Fuel Tank Sand Blasting Cabinet

"We do custom painting and sand blasting of tractors, forklifts, and other equipment. We recently bought a big commercial sand blaster for our work. My son said he thought we needed another sand blaster for doing small stuff. So we made our own out of a 300-gal. diesel fuel tank and a shop vac," says Skip Kirkland of Mahomet, Ill.

Kirkland cut the tank stand's legs down to 2 ft. and fitted them with caster wheels. A 1 by 2-ft. window was cut into one side along with a pair of 7-in. dia. access holes, spaced 16 in. apart. He fitted the holes with lengths of inner tubing to act as protective gloves.

On one end of the tank he cut out a 2-ft. sq. hole and mounted a hinged plywood door over it to serve as an access door. A large metal shelf at the opposite end supports a standard shop vac. The shop vac's blast gun is inserted through a fill hole on top of the tank. A regulator mounted on the same side of the tank is used to catch any moisture in the shop vac's air line. The shop vac is powered by a 10 hp, 3-phase electric-powered air compressor, and is hooked up by a hose to the regulator. A second shelf below the shop vac supports a bucket of sand. Two small hoses -- one an air hose and the other a siphon hose -- lead from the tank into the bucket.

Vac powered by? Hose next to shelf? Hose into and out of tank goes to regulator? Yellow cord toward back? Why vac hose go into top of tank? 5-gal. bucket? A vac sucks, not blows -- how sandblast anything? Grill? Rubber hose inside tank?

"It works great and can be easily moved around our shop," says Kirkland. "To operate the sand blasting cabinet, we simply flip a switch on the compressor. A 4-ft. long fluorescent shop light hangs inside the tank to provide light," notes Kirkland.