Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Beaterblog Product Review - HF 20lb. Capacity Sand Blast Kit

After many evenings of applying paint stripper and diligently peeling off three layers of color and chemically disposing of my fingerprints, I decided that maybe sandblasting the engine bay of the Javelin was the method of choice to finish this stage of the paint preparation process. Naturally, I went to Harbor Freight to view their selection of shard wielding equipment for the job. I gravitated towards the 'Entry Level' models. It should have been a red flag that the marked price was $29.99 and I ended up paying a clearance price of $10.00 even.

This little Chinese gem consists of one air gun with a sand feed connected to a shoulder-strapped plastic jug full of sand. On the other end of the nozzle is a high pressure air feed. It's all pretty simple but oh-so crappy.

Why you would

If you are a masochist, you would love this package. It was only $10.00 and it ended up getting the job done albeit slowly and painfully. If it's really only ten bucks and not a mistake in the transaction then it could be worth it for the basic sandblasting nozzle.

Why you wouldn't

The quality of this product - particularly the sand container and hoses - is horrendous. It was practically made of packaging material that is normally meant to be thrown away. Speaking of packaging material, the package label consists of a large plastic plate that is riveted to the front of the sand container. If you remove it, you will be taking the rivets with you and the sandbox will leak from then on.

The blasting action is OK but would have been more consistent if I had taken the $10 in pennies and flicked them at the engine bay. While sandblasting away, the nozzle got clogged up. This forced air back through the sand feed, exploding the hose, and successfully scaring the shit out of me and stoving up my finger. This also rendered the hose useless and I was forced to 'fix' it. It blew up two more times - once at the junction to the sandbox and once more the hose itself - and I was forced to give up for the day.
Verdict

At the end of the day, it worked to strip paint but so do a lot of other things. It took a long, long time and I had to fix a brand new tool three times. I don't think I would buy this product if it was any more than $10 or if I was any more motivated to get something else.

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