RayburnGuy

Air Compressor Size

10 posts in this topic

I'm looking at buying a new air compressor. Is a compressor that delivers 3.7 cubic feet per minute @ 40 psi sufficient for airbrushing multiple baits? I've read several posts and most said to buy as large as you can afford or that bigger is better, but this doesn't really tell me much. I don't want to waste money buying more than I need, but I also don't want to buy something that's not going to do the job either.

thanks guys,

Ben

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http://www.howtoairbrush.com/index.php/site/lesson/compressors_for_airbrushing/

Ben, I'm not familiar with CFM's but there are airbrushing sites (check the above link) where you can explore what compressor might be ideal for you. In my amateur opinion, Max 40 psi is too low because the sustained psi of a small airbrush compressor is usually 10-15 psi less than Max Psi, or 25-30 psi in this case. Small airbrush compressors can also tend to pulse air rather than supply a constant solid air stream. I for one want a compressor that will supply at least 40 psi sustained. Of course, there's more to a compressor than just the psi - you also want to think about how noisy it is for your environment, whether it is oiled or oil-less, what connectors, filter and pressure regulator is supplied (if any), size, etc.

Edited by BobP

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http://www.howtoairb...or_airbrushing/

Ben, I'm not familiar with CFM's but there are airbrushing sites (check the above link) where you can explore what compressor might be ideal for you. In my amateur opinion, Max 40 psi is too low because the sustained psi of a small airbrush compressor is usually 10-15 psi less than Max Psi, or 25-30 psi in this case. Small airbrush compressors can also tend to pulse air rather than supply a constant solid air stream. I for one want a compressor that will supply at least 40 psi sustained. Of course, there's more to a compressor than just the psi - you also want to think about how noisy it is for your environment, whether it is oiled or oil-less, what connectors, filter and pressure regulator is supplied (if any), size, etc.

Hey Bob,

Thanks for the link. The 40 psi I was referring to wasn't the "max" pressure. The maximum pressure on this compressor is 125 psi. The 3.7 CFM at 40 psi was just what I was using to try and reference what the compressor would put out. According to the literature that's what it will sustain at 40 psi. I was just wondering if that was enough for the continuous spraying of baits.

I should also have mentioned that it has a 3 gallon tank.

Ben

Edited by RayburnGuy

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That compressor you are talking about seams like a good choice. I wish there was info on the air usage of an air brush, I cant seem to find any. Which leads me to believe it is not a problem as far as air consumption goes. When you are using an air brush you are rarely using it for more that a few minutes at one time if even that. If they can sell someone those little compressors then you should be fine. Max psi is of no concern for what we are doing with air brushes. When you use large paint guns to paint say a car is when the cfm comes into play and still not the max psi. CFM is the ability for the compressor to recover the air being used at the given pressure. You do not want your compressor to run all the time because the heat will cause moisture in the air. Anyways you will be fine and will really happy with any unit with those capabilitys, for air brushing anyways. Hope this helps.

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I'm sure a 125 max psi tool compressor with a 3 gal tank would be more than adequate. Different airbrushes require different CFM's but they are all tiny compared to most air tools. It will be fairly loud when the compressor runs, but a tool compressor seems to be the price/performance leader for airbrushing when noise is not a big factor.

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Thanks guys. They've got this compressor on sale for less than $90. It's a Craftsman so hopefully they still stand behind their tools. I think I'm going to give it a shot.

thanks again,

Ben

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Don't count on the same support for a compressor you get with their tools. The last time I was looking at a Sears brand tool I asked about the lifetime warranty and was told it only applied to Craftsman hand tools. Most of their power tools are manufactured by other companies such as Bosch and do not carry the same lifetime warranty. If you are painting a lot of baits at the same time 3 gallons will not last long. I am using a Porter Cable 135psi 2.6SCFM @ 90psi 2HP 4gal tank. I only paint 3-5 lures at one time with different colors which requires frequent brush cleaning. The compressor may kick on twice depending the cleaning. IMO any compressor other than the hobby type will be fine if noise is not an issue. Check wal-mart I once bought a compressor with a 30gal on wheels fair price I think less than $150.00 but that was 5 years ago. Hope this helps.

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Is the compressor your looking at the pancake style? I've been eyeballing that one myself. I've had a normal airbrush compressor for a long time... I keep waiting for it to die. It would be sooo nice to have one that didn't run all the time.

I would check to see if there is a pressure regulator of some sort too. I figure you could set it at 40-50 and have the luxury of constant pressure (which is something you definitely don't get with an airbrush compressor). Make sure to get a moisture trap too! Let me know how it works out!

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i've got a 25ltr (around 5 gallon i'd guess) tank on my compressor and would recommend that you get as big a tank as you can afford and if you can't afford it i'd wait till you can, i'd go for at least 50ltrs/10gallon

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Ben, I think if your lookin at painting alot of baits, all day every day then you should concider going with something that has a bigger tank....say 20 gallon min.....but if your talking about a dozen baits a day then your three gal unit would probably work ok...as pointed out three gallons of air won't last long so the unit will be cycling reasonably often.....if its too often then your just gonna wear it out prematurely and you need to upgrade a size or two.

I started with an old Brown mfg airbrush compressor with no tank or regulator...then a friend gave me an old piston unit compressor on a 2gal tank...it worked great.....eventually I ran across a larger tank at a flea market and mounted my unit on top and plumbed both tanks together which gave me 12 gals....I used that for several years till I purchased a new Puma with a 20 gal tank....that unit lasted along time, but I eventually needed more and finally went to a 65gal upright unit with 6.5hp 220v.....even though its large enough to do anything I want, its number one purpose is still for airbrush use.....its nice when the unit only kicks on once every couple of hours or so....lol.

Get the largest tank you can afford.

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