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wiltok
02-28-2007, 03:11 PM
I am a "tool freak" and was thinking of buying an air compressor. I am not talking about the little models for pumping your tires - I am thinking about one that you use to drive tools. I could use it for filling items (obviously), air tools, drying my car, winterizing my boat/jet ski, etc..(at least that is what I will tell my wife :)? Recommended or a waste of cash? If recommended, what is size is best for around the house work? Thanks!!

PendO
02-28-2007, 03:19 PM
are you going to plug it in to a 15A outlet or a 20A outlet?

trickskier
02-28-2007, 03:41 PM
I have a 2HP Craftsman that plugs into a 110 outlet. I have several pneumatic tools I use with it. The only problem I have is when I'm using my 3/8 impact wrench it takes a few minutes for it to recover.

I've had it for about 10 years, and no problems.

Brazos Bum
02-28-2007, 03:52 PM
I made the mistake of buying a 220V compressor a long time ago. It could pretty much keep up with any tool I ever connected to it, but it was kind of annoying to have to run it off 220V. In the long run I would have been much happier with lower output from a compressor that I could use anywhere.

When that compressor finally died I replaced it with a little 4 gallon pancake job. It doesn't take up much space, can go anywhere, and puts out enough air for 95% of my needs. It's not too happy about spraying texture or driving an impact hammer, but I don't do that too often.

If I were compressor shopping today I'd probably look for the one rated for highest output at 90 psi that would run off a 110V/15A circuit.

Sodar
02-28-2007, 03:55 PM
I have the same one as Trick! It is a little loud, so I put it in the attic and ran a PVC line down to the ceiling of the garage with one of these reels...
http://www.toolsinstock.com/images/uploads/SA85.jpg
It works great. I use it for pnuematic tools and have used a paint sprayer for some furniture, but its most common use is to blow out the water from the moldings, door handles and the bumper after washing the cars.

pilot02
02-28-2007, 04:00 PM
You need to determine your expected ultimate use and whether you want a portable or permanent installation. If it's going to be used often, definitely go with a 220v installation instead of 110. If you think you will use it for painting (automotive finishes) you'll likely want a permanently mounted tank with at least an 80 gallon capacity. Smaller compressors can be used (I have a 5hp/30 gallon) but you have to take some extra steps (primarily extra driers in the lines) because the smaller compressors aren't able to keep up enough SCFM's of airflow so they run the whole time which creates heat and ultimately more moisture in the tank and lines. If you decide the portable is for you. Most are probably decent but I personally prefer models which use cast iron cylinders made by Devilibiss instead of the smaller "oiless" compressors. Be careful which tools you buy as well. Especially with a smaller compressor, you wouldn't believe the difference in torque from one impact wrench brand to another. I made the mistake of getting the cheap campbell hausfield type impact and later replaced it with a high dollar Chicago pneumatic which with the same air pressure supplied probably produces at least double the torque....

My .02

chudson
02-28-2007, 04:07 PM
I have a 2HP Craftsman that plugs into a 110 outlet. I have several pneumatic tools I use with it. The only problem I have is when I'm using my 3/8 impact wrench it takes a few minutes for it to recover.

I've had it for about 10 years, and no problems.

We've got the same size compressor as this ^ that we use on our farm machinery and it always keeps up real good for us!!!

bigmac
02-28-2007, 04:08 PM
I made the mistake of buying a 220V compressor a long time ago. It could pretty much keep up with any tool I ever connected to it, but it was kind of annoying to have to run it off 220V. In the long run I would have been much happier with lower output from a compressor that I could use anywhere.

When that compressor finally died I replaced it with a little 4 gallon pancake job. It doesn't take up much space, can go anywhere, and puts out enough air for 95% of my needs. It's not too happy about spraying texture or driving an impact hammer, but I don't do that too often.

If I were compressor shopping today I'd probably look for the one rated for highest output at 90 psi that would run off a 110V/15A circuit.Just the opposite for me. I always found the 110 volt compressors to be inadequate so I switched to 220V. It's portable, but I never move it. I just leave it in the workshop and it's plumbed to several different compressor fittings around the garage using black pipe and a 50 foot hose reel in the center of the garage.

Slinkyredfoot
02-28-2007, 05:20 PM
I have a DeWalt with a 5.5hp Honda gas engine and twin 8gal saddle tanks. Very easy to move around, load or unload out of your truck, not to mention the gas engine you can take anywhere and not have to worry about a plug, not to mention a very low center of gravity so it wont tip over. A bit more expensive initally but it runs air impacts, ratchets, nailers or any kind of air tool, enough CFM to blow pool lines outn blow out your garage or any thing you want to use it for. I would have no other and have tried them all.

rcnjson
02-28-2007, 05:44 PM
I've got a 2 horse 110 compressor too, it couldn't keep up with my impact, so I got an electric impact. I use the compressor for little stuff, filling tires, air nailers, die grinder... I gave my dad my air impact, he has a 220 devilbliss compressor that will drive the impact. If you wanna use the big boy tools, you gotta git a big boy compressor.
k

Ric
02-28-2007, 06:14 PM
Just the opposite for me. I always found the 110 volt compressors to be inadequate so I switched to 220V. It's portable, but I never move it. I just leave it in the workshop and it's plumbed to several different compressor fittings around the garage using black pipe and a 50 foot hose reel in the center of the garage. ahem, this sounds like a garage which should be photographed and added to the GARAGE thread

M-Funf
02-28-2007, 06:31 PM
I need my compressor to work inside the house and in the garage, but don't use any air tools other than nail guns. So, my lovely wife bought me this Craftsman compressor (you can see it under the workbench). It's small and light so I can take it inside for use with a nailgun, but still enough to fill tires on the cars.
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid225/p16b44d2cf3863f8e35a9aeef71bfaf40/ea7beeb0.jpg

I also highly recommend the hose reel that others have mentioned. Mine is mounted near the center of the garage and reaches all 4 corners...
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid225/pd0675235eb7e8667f81709de1d0f06e7/ea7bee5f.jpg

If I needed a dedicated compressor for the garage, I would consider something with a much larger holding tank and one that runs on 220. I would also prefer to have it in an enclosed, insulated cabinet, or better, outside in an enclosure to minimize noise...like my dust collection system...

CarlosCabanas
02-28-2007, 08:31 PM
I've got a 150 psi porter cable pancake. Great for nail guns but can't run an impact off of it. Depends what you use it for... mechanics need big air compressors carpenters/framers need portablity!

Carlos

Laurel_Lake_Skier
02-28-2007, 10:25 PM
The buzzing of very oil free compressor I've ever been around drives me up the wall. They just seem to be working so hard.....I know that they are usually more portable but that noise!!

uncleboo
03-02-2007, 02:48 AM
Make sure it has high CFM---many now can run either 110 or 220. The higher the CFM, the more usable power you will have to run air tools, etc. I have an old dirty 4ph 20 gallon Craftsman that will do anything I need it to. It runs on 220v.

DrNautica
03-02-2007, 10:03 AM
Sorry, can't find a pick on the laptop and I'm outta town but I have a Curtis 5HP 3 cylinder w/80 gal. vertical tank. My unit is 230 volt single phase with a dedicated motor starter. This unit will outperform compressors in many serious automotive dealerships.

Advice:
Buy an automatic tank drain valve (yes, they should be drained daily and if you don't have an automatic drain you won't do it.) $120.

If you buy a retractable hose reel, don't settle for anything less than COX or Reelcraft. A good Cox will run you about $400 for a 1/2" x 75-100 foot w/hose. A Reelcraft will be $75 to $100 less than the Cox. Stay away from lesser (cheaper) brands - you won't be satisfied.

175psi is a must.

Set up a manifold system in your shop/garage with an air dryer/filter for best results.

DrNautica
03-02-2007, 10:06 AM
While you're at it get one of these. Unrelated to the A/C but fun to have none the less...

13HP
4000 PSI
3.5 Gal/Min

Opt for the Cat pump - they're worth it!

Thrall
03-03-2007, 12:15 PM
Depends what you plan on running for "tools". For a little woodshop, brad nailer, etc, a pancake 110v will do fine. ALthough it will not keep up w/a framing gun if you're nailing off a roof. If you're doing any real automotive work, impact wrenches, polisher, air chisel, d/a, etc, you want at least a 40gal tank and 5hp preferrably 220v.
For longevity, try to find a traditional belt driven motor/compressor.
I have a 60gal, 6hp 220v, single stage and it will keep up w/ everything except my air polisher and d/a. Does ok w/ the polisher, just runs continuously and have to stop and let it catch up every 20 min or so.
Mine is 13 yrs old now, and I use it fairly regularly, painted/polished several vehicles, buffed/polished the MC (3 days of non stop running), mech air tool use, tire rotations, etc. Built 2 houses w/ it, nail guns all around. I've changed the oil in the compressor a couple times although it always looks clean. Still works like the day I bought it.
By way of comparison, when building custom homes, we'd use the 110v pancake compressors for all our trim work and they would last 2 yrs max under heavy use.

Eddie Dodge
03-03-2007, 11:02 PM
I am also a tool freak. I have a Quincy 2 stage 80 gal and a single stage 6 hp 60 gal tank. Believe it or not they are hooked together. (air line)
Just a quick comment on pressure. When you put the settings on what they recommend , to me it is too high. The compressor runs to hot. I have my 2 stage set @ on 130 off @ 150 and the single stage on @ 80 and off @ 100.
I have a Y header coming into shop. On each end I have a regulator. The down tube I have a drain. I also have the line from the bottom of the tank coming into shop with a valve, then back out. I can drain the y and tanks very easy. On the exit of one of the regulators (set @ 90)is were the single stage is hooked up. The purpose of this is to opperate the sand blaster and soon to be bead blaster that I am starting to build.
I have quite a few air tools. The air hogs are the ones the spin. (sander, drill, impact, die grinders, etc)
It all depends what you will use it for, but if I had to buy one, it would be at least a 60 gal 2 stage.

wiltok
03-04-2007, 11:52 AM
Guys - great information - really appreciate it. I am building a house - will run 220 in the garage for the compressor. I have the room - so I will go with larger than I think I need. Just need the house to be finished!!!

Workin' 4 Toys
03-14-2007, 12:41 AM
Get a 2 stage....

Ski-me
01-04-2012, 05:34 PM
I thought I would re-open this thread as I'm looking for a new compressor too.

Mainly after some general use:

I think I want to go the oil type compressors for: more rugged, last longer, quieter and better performance. Intended use is general use for air tools, tires, etc in a barn.

I've been aiming for about a 30 gallon unit that is vertical and on wheels. Here are the ones I'm looking at:

Home Depot - 30 Gallon, $399 Model # VT6315 which is a Campbell Hausfeld unit I believe.
http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053&productId=100063473&R=100063473



Sears - 28 gallon, $433, Campbell Hausfeld VT6319 2 HP 28 Gallon Compressor
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00988721000P?sid=IDx20070921x00003c&srccode=cii_10043468&cpncode=30-20488655-2




Sears - $500, Ingersoll-Rand 20 Gallon Air Compressor, Vertical Tank, 2 HP
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00989225000P?prdNo=32&blockNo=382&blockType=G382&sid=I0084400010000100600&aff=Y



Thanks for any help!

93Prostar190
01-04-2012, 08:27 PM
I have a Sears Vertical unit 30 gallon in my garage and I am very pleased ...... going on for over 10 years ....

I have 110 run to the garage but on it's own 30 AMP breaker .... 15 amps shared load will blow a breaker in most home applications .... just my $0.02.

j.mccreight@hotmail.com
01-04-2012, 08:40 PM
I have a Snap-On 5hp 30 gallon, 110v or 220v thats performed like a champ, painted several cars with it and never seems to run out of air, it is however a little more pricey than the one's your looking at...

Ski-me
01-05-2012, 10:57 AM
I have a Snap-On 5hp 30 gallon, 110v or 220v thats performed like a champ, painted several cars with it and never seems to run out of air, it is however a little more pricey than the one's your looking at...

Snap-on is definitely a nice looking unit but at $1,400 that's a little steep for my use. If I can find one that is both 110 or 220, that would be ideal.....

CruisinGA
01-06-2012, 05:41 PM
Two things-

Oil-less = crap and noisy
Cast iron cylinder, belt driven + oil crankcase = long lasting and quiet, 220 or 110v

I have a larger Ingersoll-Rand 110v compressor. It is on wheels, but not really portable. It works well for everything short of serious body work. I have done small jobs using an DA sander and HVLP spray gun with it.

http://www.northerntool.com/images/product/images/1592073_lg.jpg

http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200375221_200375221?cm_mmc=Aggregates-_-Google-_-Air%20Compressors%3ESingle%20Stage%20Electric%20Ai r%20Compressors-_-1592073

Jerseydave
01-06-2012, 06:42 PM
2-stage is always better if you use sanders, impact guns, etc. but pricey.

I have a MAC 44 gal single stage 220V that works great, but if I had to run a sander much of the time I would get a 60 gal unit. Tank size means a lot.

What are you using it for?

http://www.mactools.com/productdetails/tabid/119/c-23156-air-compressors.aspx

Sodar
01-06-2012, 06:45 PM
Not looking to break the bank and need a horizontal compressor to fit in my attic.

Anyone have one of these? For oil-less it is very quiet.

http://www.dewalt.com/tools/compressors-wheeled-portable---electric-d55167_2.aspx

Ski-me
01-07-2012, 11:46 AM
I wanted to be around $400-$500 and it's nice someone has experience the Ingersoll unit. It did look pretty solid and had a lot of good feedback.

The main purpose is just simple, everyday use. It's for my dad so I don't know what he will actually use it for but I definitely know that sanding a car is NOT in the equation. Pretty general, basic stuff really but in a remote location. I want something that is good quality and will last a long time. And if I go up there on occasion, I want to know it's still working good and solid.

Depending on his experience, I may end up getting the same unit for my shop as well (in the future).