Page 1 of 6 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 58

Thread: Air Compressor Opinions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    30,008

    Air Compressor Opinions

    I'm considering upgrading from my tired old Auto Zone buzz bomb air compressor to a real, 220V vertical unit. I've been wanting a better (and quieter) compressor since I last asked this question back in 2006. My little Grex air sander uses 8 cfm of air, and that's the highest duty cycle tool I use. It's really the only air tool I use right now, other than the blow gun. If I ever decided to try sandblasting, it would very likely be small scale stuff on wood, not something like an auto chassis. I'm tight for space, so I'm looking at 60 gallon units. And as I mentioned, noise is an issue. I want something substantially quieter than what I have now.

    I know Ingersoll-Rand is universally recommended. I'm looking at their lower-end 3hp and the 5hp 60 gallon units. The 3hp model puts out 10.3 cfm at 90 psi, and the 5 hp gives 18.1. I'm trying to figure out if the extra 8 cfm is worth the $300 difference, considering my use. I think either would deliver ample air for my needs.

    Then I also have been looking at the three-cylinder 3hp unit from Eaton. It's rated at 14 cfm, and it costs a bit more than the bigger IR unit, but it also has a few extras that look good on paper. (Easier access to the drain valve, for one.) The Eatons also appear to be built like a brick...well a brick something...and I've read favorable things about them. They have a 5-year warranty vs. 3 years for the IR. I get the impression I could call the owner of the company and get any questions answered. And as a bonus, it can be had in purple.

    So...my questions: What are the advantages - if any - to having three cylinder as opposed to one? Would a three-cylinder compressor be quieter than a single-cylinder model? Are the extra two cylinders worth the extra money? Would I be better off saving the $300 or $400 for other tools and just get the 3hp IR unit? Would a purple compressor be cool or what?

    I'm open to suggestions...
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    Certainly there are other guys with more experiance than me on this subject, I'm sure they will chime in.

    My stupid air compressor is on the fritz again, same part, the one I just replaced, still leaks air on the release valve, thus, you are doing the right thing in buying a good compressor!

    Seems to me the most common spot where money is shaved off these units is the motor, I'd want to know the make of the motor on each unit, a good quality motor is worth the extra money to me, otherwise, any of the three units you mention would most likely do just fine!

    Build a small enclosure over the top of the unit, have it lined with sound absorption material, then put a hook, a rope, and a pulley on the ceiling, if you need to get to the head of the compressor, just pull the rope.
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ozarks
    Posts
    4,993
    vaughn,
    i called and spoke to the guy who owns eaton..the e-bay compressors....right? anyway the pumps are made in italy, motors in tai/chi, at least that`s what he told me 4-5 yrs ago.
    for my money there`s only two piston pump manufacturers i`d spend money with, the first is quincy and the second is i-r.....but ONLY their industrial line not the borg/tractor supply line, the two you mention by i-r are the lower end units......better to pony up a couple hundred more and never have to buy another compressor in your lifetime.
    quincy only does compressors.....i-r does lotsa stuff but their industrial stuff is still well built.
    don`t rush into buying a compressor, research and try to talk to a few folks who own what you`re looking for....and remember that once you have a good dependable air source the world of pneumatic tools is open to you
    [SIZE="1"] associated with several importers and manufacturers.[/SIZE]

  4. #4
    I'm not gonna talk about specifics because none of the models you are talking about mean anything to me.

    However, as a man who has wasted money on 5 compressors on the way to getting to where I am now, which is OK but nothing special, I would second tods recommendation of better is better. If I had bought the bigger compressor that I needed at the start I would have saved a lot of money.

    That is my best advice. I will send you an invoice for the 2c in due course.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    4,005
    Vaughn sandblasting takes big air. I would go with the biggest cfm you can get. With the biggest tank you can fit in. I have the 5 hp 80 gallon IR that has no problem keeping up with my sand blaster. It is going on 8 trouble free years (knock on wood) The IR's have an auto drain to help keep the tank dry. Mine is set to blow off every 15 min for 3 seconds.
    As for the noise build a small shed off the back of your shop. Keep it in the dog house so to speak. I have mine in the attic, you can hear it run but it is not over whelming.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    810
    My experience in owning and selling air compressors over the years has been that the two-stage, low rpm pumps will last longer, give a steadier supply of air at the rated capacity and will be much, much quieter than the other styles. If you can afford to buy your last air compressor now, look at spending extra to get one that turns slower while providing the same volume/time.

    cheers

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ozarks
    Posts
    4,993
    here`s some more advice........if you can`t afford to spend the bucks for a "good" stationary unit now and still need air then look at a "good" single stage, 20 gallon tank american made construction compressor.
    my jobsite quincy can be talked over while it`s running and would sell for more than i paid for it 6-7 yrs ago.
    a good comparison would be trying to power your shop with solar cells vs pole power....and air is power...or stored energy, so having a source of dependable stored energy (like pole power) is perferable to having an intermitant or unreliable source.
    cry once.......
    [SIZE="1"] associated with several importers and manufacturers.[/SIZE]

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    30,008
    I was hoping you'd chime in, Tod. I'm guessing the I-R industrial line you're talking about is the Type 30? Like this one? And I guess the comparable Quincy would be this? They both look like great machines. Any idea why the lower-end 5hp I-R puts out slightly higher cfm numbers? (18.1 vs. 16.8.) Any idea if one would be quieter than the other? I realize the initial pressure is higher with the two-stage units, but if I'm using 60-90 psi tools, that extra air only gives a longer time before the pump initially kicks in, if I understand things correctly.

    I guess another thing I'm trying to figure out is whether the difference in durability between the low end and the industrial models would ever be an issue in my case, considering I'm not a full time woodworker. I can see how it'd make a big difference for a guy in your shoes, but I can't help but wonder if the cheaper one would also last my lifetime. (On the other hand, the extra $260 amortized over the next decade or three ain't all that much money.)

    I'm also not ruling out getting a used one. I had to pass on a great old Kellogg American a while back because I simply couldn't have fit it. I've been keeping my eyes on the local Craigslist.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Delton, Michigan
    Posts
    17,470

    newbie on compressors

    vaughn i used tods opinions and found a used quincy its 5hp and with there tech support folks got the combinatin i needed to allow for air tools.. and this was a older machine the folks at quincey still helped me out.. its not silent but its way quieter than the pancake i was temporaly using and better than any contrator model i have used in the past.. i would recommend a quincey just fo rthe tech help i received but the compressor is great and i have it in a seperate room but you can talk over it while in there if need be. i vote for quincy used or new!! and if you ever decide to change intersts the quincy will resale very well... you dont find many good used compressors as you alredy know
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ozarks
    Posts
    4,993
    vaughn, i`m not up on the model numbers.....but i think i can answer your questions about cfm and single stage vs 2 stage..
    i`m betting that the pump speed on the quincy is lower than on the i-r hence the reduced cfm....the lower pump speed would lead me to think the quincy would be quieter and live a little longer?
    compressed air is a double edged sword....the pneumatic tools will outlive electric tools many times over, are generally smaller and more ergonomic....but.......in order to generate compressed air you need to burn electricity, the energy consumed to compress the air is fractionally greater than the energy delivered to the tool. a compressor, either single stage or two stage will use more amps during it`s last 20-30 psi than it does for the first load of air, by storing more air (energy) at higher pressure a two stage unit will consume less electricity to deliver one cfm of air....now a two stage pump becouse of the higher working pressure will get hotter and wear sooner than a single stage. the heat will cause more condensation but that`s addressed after the pump....over the years folks have voted with their wallets that the energy/longivity issues a two stage pump carries are worth the money.
    used is always a good/great option! just make sure the pump manufacturer is still in business. tanks in an industrial enviornment are good for 20+ years under roof.....10+ exposed to the weather and are replacable.
    [SIZE="1"] associated with several importers and manufacturers.[/SIZE]

Similar Threads

  1. Truck opinions
    By larry merlau in forum Off Topic Discussion
    Replies: 45
    Last Post: 05-27-2014, 08:34 PM
  2. Your Opinions Convinced Me .......
    By Les Elm in forum Lathe Project Showcase
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-06-2010, 02:31 AM
  3. Opinions Needed
    By Les Elm in forum Lathe Project Showcase
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 03-05-2010, 02:57 PM
  4. Opinions/Help Please
    By Nick Clayton in forum Finishing School
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-27-2007, 12:25 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •