I'm thinking about taking the leap into air tools. Sanders, staplers,
finishnailers, etc. I've got a decent basic understanding of air tools and
compressors, but not realy enough to make a good purchasing decision.
I'm a one man (sometimes 2) custom furniture shop, so I don't need a huge
unit. The most air it would us would be 2 folks running sanders....
I'm looking for something stationary.
I can run permanent air lines to the workstations.
I don't know anything about what brands are best (reliability, durability,
etc.). From what I've read and discussed with friends, a 2 stage is the way
About 8 years ago I was in a similar situation as you regarding a need for
an air compressor and not wanting to buy one that was too big. Well, last
year I bought my forth (final?) air compressor. I work alone most of the
time, but every time that I turned around it seemed like I was waiting for
the air to build back up and realized that it was costing me time and money.
It seems that once you have air available in your shop there's a whole lot
of new things that you discover that you can do with it, and in no time you
are suffering from insufficient air supply (again). Last year I finally bit
the bullet and bought a big one, an Ingersol Rand 18 cfm at 100 psi system
plus a good air dryer (had to add 6' x 6' shed onto the side of the shop for
it) and a complete re-piping of the shop air system. I think that I've
finally got enough air now.
I guess what I'm saying is that you had better buy a big one so you will
save a bunch of money and not do it like I did. But maybe buying something
smaller to start with isn't such a bad idea. If you go this way, then buy
the biggest one that you can run on a standard 15 amp 125 volt circuit with
a at least a 20 gallon tank and wheels so you can easily move it around.
Stick to the oil type rather than oil-less (the oil type are quieter and
last longer - my first compressor mistake). At least then, when it isn't
big enough for the shop anymore it'll be a good portable system to have
around when your air hose won't reach from your shop to your project . Trust
me, compressed air and woodworking go together, and you will continually
find new uses for it once it's readily available in your shop. If you buy
one that's too small, you will work it to death in no time and you will find
yourself waiting on it to catch up frequently.
"j.duprie" < email@example.com> wrote in message
[snipperized for brevity]
That is good advice and is similar to my experiences. Can't have too
The OP mentioned TWO sanders at the same time. Even the most efficient
sanders are air hogs. Two of them will break a genuine 5HP (not those
horsepower ratings from the Borgs, btw) into a sweat.
In a recent ad from Home Despot, I noticed a RHP rating of 1.7 HP for
the same compressor they rated 5HP just a few weeks prior. Maybe
somebody in the advertising/legal department finally figured out that
selling a 5 HP compressor which only draws 15 amps (about 2 R(eal?)HP)
When choosing a compressor, take the rated amperage and multiply by the
operating voltage and divide by 750. Deduct 15% for belt slippage,
bearing friction, and you'll have a better idea how much actual
horsepower you're buying. (All figures approximate as I am in no mood to
start arguing that 1 HP is 'really' 756 watts at 20.002 degrees Celsius
at sea level, assuming the wind is from the NE.)
Two stage with intercooler, 1" or bigger distribution lines, 50+ gallon
tank (not as important if your pump can keep up).
Automotive painting supply people know a thing or two about these things
FWIW, YMMV, HAND, DSFOHAYE.
Bite the bullet once.
Get a 5HP, 2 stage compressor with an 80 gallon vertical tank.
You will need a 2P-40A (240-V) circuit.
The above will allow you to spray or sand without running out of air.
It will also keep the air temperature down thus reducing water content
in the air.
Been there, done that, have the above.
Good advice, except don't get 120V unit.
If you can afford it, the big ones at HD or Lowe's. $400 for the single
stage, but the two stage is a lot better, up around $800, if you can afford
it. I have a Brand X that's run perfectly for over 10 years of home
service, including a good bit of sanding. Both need 240V, but it's just a
run of Romex from the panel.
I have an Extreme Duty CH 6HP air compressor on wheels. I think it
has a 30 gallon tank, cast iron pump. I recommend this unit. I
attached a short extension to the oil drain port to make oil changes
less messy. I like the portability of this air compressor--you never
know when that can be a handy feature.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.