Saturday, January 28, 2012

Holes, Holes, and More Holes!

Ms. Rusty has moved from my workbench in the garage to my kitchen table.  Partly because I felt guilty for neglecting her for so long, partly because the garage is still full of stuff from the kitchen remodel that is destined for a huge garage sale, but mostly because of comfort.  This time of year it is MUCH warmer in the house than out in the garage!

Ms. Rusty looks happy, don’t you think?100_1072

The next step in Ms. Rusty’s make-over is prepping her for bead blasting.  The good thing about bead blasting is that it is a fast way to remove paint and surface rust.  The bad thing is that it removes the paint using an abrasive powder that can get into all the nooks and crannies and it isn’t selective to just paint.  This means you need to protect surfaces that require tight tolerances, like smooth machined surfaces and threaded holes. 

I’m choosing to use heat resistant hole plugs and tape for protecting machined surfaces and holes.  This will serve as triple duty.  1) They will protect against unintentional damage during bead blasting, 2) they will protect the surfaces from an unwanted coating of powder during powder coating, and 3) they can stay in place while Ms. Rusty is in the oven during the “baking” phase of powder coating.


The plugs and tape shown in this picture were purchased at  I’ve added a page to the blog for material and equipment sources for future reference.

Well, on the Ms. Rusty! The first thing I decided to do was to begin plugging some of the threaded holes. It’s relatively easy.  You just pick the right size plug and stick it into the hole you want to plug.

Here’s a threaded hole for the back cover plate, before and after plugging.


Here’s another hole in the arm of the machine head  100_1075

The plug kit I have has 3 different sizes of plugs, 10 of each size.  After plugging a several holes I realized that I had both underestimated the number of holes that needed to be plugged, and that the sizes of plugs I had was insufficient for the variety of size holes in Ms. Rusty that needed to be plugged.  Fortunately there are kits available with a larger variety of sized plugs, so I decided upon the 110 plug kit.  Unfortunately, I won’t receive it for a few more weeks.

While I wait for the additional plugs to arrive, I decided to at least mark the holes that do NOT need to be plugged.  Since the paint will be removed anyway, I used a silver Sharpie pen to mark these holes with a big X mark on the surface. 

Here is a close up of how I marked the holes -


Surprisingly (at least to me) there were only 26 holes that did not need to be plugged, and a whopping 71 that do need to be protected before blasting and coating.  I’ve taken pictures of Ms. Rusty after marking the holes that don’t need plugging.  I’ve also highlighted the location of these 26  holes in the photos using red arrows.

Front – 5 unplugged holes 5 unplugged (6 that need protecting)

Top – 7 unplugged holes 7 unplugged (4 that need protecting)

Back – 6 unplugged holes 6 unplugged (4 that need protecting)

Bottom – 3 unplugged holes 3  unplugged (24 that need protecting)

Right Side (motor end) – 1 unplugged holes 1 unplugged (5 that need protecting)

Left Side (needle end) – 2 unplugged holes 2 unplugged (11 that need protecting)

Back of arm – 2 unplugged holes 2 unplugged (3 that need protecting)

There are still 6 additional holes/surfaces that need protecting inside Ms. Rusty and another 8 on her bed (mostly in the needle plate area).

The next post or two will cover (no pun intended) the protection of the threaded and smooth machined surfaces.  I just have to wait for my plugs to arrive!

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait to see the end result. I have one machine that is missing lots of paint on the base, but, she isn't 'rusty' at all. Just 'not pretty'. Oh well, I don't have access to all the cool stuff that you have access too, or, I might consider repainting her.