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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My son is an asst. manager at a Harbor Freight store.
Last week I was in his store and looked at the various
cabinets they had. My birthday is next week and he surprised
me today with the cabinet with a stand. I have a couple engines
I would like to repaint. flyernut offered to blast them for me, but
I might run across more things to repaint. Digging in my flower bed I dug up
2 old diecast cars. Paint is rough on them so I might repaint them.
They were buried for almost 40 years. I know a few of you guys have a sand blaster
cabinet. Whats the best medium to use. Will pool sand work? Tell me all you know. LOL
 

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My son is an asst. manager at a Harbor Freight store.
Last week I was in his store and looked at the various
cabinets they had. My birthday is next week and he surprised
me today with the cabinet with a stand. I have a couple engines
I would like to repaint. flyernut offered to blast them for me, but
I might run across more things to repaint. Digging in my flower bed I dug up
2 old diecast cars. Paint is rough on them so I might repaint them.
They were buried for almost 40 years. I know a few of you guys have a sand blaster
cabinet. Whats the best medium to use. Will pool sand work? Tell me all you know. LOL
 

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Ignore the above post clumsy fingers.
If you have what I suspect it is I would use glass beads. I have used a small sand blaster a bit and a cabinet arrangement that may be like you have. A good friend has a cabinet blaster and set me up with it to clean an old steam engine for repainting. I purchased a Lionel 2026 that had a good deal of rust on it, missing some of the driver rods and the motor was frozen. I bought it to see if I could bring it back to life. The bead blaster cleaned it up very well but did not erode the casting. It painted up very nicely. In my limited experience I would use the glass beads in lieu of the sand.
I would hope some of the experienced users would post and give you their views.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Ron. I have heard more to use glass beads than anything. No rust on any of my engines.
I just want to remove the paint. We have a couple of guys here that have done some nice jobs repainting
their locomotives. of coarse I would rather have the original paint but I have a few with just too
many paint flakes. I have one or 2 repainted engines and they are nice. All were sand blasted first.
 

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Mopac I have owned a Snap On blasting cabinet for 25 years. In my experience glass beads work the best. The glass beads will leave the surface fairly smooth, not etched as sand will. While an etched surface is sometimes desirable for some types of metal for good paint adhesion, or "teeth" like some real car parts, I think the glass beaded surface will be better for most any metal. Rust is no problem for glass. I have blasted brass, copper, and aluminum. The air must be turned down for soft material. You did get a regulator didn't you? Those old cars could be zamac metal which is a soft metal. Some older Hot Wheels were made of zamac.

Kenny
 

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There are all sorts of mediums you can use in your blaster. I've used pool sand,a product called "Black Beauty", and 1 other I can't recall. Be careful with glass beads, they are actually glass beads or particles.I use pool filter sand, cheap, and does the job.I filter any media I use, using a Eastwood funnel with a screen in it..I've never had a problem with damaging boiler shells or the like, and I have my regulator set at 100psi. Be careful with thin metals such as tin tenders!!!!!!! You can not blast those..Sand-blasting creates alot of heat, and you will warp the metal to no end.. Also, regardless of the medium, PROTECT YOUR LUNGS!!. I use a good filter or mask if I plan on doing alot of work, but that's using my blaster, not a cabinet.I had a Harbor Freight cabinet blaster, and actually wore it out,lol..The rubber gloves got holes in them, and they ripped at wrinkles in the glove. The worst part are the particles of medium bouncing around in the cabinet while blasting will hit the plexi-glas window,slowly over time making it impossible to see through. I think I'm done, ask if you have any more questions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Thanks Kenny and flyernut. I have alot to learn about blasting. Its alot like alot of things learn with experience. If you screw up, don't do that again. I know about clouding up the cabinet window. If it is plexiglass I might be able to replace it. My son warned me about breathing any crap in. The one I saw in the store did not have anything to sit an engine on in the cabinet. I guess I could make a stand. Or maybe you hold the engine with one of your hands.
Like I said I have alot to learn. I will go slow at first.

Many times when I am doing something for the first time I go to YouTube and find a video on
the subject. I do that on car repairs alot. My son has a Ford escape with a wore out ignition switch. Plenty of videos on how to replace. Not that easy of a job. And parts cost. It is a
common problem with the Escapes. There was one video on another fix. For less money
and alot less time. Thats the way I went. A push button start like a tractor or maybe a race car.
For less than $10 and maybe 20 minutes he has a very reliable way to start his Escape. Plus
I think the push button start is cool. You do have to turn the key to on and then push the button.
Works great. Thanks YouTube. The video showed which wires to cut into.
 

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To save plexiglass cover it with a clear laminate. Or another layer of plexiglass. Just discard it when it gets bad. That way you preserve the installed piece. Handling a piece does not sound safe but the pieces are so light they would have to be clamped. I can see there is a learning curve here.
 

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I always end up holding the item when I'm blasting it, it makes it easy to turn it around to the best angle. Remember, you're wearing thick rubber gloves, so it's really not as dangerous as it sounds. Now, if the gloves are deteriorating, that's a whole other story!
 

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i have two cabinets .. a large home made one with sandblasting sand for ferrous and other hard metals. and a second smaller one from princess auto, a bench top style with soda in it for brass locos ..
if i was going to do plastic locos i would probably use glass beads as they much less aggressive than sand.
 

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Mopac my blasting cabinet has a glass window, not plexiglass. Plexiglass would pit easily. When I first got it I took the glass to a glass company and had 10 more windows cut for replacements. When I first bought the blaster 25 years ago, I used that thing several times a day for the first 10 years I owned it. I should explain it is not a bench set up and requires a 2 stage 80 gallon compressor for steady air supply if you are doing the kind of work I was which was blasting cylinder heads, intake and exhaust manifolds for restorations. It sits on a stand and is 5' tall with the cabinet measuring 3' tall, 4' long, and 38" wide. To date I used up 2 pair of rubber gloves, fastened to the cabinet by screwed on rings so no air gets out, and have replaced only 4 of those glasses. The original Snap-On gloves I thought were adequate until I bought new ones from NAPA. Those are a lot heavier and last longer. I sometimes hold the object in my hand or lay it on the expanded steel screen that lays in the cabinet. I have made wooden, (and remade) fixtures to hold objects, that sit on the screen so I can rotate or turn up side down. I have used other blasting medium, pool sand, (cheap), Black Beauty, and glass beads. I have never had a rust removal problem using the glass beads. The usual psi is 125. Of Course a lot lower on softer metals. I admit that what I have is over kill for smaller everyday stuff but at the time I bought it, it was what I needed. Once you buy a blasting cabinet, no matter the size, you will wonder how you ever got along without one.

Kenny
 

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To save plexiglass cover it with a clear laminate. Or another layer of plexiglass. Just discard it when it gets bad. That way you preserve the installed piece. Handling a piece does not sound safe but the pieces are so light they would have to be clamped. I can see there is a learning curve here.
They come with thick gloves built in. No worries there, I always held parts unless they were too big.

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