To soon for that to be funny? I figured Bridget might like having a friend.
I used the sandblaster yesterday, was pretty happy with the results. It kind of fell apart under use, and I forgot to put it back together (window came off hinges, right glove's hose clamp came loose). My bad, I'll fix it this Wednesday.
However, this got me thinking. The mechanism in the blaster is decent, its just the cabinet that sucks. We could build a new cabinet pretty cheap, giving it the following features:
- Larger volume (potentially much larger)
- Easy & (relatively) clean media drain for swapping / cleaning blasting media
- 5 gal buckets with lids for media storage, and a variety of media
- Longer gloves (we can modify the existing ones, gluing them to lengthening the sleeves) with better retaining mechanism
- Window that has protective coverings that tape to glass OUTSIDE of cabinet seals (also would allow use to cheap mylar w/ no tape)
- Better sealing door (independent from view port - both would use actual weather stripping, or similar made from sturdy rubber hose)
- Working light inside cabinet (it has hardware for this already, just not wired up) w/ swtich
- Possible future hook up to dust / fume collection system (pulls dust from cabinet when blaster is not blowing & work light is on) to make it easier to see your work and reduce media contamination)
I'm volunteering to head this project up and put funding towards it, assuming space can be made available to place the cabinet and my costs go as credit towards membership fees. I'm not rich, so some additional funding may be needed. The space I'm proposing is on the aluminum table next to the big pickle (or in that location, with that table moved- its got a decent vice mounted to it, we may want it for other use). This would allow Sandy to tap directly into the Pickles plumbing, giving her max wind velocity; I suspect the hoses we have limit the hardware's capability somewhat.
This could very easily be a group project. Once the frame is done, the door, viewport, drain, cabinet skin, and hardware installation can be done as sub-projects by different individuals.
Although the location I'm proposing puts it in the metal shop (I've contacted Tony), a nice, easy to use blaster would potentially be of interest to other users. I could see using the laser cutter on some adhesive backed rubber to make a mask for blasting wood to make signs / images, for example. Sand blasted glass is also popular, and maybe could be used to make diffusers for the glass block pixel art project.