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Thread: Larger compressor questions

  1. #1
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    Larger compressor questions

    Good Morning Everyone
    My apologies for ploughing old ground again, as I'm sure this has been addressed before, but I'm on the road and can't really search threads very well.
    I'm hoping for some helpful tips on larger upright type compressors. Brands to look for or avoid? Spraying, sandblasting and air tools would be our eventual uses.
    Would a used tank and compressor, without motor be a thing to avoid?
    What should we look for?
    Any advice would be appreciated, as always.
    Peter

  2. #2
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    quincy makes a quality compressor and so des the industrial version of Ingersol Rand.

    i have a used unit and its doing me just fine but i dont use as hard as you might on your farm..
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  3. #3
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    The main thing is to make sure it can put out high cfm. If you can find a rotary compressor that would be the way to go as they can pump out well over 25cfm without trying. I would be looking for a 60 gallon tank. I like quincy they are exellent.

  4. #4
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    Thank you for the helpful advice guys.
    Enjoy the weekend.
    Peter

  5. #5
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    One of the things I am considering when I get a larger compressor is two tanks. I use air intermittently... sometimes just enough to shoot a few nails, other time for major projects (spraying, etc.). And sometimes not at all for weeks at a time. There are a couple considerations...

    1. One of my friends kept the pressure on his air tank. Then he had a pipe leak, and found the compressor (in an out-building) had been running flat out for days. I only want to turn the compressor on when I will be using it.

    2. I hate the time (and energy) it takes to fill a big tank, if all I am going to do is shoot a few brads.

    My solution, which I have never seen implemented, is to have a small tank (3-5 gallons) that is always on-line, but also a big tank (30-60 gallons) that is connected to the distribution system with a valve. If I am going to be using a lot of air, open the valve to the big tank and have the luxury of a large amount of air. If I just need a little, close the valve to the big tank and get full pressure in the little tank very quickly. This idea seems straightforward, but since nobody else has done it, I am worried about it.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  6. #6
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    in your proposed idea i think you will loose presure and there for get unseated nails soon..
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  7. #7
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    I disagree with Larry. Assuming there are no leaks, I see no reason why the small tank would have any less pressure than the big tank.

    Seems like a workable solution to me, Charlie.


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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    in your proposed idea i think you will loose presure and there for get unseated nails soon..
    I don't see where I would lose pressure. If I had a 50 gallon tank and a 5 gallon tank, and the valve were open (both tanks were in the system) how would that be any different than if I had a compressor with a 55 gallon tank? The instant I opened the valve to the big tank, the compressor would have to kick in to fill the bigger tank. Just for discussion, assume it took 3 minutes to fill the big tank - during the 3 minutes while the tank was filling, the pressure would be down, but once the tank was filled, it seems like I am good to go, and would have as much pressure as any 55 gallon system.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  9. #9
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    I can't see why that idea wouldn't work Charlie, but like you, I'd like to hear from someone who's done it.
    I saw an ad here for a 60 gal tank and compressor, but no motor, for $150. I think it would need 5hp, but what would the other specs be, rpm etc? I seem to recall from some of the Bill Pentz discussions that compressor motors were a breed apart. Haven't seen it, nor do I know it's age or condition. Might check it out next week.
    Getting a little tired of lugging the so-called "portable" hotdog compressor around. I wonder how much 1/4 inch line you could run off that for light jobs like nailing, inflating, dust blowing etc?
    Thanks
    Peter

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Rideout View Post
    ...I saw an ad here for a 60 gal tank and compressor, but no motor, for $150. I think it would need 5hp, but what would the other specs be, rpm etc? ...
    I know many, maybe most compressors have motors running at the standard 3450 rpm, and others (like mine) running at 1740 rpm. A pump should work with either speed motor, but the slower motor on a given pump will compress less air in a given time than the faster motor will. On the other hand, the slower motor will put less stress on the pump, which will add to its longevity and let it run more quietly. In the case of my compressor, it's got a 5 hp motor at 1740 rpm turning a pump that's designed to run on a 7.5 hp 3450 rpm motor. The net result is that my compressor runs more quietly and with less wear on the pump (by being slower), but still puts out 19+ cfm since it's an oversized pump. Chances are, the pump you're looking at is designed to run with a 3450 rpm motor. It'd be quieter with a slower motor, but it might not put out as much air as you'll need.

    All this talk of motor RPM is somewhat moot at this point though, since the pulley size plays a big part in how fast the pump is running. If you go see it, make a note of the size of the pulley on the pump, and see if the owner know what size the motor pulley is supposed to be.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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