No announcement yet.

Air Compressor capacity

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Air Compressor capacity

    I currently have a 26 gallon, 5HP campbell hausfeld compressor that I got a few years ago on clearance at HD for $100. I only really use it for my brad nailer. Occasionally I use it with a spray gun. I'm thinking of getting rid of it and buying a smaller unit that I can take with me to side jobs. If I get a smaller, portable unit (like a pancake) will I be able to use a spray gun with it? I really can't justify having such a big unit. The only reason I bought it was because of the price.

  • #2
    Re: Air Compressor capacity

    I seriously doubt it, you need a volume capacity behind the gun. You'll have pressure but not volume behind it, unless maybe your using a tiny touch up gun. I'm not a spray painter with compressors so lets see what others have to say. I've tried doing spray painting and I suck at it, I know keep the guns clean, set the right setting, practice, practice, and more practice. Maybe one day I might. but I'm pretty sure you need the volume capacity behind it though.
    Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

    A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!


    • #3
      Re: Air Compressor capacity

      When you're shopping for a replacement compressor, pancake or otherwise, you need to check the SCFM (or CFM) rating of the particular unit. As I recall, the P-C model was just enough to drive a small "spotting" gun. That's the kind that have the little pint-size canister and usually a finger lever on top of the operating mechanisism. At HD, they're around $30-$35. But, even with that small sprayer, it's going to max-out a pancake compressor should you try a continuous spray.

      Actually your 26-gal Campbell-Hausefeld is probably on the edge for a full-sized siphon-feed gun. They usually take around 10 scfm @ 40-50 psi, while compressors of that size are usually in the range of 8 or 9 scfm @ 40 psi, and 4 or 5 scfm @ 90 psi. (I could be remembering wrong though).

      I hope this helps,

      Last edited by CWSmith; 03-10-2007, 12:18 PM.


      • #4
        Re: Air Compressor capacity

        the older tool guy at my HD told me that they get alot of returns on the pancake compressors compaired to the twin stack type compressors
        American by birth. Canadian at heart.


        • #5
          Re: Air Compressor capacity

          It will be a pain in the a$$ for a spray gun. I have the little 1 gal senco and also a pancake. The lil one is perfect for brad, finish and pin nailing. it is about 20lbs and can sit on a finished dining room table with no damage worries (not that I'd do it). For when you use your nailer I'd VERY highly recommend it. So convenient. For my framing nailer the pancake is just on the brink of too little, but does the trick without getting annoying. A spray gun though? No way. Even using it for things like blowing out anchor bolt holes or the time I set up a muffler gun on it to break stucco had it running constantly and me waiting for it to catch up.
          The two uses you have, unless you always paint after you install trim and they go hand in hand or the like, have different enough needs to make owning two compressors a good idea.
          And, btw, I got a great deal on my senco with a 23 gauge pin nailer delivered for $175 on ebay. If you haven't used a pin nailer it is an unbelievable tool, leaves a hole so small it rarely is visible at all even without filling. And again, for job site transport the mini compressor is the ****. Skip the pancake and even the double hot dog unless you think you will be using a bigger nailer someday, it won't help for the spray gun anyway.

          Here is where I got it, they are not offering the set right now but I'm sure you can find it if you want the gun too.

          Last edited by woodenstickers; 03-10-2007, 05:27 PM. Reason: added link
          A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.


          • #6
            Re: Air Compressor capacity

            I have the little senco too, and it's great for small jobs and an 18ga brad nailer.
            For larger jobs I have a hotdog oil-luded compressor.


            • #7
              Re: Air Compressor capacity

              there is a trick that will buy you some air. the scfm is the real issue. usually tanks are matched to compressor size.

              my first compressor i bought when i was 16. my friend had to drive me to the store as i did'nt have a car yet it still works today. it has a true 5hp. motor 240 volts and only a 12 gallon tank.

              now back to your issue. you can buy a 11 gallon portable air tank, the kind you fill and then inflate tires with. add a tee to the new 11 gal tank valve and install a quick connect fitting for inlet and outlet. this will give you an extra 11 gallons of high pressure air for the volume surge. it will make your compressor cycle less, but run longer the time to refill your 11 gallon tank plus your 4 gallon pancake will be like a 15 gallon compressor.

              this is also a great trick when you have a long air hose run or multiple guns off of 1 hose tee. the 11 gallon will act as a surge tank and pick up the slack of the long hose run. keep your hose run from the tank to your gun short, and the comp to the tank longer

              hope this helps.

              i have a compressor for each application including 2 gas powered comps. there is no 1 compressor for every application. either they are too large or too small. you just need to match them up like tools. hope this helps.

              phoebe it is