As you prepare to begin dry ice blasting, ensuring you have the proper air hoses and fittings will lead to a better blasting experience.  A bad hose or improper fitting can lead to poor performance or even injury. Below are several tips to make certain your dry ice blasting experience is safe and efficient.

Safety Comes First

Before dry ice blasting, inspect both the hose and fittings for excessive wear and be sure your hose doesn’t have cuts or tears.  A hose that comes loose during blasting can quickly become a safety hazard.  During inspection, also note the PSI rating of the hose and make sure it exceeds the PSI of the compressor.  If the PSI of the compressor exceeds the PSI rating of the hose, the hose could burst.

Maximize Performance – Match the Inside Diameters of the Hose

The inside diameter of the hose should match the diameter of the source connection. Hooking a 1.5” hose into a .5” source line will be counterproductive, causing a pressure drop. If you must use multiple hoses with different inside diameters for the project, start with the hose with the largest inside diameter closest to the source and use the hose with the smallest inside diameter closest to the end-use blasting machine or nozzle.

Maximize Airflow – Make Sure Connectors are Unrestricted

Connector airflow should not be restricted lower than that of the machine or nozzle.  If airflow is reduced and then expanded, a pressure drop will occur.  The size of the pressure drop will vary depending on the size of the restriction and expansion.  The restriction can be in the opening or the base of the fitting.  The photos below demonstrate several examples of appropriate air flow with 1” universal claw couplings (Chicago fitting).

Chicago Fitting Example 2          Chicago Fitting Example 1          Barbed Style Chicago Fitting