Air Compressor Options?

RickLB

Adventurist
#1
Looking to buy a compressor for my truck that has 35s on it. Is it best to have it vehicle mounted or portable? Looking at this one right now, ARB High performance portable single compressor.

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#3
I have Viair 400P portable, it's capable to inflate tires up to a 35" tire. Never had any issues with it, always served me.
31″ X 10.5″ FILL RATE 0 to 30 PSI3 min. 00 sec. (± 10 sec.)15 to 30 PSI1 min. 35 sec. (± 05 sec.)
33″ X 12.5″ FILL RATE 0 to 30 PSI4 min. 20 sec. (± 10 sec.)15 to 30 PSI2 min. 05 sec. (± 05 sec.)
35″ X 12.5″ FILL RATE 0 to 30 PSI5 min. 20 sec. (± 15 sec.)15 to 30 PSI2 min. 45 sec. (± 05 sec.)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9QbJPhj9Tw
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#5
I have a vair installed on the frame rail under the driver side. It's rated at 200 psi, 100% duty cycle at 100 psi though, I have a 120psi pressure switch so it never sees the max pressure. Fills my tires fast (315/70/17"s). I have a nice 20' polyurethane air hose, nice and flexible.
 

Dean

Adventurist
Founding Member
#6
I ran the ViAir "Ultra Duty" OBA system on my LJ for about three years. It was great. 200 psi and had a 2.5 gallon tank. It could run air tools if I wanted. The only downside was it was (relatively) slow compared to some other compressors on the market.

I now have an ARB Max Performance Portable Air Supply. It's a lower air-pressure than the ViAir system, but it's twice the CFM. It's wicked fast. That's basically the trade-off, either you get high psi or high cfm, rarely both (in the safe form factor at least).

As far as OBA vs. Portable, I've run both and both have their advantages and disadvantages. This year with the LJ being off-line it's been nice having the portable system because I can throw it in whatever vehicle I'm driving at the time. Where as if I was sticking to OBA I would be without air all year.

I've use the ViAir portable compressors and they're good. Same with ARB. Both companies make quality compressors. Just make sure you pay attention to the duty cycles. I highly highly highly recommend investing in one that is 100% duty cycle. You'll pay a little more, but they will last longer and be more reliable than something that is 50% or 33% duty cycle. Compressors, like all electrical devices, don't like to be overworked passed their duty cycle rating, so for me buy-once/cry-once and get the 100% duty cycle (same goes for OBA; not all OBA systems are 100% dity cycle).
 

java230

Adventurist
#7
I have a puma, with 1.5 gallon tank installed in my big truck. Tank helps with the first tire, but not much really.

125 PSI
oil-Less compressor
Pressure Switch
Compact, lightweight 28 lbs
3.4 cfm @ 40 psi
3 cfm @ 90 psi
100% Duty Cycle
30 amp draw

Draws more amps than quoted, but works well. Still takes forever with 35" tires at 70psi...
 

Jonathan Hanson

Adventurist
Founding Member
#8
With 35s the ARB single, i.e. the "High Output" model—a very fine unit—will be pretty slow. If you can possibly afford it I guarantee you won't be sorry splurging on the Twin. As Dean mentioned, it is wicked fast, literally twice as fast as the High-Output model as it is essentially two of them with a cooling fan. I wrote an in-depth review here.
 
#9
I have been running the Viair 450C 100% duty cycle, mounted in my bed. Works great for up to 33' tires. I purchased 25' of Goodyear air hose and refill clients tires all lined up in a conga line.

That being said both my business partners have stepped up to the ARB twin compressor and it is by far a better tool for the job especially when filling up 40 tires on clients vehicles.

I am in the process of selling my current rig and will be installing the ARB twin compressor in the new build.
 
#10
I used a Viair (Branded as Bushranger overseas, but I think they are the same product) for several years in Dubai. IT was a reliable as an anvil. I later "upgraded" to an ARB twin because I was jealous of the one in my wife's Jeep. The ARB was a lot faster, and almost as reliable. (problems in the desert with filters and current draw, but it never stopped.) Both will serve you well, but get the best you can afford. Nobody ever complained that their compressor was too fast. I would happily buy the ARB twin again.

I am tempted by the Extremeair Magnum, but I have never met anybody who owns one.
 

armyRN

Adventurist
#13
I've got the Air Armor M240. It comes in an ammo can (and everything fits inside), so it is easily transportable. Not expensive (link says $130), and it works. Might not be the world's fastest or slowest, but at the end of the day when folks are airing back up, I've never been told "times-up". It clips to your battery, and has a plenty long power cord and hose (hose reaches all four tires). I've been pleased with it. This picture is me airing back up after a snow run.

https://masterflowair.com/products/air-armor-m240

Ammo can air.jpg

I'm sure the portable ARB Twin would be nice, and would fill all four of my Jeep's tires a few minutes quicker overall compared to my Air Armor. And if someone wanted to give me one I'd happily accept it. However, with the price difference ($130 for the Air Armor vs. $870 for the portable ARB Twin - that's almost the cost of a 12-volt electric fridge) I'm willing to spend a few extra minutes airing-up. And I've never been the last one to air-up at the end of the day.

ARB portable compressors
 

Dave

Adventurist
Founder
Senior Staff
Editor
#15
I've had a few compressors over the years. The old school "MV50" back in the day was fine, I've also had a Viair 400-something that was Ok as well. These days I'm a big fan of the ARB dual compressor (CKMTA12).

I have the ARB dual compressor mounted under the passenger seat in my Jeep JL with the Innovative JK Products mount. Coil hose lives under the seat as well and reaches all 4 tires with ease. Compressor is wired to use the OEM Jeep Aux switch #4.

Clean install and keeps the compressor high and dry in a previously unused space, and takes mere seconds to deploy or stow.

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armyRN

Adventurist
#16
In the ammo can... seems like heat may be an issue?
It does get warm (don't they all?). I leave the lid open when in use of course, and don't pack everything away until it has cooled down some. Usually it is like 2-3 minutes to air up a tire, turn it off while I move the hose to the next tire, turn it on for 2-3 minutes to air up the next tire, turn it off while I move to the next tire.... Heat has not been an issue. It isn't designed to be run nonstop. I just use it to air up my 33" tires from about 15 psi back to about 28 psi. It isn't a race.

If I were selling my stuff and embarking on a trip measured in months or years then I'd get the ARB twin, MaxTrax boards, high-end fridge, etc. But since I'm at best a weekend-overlander (1 - 2 weeks generally max), then it is the Air Armor, X-Bull boards, and buying ice for the cooler for me.
 
#17
ArmyRN I actually like the setup! I ride 2 different vehicles and looking for a setup I can carry in either... as a backup. I use CO2 but on one longer trip I ran out and had to find a refill. Had buds with me if I had need air but looking for compact backup. Can I get specs?
 
#19
I used a Viair (Branded as Bushranger overseas, but I think they are the same product) for several years in Dubai. IT was a reliable as an anvil. I later "upgraded" to an ARB twin because I was jealous of the one in my wife's Jeep. The ARB was a lot faster, and almost as reliable. (problems in the desert with filters and current draw, but it never stopped.) Both will serve you well, but get the best you can afford. Nobody ever complained that their compressor was too fast. I would happily buy the ARB twin again.

I am tempted by the Extremeair Magnum, but I have never met anybody who owns one.
I've had the Extremeaire Magnum for a couple years now. I got it as the portable unit but have since fabricated some mounting brackets for both my Taco and my 4Runner to place it under the hood. It's pretty large compared to many others and is also pretty heavy, 35 pounds if I remember correctly. The unit is totally sealed against water or dust penetration and can be mounted in any configuration, sideways, upside down, etc. The air filter can be detached and mounted remotely by simply running some tubing to wherever it fits best and will get clean air. The manufacturer says many Aussies mount them "down under" on the frame rails. 100% duty cycle and will run an air gun without a tank with no problem. I'm usually out on the trails alone but on a few occasions when I was out with a group, I'd air up my tires and usually at least 2 on the next vehicle.
 

armyRN

Adventurist
#20
ArmyRN I actually like the setup! I ride 2 different vehicles and looking for a setup I can carry in either... as a backup. I use CO2 but on one longer trip I ran out and had to find a refill. Had buds with me if I had need air but looking for compact backup. Can I get specs?
Here's the website with the specs:

https://masterflowair.com/products/air-armor-m240

  • Voltage: 12
  • Powers From: Powers from your vehicle battery
  • Power Cord: 10 Feet
  • Amperage: 30 amps
  • Output: 3500 Cubic Inches
  • Unit Weight: 18 lbs
  • Hose Length: 25 Feet
  • Run Time: 20 minutes on 40 minutes off
So what's that... 33% duty time?

I used to run CO2 (still have the tank in my Willys) and it is fast, but it only took one time for me to run out of CO2 (got three tires filled before it ran out) before I realized I needed something more dependable. And how did I get the fourth tire filled? Someone bailed me out with a portable 12V compressor.

And I too move this Air Ammo can between vehicles sometimes.

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