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Old 01-03-2020, 14:12   #1
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Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

My 32' fiberglass schooner (1976) is on the hard, 10 feet from one of New York State's Finger Lakes and 3 feet from boats on both sides. The hull has years of built up anti-fouling paint that I want to fare with a sander before painting. I can't make a mess with the sanding dust, though. Mirka DEROS vacuum sanders are advertised as virtually dust free. Are they? Would it be safe to get one and use it for this job? Does anyone have experience here?

The sanders are expensive, but probably cheaper than the boat yard will charge for the sanding job.



Then the next question is the dust extractor. Professional dust extractors cost as much as the sander. Is there a cheaper way to go? Will it work to hook up a $60 Shop Vac to the sander?



Any advice will be appreciated.
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Old 01-03-2020, 14:29   #2
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazy Jack 32 View Post
My 32' fiberglass schooner (1976) is on the hard, 10 feet from one of New York State's Finger Lakes and 3 feet from boats on both sides. The hull has years of built up anti-fouling paint that I want to fare with a sander before painting. I can't make a mess with the sanding dust, though. Mirka DEROS vacuum sanders are advertised as virtually dust free. Are they? Would it be safe to get one and use it for this job? Does anyone have experience here?

The sanders are expensive, but probably cheaper than the boat yard will charge for the sanding job.



Then the next question is the dust extractor. Professional dust extractors cost as much as the sander. Is there a cheaper way to go? Will it work to hook up a $60 Shop Vac to the sander?



Any advice will be appreciated.
A shop vac is not designed to run continuously

It will overheat

A proper dust evacuation vac is designed to run continuously , a separate cooling chamber for the motor

Itís possible that a cheap shop vac could last long enough to get the job done

The best ď cheapest ď expensive dust extraction
vac is made by FIEN

Itís Good tool
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Old 01-03-2020, 15:13   #3
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

I have a dust deputy by Oneida air couples to a 5 inch dewalt RO sander and a shop vac. While it is not 100% dust free, I have been able to do a lot of work with it including paint removal on the decks while containing almost all dust. I Still wear a good mask and protect the surrounding area. This solution has worked well for me without breaking the bank.
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Old 01-03-2020, 15:22   #4
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

A good shop vac with good filtration should do the job, but you'll likely spend a bit of money on filters. I'll be doing this same job this spring. Plan is to use my HEPA filtered, separate cooling air shop vac for the job. If I find I'm clogging bags and filters too fast, I'll end up buying one of the inline cyclone dust separators most likely.
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Old 01-03-2020, 15:25   #5
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

The best I have used are the Fess Tools sander and dust collector.

In some yards I have been in those are the only sander/dust collectors allowed under their local air pollution permits.

Pricey. About $1k for the kit. You might find a place you can rent them.
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Old 01-03-2020, 17:47   #6
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Thanks, all. I will get the Mirka vacuum sander, then, and a Ridgid shop vac (found one on Craigslist cheap). It sounds like a dust collector between the sander and the vac will save enough on filters to pay for itself. I'll put drop cloths under the boat just in case, and hang them on the neighbor boats' lifelines if need be.
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Old 01-03-2020, 17:53   #7
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

You can buy bag filters for shop vacs, They work much better for fine dust than the stock filters.
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Old 01-03-2020, 20:05   #8
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Quote:
Originally Posted by billknny View Post
The best I have used are the Fess Tools sander and dust collector.

In some yards I have been in those are the only sander/dust collectors allowed under their local air pollution permits.

Pricey. About $1k for the kit. You might find a place you can rent them.
Thatís what I have, a Festool sander and hepa dust extractor. Rather pricey but worth every penny. Almost makes sanding fun. Certainly doing my, and everyone elseís lungs, a big favor.
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Old 02-03-2020, 02:55   #9
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

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Originally Posted by Lazy Jack 32 View Post
Thanks, all. I will get the Mirka vacuum sander, then, and a Ridgid shop vac (found one on Craigslist cheap). It sounds like a dust collector between the sander and the vac will save enough on filters to pay for itself. I'll put drop cloths under the boat just in case, and hang them on the neighbor boats' lifelines if need be.
Careful with the Mirka they are not general purpose Random orbital sanders

Mirka models are sold by orbit diameter. Small orbit is for very fine sandpaper , large orbit is for heavy duty 36 to 80 grit sandpaper

A pro would have three or four different Mirka sanders . One for each sandpaper grade

You should consider one of the general purpose , adjustable orbit random orbital sanders

Bosch makes a good one Ask you tool supplier for advice
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:24   #10
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

You can build a water trap for a sander using a 5 gal bucket and some cheap plumbing supplies. Def saves the vac filters from clogging up.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:55   #11
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Have done more of this than I wish I had.

A rigid shop vac will run for hours and hours and hours. And hours!

A rigid 6 inch random orbital sander is around a hundred bucks and setup to work with a vac.

Use a piece of pvc pipe to connect the two, use a heat gun to soften and swell the pipe where needed to get a tight press fit.

No rigid vac or sander are not the best but those two items will easily get mutliple hulls sanded. Easily.

Best to keep the vac filter cleaned on a regular basis. Pop the whole top off the vac and put it in a big garbage bag. Tap and massage the filter from the outside to drop the dust into the bag, easy and clean.

Have fun!
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Old 02-03-2020, 07:12   #12
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Rigid makes an adapter kit that will mate the vac hose to a random orbital. I have one for my dewalt RA.

And use the rigid drywall dust bags.
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Old 02-03-2020, 09:22   #13
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsell View Post
I have a dust deputy by Oneida air couples to a 5 inch dewalt RO sander and a shop vac. While it is not 100% dust free, I have been able to do a lot of work with it including paint removal on the decks while containing almost all dust. I Still wear a good mask and protect the surrounding area. This solution has worked well for me without breaking the bank.
+1 for the Dust Deputy.

I used one with a Dewalt RO sander and Shop Vac. Removed 5 gallons of paint dust from the bottom. Do wear a mask as some dust always escapes. Also use a good strong shop vac, it will run for a long time, I tried a less expensive on and killed it.

Oneida Air Systems is for you an almost local business, it is based in Syracuse.
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Old 02-03-2020, 09:32   #14
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazy Jack 32 View Post
My 32' fiberglass schooner (1976) is on the hard, 10 feet from one of New York State's Finger Lakes and 3 feet from boats on both sides. The hull has years of built up anti-fouling paint that I want to fare with a sander before painting. I can't make a mess with the sanding dust, though. Mirka DEROS vacuum sanders are advertised as virtually dust free. Are they? Would it be safe to get one and use it for this job? Does anyone have experience here?

The sanders are expensive, but probably cheaper than the boat yard will charge for the sanding job.



Then the next question is the dust extractor. Professional dust extractors cost as much as the sander. Is there a cheaper way to go? Will it work to hook up a $60 Shop Vac to the sander?



Any advice will be appreciated.
This might be helpful.
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Old 02-03-2020, 09:50   #15
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Re: Vacuum sanding antfouling paint

Better check with your marina operator first. Many now require a lot of isolation techniques beyond vacuum sanding. EPA regulations are getting stricter and stricter. Where I am in south Florida it is required to put down barrier under the boat and skirt the entire hull all way around with plastic like visqueen. Then any people who you hire to do it have to wear OSHA suits and masks.

Gone are the days when we could get out there in our t shits, no masks and let the stuff fly without regard. I know you are wanting to do the right thing by asking about vacuum sanding but it may not be enough to pass muster any longer.
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