Air tools....

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by oz in SC, Mar 13, 2005.

  1. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    We are thinking of buying an air compressor and assorted tools for building 'stuff'.. :D

    So we are looking for some advice on the various compressor sizes,oil free or not,how big for around the homestead projects etc...

    What y'all think???
     
  2. Lt. Wombat

    Lt. Wombat Well-Known Member

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    My rule of thumb is buy as much as you can afford or are willing to finance. I have never met a project that the compressor was too big for but I have had several where it just couldn't keep up.

    Also, if you have high power rates get one set up to run on 220v as they are cheaper (or so my co-op says).
     

  3. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    An oil type, run on synthetic oil, and and belt drive are 2 must have features for longivity. Cast iron compressors add to this. ASME tanks add a safety factor along with price increase. PVC lines are not approved to carry air and they deterioate with time. Brands of small compressor are unimportant since the motors and compressor are sourced abroad. The HP advertised is a sales gimmick. Divide 4 into the CFM and you will get the approximate true HP.
     
  4. Ozarks_1

    Ozarks_1 Well-Known Member

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    Neither one!

    As agmantoo pointed out "belt drive" is preferable ... which means a separate motor and compressor. If either the motor or compressor goes bad, you can simply replace it "fairly" cheaply. When a combined motor/compressor unit goes bad, you might as well just convert what's left into a fancy air tank.

    Get a good compressor. You'll find a lot more air tools for it than you might think.

    (I read where folks who do "recreational" gold mining often use the typical air hammer/chisel to break rocks. I just and to try it ... and, believe it or not, it works! Note, however, that an air hammer/chisel uses a good amount of air.)
     
  5. coydog

    coydog Well-Known Member

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    Do you need a compressor that will be portable? I use the Dewalt emglow. Suitcase type can be carried easily. Oil lubed will last longer. 2hp and recovers quickly. Bostich air tools are the best value and are easy to get repaired. Have had good luck with this equipment. Make my living with them.
     
  6. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Well the problem with anything bigger/better is they cost twice as much and are NOT portable.

    I have used them when I was a mechanic and also when I worked at a stone fabrication shop,big,VERY loud and not possible to be moved.

    I guess I should have given a price limit-on the compressor about $300.
     
  7. coydog

    coydog Well-Known Member

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    300$ is no problem. The emglo is a little more but have also used Bostich 2hp pancake style. We had no problems with it keeping up with 2 framing nailers. Also learned to use flexible and as lightwieght hoses I could afford. Working at heights you have the weight of the air tool and the hose. Good luck with your building projects. Lotta satisfaction in building.
     
  8. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Well I consider myself carpentry-challenged... :haha:

    BUT it surely has to be easier to use air tools than trying to hammer while lying on your back in the crawlspace under the house...

    So you think a small 'pancake' style would be fine or should I get one of the bigger(8 gallon 120PSI stand up type) ones?

    We are NOT going to be building the pyramids :D or anything,just little around the home jobs.

    Thanks for the replies....
     
  9. coydog

    coydog Well-Known Member

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    Pancake stlyle would probably do. Wait till you see the choices in air guns.
     
  10. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Ahhhh,speaking of air guns....

    What is the purpose in the various nail guns in regards 21 degree/28 degree/34 degree???? :confused:

    I imagine whichever we choos it will be wrong... :haha:

    Also depth of drive adjustment-needed or not?

    In fact ANYTHING anyone can give us as advice would be appreciated.

    Also putting up crown moulding and other delicate work,would this work??


    www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=40116

    Thanks.
     
  11. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    We have a cheap Campbell Hausfeild brad nailer that works OK. At $30 if it does a couple of jobs and dies you're not out much. We also have a Bostitch N80 coil nailer that drives 1-3 1/4 inch nails. Wouldn't start a construction project without it. As for compressors I'd find a cast iron cyl, portable 2 hp over a direct drive. We've had both and although the direct drive works OK its so loud I get tired just listening to it. I'm almost glad to hear it won't last long as the first belt drive I had lasted 25 years.
     
  12. coydog

    coydog Well-Known Member

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    The framing nailer you buy will only be able to shoot a certail type nail. Nail gun will dictate the angle you shoot. Check the prices of the nails and the availibilty of them before you purchase the gun. You will also have to choose between cliphead and collated nails. All will fasten the same. Depth of shot can be regulated somewhat by air pressure. Some guns do have depth adjustment. Collalated nails that have plastic collalation strips when shot will have little plastic pieces flying. Usualy just a bother to anyone near and not the user.
     
  13. Old Jack

    Old Jack Truth Seeker

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    Harbor Freight stuff is cheap for a reason, if you can, go to a store and look at the tools in person.
    You are always better off buying quality tools that will last.
     
  14. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Can anyone name a brand that is still made here?

    Because most EVERYTHING is made in China.
     
  15. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Just ONE more question....

    Any preference as to collated or clipped head nailers?

    Collated I gather are held together with the plastic and clipped head are 'glued'...is this correct?

    Thanks for all the help.
     
  16. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    The coil nails my Bostitch uses are joined with two thin wires. The wire simply breaks as the nail is driven and goes in with the nail.
     
  17. Janon

    Janon 993cc Geo Metro

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    I had a Craftsman framing nailer - magnesium body and used clippedhead nails which come in strips similar to staples. It had depth adjustment and was a dream to work with (feather lite for its size). I bought it "refurbished" from Sears, but the gun was obviously new. Never used it much so I sold it. The nails were pricey from Sears, less pricey from other outlets, but either way they were expensive.

    I suppose the moral of the storey is only buy what you need. If I did framing on a regular basis, I'd have a good framing nailer - but I don't. You can always rent tools for those "once-in-a-blue-moon" times that you need them.

    cheers,
     
  18. coydog

    coydog Well-Known Member

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    Your air nailer will hold more nails with clippheads. More compact, less loading. Also fit more easily in tool bag. Some codes wont allow clipped head nails. Less of a head I think, if thats a concern. I use both and like the clipped the best.