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97ssz71 03-07-2013 07:16 PM

compressor moisture help
I have a gas powered air compressor and would like to use it to paint my car, i like and use this compressor because it is portable and recovers super fast, but i do get alot of moisture, which dryer would be the best to use so i get no moisture in my primer and paint. i have read some posts but most pertain to hard piping installed in shops and this doesn't really apply to me. below is the link to my compressor

Hitachi EC2510E 5.5 HP Gas Engine Powered Air Compressor (Reconditioned)

69 widetrack 03-07-2013 07:31 PM

By the looks of the compressor, you don't have a large enough holding tank to paint a many CFM are they advertising when the compressor is running. The reason you may be getting moisture is because the holding tanks are so small that the compressor is constantly running and developing heat...the heat when cooling will cause the moisture to condense and turning into water. If you paint your car with that compressor, I don't know of any desiccant dryer that would keep up with removing the moisture, let alone the compressor keeping up with the air supply needed to paint.


mitmaks 03-07-2013 07:36 PM

Width 18.1"
CFM @ 100PSI 9
PSI Range 116-145
Control Panel Baseplate
Regulator Size 3/8"
Oil Level Sight Glass Oversized
Oil Level Indicator Sight Glass
Crankcase Breather Metal
Engine Throttle Control Pneumatic
Actual Weight 144 lbs
Length 42.1"
Height 24.4"

That is not large enough compressor to paint car, you might do a panel and that's about it. I have water trap after 50ft of hose and then another dissicant filter right at the gun.

97ssz71 03-07-2013 07:58 PM

What if i was to add a 10 gallon reserve tank, i have an old 10 gallon that the motor quit working on, I really need to make this work as buying another compressor isn't in the budget

69 widetrack 03-07-2013 08:11 PM

I'm sorry to bearer of bad news but 10 gallons added on is not going to give you enough holding capacity to paint a car, the smallest amount of holding capacity for painting a car is around 60 gallons (and I think that's pushing it, the minimum I prefer is 80 gallons)...The advertised CFM out put is 9 CFM...your average paint gun will take 1 1/2 times that much CFM or, in short...your compressor won't produce enough CFM to keep up with a paint gun let alone the storage capacity required so your compressor isn't running the whole time your painting.


DanielC 03-08-2013 03:36 AM

I have painted panels with this air compressor,
It is only a three HP compressor.
It dumps into this tank.
And I use this gun.

The compressor has a 20 gallon tank, and so is the red tank. What I do is run the second tank at about 40 psi, using the regulator on the compressor.
What happens is when the air expands, going through the regulator, it cools some, and its volume increases. Remember, your HVLP gun does not need high presssure. While painting, my compressor does cycle on, and off.

I live in Oregon. We do not have the humidity you have in Florida. My tanks are bigger.

You might try try setting up a system similar to mine, and see what happens if you just spray air, without paint in your gun. Spend a half hour, just spraying air, and see if you get any water condensing at your gun.
However, that is no guarantee you will not get water spots. The solvent in the paint evaporating just after it leaves the gun tip does cool the air some more, and condensation could happen then.

97ssz71 03-08-2013 04:32 AM

Thanks for the ideas, Daniel your setup gives me some ideas and the pictures were great thanks. I will try just spraying air thru the gun and see what happens probably this weekend. Thanks again :D

Old Fool 03-08-2013 05:28 AM

Big misunderstanding is tank size, IF the compressor can not make more air than the device attached to the end of the hose uses the compressor will run continuously. Only thing a second tank will do is act as an air receiver and let the air slow down in that area, less velocity will give the air a few more moments to let moisture drop out.

Best advice I can give you is to get a spray gun that uses less air than most.
2nd: make a portable cooler for your "system". Buy a coil of 1/2" copper and pull it out like a slinky. Make its overall end to end dimension just less than a 55 gallon drum.
Connect your air compressor to the copper tubing at the top of the plastic drum.
Run the other end of the tubing thru a bulkhead fitting at the bottom of the drum. After the bulkhead fitting install a tee, put the bullhead of the tee on the line coming from the bulkhead and put the tee in a vertical position. run a float type drain off the bottom of the tee, and run your air hose up at least as high as the rim of the barrel. Fill the barrel with water, allow a small flow of water to overflow if your water isn't nice and cold .

Chevymon 03-08-2013 10:26 AM

Thats a good solution Old Fool for an inexpension fix, but I would still suggest an air dryer to get some of the moisture that didn't condense.

69 widetrack 03-08-2013 10:36 AM

To make a long story short...the OP wants to paint his whole car. The compressor he has puts out an advertised 9 CFM (under optimum conditions. The average spray gun will take between 12 and 14 CFM. He has a max of 15 gallon holding capacity. Even if he could spray panels, a complete with the set up he has or any other setup will result in failure due to overheating the compressor head and moisture will come into play. Small items, the odd panel, not a problem, but his complete

Remember, he asked about how to get rid of it must be a problem today...the problems will only get bigger the larger the area is that he is attempting to paint. As I mentioned, I don't know of a dryer out there (within $ Value) that can remove the moisture he's experiencing. The copper line/Still method will remove a good deal of moisture however, would I want to spend all that money on material and have it go to waste because 1/2 way through the job the compressor spits out water?


swvalcon 03-08-2013 10:59 AM

Part of your problem is all that rubber hose. Gives to many places for water to build up then come out in one big shot. Try to plum it into some steel or copper line. If you have and old drive shaft and are a good welder. Mount it up right, put a petcock in the bottom, put a fitting about half way up for air in,then a fitting at the top for air out. Put your water traps on the air out side. I like the water filter that takes a paper roll just before my hose to the gun.

timothale 03-08-2013 11:43 AM

kitty litter
somewhere on the net I read about making a desicant dryer out of an old obsolete 5 gallon propane tank and filling it with kitty litter. I did about $ 100 damage to my plasma cutter tips when moisture hit the hot tips. I have welded one up but haven't put everything together, I plan on first manually draining my 50 gallon air tank. It does also have an auto drain but just to be sure I manually check it first. then run air thru the kitty litter, then thru a motor guard filter then a clear plastic water trap that changes color when loaded with moisture then to the paint filter regulater combo. I have all the parts now, just have to build a roll around cart with all the pieces mounted.

timothale 03-08-2013 12:00 PM

do a search here on Hotrodders for posts by 50bowTie, there is some info about his propane tank- kitty litter dryer.

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