Is This 2gal 1.5HP Air Compressor Good For Light Use?

As mentioned in another message thread, I am planning to get a small/cheap air compressor for light-duty work. I am wondering whether this air compressor is good enough for my use:
Craftsman 2-gal 1.5HP (model# 15210): - 2.4 scfm at 90 psi - 125 psi max pressure - Cast-iron cylinder - Oil-lubed direct-drive - The whole setup is upright instead of flat - Single-hot-dog style with motor mounted on top of the hot dog - One handle bar is on top of the whole setup
The kind of light-duty works are:
- Shoot a small number of brads for making woodwork, probably shoot to cherry or some plywood. Let's say 20 brads a day.
- Blow dust away from filter cartridge in my "future" dust collector, or from my shop vac. Currently, this process is totally manual, and I hate to do this.
Some secondary uses that I may or may not use it for:
- Top off the tires in my SUV and car. I could have used the air pump in a local gas station.
- Blow dust away from surfaces in my workshop. I may use a shop vac to do this instead.
I am not going to use it for sanding, spraying paint, nor using impact wrench.
My questions are:
- Will that small air compressor work OK with the kind of light-duty works that I want to use it for?
- How many brads I can shoot from that small 2-gal built-in air tank before the motor needs to restart to refill the air tank? (approximately)
Thanks in advance for any information.
Jay Chan
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Jay Chan said:

It should work fine with a nailer.

I would guess 30-60 - this is a guess based on the cycle time of my compressor. Brad nailers are pretty frugal with air. A bigger tank is usually better.
An air jet uses far more air, and if you are looking to blow dust out of things, it will deplete it in an instant. Not a recommended procedures indoors, BTW.
FWIW,
Greg G.
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Seem like this 2-gal small compressor is OK with the small number of nails that I may use in a day.

I see. This means if I want to blow dust off a filter-cartridge of a dust collector, I will need to use something bigger. How much bigger should it be? Will it be one that comes with a 4-gal or 8-gal air tank, or something even bigger?
Thanks in advance for any additional info that you may offer.
Jay Chan
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On Wed 24 Dec 2003 07:57:10a, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Jay Chan) wrote in

Okay, that settles it. Last night we each opened one present, and mine was one of those little 2 gals. She wanted me to open that one so I could decide whether I wanted to return it for something a little bigger. Now that I've followed this and similar threads, I've decided to stay with it for now, buy a bigger one when I need it and give this to my son-in-law or somebody else in the family who's just starting out. All I need - right now - is a brad nailer and an air hose. Probably going to stay that way for about a year.
So I pulled it out of the box and checked it out. It's such a darn cute little thing :-) and it'll be easy to store and carry around the shop or the driveway or take it over to somebody's house. I'll spend the money I would have used to upgrade it on piping for that new HF dust collector instead.
Dan
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Good idea. You get to see what you really want/need from actual use and you can make someone else very happy if you want to change later. Win - Win. Ed
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Hi Jay, I read your other thread so I will offer my 2 cents here. I just went through this nailer/compressor thing this past year. Although the compressor you mention should be fine for a nailer, I think you will appreciate a slightly larger compressor. I have an Eagle 2hp 4 gallon double "hot dog", 4.1cfm, oil lubed. It's great for nailers. Although it depletes quickly, it does me fine for blowing dust off of tools. I even use it with a "cricket" sprayer for applying stain and varnish. (see Lee Valley cat#03K03.01) As far as nailers, for the jobs you listed you would probably want a 15 gauge finish nailer, although you will want both that and the 18 gauge. I have both plus a 1/4" crown stapler. The 18 gauge is great for small projects. Think of it as a whole bunch of clamps while the glue sets, plus it's great for trim and baseboards. Many companies have a kit with nailer and hot dog or pancake style compressor in this size. Porter Cable has just such a combo that I believe most people are very satisfied with. Not sure where you live, but here in the north, Canadian Tire has a special this week on Campbell/Hausfeld kit. It is a pancake style 2hp, 4 gal with a 18 ga brad nailer that shoots brads up to 2" plus accessories for $249 (Canadian). Check their website (www.canadiantire.ca) My brother in law has the Campbell/Hausfeld and he is quite satisfied. That's my 2 cents.
Keep your stick on the ice. Tony

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Seem like this has to do with how many time I need to blow dust off a filter cartridge. I doubt that I will need to do this too often (I hate to do this manually though). Therefore, I still consider the small 1.5HP compressor. Thanks for the suggestion anyway.

Thanks for the advice on nailers selection. It sounds like a good selection. I probably will start with 18 gauge first for the purpose that you have described -- as a clamp. I appreciate your help.
Have a happy holiday.
Jay Chan
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