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No Place for other Tools? I Found a Big Air Compressor

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OK, so there is no place to discuss other tools generally, and Pnuematics in particular. I went ahead with the purchase of the older compressor with the questionable tank and the extra "new" tank to go with it for $200.00 the picture from original owner is below. (I haven't had the chance to take it off of my truck yet to get my own pictures.)

My Compressor and Tank_001-400.jpg

It turns out to be a 2 stage Kellogg-American built between 1910 and 1925 (http://kellogg-american.com/company/). I did get a picture of the makers plate, although it isn't very good.

My Compressor Plate_002.jpg

The owner had quite the time locating the tags on this compressor. It has quite a bit of overspray on it. As far as I can tell the motor is a replacement as the "Stock" originals seem to have had Delta motors, and this one has a Westinghouse 3 HP. A picture of the motor plate.

My Compressor Motor Plate_003.jpg

But then I decided I should have a backup, and since I love old American made things I picked up this beautiful Craftsman Oilless compressor Sprayer. It was only $700.00 so I was lucky.

Craftsman Oilless Sprayer_001.jpg

Craftsman Oilless Sprayer_006.jpg

Craftsman Oilless Sprayer_003.jpg

OK, so I tried an April Fools joke late. :D This Paint Sprayer was something I inherited from my father. We'll see what's left of it when I get it torn down and dried out.

So, what's really interesting is that I picked up 100 Ft. (2-50 ft lengths) of air hose on Thursday for free. There are a couple of other things that I got that will go in another post about my CJ-7, but it was quite a trip to pick up a few free things from Craig's List. Now we're living in a Winter Wonderland again with an Arctic cold front moving through. From the 50s to the 20s in 2 days. So, any advice for how best to check the tank on the Kellogg American Compressor? If it's usable, or can be fixed to be safe, any advice on how to hook it up to the 60 gal. Craftsman tank for more volume? 

I only know how to use a compressor, but I have never really seen much about setting up a "shop" system.

Tell me how you've done your system. Pictures appreciated. Anyone else have vintage tools?

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BadDriver4x4...Ah, vintage iron!  I did pause on the oil-less, waiting for the punchline; the $700 price raised my eyebrows, though I'm not clear about the value of collectible sprayers...Happy Belated April Fool's Day.

As for setting up the compressor, mine is very simple.  I have the compressor assembly mounted on 4" x 8" blocks at each end to isolate vibration to the floor.  (Heavy, it doesn't dance around.)  The cord is single phase 220V with a common welder-type plug to match my welding equipment.  The wall receptacle is amp rated.  There is a designated breaker at the main panel.  The receptacle has its own additional fusing with a quick pull-out disconnect.  You want an accessible disconnect box with either a pull-out shut off or On-Off switch.  I used 8-gauge wiring from the panel (short in my case, right through the wall) to the receptacle.

Filtration is critical in a humid climate.  I have a Craftsman regulator/water separator at this point but would consider more moisture protection.  See the T-P Tools equipment catalog online, they serve the DIY and small shop market.  I use their air and blasting products and follow tips found there.

I would imagine that you can pressure test the suspect tank as you would any vessel (gas bottles, propane tanks, etc.).  There should be a reasonable margin of safety beyond the anticipated pressure limit (150 psi cut-out on my setup).  I run between a low of 125 psi and high of 150 psi at the tank, with a regulator pressure set between 90-110 psi, depending upon the kind of use at a given time.  

In addition to pressure checking the tank (a plumbing shop or propane gas supplier can do this task with a leakdown gauge and compressed air), you should make an attempt to clean out debris, scale and any loose rust.  I would guess there is some kind of vacuum approach that would work here, ask around about scouring methods that are safe and not harmful to the metal.  Welding repairs should conform to pressure vessel standards, using the correct filler material and cleanliness/prep work.

Adding the extra tank should not be difficult.  Consider this an extension of the main tank.  Piping/tubing should be at least as large as the inlet to the Craftsman tank.  Use air/pressure rated fittings, typically black (non-galvanized) type.  Consider a pressure rated ball-type shut-off valve on the line between the two tanks to reduce compressor load when you do not need the auxiliary tank.  Ask around local body shops for methods they use to add tanks, this is done regularly.  Consider the amount of compressor operation needed to fill both tanks, this is a load on that vintage two-stage unit.  Be sure the pulley/fan is blowing sufficient air over the compressor's air fins.

You must use proper piping, clearly rated for compressed air.  Do not use the wrong schedule PVC that can expand, contract and explode violently under pneumatic tool operation.  If you elect to use PVC, make sure it's air compressor rated.  Otherwise, black pipe works but be sure to use water drain valves at the bottom of pipe drops to your bench.  My former shop had 3/4" black pipe running 8' above the floor from the compressor throughout the shop.  There were 1/2" pipe drops to each bench top air coupler.  With that setup, there must be air/moisture drain valves below each air coupler.  I drained moisture regularly.  Keep volume high and friction low (smooth bends) in the piping.

I heartily recommend building or finding a belt guard if you have children around!  These units start unexpectedly. 


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