Sandblasting


 

KevinJK

New member
For those who have done it, curious as to the time and effort required to sandblast firebox and hood sides. Is it easy enough for a first-timer? I have refurbed two grills. The second was better than the first. Hoping third, which will also be a bit of a re-do/combining parts with the first - turning two 1000LXs into one , will be better than the second. There are DIY sandblasts booths nearby, so just looking for some input on what's involved, and expected results. Thanks.
 

Steve Hoch

TVWBB Guru
I'm sure the effort is way less to sandblast the parts rather than stripping them with wire brushes in your angle grinder and or drill. I would expect the result to look better too, especially the cookbox. If there's a place you can take your parts to and sandblast them, I would do it in a heartbeat. I've done it the old fashioned way and I have also paid to have those parts sandblasted.
 

Ed P

TVWBB Diamond Member
For those who have done it, curious as to the time and effort required to sandblast firebox and hood sides. Is it easy enough for a first-timer? I have refurbed two grills. The second was better than the first. Hoping third, which will also be a bit of a re-do/combining parts with the first - turning two 1000LXs into one , will be better than the second. There are DIY sandblasts booths nearby, so just looking for some input on what's involved, and expected results. Thanks.
I have a homebuilt 4x4x4 sandblast cabinet and a large compressor. I have done quite a bit of blasting at home...it is easy enough with the proper equipment. There is a learning curve, to be sure, but it can get expensive. The biggest outlay is the compressor...sandblasting requires a compressor with a lot of CFM, and that requires adequate electrical power, so that is usually the major financial hurdle. I started with a 2HP compressor but flat wore it out and now I have a 7hp 80gal. rig that does well. You will need an exhaust system when using a cabinet, so that's another expense, and a cabinet big enough to accommodate a cookbox. Sandblasting is usually not cost effective for most grill flippers, unless you have a thriving business...a better alternative might be to pay a commercial outfit to do your blasting.
 

KevinJK

New member
I have access to commercial self-service blast cabinets. Just looking for some insight into the time and cost to do a firebox and two sides. I'm guessing it would be under an hour or so, but looking for input from those that have done it.
 

Ed P

TVWBB Diamond Member
I have access to commercial self-service blast cabinets. Just looking for some insight into the time and cost to do a firebox and two sides. I'm guessing it would be under an hour or so, but looking for input from those that have done it.
Can't help you there.
 

Scott Smith

TVWBB Pro
I can't help you there either. I'm wondering what media you should choose and how much you would need. Is this included with your setup?
 

TomRc

TVWBB Super Fan
I have access to commercial self-service blast cabinets. Just looking for some insight into the time and cost to do a firebox and two sides. I'm guessing it would be under an hour or so, but looking for input from those that have done it.
If you go after the heavy crud in the cook box and the inside of the shroud ends with a wire cup brush in a grinder first, you can do all of the sandblasting in about an hour. I send mine out to be done and he gives me a price break (1/3 off) if I do the prep work with the grinder and wire cup brush first.
 

Richard in NS

TVWBB Wizard
I would think you could do it in an hour depending on the volume of your blaster. I made a windbreak and did mine in the backyard with my small one but it was hot under the blasting hood so I had to take lots of breaks. Not sure how long it took. I scrapped and cleaned it first with oven cleaner and a pressure washer so there was not a lot of gunk on the inside.


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DanHoo

TVWBB Honor Circle
I've read oven cleaner is not good for aluminum. Is there an oven cleaner that is OK for aluminum?
 

John G (Boston)

TVWBB Member
Ha. So I just did some blasting today, actually (Silver C parts). I did not finish the job (got interrupted) and will try to finish it tomorrow. I'm using brand new Black Beauty grit (it wears out over time) in a pretty big cabinet, powered by two big compressors. Not sure of the HP on the compressors but I think they are 5 and 7 HP. Tanks are pretty big so I never have to wait for air - just keep blasting.

I've blasted a lot of old car parts back in the day (using glass beads and Black Beauty) so I knew to strip out all the grease and crud best I could beforehand. It keeps the blast media from getting contaminated and keeps your parts from turning into a powdered donut.

So, I am blasting a Silver C cookbox and its two endcaps. The paint was shot on the box and the endcaps were bubbling under the paint (white corrosion) so I decided to blast everything. I wanted to get the inside as clean as I could. So far, it's going about as fast as expected, which is not all that fast.

Blasting in a cabinet is slow going. I would say the carbon staining came off about as quickly as heavy rust on steel - you need to work it a bit to get it clean. The paint came off really fast. The "sweep" coverage is typically pretty narrow in a cabinet (like a quarter inch, more or less). The further away you hold the nozzle the bigger the sweep - but the lower the blast intensity. For easier stuff like the paint you can back away a little and get a bigger sweep. The carbon staining required getting closer and going slower. Also, the nozzle size will affect how fast you can go. The compressor capacity will dictate the nozzle size.

You don't want to use (or hire) a big blaster on these parts. I bet you could bend the cookbox with a big blaster.

-John
 

LMichaels

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
I've read oven cleaner is not good for aluminum. Is there an oven cleaner that is OK for aluminum?
It won't harm anything. I've done it for years. Yeah perhaps on bare aluminum but when we have to clean a box it's anything but bare. The bulk of the alkali is going to be used up eating off carbon and burned grease not attacking aluminum
 

BPratt

TVWBB Pro
I've read oven cleaner is not good for aluminum. Is there an oven cleaner that is OK for aluminum?
I don’t use oven cleaner on aluminum or painted parts. It doesn’t do much on thick crud. Grease can be burnt off the firebox. You still end up scraping or brushing anyways. Like cast iron cookware - no soap on porous surfaces


I like oven cleaner on porcelain enamel and stainless once the crud is scraped off. Just don’t let it sit too long.
 

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Bruce

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
I will have to check to see what my Sams Club Grill cleaner says. I would think that grill cleaner would be safe for aluminum with so many grills being made of aluminum.
 

LMichaels

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
When it state "not safe for aluminum" it's not indicating you cannot clean your grill with it. It's there so you don't use it on polished aluminum cookware. If you put it on bare aluminum it will turn the pan black. So the warning. It's not because you cannot use it on the fire box
 

Richard in NS

TVWBB Wizard
Yeah, I should have specified I don’t use it on bare aluminum. Just spray it on the inside of the firebox after scraping out all the thick gunk. And I don’t leave it very long. Just long enough to soften up the gunk before I pressure wash it. I rinse it off with the regular hose on low pressure as the pressure washer can splash the oven cleaner all over you which can cause burns.
 

 

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