what size air compressor is the best for sandblasting?
The best size air compressor for sandblasting depends on the size of your sandblast nozzle. Determining the size of the nozzle most often helps to understand the perfect size air compressor for sandblasting. Maintaining constant pressure with your sandblaster will enable the most efficient cost of blasting your items. The lower the cfm (cubic foot per minute) the longer it takes to remove paint, rust or general cleaning from the surface. With a smaller size air compressor the pressure at the nozzle will constantly drop until the point where the air compressor can only maintain the maximum amount of pressure that the air compressor puts out.
Screw air compressors are most commonly the better types of air compressors to use when sandblasting as they are able to keep a constant cfm air flow. Screw compressors also are designed to work hard and not create any issues running hot or overloading. Piston compressors are designed to start and stop at least 4 times every hour and have a duty cycle. Piston machines are great for small to medium sandblasting operation whereas a screw machine is better for medium to large operation.
Sandblasting pressure blast pots work best with a dry air supply. Having an air dryer whether it is refrigerated or not allows clean fresh air to your blaster and avoids any types of blockages or condensation problems within your sandblast pot. When condensation (water) enters the sandblast pot it will create a blockage and limit the abrasive supply to a point where no abrasive can be produced to the blast hose & nozzle. If this happens you have to stop blasting, take the pot apart and clear the blockage and fix the condensation problem to start blasting again.
Listed below are the specifications on what size nozzle should be used with the size air compressor;
- Nozzle 1/8″ 100 psi 21 cfm
- Nozzle 3/16″ 100 psi 45 cfm
- Nozzle 1/4″ 100 psi 80 cfm’
- Nozzle 5/16″ 100 psi 142 cfm
- Nozzle 3/8″ 100 psi 200 cfm
These specifications are based on sandblasting pressure pots usage and may vary depending on the size blast hose and air hose you are using. It is always the best rule to have more air when sandblasting than less to maintain a constant pressure at the nozzle to maximise your efficiency. Ublast Pty Ltd have all the correct specification available and we can help to make sure you have the right size equipment to sandblast your items.