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NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

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  • NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

    I am having doubts about my new RIDGID compressor.

    I set the regulator at 110 Psi for my brad nailer 18 guage.

    I fire a nail and the pressure goes down to 100 psi. Taking it's sweet time returning to 110 psi. (with a whistling sound to boot)

    If I fire 3-4 nails rapidly. The pressure goes down, down, down. 110, 100, 95, 90, 85 psi. It doesn't go much lower than 85 before the regulator decides to let some pressure back into my hose. (slowly)

    This can't be normal.
    Anyone have the same compressor?

  • #2
    Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

    I went to HD to give a demonstration of this problem. They agreed that it was not normal. Enough to give me a new tristack compressor.
    I got the new one home. After blowing two 15 watt fuses (dang that motor needs allot of juice), I was able to test my new one.

    IT DOES THE SAME THING, if not worse.
    Last edited by eric braun; 08-30-2011, 10:05 PM. Reason: watt not volt sorry


    • #3
      Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

      I was having a similar problem, I think it could be just a bad model. I just picked up a different compressor from Sears and haven't had any issues.


      • #4
        Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

        I've never seen anyone recommend 110 psi for a pneumatic nailer of any sort.

        What is a 15 volt fuse?


        • #5
          Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

          So on my new tristack compressor. (the second one) I decided to try and open the lower, outlet, regulator all the way and then close it all the way. Maybe that would loosen it up and make it work better. No such luck. The regulator knob seized up and I couldn't turn the outlet pressure higher than 70 psi. I went at it with both hands to try and turn it. CLICK the knob broke and is now spinning and does nothing. Striped it.

          I returned the compressor and, I AM DONE WITH RIDGID compressors. NEVER AGAIN.


          • #6
            Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

            Everybody sells crap, unfortunatley it looks like you should have gone to Vegas or Atlantic city and tried your luck at winning two jackpots in a row instead of returning to HD to buy a second compressor! I have never had the misfortune of having TWO of the same product bad right out of the box.
            We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!


            • #7
              Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

              Eric, I read this review on the HD site about this compressor. It may resolve the issue you had w/ recharging, and also validates what you experienced with blown breakers. I thought this might help current owners or future owners.

              "Overall rating 5 / 5 Contractor approved,PostedAugust 25, 2011BlackRiverWoodwork from Angier, NC

              When I first saw this compressor come out, I though, whoa, that is pretty cool. I noticed it had replaced the other twin tank with the "cage" on it, which I already own and keep at the shop because of its high volume. Looked it over checked out all the features. Then, being a contractor, I thought, the more doo-dads, the more stuff to break, so I passed on it for a little while.

              Lo and behold I get to a job an hour from home and discover I left my pancake compressor at home! Head off to the nearest home depot to pick up a new one, and decide if I have to buy one, I may as well try this new ridgid one.

              Started off with a few hiccups, but turned out being user error. It would run every ten seconds for three seconds or so. We managed to figure out that we had one gun plugged into the upper outlet, which ONLY uses air from the smaller tank on the motor. DOH!

              After all the kinks are worked out, this bad boy has been on the job for three weeks now. We split the motor off and plug it in at the pole, run a 100 foot hose to the tank in the house, and split off it to run a FIVE MAN trim crew all day long, non stop. Its nice not to have the compressor screaming inside the house all day.

              One drawback is the massive amount of power this thing draws. Make sure youve got a good power source before you plug this sucker in. Even on a temporary power pole we will have to reset breakers on the pole and the motor a few times a day. A small price to pay, in my opinion."

              End Quote
              Last edited by erngum; 09-01-2011, 12:26 AM.


              • #8
                Re: NEW Tri-stack 5 gallon oil free air compressor

                I'm glad to know someone is enjoying the tristack. Those details were fun to sort out. Getting to know why and when the motor starts depending on where you hook up. Being very impressed with how fast it does fill. Like he said the top small tank, 3 seconds to fill it back up.

                I work with a smaller trim crew. We normally run up to 3-4 guys on the same line, on rather small compressor mind you. Other trades are often saying "Wow all you guys are on that tiny thing?" Finishing brad nailers don't need much air volume, but pressure is critical.

                Working with Tristack situation : all in the first half hour)
                I was nailing trim, my partner was nailing also in another room. Most of the time the nails were going in fine. But especially after doing 2-3 quickly, the third nail had the head sticking out. No big deal, it happens. I punch it in with nail punch and hammer. Nailing the other side of the door, dang happens again. Punch the nail in. I'm thinking, hmm must be time to put a couple drops of oil in my gun. I go downstairs to get some and my partner is there already doing just that. "You got nail heads sticking out?" He said "Yeah quite a few." That's when I started starring at the needle and shooting with my gun. Started noticing the 110psi, 100psi, 95psi, 90psi...etc Tack, Tack, Tack, Tack Until it reached 85psi it didnt let air in to recover pressure to 110psi. Incidentally, while said pressure recovery is happening (with the whistling sound) I fire the gun and it handles it, still rising in pressure. So I know the valve can actually let in the required air. It's just too slow to start doing it's job. And as soon as it has a second to rest steadily at full pressure. It goes back to doing the weird pressure thing.

                I would be sooo interested in knowing what pressure that 5 man crew set on the outlet regulator. My solution to the problem was to simply set it to 120psi to give us a buffer of pressure. So that even functioning the way it was, it would perhaps only go down to 95 psi before resetting (this may have been wearing on the guns though). 95 psi would have probably been sufficient. But then the second machine I got had the regulator knob seize up completely at 70 psi max. It stripped trying to get it to turn higher.

                I have personally used a few different brands and sizes. I've never had this issue.
                It's a very subtle problem but tiny cheap compressors can do it easily.

                I guess I got 2 bad ones. I'm back to using my 85 dollar cheapy that has seen daily use for 4 years now. Runs 4 guys on a 1 gallon tank all day long.
                Last edited by eric braun; 09-01-2011, 09:45 PM.