DIY $5.00 Sandblaster




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Intro: DIY $5.00 Sandblaster

Instagram: Withered_perception

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

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

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

Step 3: Cut the Neck

Remove the locking neck for the cap.

Step 4: Drill

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

Step 5: Test Fit

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

Step 6: Mark

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

Step 7: File

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

Get the tube back into the hole.

Step 9: Seal

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

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

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

Step 12: Blast Away

Clean as a whistle!

Step 13: Extra Step

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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432 Discussions


26 days ago

Everyone here making this instructable should understand that the P-100 filter mask is A MUST! If you use beach sand, play sand, ANY KIND OF SAND! understand that you are risking getting silicosis. Breathing the vaporized sand from blasting can and will kill you slowly and painfully after it sets in months or years later and there is NO CURE!

1 reply

Reply 26 days ago

Also note that using sand specially made for sand blasting has a greatly reduced silicosis risk. And remember that this device has no ceramic tip so it has a limited number of uses before the sand sand blasts the air tip into oblivion.


11 months ago

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.

3 replies

Reply 10 months ago

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


10 months ago

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.

3 replies

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!

GunsawWithered Perception

Reply 26 days ago

This is a tiny sand blaster and the spray pattern from the tip is pencil thin. You won't want to use ^THIS item for removing rust from a car frame. Small tools or objects yes, large items, not really.


5 weeks ago on Step 2

jejeje i didnt spect this... funny :P


6 weeks ago on Introduction

Awesome project I will definitely be doing this! I also love the optional cat step, I'll have to modify that slightly to my dogs or bunnies.


8 weeks ago

Awesome I'ble, but the cat did not care for being sandblasted at all.


Question 5 months ago

Why does the hole have to be in the bottom of the tube? Thinking about it, wouldn't you want it on the top so that gravity helps the media enter the tube?

1 more answer

Answer 2 months ago

You could do it that way, but in practice what happens is the sand is pulled in at too high of a rate and will start to clump and clog the hole up as the individual grains fight for space to enter all at the same time. If it doesn't clog, it will proceed to spray your sand out at an alarming rate. Facing the notch downward allows the low pressure area inside the notch to create a small air pocket underneath where the sand grains are then pulled up in a controlled manner within the air stream, leading to a smoother and more predictable flow of material. The resulting air pocket underneath also has the added effect of preventing clogging and leaving behind any material that is too large. After the bottle is empty, this can easily be dumped out before adding fresh sand.


Answer 2 months ago

No. Cats will stay up on the shelf and out of the way, generally hissing at you, which is not a big deal. Dogs will try to catch the blasting grit in their mouths, so the $$$ you saved making a DIY sandblaster will be spent at the vet's office.


Question 4 months ago on Step 3

Hi there,

I am interested to clean by sand blasting an aluminium motor and I wonder if your project can work with a small air compressor (used by my son for modelling). The details of this compressor are as follows: OUTPUT: 75W., VOLT: 220V., CYCLE: 50HZ., AMP: 06A., PHASE: 1 Φ., CLASS: E., POLE: 4P., R.P.M.: 1400., RISE: 50 DEGREES CELSIUS.