Baking soda for blasting?

I see baking soda used in various places for allegedly non abrasive
cleaning as in air blasting.
Is this really effective?
Is Baking soda a particularly sharp edged soft crystal or would any
powder eg talcum powder etc do the same thing?
Just interested in the process and considering making a gun to clean
traces of paint graffiti off brickwork without using abrasive or really
high pressure water which will leave abraded patches of different colour
in the brickwork.
Anyone been down this route? Thanks
C+
Reply to
Charlie+
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Yes, it works very well for removing paint, dirt,grease, whatever. BUT it does not do real well on bad rust. Just not aggressive enough.
The blast media isn't the same stuff you get in the store. It is larger crystals (like sugar crystal sized) treated with a chemical that helps keep it from absorbing water. On steel and aluminum it leaves behind a nice smooth surface and a thin coating which retards rust formation for 6-8 weeks if stored inside out of the weather.
I use it a lot but not for bricks. I know it will clean brick as the process is what they use to remove paint during restorations of buildings. I will probably lighten the brick though due to removing any dirt/soot/mold that is on the surface. If you wanted to test it but not spend a bunch of money on equipment there are small hand held units that will work with soda and may even be all you need.
I have the earlier version of this gun and it works just fine with the Armex soda that HF also carries.
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A HUGE advantage of soda as a blast media is that you don't have any real clean up. The media is non-toxic and just washes away with water. BUT if you are going to use paint over a surface that was soda blasted you will need to wash it VERY well. The coating it leaves won't allow paint to stick.
Reply to
Steve W.
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Agree with all of the above, plus would add that it takes a lot of baking soda and air to remove paint from any reasonably sized surface. It also has to be metered very carefully, using a regular blast pot it will run right through. Also, it can etch brick. It may be non-toxic but enough of it will kill plants due to the alkaline pH. You might be better off with a good graffiti remover like Taginator.
Reply to
ATP
On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 10:38:34 -0400, "Steve W." wrote as underneath :
Thanks very much for your excellent reply, I didnt realise the soda is specially produced for the job! However I now after following up on your info am looking at fine glass media which tho not quite as gentle may have a little less clean up pollution! C+
Reply to
Charlie+
On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 20:23:30 -0400, "ATP" wrote as underneath :
Thank you, yes I can see the dust is not inactive and could get absolutely everywhere! Noted re metering! As hopefully this is a one time use, specialist expensive equipment is to be avoided! C+
Reply to
Charlie+
I blast with a lot of glass beads. Just be prepared for it to be slippery on concrete unless its hosed away..and you will see shiney speckles for a very long time, via head lights and other spot light sources
Gunner
"The best government is a benevolent tyranny tempered by an occasional assassination." --Voltaire
Reply to
Gunner
Yep, the glass beads you blast with are the same stuff the drop on the line paint on the road to make them reflect.
You can get ground glass as well, it's a bit more aggressive and you REALLY want to wear good eye protection when using it.
Reply to
Steve W.
On Wed, 17 Oct 2012 10:29:59 -0400, "Steve W." wrote as underneath my scribble :
snips
Very interesting, thanks to you both for more useful information... C+
Reply to
Charlie+

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