I have been using an Iwata Silent Air setup for way too long. Works pretty good, but has it’s own designed in set of issues to fight with:
- doesn’t have a tank
- pressures are good to about 25psi and then it drops off fast (volume of air mostly)
- I don’t like the idea of no reserve volume, as well as it shutting off when not in use
I kinda been thinking about something with a tank (one gallon will do, and two gallons would be great). I saw one at Harbor Freight that was small and pretty quiet (the Iwata is still quieter) that has about a gallon and a half tank. Not too worried about their pressure relief valve setup, but will add a nice coellesent water trap to it and maybe a more precise pressure relief valve (this would add to the cost involved). Should be able to use two brushes at the sametime if needed.
what do you think?
Years ago I bought a Harbor Freight compressor based on the recommendation of a guy who did AB demos a shows. Mine doesn’t have a tank but came with hose, pressure gauge, water trap. While not silent it is not noisy at all. I can run it and still hear the ballgames without turning up the volume. The radio and compressor sit side by side. Cost me all of about $60.00 and I’m still using it.
I think I know the one you’re looking at and I’ve been considering the same. The only thing I’m trying to work out is how to piece together the fittings I need to go from the std built in disconnects to my airbrush hose. If you go that way let me know you stepped down between the two in a simple clean manner.
my idea is to call in a marker and use a Wilkerson gauge setup (there is one far better, but also far more expensive). I was thinking about using a piece of 1/4" steel plate and mounting the valves to the plate. Right now I’d just love to have one of those Hansen air dryers I threw out years ago!!! They still worked well, but wanted something bigger. Reason for the tank is that it will have a reserve capacity as will as act like a shock absorber in the system
I’ll dig up the P/N later
Harbor freight. I have had this one for two years. probably about 80 hours on it easily. Burnt up the first one in 6 months. I have a third new one in its box for when this one burns up. from the last time I checked they stopped selling it.
Based on your previous posts about working with metal and machinery:
If the compressor as such, the function to compress air, is still good
I would suggest going shopping or looking for en emptied dry powder
fire extinguisher (they are designed and built to be under high pressure,
factory filled under pressure actually).
Get one with a removable valve assembly made of metal.
Pick a suitable size, gallon or two is reasonable. Often used
as extinguishers in cars & trucks.
They are classified for pressures sky high above what our puny
little compressors will ever achieve.
Get a pressure switch to turn it on/off based on the pressure in the tank.
Garnish with reduction valves, oil/water traps et.c.
The valve assembly on the fire extinguisher can be drilled and tapped
to accept the pressure pipe fittings.
Clean it out and coat the insides with epoxi paint
Mount the tank vertically with the valve assembly downwards and mount
a drain cock in the lowest possible position. Setting the drain cock in the
valve assembly avoids drilling and tapping the side of the tank.
Since the valve assembly screws into the tank (fire extinguisher) it can be
removed to let the tank dry out completely or even to simply replace the
Another option is the aluminum flasks used for NOx (kids around here use
that stuff for “recreational” purposes so they are lying around, finders keepers).
The valve is brass, easy to work with, drill, tap, hose fittings, ready to go.
May need a few mounted in a bank …
they had that one in stock for $83. The one I’m thinking about is bigger, and has a tank
This has been the only I have used. It runs all the time and I think it might be nice to have a tank like you are talking about for maybe better flow control?
Hydraulics are similar to pneumatics. In hydraulics we often use an accumulator to compensate for surges, and a tank does the same thing. you run about 25% more pressure (or CFM) into the tank, and the reduce the pressure coming out of the tank to fit your needs. That Hansen air dryer would have been perfect if not 33% too large. I just tossed them in the dumpster! Yet still worked well. Just a little too big enough for my needs. The coalescent filter is a good water trap (much better that what most of us use). It spins the air flow causing the water to go to the outside and fill the container cup; which you bleed every few days. I’ve used all the big name brands, but for me Wilkerson was the best for the cash outlay. Noregreen is also pretty good, but I like the Wilkerson setup better. That pressure reducing valve I spoke of is super accurate, and compensates better than 98% of them. I have a couple stashed away somewhere, but have not seen them in years.
You can buy an air tank at Harbor Freight and add the valves needed. Your looking at $30 for the tank, and whatever you want to spend on valving. You don’t need gauge quality, or super precision products. As I said it’s not close to rocket science.