Introduction: DIY $5.00 Sandblaster

Picture of DIY $5.00 Sandblaster

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I have some rust on my driveway and some old rusty tools I got from my grandfather years ago.

I have been looking at sand and soda blasters for about 6 months. They are either inexpensive and cheap or very well made and expensive!

So I decided lets just make one.

Step 1: Get Crap

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Go get some crap at Harbor Freight. This air gun kit ran $4.99.

Now find a bottle in the trash.

Step 2: Say "Hi" to the Cat

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This optional but important step may be the difference between you succeeding or failing.

Step 3: Cut the Neck

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Remove the locking neck for the cap.

Step 4: Drill

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Grab a 3/16" bit and drill the neck just under the cap.

Step 5: Test Fit

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Push the air rod in. It should be very snug!

Step 6: Mark

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Mark the bottom of the air tube. Spin the tube around so you can hold the handle while you file.

Step 7: File

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File a hole through the tube to let your media in. When you're done spin the tube back so the opening is at the bottom.

Step 8: Fit

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Get the tube back into the hole.

Step 9: Seal

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Not looking for the glue to actually stick here.

Just looking to prevent the hole from opening up too much while under pressure.

Step 10: Test Blast

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Put your Saftey goggles and gloves on and give it a good blast. I shot at the rust on the drive way and removed a spot (the white part) in just a few seconds.

I will give you an update on the driveway once I have time to do some actual blasting on it.

Step 11: Real Deal

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An old set of needle nose (rusty as hell...)

Step 12: Blast Away

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Clean as a whistle!

Step 13: Extra Step

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Because everyone keeps asking this is my air compressor a California Air Tools 10020c running at about 40 PSI for blasting.

I also use 20/40 crushed walnut for my media.

For PPE I use gloves, a P-100 respirator, long sleeves and a face shield. No excuses! Do not mess with your Safety!

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Comments

ModesteEdlyn made it! (author)2018-01-18

Är det santttttttttttttttttttttttttttt?hahahahahaha.

ingram484 (author)2018-01-14

Made one today. Used it to clean hard to reach area on welding project - I used sand, it caused some slight pitting , but not an issue for my project. Great idea !!

kakungulu (author)2017-11-14

What kind of air compressor are you hooking up to this? Sorry, my shop is only electric, but I'm considering shifting to air pressure tools.

Because everyone is asking, I posted short a video of the blaster in action: https://youtu.be/Rb1JuEODyDw

Impressive. Did you try to frost glass with this? Can you use quikrete sandbox sand as medium?

Wingloader (author)kakungulu2018-01-10

If you use any kind of concrete, I'd suggest you wear an OSHA VOC type respirator. That is some pretty fine particulate and it is extremely bad for lungs (cancer etc.)

I have a 10 gal 10020C California Air Compressor

GaryN46 (author)2017-12-08

I don't see any gloves in the picture

Wingloader (author)GaryN462018-01-10

I accidentally hi my finger using crushed walnut. I'm just glad it wasn't an abrasive. OMG it hurt pretty bad. Learned two lessons with this project. 1. Safety is important and 2. Not heeding number 1 is painful.

It was only for a picture. Watch the video. Gloves are on! lol

Wingloader (author)2018-01-10

Dude! I made it!!! It is awesome. I only had 30 bucks on me so I bought the crushed walnut at HF. I was so excited to try it I forgot to put on eye protection. I was wearing prescription eyeglasses, but....DON'T use this without FULL eye protection. Trust me.

Can you use regular old sand in this instead of buying the expensive abrasives at HF?

the modder (author)2017-11-20

also just a question where do u get crushed walnut media from

ricks451 (author)the modder2018-01-09

Harbor Freight has fine and coarse crushed walnut abrasive media.

ve6cmm (author)2018-01-04

Great idea. I am going to do this and use the sand blaster to clean radio chassis. I restore vintage radio's and am always having problems getting into tight areas to clean out 80 year old gunk. This will also be great for cleaning surface rust off, and stripping the cabinetry.

komendj (author)2017-11-14

Is there any risk of sand going back into the air-hose? I am hesitant that some could make it's way up and damage a compressor or something.

Cheese Queen (author)komendj2017-11-14

The air is coming OUT of the compressor under pressure. No, there is no chance sand will be able to fight its way back up the hose.

komendj (author)Cheese Queen2017-11-20

I understand it was coming out pressurized and that something making it's way up would be a low, low chance event. I was mostly trying to think about if it would be possible to have a low density filter (not impede the air flow but catch medium size pieces of media) before the air hose but after the hole in the air gun nozzle.

komendj (author)komendj2017-11-20

Sorry, that was a confusing way of putting it. In terms of coming down the line from the compressor, it would be after the air gun, but before the hole in the nozzle.

TraceyT222 (author)komendj2017-12-31

If it makes you feel better, put an inline filter like this on the end of your hose. $6 https://m.harborfreight.com/OilWater-Separator-68246.html

jnorwood1983 (author)2017-12-15

Thanks for the cool idea! Unfortunately, everything that I have tried to remove rust from has not worked. Mine is built exactly like yours and I have varied psi up to 70 but still not enough to remove any rust. I am using crushed walnut shells (fine). Any idea as to why it is not working for me?

RiggedTaco (author)jnorwood19832017-12-25

I'm not sure if the items your trying to remove rust from are smaller, like hand tools, but soaking in apple cider vinegar works very well on rusted tools. I brought a wrench back that I last in the field years ago.

Try different abrasives possibly? Depending on the rust or the metals surface blasting may not work. you may need to use a solvent.

I am going to try the solvent shown below first. Almost all the videos I have watched use crushed walnut so I don't see why that shouldn't work. If that doesn't work I will try something else. Thanks

RockerParker made it! (author)jnorwood19832017-12-20

This is what you need!

Thanks for the suggestions! I will try it out

made2hack (author)2017-12-07

Awesome project idea. These are becoming quite popular diy projects!

I could deffinatly see that!

jackbatster (author)2017-12-11

I think I must try this !

Yes you do!

JumpingThrghHoops (author)2017-12-03

Great DIY project!

Do you think that the sand blasting or another media could be used on the underside of a car to remove rust?

Yes, a Canadian problem caused largely from the road salt used to melt the snow on the roads. I cannot see why it wouldn't work, but need to put some thought into before actually proceeding. The one thing that comes to mind is it may be necessary to cover the brakes to prevent sand from penetrating, but then again as soon as the car starts rolling it should shake and blow off.

Absolutely. I spent years in the Auto industry and Sandblasting is very common! Cover what you don't want blasted, cardboard shields work well and a simple air nozzle after at about 90PSI should take care of about 85% of the media. driving should in theory get the rest!

Thanks! That's good news.

Scott

JoeyyBoyy (author)2017-11-18

Need clairifcation: About that slot opening in the metal tube. Is the slot facing the cap or the top of the bottle?

Have you tryed sand blown off the beach it's very fine and usually dry

It honestly wont matter. Considering the venturi will pull the material through the tube. I personally set mine facing the cap to prevent cavitation.

Here is the video of it in use. https://youtu.be/Rb1JuEODyDw

Nikiniku (author)2017-11-14

I was wrong about being able to buy a complete sand blasting kit for $29. I discovered that when went to Amazon just now to buy it. $29 does NOT include the compressor. As far as the kits NOT INCLUDING COMPRESSORS are concerned, the cheapest one I could find was $11.95, and there were nine less than $19.00. The compresors I found were not that cheap. There was one for $13.95, but the next highest one was $19.95, and they went up from there. So, it looks like I won't be buying a sand blaster and compressor to clean the surface of my concrete driveway. I'll have to stick with the power drill and circular sandpaper discs I have been using.

offramp (author)Nikiniku2017-11-22

ummm.... have you considered muriatic acid...?

maxhuey (author)2017-11-21

Did you try using baking soda? works great for carburetors. simply wash away with water after blasting. I think it needs a smaller hole on the tube otherwise the air will empty out the baking soda in a few seconds

wilwrk4tls made it! (author)2017-11-20

I added a brace because even with a snug hole through the bottle and (too much!!!) hot glue it didn't feel stable. It's just attached with tie wire through holes in the wood.

I haven't tested it out just yet but will get to soon.

the modder (author)2017-11-20

I WILL SEND A FEW PICS OF IT IF U WANT

BTW I USED A CONDITIONER BOTTLE
MAY I ASK WHY DO I NEED TO REPLACE THE BOTTLE JUST WOUNDERING

the modder (author)2017-11-18

I USED EPOXY TO HOLD MY FRINGING HOPPER ON (SAND HOLDER) I PREFERE IT PERMENT ON THERE

Mine was a reinforcement more than A holder. I would assume even Epoxy wouldn't hold all that well considering the minimal surface area of the tube and the slick smooth surface.

With a tight enough hole the tube shouldn't come off easily anyways. but Epoxy is worth a shot!

Worse case scenario you need to get another gatorade bottle.

Thank you for the comment. Here is the blaster in action: https://youtu.be/Rb1JuEODyDw

WELL I ADDED A CAP AT THE TOP OF THE BOTTLE FOR EASY ACCESS TO REFILL IT
IF U WANT I FILL MINE UP WITH SOAP AND WATER AND CLEANED MY DAD`S UTE WITH IT BUT MAKE SURE U CLEAN IT VERY WELL THOUGH

ALSO WHEN USING EPOXY MAKE SURE U ROUGHN THE PIPE UP WITH A FILE TO MAKE IT STICK BETTER
AND THANX FOR THE VIDEO I ENJOYED IT!!!!

DonaldC67 (author)2017-11-18

Neat idea, and surely will work well with any large air compressor. Many small and moderate-size ones may suffice, but won't have the CFM necessary for the Harbor Freight device, which requires 7 CFM at 90 psi.

I'm only running @ 25-30 PSI and my 10 Gal holds up just fine.

Here is the video of it in action: https://youtu.be/Rb1JuEODyDw

Sure looks impressive.

Luke Wilson (author)2017-11-18

That's brilliant.

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