The main purpose of abrasive blasting is to reshape or refinish an object. Abrasive blasting can remove paint, mold or rust from metal and plastic. You can even use abrasive blasting on wood and glass if you choose. The material you are working with and what you want to do will determine what media you use for abrasive blasting. You are essentially shooting the media at the surface which creates change to that surface. When you have a piece of metal or other hard surface that has been roughed up by paint or rust, you can smooth it out by abrasive blasting. The article below will show you how.
Step 1 – Area Preparation
Depending on the size of the item to smooth out you may need a large open area or, if the item is small enough, a blasting cabinet. If you are using a blasting cabinet there is no preparation that is needed. If, however, you need to use an open space, you may need to make it work for the process. Cover the floor with plastic sheets and set the item on top of it. Cover windows and other areas that could be damaged with plastic.
Step 2 – Prepare Yourself
When abrasive blasting, you are at risk to hurt yourself. Your safety gear should include ear protection as abrasive sanding is very loud. You will also want to protect your person by wearing sweatshirt, work boots, work gloves and jeans. Wear a hat to protect your head, facemask to prevent you from breathing in the sand and eye protection.
Step 3 – Prepare the Abrasive Blasting Gun
Abrasive blasting requires several things in order to work. You need an air compressor to be the fuel, the gun which propels the media, and a canister which holds the media. Connect a hose from the air compressor to the “in” valve on the abrasive blasting media canister and another hose from the “out” to the gun. Make sure all of the air valves are closed and then plug in the air compressor. To smooth out of a rough surface you should set the PSI to 60 and use fine granule sand. Fill the canister with the sand up to the line marked on the inside. Shut the lid on the canister and pull the ring or tab. This will create an airtight seal.
Step 4 – The Process
Use a 60 PSI setting and then turn the air compressor on and stand about a foot away from the item you want to smooth out. Open the nozzle on the abrasive blasting gun. The sand will be propelled from the gun and to the surface. Use gradual sweeping motions. Close the nozzle and inspect the surface periodically until you are happy with the result. If you run out of sand, you can vacuum it up and refill the canister with it. You can recycle the sand several times.