I use an 80 lb pressure blaster for doing any paint stripping/rust
removal on my TR4 (there's my LBC content!). I have recently stumbled
across a lot of literature regarding silicosis, which is a lung
disease caused by the inhalation of silica dust. As a weekend
hobbyist, I probably only use the gear once every couple of months for
a few hours at a time. If I'm doing a big project, I may use it all
day on a free Saturday. I use a blast hood from Eastwood, as well as a
respirator rated for hazardous dust (not an air supplied respirator).
So, am I killing myself, or what? The OSHA literature that I've read
says that it takes 20-30 years of exposure to contract the disease,
with sometimes as little as 10 years if the person has a heavy
exposure. However, all of the bags of sand I've been buying have
notices on them that make it sound like if I'm not using an air
supplied respirator, I'll drop dead in a week. A lot of my local
stores have stopped carrying blasting sand, too.
I've looked into alternative blast medias, and they are 10X the price
of sand. I've also looked into air supplied resirators, and they are
also hideously expensive.
I'm wondering if there are any other folks out there who do any
sandblasting, and what level of protection is being used or