of info that makes the 'bot' so valuable. I have also had success cutting vinyl, a nice crisp cut, after applying it to durabond and HDU with a downcut spiral.

Great idea for the grain frame. Wish I had a bigger compressor.

03-11-2004, 07:25 AM

What affect were you getting by sandblasting durabond, and were you going through the aluminum to the corre?


04-27-2004, 12:30 PM
I got a chance to see some sandblasted signs, up close. I like them, I think they could make a very nice mix, with routered items and sandblasting. So I've got a couple questions.

1. Simple sandblasting setup, I found a 5lb tank for 100.00, I have an air compressor that would be able to supply the proper cfm and pressure. I do not really have a place for a booth, but could set up a hood like booth for that.

2. Silca sand, after blasting can it be reused or is it just disposed of. Can you screed out the wood fibers and chips.

3. Proper saftey equipment. Hood, goggles and gloves. I've even thought about a leather welding apron.

Just my rambling thoughts, but I'd like some feedback.

Thanks, Jay

04-27-2004, 03:44 PM
How large will the pieces you sandblast be? You need your hood or booth to be that large.

I sandblasted all the steel for my do-it-yourself ShopBot Steel Table in the heat of August. I did it out in the yard and let the sand fall in the grass because the pieces were so large. When you sweat, the sand sticks to you. Not fun.

If you're going to do small pieces, look at the Harbor Freight sandblast cabinet. I think it has a filter to screen out larger pieces from the used sand.

Proper safety equipment must include some sort of good dust mask. You don't want to be breathing silica dust.

Brady Watson
04-28-2004, 09:10 AM
I have a Harbor Freight blasting cabinet. Not bad for the price, except I did have to replace the gun for $15 at Depot.

Here are some plans to build your own:

Note that, grit can be recycled in the cabinet...but it does get all over the place no matter what you do. You can use the plans above to build your own and just make it larger to suit your needs. You can get the gloves with gaunlets at McMaster or MSC and just about anything else you may need.


Brady Watson
04-28-2004, 10:27 AM
Oh...forgot to add, you must sign up for that message board to see the complete plans...It's worth it!


04-28-2004, 11:49 AM
Brady - Thanks.

I am just wanting to start with small signs.


08-23-2004, 03:39 PM
Some comments on sandblasting...

Unless you are using a supplied air suit, you should NOT use Silica sand do to the very real danger of Silicosis. As a safer alternative, you can use garnet or aluminum oxide. Granted, these two options are more expensive, but what are your lungs and lives worth? I personally use Garnet from a local industrial-type sandblaster (about $10-$12 for 50#). It is still not 100% safe as you still need a good quality respirator of some sort like a 3M cartridge style to filter out the small particles floating all over. None of that is good for you w/o filtration, but at least will not cause silicosis. Another thing is sandblasting consumes ENORMOUS amounts of air, so you will need a pertty large compressor to keep up for anything very large. I currently use a small 5HP/20 gallon Devilbiss along with a 40# pressure pot from Harbor Freight, and it just doesn't cut except for the smallest of stuff. My plan is to get a 7HP/60 gallon compressor (oil-type) and that really isn't enough for big stuff, but better. I just can't afford or justify what is normally required for full-on 'blasting (cuz it is part-time right now).

Anyway, just wanted to pass on some info.

08-24-2004, 10:22 AM
I was watching one of the "Car Buildoff" shows the other night on the Discovery Channel or something and one group was using a "Baking Soda" based abrasive to do the blasting with. Their claim was that it would disolve with the next rain, and you wouldnt have the sand all over the place. Anyone used this? Know where you can get it?


08-25-2004, 08:43 AM
My Mother-in-law wanted some light rust removed from an antique peddle sewing machine. I used baking soda that I bought at the grocery store to sand blast the machine. The rust was removed without damaging the original paint.

I would wear a mask and do this outside.

Ken Brisk (Unregistered Guest)
08-25-2004, 11:33 AM
One of the biggest producers of Baking Soda (Soda Ash)is Church & Dwight. They are located in Morristown, NJ. You might try a large bakery in your area.