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looking to buy air compressor

This is a discussion on looking to buy air compressor within the Tools forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Im looking to buy an air compressor that would be powerful enough to use power tools. What should I look ...

  1. #1
    Member 28Marcos's Avatar
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    looking to buy air compressor

    Im looking to buy an air compressor that would be powerful enough to use power tools. What should I look for? HP size? PSI? Gallon size? Enlighten this newbie please!

  2. #2
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    All your questions kind of depend on the tools you are wanting to use, but I'll give you some basics. The main things you want to focus on are CFM (cubic feet (of air) per minute) and tank size. Some portable compressors have impressive CFM numbers by placing a large motor on a small tank, but the compressor runs non-stop and therefore works very hard. I have 2 compressors- one is a 17 gallon, 2 horsepower that puts out 3.3 CFM @ 90 psi. Most air tools are operated at 90 psi, and will have and average CFM requirement listed. Both my impacts are 4 CFM, and my die grinders are a little over 2. So with any extended use, this compressor starts running and keeps running. I also have a 30 gallon 5.5 HP compressor that puts out 6.7 CFM at 90 PSI...this one will run my air tools non stop no problems. This is about as big a compressor as you can get and run off 110 electricity (standard plug in). Bigger compressors run off 220. Bottom line, if you are just looking to air up tires, run an impact wrench, air rachet, die grinder etc I would go for something at least as big as 3.5 CFM and 20 gallon. If you will be using such tools for extended lengths of time, shoot for something closer to 5 CFM. I would recommend staying away from the oil-free compressors as they are louder and I have heard they don't run as long...one of mine is oil free and very loud. Hope this helps a little.

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    Member jcws6's Avatar
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    I've got a 2HP, 8gal electric compressor (4CFM @ 90PSI). It powers my 650ft/lb impact wrench just fine, and it's easy to move around if you need.

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    Member Blue28's Avatar
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    What voltage?

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    Member jcws6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue28 View Post
    What voltage?
    Mine's 110v. Just plugs into a regular wall outlet.

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    Member Blue28's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 28Marcos View Post
    Im looking to buy an air compressor that would be powerful enough to use power tools. What should I look for? HP size? PSI? Gallon size? Enlighten this newbie please!
    What voltage are you looking for?

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    Member 28Marcos's Avatar
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    im looking for something that runs off the standard wall outlet that would power the basic tools like the impact wrench and air rachet. trying to gather some tools now to restore a 48 gmc panel next year with my dad. with that said should i just get a basic model 20 gallon 3.5cfm compressor?

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    Member Blue28's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Here's a couple I've been looking at.

    FYI, both of these are around $700.

    Quincy 20-Gallon (Belt Drive) Cast-Iron Air Compressor
    Model: 131A20PC3
    http://www.aircompressorsdirect.com/...0PC3/p533.html

    Ingersoll Rand Electric Portable Air Compressor — 2 HP, 110 Volt, Model# SS3F2GM
    http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...9041_200339041

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    Member jcws6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 28Marcos View Post
    im looking for something that runs off the standard wall outlet that would power the basic tools like the impact wrench and air rachet. trying to gather some tools now to restore a 48 gmc panel next year with my dad. with that said should i just get a basic model 20 gallon 3.5cfm compressor?
    Here's the one I was talking about: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=40400

    I know Harbor Freight gets a bad rap everywhere. I bought mine around 4 years ago, with a 3 year warranty (just in case). Never used the warranty, and the thing still runs like a champ. Cost me about $100 with the 20% off coupons they're running all the time. I was looking for something I'd be able to haul around if I needed to, while still powering everything I needed.

    Ever since I got my battery-powered impact wrench, I barely ever haul the compressor out anymore. A damn shame.

  11. #11
    Member tpilews's Avatar
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    I would look around on craigslist if I were you. I picked up a 40 gallon, 5 HP Craftsman compressor for $200. It runs 10CFM @90 PSI and 12CFM @ 40PSI. If you're ever going to spray something, you want a decent 40 PSI rating. Obviously, the higher the better. I've sprayed quite a few things since having it. Bookshelves, benches, coffee tables, etc... It runs all my other tools without a hiccup.

    Oh, mine 240 volts though, so you have to have some electrical knowledge, and it isn't portable. But, that's why I have 250 ft. of rubber line.
    Last edited by tpilews; 06-26-2009 at 07:56 AM.

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    I've just bought a 1HP compressor for 100$. Used but in good condition. It's worth searching through used craftsman tools. I've found the one I bought here:
    http://www.pennysaverusa.com/categor...w-us/radius-1/

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    Member TA98's Avatar
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    How many gallons is it?

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    take into consideration of the consumption of the air tools you are gonna be using like an impact wrench

  15. #15
    Rodzilla Tha Cavity Filla zero_proto's Avatar
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    what would be ideal if i want to use one to media blast a car?

  16. #16
    formally 01 T/A 0verkill's Avatar
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    here is what i use for all my stuff. and if you look at sale add's some times you find it cheper and with some free tools to.
    http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...sName=View+All

  17. #17
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    2003 Silverado

    I have this one from Craftsman that I bought 5+ years ago. It runs my 1/2" impact and air rachets with no problems. It is 110v. If you plan to paint or do any blasting, save up for a unit with 12+ CFM at 90psi with a 60-80 gal tank. It costs more, but it is worth it.

    http://www.craftsman.com/shc/s/p_101...=1296241651677

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