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Eastwood Media Blaster

1968 Nova
Posted July 14 2011 04:46 PM by Johnny Hunkins 
Filed under: Project Cars

Eastwood Master Blaster

We made short work out of stripping tough paint and rust with Eastwood’s dual-media Master Blaster.

Eastwood's dual-media Master Blaster is the quick, easy way to strip off paint and rust.

With our ’68 Nova project car safely ensconced at Outlaw Motorsports in Riverside, CA and in the capable hands of proprietor, Ron Aschtgen, we’ve begun to disassemble and strip the old paint off the old Nova. We knew we were in for a tough job, so we turned to Eastwood—the experts where it comes to DIY body and paint. As we planned the paint transformation, we took a good look at the Eastwood catalog. One of the things we were curious about was their new dual media blaster system, called the Master Blaster. 

Media blasting is a time-honored way to remove paint, scale, and filler from bodywork, but it sometimes comes with a hidden price. When used with aggressive abrasives like silica (sand), some pieces, especially thin metal and aluminum, can be overworked and overheated by the blast media. One alternative is to use a milder media, such as soda, or even walnut shells. By reducing the aggressiveness of the media, the work doesn’t overheat and warp. From a practical standpoint, you can have one media blast tank, and change out the blast media for varying conditions, or you can have separate blast systems and switch between the two as conditions require. But Eastwood has a better solution called the Master Blaster.

The Eastwood Master Blaster ($429.99, part No. 11737) allows you to use two types of media, and mix the ratio between the two on the fly. Just assemble the system (it takes about 30 minutes), fill the tanks with the abrasive media of your choice (Eastwood also sells bulk media in bags), and connect your air compressor. After donning the protective headgear that comes with the Master Blaster, you are now ready to blast away rust and paint!

We got the chance to try the Master Blaster out at Outlaw Motorsports. We chose to use traditional abrasive discs mounted on a variable-speed angle grinder for much of the work, but wanted to compare the ease of use to the Master Blaster. What we found was twofold: media blasting cuts the time and effort in half; instead of spending days or weekends grinding, you can cut the job down to a mere six hours, provided you have enough media. On the down side, it also makes more of a mess and goes through quite a lot of media. We think that more familiarity with the technique will help us cut down on the amount of material we use, and better isolation of the blast area might help us retrieve the  media for reuse. It was a lot of fun, and we’ll be using it later on to tackle our chassis, trunk, and floorboards.

Look for a full tech story in the December 2011 issue on how we stripped our '68 Nova, including the Master Blaster.  

Also, check back in a few days when we post a cool how-to video of the entire process!

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