Lots of air

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Blog entry by Craftsman on the lake posted 03-18-2009 12:33 AM 943 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’m so pleased. I’ve got two air compressors. One of them is one of those little ones with a small tank that is good for a nail gun but any air tool that runs continuously like a grinder or air sander it can’t handle.

I’ve had a used 5hp air compressor in the garage for a long time. I’ve never used it. It works great but was miserably out of adjustment so it wouldn’t turn off by itself. Pressure would build up and the bus fuses would blow in my shutoff box after awhile.
Well, a couple of days ago I decided to get on it. I ran a 220 wire and plug to it. I set it up with a shutoff valve and let it charge and discharge air while I kept trying different settings in the switch. I finally got it to start at 80lbs and turn off at about 122lbs. This range is just right for most air tools.
Today, I silver braised some copper pipe with quick disconnects in the garage, outside the garage (driveway) and upstairs in my shop. I ran a connection overhead right over my bench and with a 20ft springy coiled hose hanging over my bench on the ceiling. I made a hook for my finish nailer.
Air is very handy. I’m also a welder and use a grinder a lot. An air grinder, cutoff too, and chipper make things so much easier, and even though not any better than electric, I’ve got an air drill. Now I can look into a few other tools like sanders. Also, being able to blow the dust off everything is a nice little bonus with a setup like this. I was fortunate to get this compressor. I felt bad that it was going to waste. Satisfying.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

4 comments so far

View jeh412's profile


129 posts in 3397 days

#1 posted 03-18-2009 01:49 AM

Yep, air in the shop is good! Sounds like you have yourself a nice setup.

I have a 6 gallon pancake compressor—enough for brad and finish nailers and blowing dust off tools—but would like to get a larger one and then pipe the shop like you did.

-- John, co-owner Sawdust 'n Stitches

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 3580 days

#2 posted 03-18-2009 02:18 AM

What would we do without air? Go back to hammers and nails of course. I have a 35 gallon tank on mine. It just does not keep up with my dynabrade sander though. I have to stop and let it buildup after about 10 minutes of sanding.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2794 posts in 3459 days

#3 posted 03-18-2009 02:39 AM

I don’t know the size of this one. The motor is 5hp. The tank is about 5 1/2 ft tall. Maybe it’s 40-50 gallons? The compressor is 2 cylinder. I always planned on trying to get it running so I moved it downstairs to the garage. I have a removable trapdoor in the shop floor and had to use a chainfall. It’s pretty heavy. Funny, it was loud in the shop but in the garage, on a cement floor but lifted up on a piece of plywood it’s much quieter. And from upstairs in the shop I can hardly hear it running.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Bureaucrat's profile


18339 posts in 3673 days

#4 posted 03-18-2009 04:30 AM

Sounds like a great set up. I bought a little pancake 6 gallon compressor & 3 nail guns (Porter Cable special). I wish now that I had saved up for a bigger compressor. I’m pretty much limited to what I can connect to it.

-- Gary D. Stoughton, WI

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