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mattbsharks

Looking for recommendations on 1 air tool to buy for softish shales and limestone

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mattbsharks

I am looking to spend around $250-350 total on an air compressor and one air tool well equipped  to prep both green river formation limestone and softish shales like penn Dixie/dsr. I understand that no one tool would be perfect for that, but I want to find one that can do both jobs solidly.

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jpc

which Green River layer?  I use hand tools (and sometimes small air scribes) on split fish and air abrasive on 18 inch.  

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hadrosauridae

I can tell you right now that the common GR limestone is WAAAAAY too soft for air scribes.  A stiff toothbrush will obliterate a fish.   If you have something harder like the bottom cap layer fish, then a light scribe can work, but you're going to spend you entire budget on just the scribe.  

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Kane

For Penn Dixie material, a Paasche using baking soda can achieve good results. That should run you about $100. The compressor should be 20 gallon tank; anything less will likely be running constantly to catch up.

 

As others have said above, not suited for typical, soft GR material; that’s hand tools, patience, and “scratch and blow,”

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Jackson g

I recommend this good starting scribe made by one of our own members. Made for what you have in mind. 

https://www.fossilshack.com/store/p2590/scribe.html 

PaleoAro make very nice tools, but I don't recommend these to start with as they are expensive and you may not enjoy scribe work in the long run.

I also agree with @Kane that trying a cheaper Paasche abbrasive system isn't a bad idea either for the soft rock you talk about working on. Forsure a 20 gallon compressor or bigger would also be needed. They usually aren't very cheap either(I think cheaper ones run 150-200$). I run a 20 gallon campbell hausfeld compressor, and it even kicks on more than I like it to but works amazing.

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