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Thread: HF Blast Cabinet Mods/Build...

  1. #1

    HF Blast Cabinet Mods/Build...

    Finally got a chance to use my new/modified HF blast cabinet. I'm super impressed with the performance and ease of use. I purchased the cabinet new, with the intention of installing several of the Tacoma mods that are viewable on YT. I got the Standard Kit, which includes Tacoma manufactured gun, foot control, metering valve, along with a regulator/guage and all the hoses, fittings and grommets you'll need. Along with the Standard Kit, I also purchased several of Tacoma's options, which makes the cabinet perform as efficiently as you could imagine. For light inside the cabinet, I replaced the meager OEM light, with 2 outdoor floods, with a plug to go into my vac's Automatic input, so that the vac turns on when I turn on the lights.
    Now, I know many might ask why I would purchase a $150 blast cabinet, only to add on hundreds of dollars worth of mods. After researching cabinet prices and features, I found that for well under $1000, I could have a cabinet that performs better than $2000+ cabinets. Granted, more expensive cabinets use heavy sheet metal and are meant survive the drops and hits that might occur in a pro shop, however for my purposes, this cabinet will be well cared for, so massive durability will not be a factor and in fact, would take away from it's moveabiltiy and space savings, which are a big consideration for me.
    Having used the modified cabinet for the first time, I can say that it operates beautifully, with no leaks anywhere. With only 2 cups of HF glass media, I was able to blast rust and paint off of several parts, with the metering valve only half way open and the pressure set at only 20psi. The add ons meant to divert media inside the cabinet, down the funnel, did their job and kept the 2 cups of media continually recirculating. Visibility inside the cabinet while blasting, was not an issue due to repositioning of the vac port and air intake. Also, replacement of the plexiglass window with glass and quick change kit, aids in the clear view and will make window replacement simple.
    Although all the mods took me about a solid week of work, I am very happy with the results. This has made blasting so easy, I wonder why it took me so long to make the move. Here are some pics of the mods I made... Sorry...the pics got cropped a bit in Photobucket...
    Last edited by Derek Arita; 07-04-2019 at 4:04 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    201
    Enjoy your new blast cabinet. I have access to my husband's blast cabinet with glass bead and know there are many times it has made my life easy.

  3. #3
    Lisa, I will. I restore vintage, rusty, torn up, alarm clocks along with the woodworking. I also restore old hand tools. This BC will definitely make my life easier. Before, it was all sandpaper and wire wheels.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,815
    is the replacement window just regular glass? Mine is pretty frosty now.
    Bill D

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Griswold Connecticut
    Posts
    6,346
    Wow! That's pretty sweet looking.
    You have a working blasting cabinet that is being run by a 10.2CFM air compressor. That's pretty amazing my friend. Now I understand all of your attention to detail on the fittings and components for your compressor in the other thread.
    Nice work!!
    "The first thing you need to know, will likely be the last thing you learn." (Unknown)

  6. #6
    Bill, you use the OEM glass as your outer glass, which stays scratch free. You replace the inside plexiglass and protective sheet with single pane glass from Lowes. They sell a sheet that is 36 x 24 and have it cut into 3 sheets of 12 x 24. Don't remember the cost of that sheet, but it's very reasonable, as that glass sheet will last a lot longer than the plastic tear-offs provided and it will be a lot easier to see thru. Combine that with the Tacoma glass quick change kit and it all works great.

    Thanks Mike. Lot's of mods that I could have detailed, but it would take a lot more than most would be willing to read thru. In a conversation with Mike Tacoma, he said that good air flow to the cabinet is essential to its performance. He says 1/2" hose and fittings is best, 3/8 is a minimum. Considering that he has decades of experience with blasting, I believe him. That in mind, I figured that the best I could realistically do is 3/8 hoses and fittings, with high flow 1/4" couplers and plugs. I found that by using Lowes or HD high flow couplers and plugs, I can get pretty darn close to 3/8 all the way. Oddly enough, I found that HD and Lowes high flow couplers have a larger ID than the Milton high flow couplers. 3/4 up to the filter/regulator, then 3/8 the rest of the way.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    3,882
    Thanks for posting this useful information.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Putney, Vermont
    Posts
    670
    Derek,I made a home made sand blast cabinet very similar to yours, but bigger, and I used plywood and 2x4 legs. To protect the glass in the door, I covered the inside of the glass with window screen, to protect it from the blast media. That makes the glass last, and you see through just fine.

  9. #9
    Let me take the high flow couplers thing further. I wanted to replace my Flexzilla 3/8 hose ends with hf (high flow) couplers, as the OEM couplers on the hose are larger than normal, but not hf. I couldn't find 3/8 hose barb with 1/4 npt fittings anywhere, so took the HD hf plugs and inserted the plug end into the hose and used a hose clamp to seal it and hold it. This gives me the larger ID of the hf plug, along with the 1/4 npt fittings I need. I replaced the barb ends on my hose reel and another, shorter hose and they work great.
    I've included a pic showing the black, HD hf plug and the Milton hf plug in silver, so you can see the difference.

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