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RFI small portable air compressor

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Offline Imre

  • Diamondback
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RFI small portable air compressor
« on: November 18, 2018, 03:58:27 PM »
My apologies in advance if this has been covered elsewhere.   Before my next trip to the park I intend to purchase a small portable air compressor -- the sort you plug into the cigarette lighter (now known as the 'power  outlet' or something) to inflate your tires. I don't require anything powerful enough to pop the bead back on the rim -- just something to top off a low tire. There are a variety of brands available on Amazon (although they do look like they came from the same factory) for about US $ 30 but each of them has a small per cent negative votes like 'broken out of the box.'
What do the experienced recommend?

 
For every complex problem there is a solution that is simple, obvious, and wrong.
- H.L. Mencken

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Offline presidio

  • Soaptree Yucca
  • Mountain Lion
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  • 3509
Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2018, 04:03:04 PM »
My apologies in advance if this has been covered elsewhere.   Before my next trip to the park I intend to purchase a small portable air compressor -- the sort you plug into the cigarette lighter (now known as the 'power  outlet' or something) to inflate your tires. I don't require anything powerful enough to pop the bead back on the rim -- just something to top off a low tire. There are a variety of brands available on Amazon (although they do look like they came from the same factory) for about US $ 30 but each of them has a small per cent negative votes like 'broken out of the box.'
What do the experienced recommend?

Spend the money and get a decent unit. Search the threads on BBC for suggestions. Get one that uses spring clamps to connect to the battery rather than the flimsy, power-robbing light gauge wire used with cigarette plugs.

You won't regret avoiding the cheap units.

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<  presidio  >
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Wendell (Garret Dillahunt): It's a mess, ain't it, sheriff?
Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones): If it ain't, it'll do till the mess gets here.
--No Country for Old Men (2007)

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Offline CC

  • Jack Rabbit
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2018, 06:21:09 PM »
I agree.  I got the Via-air 88P a few years ago. Itís ok but I wish I would have got their next size up.   I donít usually air-down, so it will do for now.

A cheap pump will disappoint you just when you need it most.


Sent from my iPhone using Big Bend Chat

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Offline RichardM

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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2018, 08:04:05 PM »
I agree.  I got the Via-air 88P a few years ago. Itís ok but I wish I would have got their next size up.   I donít usually air-down, so it will do for now.

A cheap pump will disappoint you just when you need it most.
I've been tempting fate for a couple of decades now with a $10 compressor from WalMart. Dumb thing just seems to keep working. That said, on Big Bend trips in my Sonata (Camry before that) I toss my bicycle floor pump in the trunk as a backup. Better to take their advice and get a good one.

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Offline presidio

  • Soaptree Yucca
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2018, 12:12:09 AM »
I toss my bicycle floor pump in the trunk as a backup.

I always carry a hand pump even with a compressor.
_____________
<  presidio  >
_____________
Wendell (Garret Dillahunt): It's a mess, ain't it, sheriff?
Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones): If it ain't, it'll do till the mess gets here.
--No Country for Old Men (2007)

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Offline Mesquito

  • Roadrunner
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2018, 03:56:49 AM »
I carry around a cheap 12 volt compressor.  It takes forever to bring my tires back up to street pressure, and grows disturbingly warm while doing so.  As a result, I often donít air down when trail  conditions warrant it, and if I do, Iím really not that good about airing back up when I need to.

My Xmas present to myself is going to be a decent compressor.  One of the ARB models that installs under the hood.

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Offline Slimkitty

  • Coyote
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2018, 06:32:48 AM »
After my last tire debacle in my wifeís crv out at Big Bend I now keep a viair 300p compressor ($125) in it at all times.  It attaches to the car battery with clips exactly like a set of jumper cables.  Itís got plenty of power to air your tires all the way up in a decent amount of time.  It also has a feature that allows you to air down your tires while the device is still attached to the valve, so you can easily hit your preferred psi.  I canít recommend it enough!


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Offline UglyJerry

  • Kangaroo Rat
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2018, 07:53:54 AM »
Be careful with portable air compressors that plug into the cigarette lighter power outlet. I got one and it drew too many amps for the cigarette lighter outlet to handle. I'd blow the fuse and have to pop open the fuse box and replace it every time I'd use it. After I figured out it was causing the the blown fuse problem I switched over to a Viair 88P. It has spring clips that attach to the car battery and that works fine and inflates my standard size Jeep Wrangler tires quick enough for my purposes.

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Offline BlindWilly

  • Overlander
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    • TXpedition Offroad & Overland
Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2018, 12:14:52 PM »
I have the viair 400P.  It is a great compressor at a decent price.
Customer Service is outstanding with these folks, so you know you will be taken care of if you need it. 
I air down and up all the time, so it's a good sturdy unit.  It takes roughly 5 minutes per tire from 16psi up to 35 psi. If you are only going to air down and up once in a blue moon, get the 88P.
https://www.viaircorp.com/portables/400p

https://www.viaircorp.com/portables/88p
"No matter where you go, there you are"
-Buckaroo Bonzai

www.txpedition.com

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Offline Txlj

  • Black Bear
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2018, 01:53:42 AM »
Love my Viair 450C.

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Offline Imre

  • Diamondback
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Re: RFI small portable air compressor
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2018, 12:07:08 PM »
Thanks for the recommendations. I was skeptical of the least expensive units, that usually means its only a matter of time until I buy a much better one. And it had not occurred to me that the power outlet would be inadequate. I'll get one that goes straight to the battery.
Cheers
Imre

For every complex problem there is a solution that is simple, obvious, and wrong.
- H.L. Mencken

 


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