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compressor needs...

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  • compressor needs...

    Hello, new to the site...I'm in the process of setting up a new shop and am wondering about my compressor needs. Do you go by CFM's/hp what? While I might use some air tools (drill, die grinder), my real interest is for a plasma (probably a Spectrum 625), and for cleaning out my welder now and then. Any ideas for what I might need?

  • #2
    best advice i can give is be shore to get at least a 60 gal. tanks with a good sized 220V motor. i picked up the husky version from home depot. its only a single stage but has served me well for a few years now. a 2 stage motor will give you more air and may well last longer depending on your use and budget. but any way you look at it you judge a compressor by both of the above you asked about. the plasma cutter you chose will give you a needed CF PM as do most all the air tools. with a large tanks you can get away with using a tool that needs more air than you can produce for a lil bit but its best to say above usage when you pick a compressor. TSC also caries some nice 60 gal compressors, get the best you can afford within reason and you should get long happy service out of it. most all the lil compressors will not last that long in a shop, better to go big to reduce its run time and extend its life.
    i would also recommend you replace the lil screw type drain at the bottom with a better option like the kit pictured in my 2nd pic. that kit was like $15, but you could piece it together also if its better for you. the screw type tend to get clogged fast and not want to screw in and out well. or lose there seal.
    Attached Files

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    • #3
      I'd probably grab a compressor that is double the CFM of your biggest air usage tool @ 90 psi with a 60 gal tank. This should allow the compressor to get plenty of rest so you don't overheat.

      Comment


      • #4
        i think mine is like 11.5cmpm at 90psi. thats done a good job of keeping up with my air tools the die grinder is probly one of my boggest users, or the cut off tool, not shore but the compressor can outrun the tool so its been fine.
        also a good idea to go ahead and spring for the synthetic oil. you dont use that much or that often so its werth the lil extra .
        do you have a budjet in mind for your air needs, 2 stages start out around $900 and a decent sized single stage will be around $450. IR's single stage at TSC is about $450 i think. probly the best option in an inexpensive home air compressor.

        Comment


        • #5
          Just my two cents on the subject. I had a single stage, 60gal for a long time. Great comp and did just about any and everything I asked it to. When we built the new shop, I sprung for a 2 stage, 80 gal (mainly because dad confiscated the old one for his carpentry shop!!) and, for me at least, it was like night and day. A couple other guys can be running stuff and it still idles along. Also, it's nice to be able to go longer between cycles. Not that it matters for performance, but it's just one less thing making noise all the time. As a side note on the drain valves, I agree that those things should come off before you even take it off of the pallet. I replace mine with a pull cable style drain valve used on truck air systems. That way you can hook the cable up in easy reach and just give it a yank to drain it. I think it promotes safety because you are way more likely to drain the tank like you're supposed to, simply because you don't have to get on your hands and knees and fight that OEM style drain......OK, you got me on a soap box.....of all the engineering in the world, why can't they build a decent wing nut style valve?? I mean seriously, there are people working on hydrogen fusion but we can't fix a problem that plagues just about every off the shelf comp in the world......anyway, moving on....


          SSS

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          • #6
            of all the engineering in the world, why can't they build a decent wing nut style valve?? I mean seriously, there are people working on hydrogen fusion but we can't fix a problem that plagues just about every off the shelf comp in the world.
            LOL thats funny. prioritys i guess.
            no dought a 2 stage 80 gal would be a nicer option i agree. but if cash is tight , do your best to atleast get a 60gal compressor like the husky or TSC's versions like the IR. i think the 2 stage wil not only be quieter but should also last longer due to less cycles and easyer work load.
            my comp. is oh ?? 5 or 6 + years old its been a wile but its still running like new, with a lil luck it will be doing the same in 10 more.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by SkidSteerSteve View Post
              Just my two cents on the subject. I had a single stage, 60gal for a long time. Great comp and did just about any and everything I asked it to. When we built the new shop, I sprung for a 2 stage, 80 gal (mainly because dad confiscated the old one for his carpentry shop!!) and, for me at least, it was like night and day. A couple other guys can be running stuff and it still idles along. Also, it's nice to be able to go longer between cycles. Not that it matters for performance, but it's just one less thing making noise all the time. As a side note on the drain valves, I agree that those things should come off before you even take it off of the pallet. I replace mine with a pull cable style drain valve used on truck air systems. That way you can hook the cable up in easy reach and just give it a yank to drain it. I think it promotes safety because you are way more likely to drain the tank like you're supposed to, simply because you don't have to get on your hands and knees and fight that OEM style drain......OK, you got me on a soap box.....of all the engineering in the world, why can't they build a decent wing nut style valve?? I mean seriously, there are people working on hydrogen fusion but we can't fix a problem that plagues just about every off the shelf comp in the world......anyway, moving on....


              SSS
              I think I'll be borrowing that idea when I get my Ingersol 60Gal hooked up eventually. Where do you go looking for that part?

              Comment


              • #8
                A regular ball valve off the shelf is also a cheap option and easy to find and install. Gas line ones are rated for 150psi, so if you're not running a big twin cylinder pump; that'll do you just fine for around 7 bucks.

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                • #9
                  i have thought about spring loading mine so i could add a pull line to it. i dont have to mess around trying to screw it open and closed but i do still have to bend down to reach the ball valve. although its still about 400% better than the screw garbage that came with it. the other cool part about this setup is you can use an old air line to run the drane off watter anywhere you want it insted of just speuwing it out onto the floor. that could cause a nice oily wet streem running acrost the shop floor and thats no good for anyone.

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                  • #10
                    My ball valve is sticking out the side of the tank due to an elbow and a piece of pipe.

                    I'm actually going to rig up a solenoid to auto drain it when I get around to it. Right now I have a 900sqft shop addition to complete.

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                    • #11
                      As far as the drain water, I just have a big pan that stays under the tank. It catches most of the spray and it just evaporates off. Some of it splashes out, but it hasn't presented that big of a problem yet. Of course we don't use it all day every day. As far as a supplier for those, just about any commercial truck acsessory/supply/parts store will have them. I just get a generic valve with male 1/4" NPT and it screws right in.

                      SSS

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                      • #12
                        I purchase/upgraded my compressor last year because the one I had was a small single stage and it couldn't keep up with my new blast cabinet.

                        While looking for a new compressor, a friend of mine told me about the new compressor he had purchased for his shop. He has a small body shop and uses quite a few air tools, so his need for HP and CFM is important. When he told me he had purchased a single stage 3 cyclinder unit, I said I really wasn't interested in going that route. He told me to stop by his shop and he'd show me how well his compressor operates.

                        I must say that I was impressed and wound up buying the same compressor.

                        When I went into the store they had 2 units sitting side by side, one was a 2 stage unit and the other was a single stage 3 cyclinder unit. Both were made by the same company, had the same HP, CFM. same sized tank, identical to eachother except for the compressors, and price. The single stage 3 cyclinder unit was $699.00 and the 2 stage unit was $1099.00.

                        I have to say, that the 2 stage units pump up a little faster, than the unit I have, which I already knew, but not enough to notice and surely not enough to warrent a $400.00 difference is price.

                        This unit has no problem supplying all the air I need for the blast cabinet and air tools, that I use. On a couple occassions I have used an airarc and it supplies all the air needed.

                        These compressors are made by Eagle Compressors in Canada and their web site is: www.eaglecompressor.com

                        I am very satified and pleased with the compressor I have and reccomend looking into this company before you purchase your next unit.

                        I don't have any pictures of the unit I purchased, but the model number is C5160V1

                        Hope this information helps.
                        Last edited by diverbill45; 07-20-2007, 05:38 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Ingersoll Rand

                          Hey Metal Head,

                          For a shop air compressor, I would check out the Northern Tool and Equipment. They carry Ingersoll Rand compressors. I caught a 5 hp, 80 gal, 230v machine on sale for less than $800. These compressors normally sell for around $1200.

                          I have a 4 bay auto hobby/light fab shop. It more than meets my needs. I have each bay "plumbed for air" with a separate drop for a plasma cutter. This line has more filters and is not used with any automatic oilers. Plasma cutters require very clean dry air for the best cuts.

                          Just like most other things; "you get what you pay for". The big compressors you get at the home improvement stores are OK but an IR will last you a lifetime.

                          Best of luck,
                          Wooly

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I don't know enough about compressors, but James, Dave, SSS, or someone mentioned the minimum CFM one should have...seemed to be more important than the psi. Any help for him out there?

                            Question: 'bout opening up a shop...Someone mentioned to me a few months ago that an inspector came to his shop (probably some state official) and fined him for having an illegal air compressor (probably sent by his competitor. Apparently an air compressor (and maybe other tools) for a commercial business has to be inspected and passes every year. For the price of the repair guy overhauling it yearly, he just buys a new compressor every year. Is this some crappy hawaii law, or is this bs???

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bert View Post
                              ...minimum CFM one should have...seemed to be more important than the psi...

                              ...Someone mentioned to me a few months ago that an inspector came to his shop...
                              Hey Bert,

                              Pressure measured in Pounds per Square Inch (PSI) and Air Flow measured in Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) are equally important and are tool specific. For example; I have a high speed 5" grinder/sander that requires high airflow but not so much pressure. I also have a framing nail gun that requires pressure up over 100psi to seat the nails to the head.

                              I recommend looking at the tools you think you might need either on line or in a good supply store and then getting a compressor that will handle both the airflow and pressure requirements. Consider if you will be running more than one tool at a time.

                              When I built my shop, I built it to state code (TX). All plumbing and wiring, etc. are code so no problems with inspectors. We don't get to many of those type snooping around down here in Texas anyway.

                              Wooly

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