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recommendations on air compressors

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by alex, Apr 21, 2014.

  1. alex

    alex Chimp

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    Hello,

    I am interested in purchasing an air compressor for my small in-home work area. I will only be using it to inflate tubeless tires, dust off my bike and maybe inflate my blow-up doll.

    I have been looking into small 1-gallon pancake compressors--is this enough? What is the ideal horsepower/size/PSI capacity?

    What attributes am I looking for?

    Owing to such limited use I really don't won't to go overboard, however, I want to make snapping my tires on a cinch.

    Let me know if you have any experience with compressors working poorly or working really well.

    Cheers,

    Alex
     

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  2. Nick

    Nick My name is Nick

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    I have a Porter Cable CF2600. It's perfect for what you're describing. IIRC: 6hp, 2.5ish cfm @ 50psi.

    Whatever you look at, remember that it's VOLUME you want for tires etc, not pressure. Being able to move a large volume of air quickly is what makes setting tubeless tires a snap.
     
    #2 -   Apr 21, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2014
  3. chillindrdude

    chillindrdude Turbo Monkey

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  4. HardtailHack

    HardtailHack used an iron once

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    It's normally cheap regulators and tiny air lines that limit the flow, put a decent reg/separator on a **** compressor and you'll be fine. Put a drain cock on it and drain the tank after every use, also after a while the tiny air filters fall apart and go through the compressor so keep an eye on that.
     
  5. csermonet

    csermonet Monkey

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    Make sure to get a proper air chuck for filling up tires too. I use a schrader adapter on my presta valves and use a schrader air chuck. Some of them are actuated by the shrader valve's core depressing a button inside the head, filling it with air. They are effectively useless when trying to seat an empty tires. Get one that has a trigger of sorts, so you can unleash all those sweet PSI's that you built up all at once.

    you want something like this:


    not with a head like this:
     
    #5 -   Apr 22, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2014
  6. dbozman

    dbozman Monkey

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    With air compressors, more is always better. I bought a Craftsman 30-gallon probably 8 years ago. Still going strong, runs air tools, etc. Not cheap but a great investment if you have the room for it.
     
  7. aenema

    aenema Monkey

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    I would get one that has oil to lube the piston. It will last a long time compared to the cheap ones that use ceramic pistons but no lubrication. Those are basically disposable. I use a small pancake style with the above type chock and it works great. Seal the lines really well to prevent leaks so it isn't constantly trying to keep pressure and drain your tank between uses, like stated above.
     
  8. HardtailHack

    HardtailHack used an iron once

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    Really, I have an oilless compressor and it is great, it would have to be 6or 7 years old now without a problem.
     
  9. kazlx

    kazlx Patches O'Houlihan

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  10. yd35

    yd35 Monkey

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  11. EVRAC

    EVRAC Monkey

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  12. yetihenry

    yetihenry Monkey

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    Small ones will be loud, as they're constantly filling themselves. Mine is plumbed in to the garage around a corner, so it's not a huge issue, but it'll rumble constantly.

    I'd recommend a good chuck, and a digital pressure gauge.
     
  13. MinorThreat

    MinorThreat Turbo Monkey

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    I bought a little 3 gal. Harbor Freight pancake compressor to have something handy in the basement and stop me from dragging my shop compressor between the shop and the house all the time. Some observations:

    • It works . . . and does make 100 psi
    • It's LOUD (as others note)
    • CFM is small so it runs a lonnnng time before cutout (as others note)
    • Will run small air tools (tire chuck, brad nailer, etc) fine but higher CFM tools make it run A LOT. Loudly.
    As long as you don't expect a lot from it, it will do fine.
     
    #13 -   Apr 23, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2014
  14. aenema

    aenema Monkey

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    Yeah really. I am not going to tell you how long to expect it to last but think about it. You have zero lubrication. Pistons are often ceramic so as to manage the heat and is very hard but that is all that is ceramic. You still have wear and you still have heat being generated that other parts have to deal with. Everything wears out, including oil lubricated ones, but non oil are the cheaper, disposable option when shopping for a compressor, no matter what your experience may be.