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Pressure washer sand blaster, good or bad?

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Old 04-06-2005, 10:43:54 PM
JKKD JKKD is offline
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Default Pressure washer sand blaster, good or bad?

I'm thinking about buying a pressure washer & sand blaster attachment and I know I've seen them mentioned a few times here. I'd like some input from those of you that have used them or seen them used as to whether it's a good or bad idea. I'm looking at using a 2600 PSI, 2.5 GPM pressure washer. If it works, it looks like a lot cheaper & better way of blasting than investing in a high cfm compressor and all the hassle with water in the lines and then a good blast cabinet & exhaust fan or a good pressurized blasting unit for outdoor use. A good blast cabinet is going to take up some precious floor space and not get used very often where as my current pressure washer gets used all the time. The biggest problem I see with them is cold weather use.

Thanks for the input.

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Old 04-07-2005, 10:09:46 AM
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Elden DuRand Elden DuRand is offline
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Default Re: Pressure washer sand blaster, good or bad?

In my opinion, you're better off with a pressure washer if you need one at all.

Usually, I just use solvent and good 'ol elbow grease to clean parts. Too much chance of blowing a small loose part off into the wild blue yonder.

What I have used a pressure washer (1500 psi) for is to remove paint after using gelled paint remover. The washer gets more of the old paint off so I don't have as much wire brush work to finish the cleaning. Can I help it if I'm lazy???!!

You have to be careful with a pressure washer because the stuff it washes off will end up on anything you don't want it on within a large radius of where you're working.

A sand blaster will do more damage than good if not used VERY carefully. It can lodge sand particles back in small crevices and erode soft metal parts quickly. It's also very dusty.

Take care - Elden
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Old 04-07-2005, 11:58:08 AM
Dave from Omemee Dave from Omemee is offline
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Default Re: Pressure washer sand blaster, good or bad?

I have used both, and they each have their place. If you have an old engine covered in old hard grease the best bet is the pressure washer. Go easy if your trying to save the paint, or use spray on oven cleaner if the paint is not worth saving. The pressure washer will get the engine clean so you can see what you have in the way of problems or not (particularly the inside of the hopper). On the other hand the place where I work has a nice glass bead blaster, I use it for rust removal, not old grease removal. On a cracked head water jacket, I bead blast, inside and out, vee out the crack, bead blast again and JB both sides. On a gas tank after you soak with TSP and pressure wash, let it dry and bead blast any area where you want to solder as the first step in cleaning in order to solder.
In my opinion the pressure washer is for grease and dirt removal, the bead blaster for rust removal. They each have their place. I have never used "sand" blasting.
dave from omemee
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Old 04-07-2005, 12:54:45 PM
Dick Welty Dick Welty is offline
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Default Re: Pressure washer sand blaster, good or bad?

I have just about what you are asking about and I love this setup. The manufacturer of the sandblast attachment reccommends a little larger pressure washer than this but I find that this works very well with fine silica sand I get at a home improvment store.

The water keeps the sand and dust down. I always use common sense about sand around soft materials and moving parts.

I just pressure wash first to get off the grease and loose stuff then I put down a peice of plywood someplace in the yard and blast away the rust.

If you want to preserve the original finish as I do on much of what I restore I don't use the blaster at all. But when I am cleaning up an old pump or a rusty lawn tractor frame to install an old engine on this is the way to go.

Do your Recreation on old iron. Dick
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