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Portable Compressors

Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2006 9:50 am
by rcontrera
Sorry for not posting the information right off the bat. I have been inundated with emails asking about the compressors that I mentioned in my other post.

I have been importing compressors from Europe. I found the company that makes them for MaxAir, Nuvair, American Bristol, etc and can get them to my diver buddies for a TON less than the other guys sell them for.

My price is $2950 for the gasoline driven and $2750 for the electric. These small compressors are rated at 3.5 cubic feet per minute.

If you went to the Lighthouse sale in June, they had one from MaxAir on sale there for $3495 normally $3995. So, mine are about $1000 less than the regular price of the MaxAir and the only difference is the stickers.

Now, all that said, I am offering them on Ebay and the gasoline is $100 off my regular price since I need to make room for the next pallet load. So, if someone on the NW board wants it, I will give it to them at the special price and take it down from Ebay.

For those of you that already have compressors, I wil be posting tips on maintenance, upkeep and operation from time to time.

Posted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 5:17 pm
by rcontrera
With more and more divers investing in their own personal compressors, and several of them coming back to me when they break, I feel like I need to put this out there.

If you don't fully understand high pressure systems and how to operate them, please don't send me (or anyone, for that matter) any money to buy a compressor. While today's compressor is a simple system and a whole lot more affordable than they used to be, there are some very specific things that a few people seem to be forgetting or missing when running their machines.

    1. Check the oil before starting! Too little oil can and will cause irreparable damage to the compressor internals and can result in catastrophic failure. Too much oil will cause a big mess.

    2. Open drains every few minutes as per instructions! Condensation collecting in any of the cylinders can cause severe damage.

    3. Change oil and filters regularly! Dirty oil and a dirty inlet filter can result in compressor damage. A dirty outlet filter can result in bad air and personal injury.

    4. Pay Attention! This is a fast moving machine and should be treated with respect. Additionally, the pressures that it generates can do serious damage if not directed to the proper inspected vessel/tank. And NEVER walk away while filling as compressors can have the ability to over fill most US cylinders.

    5. Keep it Clean and Cool! Oily dirt buildup on the compressor can rob it of a cooling surface and cause overheating. The biggest enemy of this machine is heat and keeping it clean is one way to reduce heat buildup.

    6. Keep a Log! Know how long you have been running the machine, the time betwen oil/filter changes and how long it takes to fill cylinders. Your log wil tell you when it is time for major maintenance or overhauls when you watch it.

If you aren't ready to at least do these simple things every time, don't buy a compressor!

Posted: Mon Aug 07, 2006 10:31 am
by rcontrera
Time for another pointer!

OK ... you got your compressor and now find that the filters are eating you up. Well, there are a couple of things that you can do to make your filters more efficient.

First - install a back pressure regulator. This is a device that builds a back pressure on the filter before letting the air go down the hose. What this does is to make the air coming out of the compressor a lot more dense and that makes your mechanical separator (coalescer) work a LOT more efficiently. Drier air out of the mechanical filter translates into drier air going INTO the chemical filter. There are a couple of different types of back pressure valves and you are looking at an investment of anywhere from about $60 to $120 depending on fittings required and fixed or adjustable regulator. Either way you go, you will end up saving money in the long run.

Second - Use a moisture indicator. This little gem is sweet. It has an indicator that changes color when your relative humidity gets to 40% as a warning point and then to 60% as the change out point. Plus, it also has the added benefit of having Carbon Monoxide indicator available as well. This allows you to make sure that your air is safe and dry and keeps you from changing out filters too early. This runs about $65 to 90 depending on indicator element and type of fittings required. Well worth it if only for the peace of mind it brings on your air quality.

OK ... that's it for now. Go thee forth and PUMP!