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Central Pneumatic 1/8 HP, 40 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor

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  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Jefferson City, MO
Central Pneumatic 1/8 HP, 40 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor
Posted by iraqiwildman on Thursday, June 10, 2010 2:27 PM

I found this Central Pneumatic 1/8 HP, 40 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor at Harbor Freight for $59.99.

Anyone use this compressor or know anything about it?  It does not have a tank with it, so I am worried about uneven pressure. I like the quiet operation that it says it gives, but might get a louder, pancake compressor with a 3 gallon tank for $49.99 (a Central Pneumatic 3 Gallon, 100 PSI Oilless Pancake Air Compressor).

I just can't decide what I need.

Tim Wilding

  • Member since
    May, 2010
  • From: Mount Airy, MD
Posted by estein9077 on Thursday, June 10, 2010 5:15 PM

I grabbed the other one that they have that comes with an airbrush and so far it is working well.  The only problem is that you can't adjust the air pressure.  I am thinking about adding a regulator to it.

I have purchased some of there (or their or they're?) other tools and have been pleased with them.

Eric

  • Member since
    April, 2004
  • From: Gateway city, US
Posted by keilau on Friday, June 11, 2010 6:49 AM

iraqiwildman

I found this Central Pneumatic 1/8 HP, 40 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor at Harbor Freight for $59.99.

Anyone use this compressor or know anything about it?  It does not have a tank with it, so I am worried about uneven pressure. I like the quiet operation that it says it gives, but might get a louder, pancake compressor with a 3 gallon tank for $49.99 (a Central Pneumatic 3 Gallon, 100 PSI Oilless Pancake Air Compressor).

I just can't decide what I need.

You may have a better chance with the higher power one from Harbor Freight, 1/5 HP 100 psi airbrush compressor. It is on sale for $79. It will at least get you a 20 psi "working pressure" and still quiet enough for using indoor.

Their oilless pancake compressor is very noisy. Make sure that you or your family can tolerate the noise.

The problem with Harbor Freight product is the frequent change of supplier. You never know what you may get for the same catalog item. They typically double the horse power rating by using the "startup" instead of the "operating" HP when compared to other manufacturer. (But all sellers import compressor from China do the same thing.)

A better solution is to buy the more reliable brand airbrush compressor. There was a compressor round up article in the FSM July 2008 issue. The information should still be good for 2010 purchases.

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Jefferson City, MO
Posted by iraqiwildman on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 12:58 PM

I think there is a screw under the regulator you have to tuen to adjust the air pressure.

This guy added an inline regulator, before he knew there was a screw.

http://www.happinessismandatory.com/misc/Tools/Compressor.htm#BetterSetup

I wonder how hard it is to adjust this screw? I am thinking about staying with the 1/8 hp since it has a locking knob on it. This 1/5 hp just has this screw.

Tim Wilding

  • Member since
    April, 2004
  • From: Gateway city, US
Posted by keilau on Thursday, June 17, 2010 6:39 AM

iraqiwildman

I think there is a screw under the regulator you have to tuen to adjust the air pressure.

This guy added an inline regulator, before he knew there was a screw.

http://www.happinessismandatory.com/misc/Tools/Compressor.htm#BetterSetup

I wonder how hard it is to adjust this screw? I am thinking about staying with the 1/8 hp since it has a locking knob on it. This 1/5 hp just has this screw.

Normally, I would not have recommend any Harbor Freight airbrush compressor because there are too much variance in the quality control. Compressor is one of those item that you get what you paid for. The 1/5 HP one just gets more reasonable on paper spec than their two other lower power ones. Check the house brand offerings from BearAir or TCP Global. They cost a little more than the HF compressor, but had received good FSM reviews and user feedbacks.

Don't believe everything you read on the internet. Inexperienced person can post elaborate process that was completely unnecessary, and sometimes, misleading. Use good modeling web site such as FSM or ARC forum where you can find more balanced view, though sometimes confusing. The HF 1/5 HP compressor pressure regulator has a locknut too. It looks different, but works the same as other similar units.

No sure about the quality of the HF regulator/filter unit. You can get one separately if you want to. I got mine from TCPGlobal years ago. It worked well for me over the years. Most of the regulator/moisture trap come from China this days. But the quality varies. You want to get one with a diaphrapm valve, not just a simple orifice. That would give you finer and more accurate adjustment of the airflow. Get one with a glass instead of plastic cannister. The regulator/moisture trap from the major airbrush manufacturers should likely meet the quality requirements, but tends to be overpriced if purchase separately from a compressor.

Good luck and let us know how you decide.

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Jefferson City, MO
Posted by iraqiwildman on Monday, June 28, 2010 2:13 PM

I bought this compressor from Harbor Freight and really like it. Very quiet and good airflow up to 30 PSI. I sprayed a whole jar of water last night and it did not get very hot.

Tim Wilding

  • Member since
    October, 2004
  • From: Mesa, AZ
Posted by jschlechty on Monday, June 28, 2010 6:43 PM

A couple of months ago I bought one of the Harbor Freight compressors as a replacement for my Paasche one that had crapped out.    It was a 1/3 hp, 100 psi with a 2 gal storage tank on sale for $39.99! (had a special coupon for it in Flying magazine...)   I also got the 2 yr replacement warrnaty for an extra 10 bucks so if it fails in the next 2 yrs - just go get a new one.  All this for a tad under $50!

So far I've been very pleased with it.  Yes, it's a little noisier than the old one, but for the cost savings, I can put up with a little more noise.  It's adjustable from 0 psi up to (supposedly) 100 PSI.  The highest I ran it so far was when I gave the knob a crank up to clean it and ran it at about 80 psi - I think I could have airbrushed peanut butter at that pressure!  From the replies in my other thread, a lot of people can't put up with the higher noise level of these generic compressors, but if you can, I think they are a viable alternative to the name brand compressors.

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Jefferson City, MO
Posted by iraqiwildman on Thursday, October 05, 2017 9:01 PM

Well 7 years later and I was still using this compressor until tonight. At the end of spraying a flat coat, the compressor quit making air. The motor still ran, but no air. They are now $69.99 at Harobr Freight, so I decided to dig the manual out and try to fix it. I looked at the part layout and figured out it had to be the air piston. I took the top off and found the piston can unscrewed from the electic motor. 5 minutes later, it was running fine.

I came across this old posting why researching the price of a new compressor, so decided to share what a wonderful little air compressor this is.

Tim Wilding

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