My experience with the compressors is different than bridger's. These
compressors will last a surprisingly long time if you take care of
One of my subs uses the Hitachi compressor you list (roofing
applicator) and has for some time. It has been solid for him and he
runs a couple of guns with it. He has used it hard 5-7 days a week,
probably about 8 hours a day. It has shot hundreds of thousands of
nails with no problems. He has had his for a couple of years now, and
it still runs OK, considering it crashes around in the back of his
truck and he doesn't believe in oil changes. The fasterner guys I use
from time to time sell this compressor to contractors and they don't
get them back for repairs as much as the Makita.
Like their nailguns, all the contractors I know have gotten rid of
their DeWalt air equipment. Emglo is wholly owned by DeWalt, and they
are trying to regain part of their market share by reintroducing what
I believe is the old Airmate. That compressor when made by Emglo was
(to me) the gold standard of all portable compressors. I knew guys
that used them every day for actual years. However, being purchased
by the DeWalt group would sure make me suspicious of quality.
I believe the Makita is completely made in China from Chinese parts.
Like all tools that are 100% Chinese, ya pay yer money and ya takes
yer chances. You might get a ring tailed winner or just as easily get
Most of these compressors use a motor and a slightly different rating
to achieve their numbers and make their products look different.
However, having several compressors over the years and repairing just
as many, most of them have the same parts on them. Puma seems to be a
favorite maker for the Asian groups, and I have seen them on anything
from Harbor Freight to Makita.
I have a no name that looks exactly like the Hitachi, and has the same
heads on it. It came to me several years ago in a package deal
couldn't say no to, and it has run like a champ ever since doing
With all that being said, I personally would go with the Hitachi. But
I am not sure there is a lot of difference anymore in these machines
as pretty much considered throw aways. But this machine seems to be
pretty rugged, and seems to stay out of the shop.
You used to buy rebuild kits yourself for compressors that had rings,
seals, reed valves, etc, in them. No more. Take one of these things
to the shop after you have had it and used it for a while and you will
probably be better off with a new machine.
I have a Bostitch that I am using now (another package deal) that I
like as far as power and running, but this one has a Taiwanese motor
on an Italian compressor head. Go figure. It isn't any better or any
worse than any other compressor in its class, but it won't run more
than one framer (it wasn't designed to) or roofing nailer.
But if you really wanted to be the queen of the roller derby for an
excellent quality compressor, check this out:
I love the Speedaire tools, I just don't want to let go of the dough.
I had a big roll around years ago, and it was the best compressor I
have ever owned.