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Air compressor recommendations for home shop

https://www.aircompressorsdirect.com/Quincy-2V41C60VC-Air-Compressor/p855.html
This Quincy is the best value new. Cast iron two stage pump, auto unloader, and an actual Baldor motor.
Yes big box stuff is junk nowadays, and this is in the same price range. Only thing its missing that you'd find on a real commercial unit is a motor starter, so the pressure switch may burnout, but no biggie for hobby use.
So buy this or find something used locally with similar quality build.
 
Here are the data tags off the Quincy( purchased at Lowe's ) that I've had in my home shop for about eight years now, and runs flawlessly. Runs my air tools, and the blast cabinet just fine. The last photo, is something I would consider a necessity, no matter what compressor you buy. Vibration mounts for the feet. When I installed it in my shop, I bolted it directly to the slab. The first time I fired it up, I thought holy s%#t this thing is loud, I'm taking it back. You could hear it from one end of the house to the other( attached garage ). At work, mentioned it to one of the wrenches in the motor pool, and he asked me "what kind of mounting pads are you using?" Then proceeded to clue me in to vibration isolation pads. I got mine from Grainger. It was like night and day. Our living room shares a wall with the garage, and when the compressor kicks on, it's just a barely audible hum in the house. And plenty tolerable being next to it in the shop. Highly recommended.
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funny we posted the same compressor at the same time. Looks like Lowes doesn't sell Quincy anymore.
Big box quality has really dropped in the past decade, all I ever see at lowes/ HD/ tractor supply are overpriced compressors with unimpressive looking pumps and motors. Better off sourcing one online with good quality components if you want to pony up for new.
 
I can't speak for new ones but I have an older Champion Advantage compressor that has been flawless. Runs pretty slow and is quiet enough that it doesn't bother me across the shop. Came 2nd hand from a dry cleaner who was closing down.
 
In my home shop, compressed air runs the odd air wrench, airs up tires and feeds a 60A plasma cutter. Noise or lack of was paramount.

I bought one of the ubiquitous and questionable Tractor Supply I/R uprights, simply because they are convenient. I put a smaller sheave on the motor and a muffler on the inlet and a street ell to the filter. Those three mods cut the noise dramatically. You can add those mods to any belt drive machine.

Slowing the pump down, and lowering the pressure switch settings probably extends the life of the pump and the motor which are both pretty light duty.
 
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. . .Slowing the pump down, and lowering the pressure switch settings probably extends the life of the pump and the motor which are both pretty light duty.
Maybe. There is a minimum speed for splash-lubricated pumps (a max too) that ensures adequate lubrication. It is often hard to pry that info out of the manufacturer or their website, and I was happy to find that Puma makes it readily available.
 
Right now I have two. I got a Porter Cable pancake from homedepot when I was doing trim work for my mother in law. Effectively it came free with the 3 pneumatic tools. The trouble with it as anyone who's owned one will tell you, it's too darn loud to use indoors. Or outdoors without upsetting the neighbours.

A few years ago, I drove out to Federated for one of their sales and was sold a Samona 2 Gal. Air Compressor Ultra Quiet 10925. Sadly, I'd say I was taken advantage of as the unit is quiet, but a functional piece of junk. the auto-shutoff valve is constantly failing, so the unit will cycle on to re-fill the tank and then decide not to shut-off. The 2gal tank isn't really 2 gallon so it's forever running out of air that makes the first problem even more of a problem. and I don't think the unit is designed for actual use as I question the duty cycle, and as it's contantly running, I don't know how long it will last. I did ask for one that wasn't loud and that is what I got.. I should have asked for one that isn't as loud at the PC but will last, have sufficient tank capacity CFM and a well constructed so it doens't break every when being used.

Time to seriously look for something better.

I have heard about the Rolair JC10 that is quiet enough for indoor use. Some of the reviews say that it is great. I contacted one of the local dealers / repair shop looking to get a price and their take on it was they no longer carry the unit as it breaks too often as it's a very poor duty cycle and they simply don't recommend that model. Coming from an authorized dealer/service centre, I am left wondering. I am not a professional installer so I'd not be running it 8h per day 5 days a week, but I'd still rather have one that works well and could take a punishment and still keep ticking.

I have heard good things about the California Air 5510SE that has a larger tank than the Rolair but runs at about the same db noise level. Now the regulator looks identical to the one that is on the Samona I currently have. Now will that mean it will have the same problems? I don't know that. I don't have any idea what the Rolair one is like so I can't say with that either.

What is good?
The answer is simple. Forget about the home/hobby Sears& Roebuck specials. They are a waste of money. Buy a used commercial quality unit and recondition it if required.
 
Right now I have two. I got a Porter Cable pancake from homedepot when I was doing trim work for my mother in law. Effectively it came free with the 3 pneumatic tools. The trouble with it as anyone who's owned one will tell you, it's too darn loud to use indoors. Or outdoors without upsetting the neighbours.

A few years ago, I drove out to Federated for one of their sales and was sold a Samona 2 Gal. Air Compressor Ultra Quiet 10925. Sadly, I'd say I was taken advantage of as the unit is quiet, but a functional piece of junk. the auto-shutoff valve is constantly failing, so the unit will cycle on to re-fill the tank and then decide not to shut-off. The 2gal tank isn't really 2 gallon so it's forever running out of air that makes the first problem even more of a problem. and I don't think the unit is designed for actual use as I question the duty cycle, and as it's contantly running, I don't know how long it will last. I did ask for one that wasn't loud and that is what I got.. I should have asked for one that isn't as loud at the PC but will last, have sufficient tank capacity CFM and a well constructed so it doens't break every when being used.

Time to seriously look for something better.

I have heard about the Rolair JC10 that is quiet enough for indoor use. Some of the reviews say that it is great. I contacted one of the local dealers / repair shop looking to get a price and their take on it was they no longer carry the unit as it breaks too often as it's a very poor duty cycle and they simply don't recommend that model. Coming from an authorized dealer/service centre, I am left wondering. I am not a professional installer so I'd not be running it 8h per day 5 days a week, but I'd still rather have one that works well and could take a punishment and still keep ticking.

I have heard good things about the California Air 5510SE that has a larger tank than the Rolair but runs at about the same db noise level. Now the regulator looks identical to the one that is on the Samona I currently have. Now will that mean it will have the same problems? I don't know that. I don't have any idea what the Rolair one is like so I can't say with that either.

What is good?
I was just talking a good friend of mine who is a GC and he was saying how much he loves his 2 gallon harbor freight compressor, it is quiet, and has 2 air outlets and an aluminum tank, and is quiet. One of his others broke a few years ago and he needed one right then so got this and he is very happy with it.It will run one framing gun all day no problem. He has multiple others as well that can run the entire crew but the little one stays in his truck all the time and gets a lot of use. It is called - FORTRESS 2 Gallon 135 PSI, Ultra-Quiet Hand Carry Jobsite Air Compressor, and here is a link:
 
Maybe. There is a minimum speed for splash-lubricated pumps (a max too) that ensures adequate lubrication. It is often hard to pry that info out of the manufacturer or their website, and I was happy to find that Puma makes it readily available.

On those cheap single phase twin pumps just take the breather off the crank case and make sure oil spits out.
 
https://www.aircompressorsdirect.com/Quincy-2V41C60VC-Air-Compressor/p855.html
This Quincy is the best value new. Cast iron two stage pump, auto unloader, and an actual Baldor motor.
Yes big box stuff is junk nowadays, and this is in the same price range. Only thing its missing that you'd find on a real commercial unit is a motor starter, so the pressure switch may burnout, but no biggie for hobby use.
So buy this or find something used locally with similar quality build.
Ii was looking at this one also, I really didn't want to spend that much but if you guys think this will last a long time I might just spring for the extra $400. A pressure switch is easy enough to replace. For the same price I can get the 80 gallon QT5 used but that's not delivered to my door... After reading everyone's post, thanks to all for contributing by the way, it still seems like a gamble to even buy a name brand like Quincy unless I'm spending Megabucks. To answer the several CFM questions, it's not really about how much CFM I need right now it's how much I will need down the road once I build a shop. I don't really think I'll ever need anything over 80 gallons though. I have bought harbor freight compressors and Craftsman compressors, even plumb them together for extra air and that does okay but just really want to get a solid unit that will last me a long time. My little 26 gallon harbor freight compressor is still cranking but man that thing screams!
 
Ii was looking at this one also, I really didn't want to spend that much but if you guys think this will last a long time I might just spring for the extra $400. ... For the same price I can get the 80 gallon QT5 used but that's not delivered to my door... After reading everyone's post, thanks to all for contributing by the way, it still seems like a gamble to even buy a name brand like Quincy unless I'm spending Megabucks.
Go in person to look at the used one, be sure to have a truck or trailr that can carry it and cash in your pocket. Also have the add for the new one handy and use it as leverage to get him to come down a bit on price. Be sure you can see it run until it shuts off. Open the wayer drain once it is up to pressure to see what comes out.
The good thing about the used one is that it is broken in and anything that was poorly made has already been replaced.
 
Its not the contacts on the pressure switch or the motor starter that go, its the start winding contacts inside the motor its self. The pressure switch is easy to replace and so is the starter contactor but they tend to be bullet proof, its the circuit for the start windings only found in single phase motors. Three phase motors do not suffer from this as they do not have a start winding.
 
Its not the contacts on the pressure switch or the motor starter that go, its the start winding contacts inside the motor its self. The pressure switch is easy to replace and so is the starter contactor but they tend to be bullet proof, its the circuit for the start windings only found in single phase motors. Three phase motors do not suffer from this as they do not have a start winding.
Oh ok yes that definitely makes a difference. I thought you were just talking about a good old square D pressure switch
 
They both look fine, Is the quincy a 2 cyl and the brunner a single cylinder?
If so they will have different uses. 2 cyl would make higher pressure and less volume and large single stage might be less max pressure but more cfm. For "normal" shop use you may never tell a difference...
Condition of the inside of the tank might be what the deciding factor, is if either has any noticeable rust.
 
They both look fine, Is the quincy a 2 cyl and the brunner a single cylinder?
If so they will have different uses. 2 cyl would make higher pressure and less volume and large single stage might be less max pressure but more cfm. For "normal" shop use you may never tell a difference...
Condition of the inside of the tank might be what the deciding factor, is if either has any noticeable rust.
The only info I have is the Quincy is a two-stage and the bruner has a three-phase motor
 
Are there any opinions on Kellogg American compressors? I have an older 311 model that has performed well for many years. It's smaller than what the OP is looking for, but they make several models within the size range he's been looking for.

When I Googled "Kellogg American" the first posting said they were no longer made. Supposedly they were bought out in 2000 and the line was discontinued in 2008. However, the next post was January 6, 2023, rom the Kellogg American Manufacturing Company, complete with a list of models currently available.

 
I have a Kellogg that is WW2 surplus. The thing keeps knocking away but very part time usage. I was thinking of getting a pump from them at some point to mount on a tank.
 
I was just talking a good friend of mine who is a GC and he was saying how much he loves his 2 gallon harbor freight compressor, it is quiet, and has 2 air outlets and an aluminum tank, and is quiet. One of his others broke a few years ago and he needed one right then so got this and he is very happy with it.It will run one framing gun all day no problem. He has multiple others as well that can run the entire crew but the little one stays in his truck all the time and gets a lot of use. It is called - FORTRESS 2 Gallon 135 PSI, Ultra-Quiet Hand Carry Jobsite Air Compressor, and here is a link:

I have that same compressor. Ran it 24/7 for a month straight. Like it's CFM at 90 PSI was just enough to feed the application. It's a great value for what it is. Hell, buy 3 or 4 of them and gang them together to get more air. They're super silent.
 








 
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