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Thread: Convince me not to buy a California Air Tools compressor.

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Posts: 21-30 of 49
2013-05-03 18:33:32
^^ thats no way to live man...I did that 1 time, for about 5 mins. & nearly shot my self trying to use a die grinder.

I have a craftsman compressor, & its loud as fack, but i am building a box for it & lining it with sound deadein so i dont have t ohear it. I have a 20 gal, & wish it were bigger, but is sufficient for day to day stuff...i am still waiting until its a constant 75 out to see if it can keep up with a syphon feed paint gun
2013-05-13 01:36:43
NP Post back up what you decide on, it is usually pretty insightful to see what you come up with.
2013-05-13 02:17:56
If you just want to air up tires, get one of these: Q Industries MV50 SuperFlow High-Volume 12-Volt Air Compressor : Amazon.com : Automotive

(Side note, these are really cool, you can re-tap the output and install a standard quick disconnect. I use one of these with a 10-gal portable tank in my rally service truck).

Then when you decided to get a real compressor for the garage, get a big, oiled compressor. I loves me my 60 gallon.

Don't buy a little compressor just to have to eat the cost when you find it won't run a grinder for more than 30s at a shot, or you want to use a paint sprayer, and your patter goes to hell as the pressure cycles.
2013-06-11 06:39:44
I have a 60gallon compressor out back behind the house ...plumbed into the garage , cant beat a good air supply
2013-12-04 15:16:13
After looking into the dental compressor options and other quiet units, I realized I wasn't willing to do what it would take or spend the money to make that type of setup work. It was educational spending all that time at Garage Journal.

I am going to get the 10-gallon unit mentioned in the first post. It has come down in price from $399 to $375 on Amazon.com and with free shipping I'm quite happy. Right away I'll want a hose and air chuck, so I'm going to order this kit to go with it: GoodYear Air Hose Kit - Amazon.com

I'll place the order at lunch. I'll let you guys know how it turns out. Thanks!
Last edited by BenFenner on 2013-12-04 at 15-17-34.
2014-02-05 14:06:16

How did this work out for you? Is the 10 gallon enough for you or are you craving more?
2014-02-05 15:00:08
Thanks for getting me back here.

It's taken me a while to get it all sorted since it came with a broken drain valve. A quick call and they shipped me out a new one under warranty. I was also waiting until I posted pictures, but I guess those will come later.

I've only used it to fill tires so far, and for that, it is plenty. I thought it was not even good for that, but have since learned I just wasn't pushing the air chuck hard enough onto the valve stem. For whatever reason, the air chuck I got needs lots of pressure to open it up all the way. I have it running through a long extension cord right now, so it can only fill while empty. If it tries to fill again with some pressure inside, there isn't enough amperage to get the motor started. So I have to fill it up then turn it off and use it until I'm done, then drain it for the next fill.

Even using it like that, it will fill 4 tires or more no problem quickly and easily which is what I wanted.

As for the noise level, the videos are a bit deceiving. I was expecting it to be extremely quiet. It is, however, very quiet. After using it a bunch, I'm very happy with the noise level and quite happy with the purchase overall. If I start to do anything other than fill tires with it, I'll have to get a proper power run to it so I can run it continuously, and it will probably be fine for small tool use for quick sanding or polishing or whatever.

I'm just happy to finally have a proper compressor to fill tires with and now I have an air nozzle to dust and clean stuff with. That is always helpful.

I would recommend this unit for sure if you want something quiet and for minor use. Getting their largest unit (10-gallon) was the right choice for sure. I probably wouldn't go any smaller. I'm sure my neighbors are happy I got something quiet like this. They are pretty close.
Last edited by BenFenner on 2014-02-05 at 15-03-35.
2014-02-10 15:33:29
holy hell, you did all that work over the years and just *now* bought a compressor? Damn, that's the first thing I'm buying once I get my own garage. As the saying goes around here if you use a wrench: "This isn't Mexico, hand me the impact". Compressor is a must have if you got the space! Cuts job times so much.

2014-02-10 15:46:59
Yah, I'm still making due with less than I'd like. I didn't have the garage until semi-recently though. I was doing ghetto rod bearing replacements in apartment complex parking garages and engine swaps at everyone else's place but my own. =P

I do have an electric impact though, which I make good use of when it makes sense and will save me time. It won't break lug nuts free though, so I may get something better eventually. I do prefer hand tools to get the feel of things, and I work slowly and methodically regardless of what tools I have available. It gives me time to think.

These days I'm doing much less intense car work. I'm finally to the point where I've had a long enough break that I might get back into it with more enthusiasm.
Last edited by BenFenner on 2014-02-10 at 15-48-05.
2014-02-12 19:27:12
I've had a Craftsman compressor for almost 15yrs and I use my air tools as much as possible, if there's enough room. My IR air wratchet gets the most use, by far...mostly because of oil changes on 4 different vehicles - use it for the 10mm screws on the dust covers mostly but it's also good for brakes and suspension bolts smaller than 17mm.

I purchased most of my air tools when I wrenched at Nissan as a 'youngling' and highly recommend using them if you wrench regularly. Cumulative trauma disorders like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome are fairly common among auto mechanics.

My .02

Enjoy your compressor...couldn't see which one you bought. The link took me to the site but "the page you requested is no longer available."
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