I have an electric tire inflator that looks similar to this (perhaps an
I don't like the tire chuck -- I have to flip a lever to compress the
rubber washer to seal around the valve stem. This lever is hard to
operate and the seal often leaks. The pressure gauge is way off.
To make it worse, I have a scooter with hard to reach valve stem.
I'm thinking of getting a compressor with a tire chuck. I believe this
is more like the ones at gas station which I like -- you push the tire
chuck onto the valve stem with one hand, press a "trigger" with the
other hand and the air starts pumping. Release the trigger and a
built-in gauge shows the pressure fairly accurately.
Would a small compressor like this work?
I'll probably buy a tire chuck like this as well:
I never owned or used a compressor, so I'd like to hear others' opinions.
I have pretty much the exact same setup, with the same opinion, in my
garage. The $39 HF model is a twin to the $69 or so Sears 'evolv' model,
but the Sears version comes with lots of accessories, albeit cheap junk
ones. HF usually has the real Goodyear 20-foot hoses on sale, and the
cards of brass fittings and such.
I did buy an itty-bitty brad nailer (for trim work that I will probably
never get around to) to use with the HF baby pancake, but I'm scared to
try it out, for fear I will be disappointed- shoot 3 nails, wait 3
minutes, etc. The setup I have does tires okay, albeit slowly, but in
hindsight, I shoulda bought a bigger one. Maybe next time Sears or HF
has a sale, I will, and take the cheap accessories it comes with and
bundle them with this toy, and sell it on CL. Still nice and shiny, so I
should be able to get most of my $ back out of it.
I do also have a many-years-old Cambell-Hausfield 12v compressor,
pretty much like OP described, with a fingernail-buster of a plastic
latch on the end. Slow, but seems reliable, and it is portable. It folds
up small, so worth keeping in trunk on road trips.
I miss free air at gas stations, plumbed from a big comressor so you
could get more than 30 pounds in a tire. These coin-op buzz-boxes they
have now are useless junk. That is why I broke down and bought my own
setup. These damn aluminum rims on the car need topping off at least
once a month.
Scenario- a tradesman just starting out with a vanilla pickup, not a
service body, who has to load and unload all his tools twice a day,
because SWMBO's car is in the garage along with all the spare tools, and
he has to park outside.
Yeah, it probably doesn't happen often, but I'm sure it HAS happened.
It's all relative to the tool. Nailers do not run wide open for 5-30
secs. Therefor, do not need CONTINUOUS air. Mechanics tools, like
impact, ratchet, chisel, drill, do run for extended periods of time.
That's why constuction ppl use portable systems that look like two
Paris Hilton SCUBA tanks on a handtruck and max out 5 CFM. Tire shops
driving 1/2"-3/4" impact wrenches use 15-20 CFM compressors w/ 150-200
Simple physics, really. Try pumping up a car tire with a 10 speed
bicycle pump. You'll go blind or die of old age before you get 1 PSI
in that tire! ;)
nb --former gunite rig operator. 600 CFM!
They're handy, but. . . hey take a while, and I managed to do $500
worth of damage to my wiring harness with one. My mechanic says
they are good for his business. They are marginally too much
power for most power outlets so they work fine until the stars align
and you run them a little longer than normal -- then they melt the
I think I'll put another power outlet under the hood with a bigger
gauge wire- because they are handy as hell.
It will work fine--- But. . . . A compressor is something I didn't
own until I was 50-something. Then I smacked myself in the head and
couldn't believe I hadn't bought one 30 years earlier.
If you *ever* do any woodworking, metalworking, brickworking,
painting, or blowing up of large inflatables- you might want to get a
bigger compressor. That one will fill tires, and maybe run a nail
It probably won't run any; painting tools, shears, nibblers, scalers,
chisels, cut-off tools, or air hammers. I'd look over what's
available in tools-- pick out what I'm likely to use someday & buy a
compressor that will run them. Keep in mind that compressor
manufacturers inflate their SCFM numbers, and tool manufacturers
deflate them. So a tool that says it needs 6 SCFM isn't likely to
run well on a compressor that says it will produce 6 SCFM.
OTOH-- that one won't break the bank and doesn't take up much room.
I've never been a proponent of get the biggest- newest- bestest- or
any of that. I get 'good enough'. But I have been a little
frustrated when I've gone to use some air tools and didn't have enough
CFMs to use them. [I have a harbor freight 8gallon 4-6CFM compressor
that was about $120 & has paid for itself 10 times over in a few
years. But if I had it to do over again, I'd get one that would do
8-10 SCFM so I could paint and use my sand blaster a little more
Check your fuse block location; most vehicles I've seen in last 10 years
or so have an extra accessory location or two; the pickups (a Chevy and
a Dodge) have two 30A fused spare locations. Makes it a "piece o' cake"
to do so and fused besides w/ a neat install.
I put the fuel transfer tank pumps on them to get rid of the cables w/
an inside-mounted keyed switch to minimize the ease of somebody emptying
the tanks into _their_ vehicles. :) At nearly $4/gal, losing 150 gal
of diesel isn't chump change any more...and far more prevalent an
occurrence than used to be, too... :(
Yes. IMO that's more than enough for what you've stated you want to do. Has
a good set of specs that well match the bigger ones except for the size of
the tank and probably run-time of the motor for a larger tank. The output
psi setting is accurate; e.g. when it says 40 or 60 or 90 say, that s the
precse output psi you will achieve. Didn't notice whether it would run on a
cigarette lighter but it's going to run fine on 120 V ac as long as your
wiring/amp specs meet or beat its requirements.
Looks like a good deal. HATE mail-in rebates, though!
I got the same one but it's red, with accessories which includes
hose, brad gun, tire chuck and air gun.
It was $59.99 when I bought it last year. Guess it was "on sale" when
I was in there picking p a saw.
Sears marks down tool prices sometimes.
Even at $79 it's a better deal than at Harbor Freight.
I was doing 3 rooms of new woodwork so the just the brad gun made it
worth the price.
For the brad gun it doesn't come on often.
For a 15" car tire of standard width down to say 20 psi you have to
fill it at least twice to get to 35 psi and it takes about 5-7 minutes
to get your tire up, versus 5-10 seconds with a good compressor.
Since there's no clip-on you have to hold the chuck the entire time
and if your back or legs are bad it's a PITA.
Better than nothing, but I got my tires refitted so I don't have to
worry about checking them every week.
For a scooter the 12v is fine for pumping up.
I carried them in cars/vans for years and they work, but slow.
So what, they clip on so you can walk away.
Get a stick or dial tire gauge. A lot cheaper than that trigger gauge
and probably just as accurate.
It's true, you can get this one at HF for only $39 with a coupon but I
would have to say it's only barely passable. At 3 Gal and 100 psi it just
does not store enough air to do anything but adjust 4 tires from 32 to 35
psi, and that's if you don't have any air escaping for any reason. I also
have a 6 Gal/135 psi compressor and I can just grab it and inflate the
tires (well, not from 0 to 35 of course) of two cars using just the stored
air, then plug it in when I'm done. Problem is: the 6Gal one is three
times as heavy as the 3Gal HF pancake and so I'm using the small one now
and doing one car at at time.
So, if you can keep it plugged in while you're inflating those tires and
the tires are not too big, it should suffice.
Shop around. The same hundred dollars buys you this at Lowe's:
For Heaven's sake, why?? Both the Sears compressor you're looking at, and the
one at Lowe's, come with a tire chuck and a gauge on the compressor. Why would
you buy an extra tire chuck you don't need, for nearly half the cost of the
compressor? If you're planning to spend over $140 already, spend a bit more
Define "framing". Number 16 box nails through 40 ft of hose? Still, those
nailers work only every few seconds, at most. An impact wrench running long
enough to take off a commercial tire shop's impacted lugnut is quite
another thing. Gotta have the pressure AND the CFM.
How cool are air tools? I change out a water pump, including removal
of front grill and radiator, and had it all buttoned back up within 40
mins! Admittedly, a '74 Dodge van is the easiest vehicle on earth to
work on, but it woulda been a 2-3 hr job without air. A 3/8" drive
butterfly impact wrench is a joy to hold and use! ;)
Why would you buy a compressor? Buy an air tank such as:
The one on my work truck is prolly 8 years old, used regularly, exposed
to the elements (durable), and very cheap. If you buy a 'good' compressor
you've paid too much to air up scooter tires. If you get a cheap one, they
usually fail within a year. Fill it at your local station, it'll hold enough
for your tires for a year. If not, you need new tubes/tires. If too heavy,
move down to a 5 gal.
Many of our local convenience stores have the quarter machines
available (usually 50 cents to a dollar), but all service stations
around me still offer free air. The WalMart a mile from me has
a tire/service center that I usually fill my tank at. I guess it's
still true --- location location location.
PepBoys and Harbor Freight sell nice little 12V compressors that plug into
your cig lighter or clip onto the battery posts. NOT the yellow plastic
$7 POS,but the metal ones,they go for around $20,PepBoys had their
MasterFlow MF-1040 on sale for $14 after rebate,I have one,and it's
It does tires fine.
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