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Discussion DIY Wet Blaster

Discussion in 'Tech Tips' started by Andych, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I know this was sort of discussed a bit when @ShaneP had a lash at using a pool pump etc but just recently I have been thinking more about it as when I get into the Honda CB's I will have lots of bits that will need Vapour ("wet" ) blasting to bring them up looking like new.
    When I started adding up what it would cost me to have these parts done I re-visited You tube looking for DIY wet blasters....
    It really isnt too hard to convert my Sand Blast cabinet to a reasonably effective wet blast or vapour blast cabinet.
    There are a number of videos from a New Zealand guy (linked below) who tries all sorts of pumps.. washing machine pumps etc and even makes a small wet blast cabinet from an old dishwasher...
    In essence what I need is a trash pump ($60 on ebay) a large bucket, some hose and fittings plus a blast nozzle.
    The concept is proven and it takes some fiddling to get the recirculation / agitation line flow correct but that wont be an issue. I would ideally like to use a foot switch to turn on the pump and open a solenoid for the air line at the same time which I can pick up from ebay (around $30) so for not too many $$$ I should be able to make it work...
    These guys use fairly fine grade glass beads for their slurry so I will investigate that as well. It would be interesting to find out the exact media @kiffsta uses in his Industrial grade machine..

    I wont start on it for a month or so but I will start gathering bits and pieces along the way to get it to a stage where I can just muck in and convert it...

     
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  2. kiffsta

    kiffsta Administrator Staff Member Dirty Wheel Club Contributing Member

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    I use potters AD grade bead , I also have AH but AD is best

    the glandless pump is the challenge as you need to pump the slurry mix , the bead will chew out most pumps

    this pic shows it best

    2A11BB29-0F50-4AC9-BD9B-AF219DEB5B44.png
     
  3. ShaneP

    ShaneP Well-Known Member

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    The boss was probably watching the same video; he was thinking about a DIY unit, converting the dry blaster. But a dishwasher or washing machine could be good for me - I might have a few to choose from lying around here... But the boss knows a blaster in town, he's probably better off just taking it to them.
     
  4. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    For an Industrial machine then yes... the glandless pump is a better option but for what I would be doing a Stainless steel dirty water pump will work perfectly.. they all have a vortex style impeller so there is very little circulation around the mechanical seal which is to concerning part... naturally the more expensive (better brand) of pump the better the quality but I cant justify using one of the pumps I sell ($840 list price) over a $75 pump...
    The trick is to ensure good agitation of the slurry... that way the pump isnt overly stressed.
    Pricing it all up I can do it for around $200... I will have way more than that as an expense if I do all the parts I want to do on the 2 CB's.
    Front and rear hubs, engine cases, barrels, heads fork lowers... so for me... it is worth the investment..
    Another guy in the USA is doing the same thing and he also uses AD grade beads... so that seems to be the right way to go.
    If I was in Brisbane.. I wouldnt even bother as it would be worth using @kiffsta but here in Sydney.. there isnt anyone close and without knowing them or their quality of work (or charge rates) I just think this is worth a shot.
     
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  5. Barney7779

    Barney7779 Member Premium Member

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    I use a similar setup to this

    Mine is a genuine Karcher thing....Messy as all hell but get the job done pretty good

     
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  6. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I also have a KArcher one like that but it isn’t any use on smaller items.
    The wet blast cabinet is perfect for the sort of items I need to clean up.


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  7. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    Nice work.
    I picked up a $50 used sand blasting cabinet 90L 6 month's ago to convert it for vapour blasting
    Haven't had a chance to start work on it yet
     
  8. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    I picked up a used Onga pump on saturday for $20, had a few extra bit's with it that i didn't need.
    From what i can find online, the pump is around 450w, should be good for testing purposes.
    I wired the power plug directly off the pump bypassing the control box and various switch's


    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]


    First test run with just water




    I went to Bunning's yesterday and bought some pipe fitting's to get it working, i needed a 25mm to 20mm adapter, a 20mm T piece, a 13mm barb fitting and a 19mm barb fitting.

    This morning i set it up temporarily in the blasting cabinet to try it out
    I only have a 4mm bore ceramic tip fitted in the blasting gun atm, and am running the air pressure at 90psi.
    I'm impressed with the result's though
    Next i'll need to set up a wiper to keep the glass clean while i blast.

    I will also try it out with the bigger blasting head that i bought for the pressure cleaner.

    20191028_111646.jpg 20191028_111621.jpg 20191028_111548.jpg 20191028_111539.jpg 20191028_111533.jpg 20191028_101240.jpg 20191028_111424.jpg 20191028_111435.jpg 20191028_111441.jpg
     
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    Last edited: Oct 28, 2019
  9. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Wow, that looks like the goods.



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  10. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I only just read about the 4mm tip. The guy in NZ s using 8 and 10 mm so an increase in size might help as well


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  11. kiffsta

    kiffsta Administrator Staff Member Dirty Wheel Club Contributing Member

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    I blast at 45-60 psi
     
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  12. ShaneP

    ShaneP Well-Known Member

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    I removed the air supply. I got enough turbulence running a firefighting pump through a 6 or 8mm hole in a washer inside a hose fitting. The air certainly helps in kiffsta's machine, though.
     
  13. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    Tried it out again today on an old alloy wheel, i think this pump need's to be bigger.
    I swapped out the 4mm tip for a ported 8mm tip and it is a bit quicker
    I also tried it at 60 psi, 75 psi and 80 psi, but it's a much slower process at lower psi's, lower psi possibly give's a better shinier finish though
    Will have to play around again tomorrow
     
  14. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    You could throttle back the agitation line. Water / fluid is like electricity so it will take the least line of resistance. If you have a suitable sized ball valve etc you could put it on the agitation line to limit that flow and force some more liquid up the line.
    The proper vapor blasting gun will have less restriction as well as the fluid hitting the air stream at about a 30 degree angle vs 90 degrees.
    It should all make a difference.


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  15. kiffsta

    kiffsta Administrator Staff Member Dirty Wheel Club Contributing Member

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    When I say I blast at 45-60 psi, I have a separate 3 phase pump bringing the water in, my air is at 45-50 psi

    the nozzle brings the air and the water together
     
  16. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Yep, these DIY systems are not meant to challenge the commercial machines like yours. The little Onga is probably only 6000 lph and about 60 MPs max pressure at its 400 watts.
    Possibly a lower concentration in the slurry will assist the flow rate as flow drops off considerably with slurries when used on what is essentially a water pump.
    A more powerful pump will work better but the whole idea is to have a heap to build alternative to ( in Sydney at least) a $100 per hour plus drop of and delivery charge on lots of items over a build.
    I would have been looking at per $1000 easy with the cB250 and CB400
    So a hundred or so $ to convert my Sand blaster is worth it to me.


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  17. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    The gun i'm using now is pretty much the same as this one, with a 1/2" air hose going to a high flow barb fitting
    high-pressure-wet-sand-blasting-nozzles-500x500.jpg

    I am just about to go grab another 1/2 barb fitting for the agitation line, so it'll match the slurry feed line size
    I currently have a 19mm barb as the agitation line so i'm probably loosing too much to the blasting gun
     
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  18. Andych

    Andych Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Truth is you could go down to 10mm if you wanted. Agitation is more about velocity than flow.
    That gun looks the goods.
    I have ordered a cheapie 550w pump so when it gets here I will start modifying my blaster.
    I need to get another motor pulley for the compressor. Mine has a big crack in it where it was damaged in transit.
    Suppliers don’t have any spares lol typical I guess.


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  19. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    I'm sure mine will need some fine tuning to sort it out
     
  20. my67xr

    my67xr Bike Enthusiast Staff Member Premium Member Contributing Member

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    I fitted a new 13mm agitator barb fitting this morning and had another go with the vapour blaster.
    It remove's more corrosion now so i think the using the same size feed and agitator barb's is the go for the time being.
    Noticed that with the blasting nozzle on, the blasting is also quieter than blasting with the original gun i had used.

    I had another go on the mag wheel and did about twice the area in the same time
     
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