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Silent compressors

    I'm interested in a 1/2 to 3/4 HP silent air compressor with
about a 4 gallon tank running between 84 and 114 PSI with a

Ever since I got one cheap ($50, in pieces which I reassembled) from
an art shop I had been noticing silent compressor models.
Practically all then ones I have come across are basically
refrigerator compressors, given a fancy air tank, a carrying handle,
some plumbing, regulators and a bright paint job.

Mine is rated at 1.38 amp which is around 1/5 hp. It seems unlikely
that “silent/household” fridge motors will go larger than 1/3 hp
although I cannot say for sure. Mine delivers enough pressure to
burst a 175 psi rated PVC tube when I let the pressure build up
without an air bleed connection (hadn’t installed a regulator then).

What shocked me was the price - $650 new - which costs more than
fridge such a compressor would have powered. The same “power
which was what the unit looked like but fitted with a larger tank and
carrying handle was given a different model name and had another $120
added to the price. And there were price variations like that just
for the furniture differences.

I came across a hobby webpage that gave instructions how to convert
an old fridge compressor to make your own silent compressor.
Contractor grade compressors are rated at 175/180 psi and there are
(8 gal?) tire air tanks available from any hardware shop for around
$20 - $30. Otherwise the places to look for compressors are Art and
Drafting Supplies Shops, and dental equipment suppliers. Be prepared
for price sticker shock.

Kelvin Mok

Note From Ganoksin Staff:
Looking for an air compressor for your jewelry projects? We recommend:

Hi Folks,

Look into the purchasing of a used dental chairside compressor.
There must be a zillion of them out there. They are quiet. In days
of yore, dentists used to have a compressor in each operatory.
Especially when the offices were located in office buildings and the
dentist was just starting out. I purchased a McKesson (sp?) (located
in Romeoville, Illinois) from a dental tech friend about 15 years
ago. It has a 6 gallon tank. I run it at 45 lbs.psi. I use it for
an air hose, an air turbine hand piece, a Handy Sandy sandblaster,
and I have used it for an air abrasive unit. It is ideal for the
small studio. For those of you with greater needs, don’t forget your
friendly used dental equipment dealer and also many dental lab supply
houses have lease programs and will have used equipment.



Skip Meister
Orchid Jewelry Listserve Member

A good source for “silent” air compressors is Dixie Art Supplies:

These are basically the same as a dental lab machine - refrigeration
compressor based. They are very quiet and work well but do cost more
than the Home Depot type machines. Free freight, fast service, jesse

Note From Ganoksin Staff:
Looking for an air compressor for your jewelry projects? We recommend: