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Bead Blaster Does Double Duty
Dan Erdman’s homemade air blaster serves double duty setting tire beads and cleaning air filters. His 12-in. dia. and 24-in. long air tank has a 2-in. ball valve that dumps a lot of air fast for either chore.
“Big filters can run $100 to $200 each,” says Erdman. “Some guys replace them whenever they plug, but I just blast them. When that air hits a filter, there’s a cloud of dirt.”
Erdman has to take care not to damage the filter. He can control the flow of air with the ball valve. He simply sets the filter in place ahead of a 2-in. pipe screwed into the ball valve.
“I slip a small square of plywood with a hole slightly larger than the pipe over it,” adds Erdman. “This keeps the pipe aimed at the filter. Ring clamps on the pipe to either side of the board hold it in place.”
To use the air blaster to set beads on tires, he screws a shop-made air diffuser onto the ball valve. It’s simply a piece of pipe that he split and hammered one end flat. After welding filler steel into the gaps, he had a diffuser about 4 in. wide with a narrow opening of about 1/4 in.
“I remove the valve core and attach a free flow air chuck to the valve and let air flow,” says Erdman. “I put the diffuser between the edge of the rim and the tire bead and give it a blast. Once the bead sets, I replace the valve core and bring the tire up to pressure.”
Erdman suggests buying a deep pressure air bead tire mount tank at Northern Hydraulics or Princess Auto. “If you don’t know pressure welding, don’t make your own as I did,” says the journeyman welder.
The only problem Erdman has had with his blaster is the size of the air tank. With big and very dirty filters, he may have to refill the tank. He has an idea for fixing that problem but hasn’t done it yet.
“I have a 250-gal. propane tank that I’ve thought about using,” he says. “Having enough air wouldn’t be a problem with that tank.”
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Dan Erdman, Box 1620, Claresholm, Alta. Canada T0L 0T0 (ph 403-382-1020; derdman2@telusplanet.net).

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2022 - Volume #46, Issue #5