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Tools & Supplies: Compressors
Talk about compressors.
Hosted by Matt Leese
Looking for a super quiet compressor
bdouglas
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 01:22 PM UTC
Hi all. I'm looking for a compressor for my new Iwata Eclipse HP-CS. I live in an apartment so noise is a very big issue, and pretty much rules out any of the bigger compressors (sadly CO2 as well). Also, I tend to be a bit of a nightowl, so starting up a noisy compressor and waking up the neighbors is sure to bring a whole heap of trouble down on my head in a hurry.

So I'm looking for something quite that I can use at all hours, and the Smart Jet seemed to fit that bill, though I am by all means open to any suggestions. Granted, it has no tank, which I know is a drawback. I wanted to know if anyone who has (or has had) a Smart Jet can speak to the performance of the compressor. Can it spray for a long session? Is there any pulsation or moisture splatter? I assume the noise is minimal? Again, any other suggestions are greatly welcome and appreciated.

Thanks!
bd
SSGToms
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 03:19 PM UTC
Honestly, the Grex AC1810 is the quietest compressor I've ever heard, even more silent than the Iwatas. It only comes on when you press the airbrush trigger and provides instantaneous clean, steady air. It hums even quieter than a fish tank when it's pumping. About $199 and very high quality.
bdouglas
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 04:04 PM UTC
Thanks for the reply and suggestion, Matt. I' definitely going to look into the Grex. Do you know if it holds up to spraying over a long session? I've heard of tankless compressors overheating and shutting off in the middle of a session and that is one thing I'd like to avoid.

Thanks!
bd
GaryKato
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 04:28 PM UTC
I have a Smartjet that I bought after reading comments about it here on Armorama. It really is quiet. I tested it after unpacking and I thought it was broken until I shot some air from my airbrush. I too live in an apartment building so being quiet was a priority.

I should mention that I have not had long paint sessions with it so I don't know about any sort of endurance problems.
bdouglas
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 04:53 PM UTC
Thanks Gary. I don't expect I would be painting any extremely long sessions. Basecoats and camo patterns are the things that come to mind when I think of taking a fair amount of time, at least for me. I like to take my time, asI'm still mastering my airbrushing techniques and don't like to rush myself. As such, my sessions can sometimes last a an hour or two. If that is something that the Smart Jet (or the Grex, as Matt recommended) can handle without overheating then that would meet one of the big requirements I would have.

Thanks!
bd
Paul-H
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Posted: Monday, October 11, 2010 - 10:12 PM UTC
Hi

I am sure you will find that there are Smartjet and Grex compressors avalable that have a storage tank included and this will cut down on any run time and also cut down on any heat build up.

Paul

SSGToms
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Posted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - 05:05 AM UTC
Neither the Smart Jet or the Grex will overheat on you, even during a 5-6 hour session.
Grumpyoldman
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Posted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - 01:42 PM UTC
Just got an email about this one on sale at Dixie Art.
Dixie Art
only 60 decibels and 4.6 gal tanks either steel or aluminum, 1HP motor.
bdouglas
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Posted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - 04:28 PM UTC
Dave: That is quite a compressor - quiet and with a large tank capacity. I'll have to look into that one a bit more as well.

Matt: Thanks for the info. I had no idea that the Iwata/Grex compressors could go that long. I don't even know if I could last for a 5-6 hour paint session without overheating. My only other question in regard to these compressors is pulsation. Since they don't have a tank, are they still able to maintain a steady air stream?

Thanks!
bd
cardinal
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Posted: Thursday, October 14, 2010 - 01:39 AM UTC
Hi guys. Thats a pretty neat compressor there, Dave. I myself am looking for a really quiet one to replace my Testor's mini blue. I've set my sights on the Silentaire 20A but the price is pretty steep. Anyways, thanks for sharing the links. I'm going to check out those air compressors.
tread_geek
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Posted: Thursday, October 14, 2010 - 04:10 AM UTC
I will second Gary's vote about the SmartJet. When you aren't spraying, it's not running. Another interesting point is that when you do start to spray again you get about 15 seconds of spraying before the motor starts up again. Light years ahead of my trusty old Badger that sounded like a herd of diesel busses with bad mufflers.

Cheers,
tread_geek
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Posted: Thursday, October 14, 2010 - 05:37 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Dave: That is quite a compressor - quiet and with a large tank capacity. I'll have to look into that one a bit more as well.

Matt: Thanks for the info. I had no idea that the Iwata/Grex compressors could go that long. I don't even know if I could last for a 5-6 hour paint session without overheating. My only other question in regard to these compressors is pulsation. Since they don't have a tank, are they still able to maintain a steady air stream?

Thanks!
bd



Bryce,
Yes, both produce a perfect, steady airstream. I have used them both and there is no pulsation at all.
bdouglas
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Posted: Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 02:39 PM UTC
Great to hear, thanks again Matt.
Paul-H
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Posted: Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 06:49 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Just got an email about this one on sale at Dixie Art.
Dixie Art
only 60 decibels and 4.6 gal tanks either steel or aluminum, 1HP motor.



Hi

That is actualy quite a noisy compressor at 60db

Most of the single tank compressor offered on eBay are down to about 45db and if you consider the in db's a jump of 3db is doubling to noise you will se that 60db is quite a bit noisier than 45db.

Paul
cardinal
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Posted: Saturday, November 13, 2010 - 01:46 AM UTC
I finally got the Silentaire 20A & it's a real knockout for me. Silent maybe an understatement. It sits right on top of my work table & I could not even tell if its running except for the clicking sound of the pressure switch when it turns on & off. It has a small air tank (about 1.5 liters) so air pulsation is almost non existent. I usually run my air pressure around 20-30 psi. It just had about everything that I ever wanted for a hobby air compressor. If you're seriously considering a super silent air compressor I would recommend this. I got mine from BearAir around a little over $400 & I have no regrets about it's performance.
cardinal
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Posted: Tuesday, November 16, 2010 - 02:54 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Excellent choice. I got a incredible deal on a used DR500 in the late 90s, and it's still running like a champ. Only changed oil once when I moved, no maintenance otherwise.

Yours is the smaller version but I think it'll be very sufficient, especially since we use such low pressure for airbrushing, only let out very little air at a time. Mine turns on twice or 3 times in a long session to refill the tank, I imagine yours will turn on a few more times, but doesn't matter, since it's so quiet at work.

The company is maintained by an italian guy that lives in TX (I think). I talked to him once quite a while ago, he'll repair and replace your parts for free if you do encounter some issues down the road. The silair are supposedly locked up so the motor does not come off from its hangers, but rule of thumb is never to sit a oiled compressor down on its side or upside down. My wife sat it down once and luckily nothing happened, but do watch out for this when you're changing oil.



I always try to stay away from pricier compressors when it comes to the hobby but after a while of using my mini blue I found out that I needed something more flexible & efficient. After a lot of debating with myself I finally decided on this take & was really happy with my decision. I am also using quick connect fittings with my AB & airhose which is just amazing. The quick connect fittings makes switching paint & cleaning of AB a lot more easier & faster than I used to do it with the conventional fittings.
Since these silent type uses Aircon/ refrigeration compressors, it shouldn't be laid upside down or on it's side due to the oil inside and the oil has to be topped off when the level drops in the sight glass & changed every once in a while. But I guess the advantages outweighs the cons of using these types of AC. When it comes to the price, I think I made a good investment on this one. I'm really looking forward to doing more builds & improve on my painting skills.