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#2461062 - 03/04/18 04:41 PM Portable Air Compressors
RoadRunnerLuva Offline
master

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 3011
Loc: Michigan
I am thinking about getting a portable air compressor for the garage..
for car/truck/bike tires, and other basic needs. I don't want to spend more than $200-250 for one. I don't have 220 hookup either, so just a basic 4-10 gallon compressor is what I would need.

What can you guys recommend, or what have you used that works good??
Thanks!

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#2461078 - 03/04/18 04:51 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
PLUM_72 Offline
super stock

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 1135
Loc: Chicago, IL
Many here will tell you save and buy a big compressor, but I can understand the need for a small compressor. Do yourself a favor and look into California Air Tools air compressors. They are QUIET! Some of the smaller models can be purchased in your price range. I first noticed them on the Depot website.
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1972 Dodge Challenger

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#2461123 - 03/04/18 05:45 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: PLUM_72]
RoadRunnerLuva Offline
master

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 3011
Loc: Michigan
Yeah, don't have space for a big compressor at all. Just looking for
a simple 10 gal or less unit. I will look into the California brand.
Any other opinions or ideas??
_________________________
"Get busy living or get busy dying"....

1972 Plymouth Duster...418ci Stroker Small Block
1973 Dodge Charger SE Brougham...400 Magnum Big Block (SOLD)
1971 Plymouth Duster...360 4bbl (SOLD)
1970 Dodge Challenger...340 4bbl (SOLD)
1969 Dodge Dart...440 Big Block (SOLD) Burn't up in a fire
1969 Chrysler 300 Convertible...440 Big Block (SOLD)
1968 Dodge Dart Custom...318 4bbl (SOLD) Smashed/wrecked
1998 Dodge Dakota R/T 5.9 Magnum
2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.0

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#2461128 - 03/04/18 05:53 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
bboogieart Offline
master

Registered: 01/12/08
Posts: 3622
Loc: Lost and Spaced
I picked up a used craftsman decades ago. Still working, but sorta loud. It runs one tool at a time, fills tires and air toys for the beach, and still gets the job done sand-blasting. Just need to wait for it every now and then.
I'd be looking at Estate or garage sales. No need to spend big money for your purposes.
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I have mechanical Aptitude.
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#2461149 - 03/04/18 06:30 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
parksr5 Offline
mopar

Registered: 03/07/09
Posts: 610
Loc: Oh
I'd check Craigslist. I bought a used 15 gallon compressor about 5 years ago for 20 bucks. My Dad had two used compressors that he bought second hand that lasted for 20 or so years.

I have three compressors and more often than not, my small 15 gallon gets fired up more than any of them. If you're doing small things like airing up tires and ext., it works great. Just fired it up today to blow off a carb.

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#2461226 - 03/04/18 08:54 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: parksr5]
Crazy68Dart Offline
super stock

Registered: 07/23/03
Posts: 1194
Loc: Canton, Ohio
No direct experience, but I've almost bought this a few times... just seems like a handy unit to have around.

You can get them refurbished. Generally would only go for oil lubricated, but for something small like this, probably okay.

https://www.farmandfleet.com/products/56...ASABEgKN1vD_BwE
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Made my way over from www.bigblockdart.com. 68 Dart in the works.....383 for now, Hemi 4-Speed, AlterKtion, D60

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#2461235 - 03/04/18 09:04 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: Crazy68Dart]
B5 Bee Offline
master

Registered: 02/28/03
Posts: 8020
Loc: Pangaea
Another vote for Craigslist.
Look for a small Craftsman made before 1985. I bought one back then and it still runs great.
I also have one my dad bought around 1960. It runs but only pumps up to 55 lbs, which is good enough to air up tires.

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#2461249 - 03/04/18 09:23 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
5thAve Offline
master

Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 2784
Loc: Posts: 4034 - Register...
I picked this compressor up used for like $40 for doing small stuff with. It's strong enough for some air tools too but not for continuous use, I have a big compressor for that.
Watch the prices buying used because a lot of the time you can buy new for not much more.


Attachments
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#2461257 - 03/04/18 09:29 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
Mr T2U Offline
master

Registered: 04/03/05
Posts: 3812
Loc: new berlin wisconsin
i have this one from farm and fleet.

https://www.farmandfleet.com/products/64...compressor.html

runs on 110V max pressure is 135, kicks on at 80 so their is enough air it can run air tools. belt drive oil cooled so it's quiet.
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#2461337 - 03/05/18 01:26 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: Mr T2U]
1971 Gran Coupe Offline


Registered: 02/10/14
Posts: 1018
Loc: Washington/Las Vegas
Originally Posted By Mr T2U
i have this one from farm and fleet.

https://www.farmandfleet.com/products/64...compressor.html

runs on 110V max pressure is 135, kicks on at 80 so their is enough air it can run air tools. belt drive oil cooled so it's quiet.


I have the same exact compressor and I am very happy with it. Unless you are using a ton of air, this will work fine.

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#2461406 - 03/05/18 09:10 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
340Cuda Offline
top fuel

Registered: 04/04/03
Posts: 2176
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
There is a type of compressor, I think they are called oil free or oil less that are incredibly loud.

I would stay away from those.

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#2461420 - 03/05/18 09:36 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: 340Cuda]
moparx Offline
Dreaming of implants

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 9691
Loc: north of coder
Originally Posted By 340Cuda
There is a type of compressor, I think they are called oil free or oil less that are incredibly loud.

I would stay away from those.


iagree
beer

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#2461459 - 03/05/18 10:47 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
mopars4ever Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 11255
Loc: md
I bought this Craftsman one about 15 years ago. It has worked well and isn`t as loud as most oil less compressors. I use it quite a bit. I previously had a devilbiss around the same size and it was not a very good compressor. Maybe other models were better, dunno. The craftsman one is red now (mine is black) and styled different but they are basically the same. http://www.sears.com/craftsman-33-gallon-vertical-air-compressor/p-00916572000P

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#2461637 - 03/05/18 04:48 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: mopars4ever]
RoadRunnerLuva Offline
master

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 3011
Loc: Michigan
Thanks guys for all idea's and thoughts. I have been looking on CL for a
little while now, but nothing close to me for sale, as of right now.
I would prefer a new one anyway, since it would come with some type
of warranty. I will look at the models some pointed out here, and see
which one will work best for me, thanks again. beer
_________________________
"Get busy living or get busy dying"....

1972 Plymouth Duster...418ci Stroker Small Block
1973 Dodge Charger SE Brougham...400 Magnum Big Block (SOLD)
1971 Plymouth Duster...360 4bbl (SOLD)
1970 Dodge Challenger...340 4bbl (SOLD)
1969 Dodge Dart...440 Big Block (SOLD) Burn't up in a fire
1969 Chrysler 300 Convertible...440 Big Block (SOLD)
1968 Dodge Dart Custom...318 4bbl (SOLD) Smashed/wrecked
1998 Dodge Dakota R/T 5.9 Magnum
2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.0

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#2461667 - 03/05/18 06:08 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
crlush Offline
pro stock

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 1262
Loc: Michigan
I bought an old Sears 1 hp compressor with 15 gallon tank off craigslist for $50.00 runs great and pretty quiet.

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#2462006 - 03/06/18 11:26 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
DaytonaTurbo Offline


Registered: 02/26/03
Posts: 21024
Loc: Manitoba, Canada
I have a sanborn horizontal 20 gallon portable 120v compressor. I bought it used. It's a belt drive, oil lube compressor. It works great and is surprisingly quiet, I use air tools on it and I have painted cars with it. I also have a 60 gallon upright compressor but the small one has saved me in times where I did not have 240v available. My only problem with it is it's portable only in the sense that it has wheels and a handle. It is far too heavy to lug into the back of a truck solo and forget about putting it in the trunk of a car. It's even exhausting to lug it from my garage back to the pole shed when I need to do something. For just airing up tires and maybe using an air nailer I would look for something smaller.

Also, I should mention that the 2.5hp electric motor on my 20 gallon compressor, while it runs on 120v it draws enough amps that when running I can't run much else on that same circuit without tripping the 15a breaker. Also I found out the hard way it doesn't work well to use too many extension cords with it because if the extension cords are too light of a gauge the voltage drop becomes a problem and the motor won't run. Not a problem in the garage but something to keep in mind.

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#2462015 - 03/06/18 11:49 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
65pacecar Offline
master

Registered: 12/23/03
Posts: 5756
Loc: KY
Look into the Hitachi Air Compressors, their small compressors are pretty impressive and quiet.

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#2462046 - 03/06/18 01:04 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: 65pacecar]
6PakBee Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 5690
Loc: North Dakota
If all you want is to fill tires then this would probably be the best choice in your price range.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Campbell-Haus...ressor/28808013

But what I've seen over and over is people buy too small. I read a review from a purchaser of one of those $60 pancake air compressors complaining that he couldn't run an impact wrench with it. Gee, who would've thunk. If you are going to run impact wrenches, die grinders, DA sanders, beadblasters, etc. it isn't going to happen without at least 5 hp. Just my twocents
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Wife says too many cars, liquidation coming soon......

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#2462441 - 03/07/18 05:32 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
Leigh Offline
master

Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 5698
Loc: Anoka County, MN
Hands down: California Air Compressor. Quiet, efficient and quick. The one I bought, is cheaper than the "quiet" models. You'll be sorry, if you buy a pos, typical oil less big box unit.

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#2462452 - 03/07/18 07:05 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
JAMESDART Offline
mopar

Registered: 07/03/06
Posts: 533
Loc: nj
Buy one made by a company that has been around a long time. I have a 15-20 gallon that my dad bought new like 25 years ago. Last year it stopped pumping, I bought a kit with head gasket, bolts, and reed valves for like 20$ and its working great again. Better than buying a new pump.

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#2462478 - 03/07/18 08:20 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
6PakBee Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 5690
Loc: North Dakota
I looked at the California models. Once I read "oil-less", I didn't have to read any more.
_________________________
Wife says too many cars, liquidation coming soon......

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#2462520 - 03/07/18 09:58 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: 6PakBee]
340Cuda Offline
top fuel

Registered: 04/04/03
Posts: 2176
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
Originally Posted By 6PakBee
I looked at the California models. Once I read "oil-less", I didn't have to read any more.

That is what I thought also, but go to their website and watch a video comparison. Actually very quiet.

I don't know about pricing but it looks like good stuff.

Bill

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#2462569 - 03/07/18 11:19 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
mopars4ever Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 11255
Loc: md
As I stated in my previous post my Chaftsman oil-less is quieter then most oil-less and it has lasted me a long time. No complaints here.

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#2462580 - 03/07/18 11:33 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: 6PakBee]
Leigh Offline
master

Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 5698
Loc: Anoka County, MN
Originally Posted By 6PakBee
I looked at the California models. Once I read "oil-less", I didn't have to read any more.


Time to embrace improved technology. The thing works as good for its size as my baldor 2 stage 80 gallon upright.

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#2462641 - 03/07/18 01:26 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: Leigh]
6PakBee Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 5690
Loc: North Dakota
Originally Posted By Leigh
Originally Posted By 6PakBee
I looked at the California models. Once I read "oil-less", I didn't have to read any more.


Time to embrace improved technology. The thing works as good for its size as my baldor 2 stage 80 gallon upright.


Teflon piston rings on a non-lubricated reciprocating compressor is nothing new. I was involved with the big IR NL series two stage recips nearly 40 years ago. They just do not have the longevity of a traditional oil lubricated reciprocating compressor. I will admit, if you are going to use a compressor one day a month any style will work for a while. For equivalent capacity I'll go with a traditional oil lubricated recip like my Industrial Air 5 Hp two stage any day of the week. But this is only my opinion and each is entitled to their own based on what their goals are for usage, price, and longevity.
_________________________
Wife says too many cars, liquidation coming soon......

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#2462770 - 03/07/18 05:32 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
Sixpak Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 6261
Loc: The Swamp
I have a 10 gal Craftsman I bought back in 1985 that's still going. Nice thing about it is that it was originally made by Devilbiss, so I was able to throw a rebuild kit at it 'just because' after 15 years and it's still working fine after 30+ years, and will fit in my trailer alongside my bench for track side duty. At home I added another 10 gal tank to it by running the output from the 1st tank into the 2nd, to add additional volume for bead blasting, etc. It's my go to compressor at home unless I am doing lots of blasting, then I fire up the 220 v 60 gal Campbell Hausfeld.

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#2463597 - 03/09/18 07:11 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
J_BODY Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 11690
Loc: aZLiViN
having owned a Craftsman stand up oil-less unit.... I'm glad I found someone to buy it. I would literally go in the house or step outside of the garage when it would kick on. What a miserable pos! Currently have an old style electric motor/belt compressor. quiet as can be.

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#2463734 - 03/09/18 11:23 AM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: J_BODY]
dogdays Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 16272
For topping off tires, I use the Harbor Freight model that is sometimes on sale for $39.99. As much as I use it, there's no need for anything better. If it breaks, recycle it and buy a new one. It is, however, noisy as heck.

I also have a ProPower compressor that is oil lubed, another cheap Chinese compressor that I bought at Pep Boys. It worked great until I broke the pressure switch.

I'm surprised that there's been hardly any mention of the compressors that are used to drive nail guns. Here's an article to consider: https://mozaw.com/best-air-compressor-for-nail-guns/

The OP is not looking for a shop compressor. Portable means easy to move around. Nail gun compressors are by nature portable.

R.

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#2463777 - 03/09/18 12:17 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: J_BODY]
Leigh Offline
master

Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 5698
Loc: Anoka County, MN
Originally Posted By J_BODY
having owned a Craftsman stand up oil-less unit.... I'm glad I found someone to buy it. I would literally go in the house or step outside of the garage when it would kick on. What a miserable pos! Currently have an old style electric motor/belt compressor. quiet as can be.


Not to belabor a point, but this is exactly the California Air Tools forte. You literally can stand beside it, and not have to raise your voice to talk.

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#2463789 - 03/09/18 12:32 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: dogdays]
6PakBee Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 5690
Loc: North Dakota
Originally Posted By dogdays
...I'm surprised that there's been hardly any mention of the compressors that are used to drive nail guns. Here's an article to consider: https://mozaw.com/best-air-compressor-for-nail-guns/...


Unless I misunderstood him, the OP wanted a compressor in the 4-10 gallon range for car/truck/bike tires, and other basic needs. Those $50 pancake nail gun compressors aren't in that group. But if the OP scaled his expectations back, they would be a reasonable choice.
_________________________
Wife says too many cars, liquidation coming soon......

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#2463820 - 03/09/18 01:02 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: 6PakBee]
RoadRunnerLuva Offline
master

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 3011
Loc: Michigan
Yup...as I originally stated, not looking for a big "shop" compressor.
Just a portable basic unit for filling up tires, and other simple stuff.
I really don't want a loud/noisy unit, since I have a small 1-1/2 garage
with close neighbors on either side of me.... popcorn

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#2463832 - 03/09/18 01:26 PM Re: Portable Air Compressors [Re: RoadRunnerLuva]
cudaman1969 Offline
master

Registered: 01/25/04
Posts: 4538
Loc: fredericksburg,va
Not sure if this was talked about but ANY air "tool" needs volume to work. Pumping up tires, nail guns, things in that order will work with the small compressors. 80 gallon with an two cylinder two stage pump is entry level to run air wrench sand sand blasters, even then the smaller ones can't keep up. I have 4, from a tiny Senco, a 4 gallon Emglo, an 80 gal Emglo and the shop 80 gal (can't remember the name) that's 43 years old and will still pump up from empty to full (150) in 4-1/2 minutes. All have their uses. If buying used, those will be your best deals, go brand name only. Tanks, motor will all do but the compressor is the main item, don't skimp on it.

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