Britbike forum

Vapor Blasting

Posted By: Richard Phillips

Vapor Blasting - 08/18/18 9:53 pm

Looking for a Vapor Blasting source in California, preferably the Central Coast

Richard
Posted By: Andy Higham

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/18/18 10:08 pm

Just be aware that "vapour blasting" is a misleading term. It uses the same media as bead blasting but suspended in water.
The media will get stuck in every nook and cranny and escape when it can do maximum damage. After blasting blow out with compressed air, wash with warm water and washing up liquid, repeat several times. When you are sure every last particle of media is removed, wash and blow another couple of times.
REMEMBER just ONE glass bead can wreck a bearing
Posted By: kurt fischer

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/19/18 10:54 am

I'm looking into soda blasting to avoid the problems and risks Andy cites.
Posted By: AngloBike

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/19/18 11:54 am

Also dry ice
Posted By: KC in S.B.

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/19/18 2:02 pm

No, vapor blasting is not dangerous to engines. In fact, it is an improvement. The only problem is they are hard to find. This place has a 5 star rating by me, and they will even help with the shipping. Read the facts:
https://www.restocycle.com/vapor-blasting-faq
Posted By: kurt fischer

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/19/18 4:22 pm

Originally Posted by KC in S.B.
No, vapor blasting is not dangerous to engines. In fact, it is an improvement. The only problem is they are hard to find. This place has a 5 star rating by me, and they will even help with the shipping. Read the facts:
https://www.restocycle.com/vapor-blasting-faq


KC, From the FAQ of your link:

How to you prevent blast media from becoming trapped in my parts?
With regard to blast media, the first order of business is to start with a clean part, including in the oil passages and galleries, which are very thoroughly cleaned. Oil and other engine passages are then plugged or masked. Any part with a thread is also plugged to prevent media from lodging in the threads. After vapor blasting parts are immediately rinsed, several times, and then dried with compressed air. Then the plugs and masking are removed and the process is repeated. It is however the customer's responsibility to verify that no blast media is present and the parts are ready to be put back into service.

Nowhere that I can see does it say that your parts will be blast-media free.

For my money, i will continue to avoid.
Posted By: Richard Phillips

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/19/18 11:23 pm

THANK YOU KC.

KURT WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST TO CLEAN YOUR PARTS OR WHAT DO YOU DO TO CLEAN YOUR ALLOY PARTS TO MAKE THEM LOOK AS NEW.
THANK YOU,
RICHARD
Posted By: kurt fischer

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/20/18 12:52 am

Richard, my bikes aren't "restored" or shiny, just clean. In the future, if or when I want to try for an "as new" finish, I will try soda blasting. One of the regulars here does his own open-air soda blasting for his restorations, he is on vacation now, so maybe he will respond later.

Harbor Freight sell soda blasting setups and blast soda.

Here's one result from a quick Web search FYI:

https://turbofuture.com/industrial/What-is-the-Difference-Between-Sand-Blasting-Soda-Blasting

... but try your own search, make your own decision! smile


PS -- I've heard tell of a restorer who sends crankcase sets out to be tumbled.
https://www.kramerindustriesonline.com/resources/barrel-finishing-guide/

Posted By: Tridentman

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/20/18 1:34 pm

I guess that my friend Kurt may have been referring to me.
I certainly use soda blasting for cleaning cases etc in a restoration.
Two reasons:
--- it leaves no residue as the soda is water soluble and after blasting I wash thoroughly in hot water (when my wife is out shopping of course!).
--- you can do it yourself and be very particular and take your time--in a way that a commercial undertaking cannot--time for them is money--time for us is the satisfaction of a good job done.

I use the HF system that Kurt mentioned.
From memory they offer two sizes--I have the larger of the two.
And of course you need a compressor to power it.
My compressor is quite small but I have connected to its reservoir an extra reservoir (also from HF) which increases the air storage capacity.
I cannot soda blast continuously-- I have to blast then wait for the compressor to "catch up".
This would probably be a big problem if blasting large areas such as a car body panel.
But our requirements are related to quite small parts and blasting a small part and then putting it down and sorting out the next part to blast gives time for the compressor to "recover".

As Kurt also mentions I do my blasting in the road outside my house-- normally in the daytime in the week when most of my neighbors are at work (I am retired).
The local cops come around sometimes but they know me as "the crazy Englishman with the motorcycles" and just drive on.
BTW--it makes one hell of a mess but I just hose the residue down afterwards with a garden hose into the gutter.
The soda is biodegradable so no problem there.
HTH
Posted By: KC in S.B.

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/21/18 3:54 am

Waiting for my 2 motors to blow up.............
Posted By: kurt fischer

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/21/18 12:14 pm

Originally Posted by Tridentman
I guess that my friend Kurt may have been referring to me.
I certainly use soda blasting for cleaning cases etc in a restoration.
Two reasons:
--- it leaves no residue as the soda is water soluble and after blasting I wash thoroughly in hot water (when my wife is out shopping of course!).
--- you can do it yourself and be very particular and take your time--in a way that a commercial undertaking cannot--time for them is money--time for us is the satisfaction of a good job done. ...

Tridentman, thank you for your experience and thoughtful explanation. thumbsup


Originally Posted by KC in S.B.
Waiting for my 2 motors to blow up.............

KC, sample size too small grin
Posted By: dave jones

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/21/18 12:25 pm

I used clothes washing detergent in very hot water to clean alloy parts. Works well. You have to rinse well after especially if there are any steel fittings (studs, etc)to go rusty. You can use mild acid like is used for cleaning alloy wheels if it has gone a bit white, too.

Dave
Posted By: Richard Phillips

Re: Vapor Blasting - 08/21/18 6:59 pm



Thanks Dave good idea. Im going with Vapor Blast. I saw comparisons between soda and vapor. I saw a slight brownish tint in the soda next to a vapor blast part. I am not convinced the soda improves the surface. The vapor blast actually improves the metal and I'll go with the gang at Rolls Royce.
Soda blast is excellent for automotive sheet metal that is sensitive to warping.
Regardless my intention was not a lecture on the dangers and voodoo of Vapor Polishing just a professional source to do the job for my restoration to a BSA West Coast Hornet to Concourse condition .
© 2019 Britbike forum