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Old 02-05-2010, 10:25 AM   #1
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Air compressor question


I am looking at a Framing nailer, along with some finishing nailers. The framing nailer specs show that it needs 4.1 CFM @ 90 psi.

I am looking at a Kobalt 5.5 gallon compressor at Lowe's. It is more than adequate for the finishing nailers but it shows 3.8 CFM @ 90 psi. Will this be adequate for the framing nailer, what results can I expect? This is my first foray into air tools and I am not sure of the tolerances and how specific the CFM number is.

I will be using this for my own projects and possibly to help out a friend now and then. I will be using the framing nailer to stiffen my floors and then will also be installing a hardwood floor. Will this compressor handle a pneumatic stapler/nailer when flooring time comes?

Thanks in advance

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Old 02-05-2010, 11:46 AM   #2
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Air compressor question


The SCFM rating is the volume of air your compressor can maintain at 90 psi. Your nailer rating is higher than the tank, so the tank will run out of air volume and you will have to wait for the compressor to catch up.

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Old 02-05-2010, 11:56 AM   #3
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It will work fine for single nail shots, but if you speed nail, the waiting time will kick in.
I have a 100 pound propane tank with a 'T' installed that is used as a reservoir for air when I have too large of a demand.
Running a single nailer off that compressor will work if you don't break a sweat nailing.
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:02 PM   #4
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Air compressor question


The nailer shows me 4.1 SCFM @ 90 psi for 16 nails per minute. I will not be using this for speed nailing, more for confined areas under my house where I will need the other hand for something other than holding nails. If it is just a question of waiting for a recharge, I am fine with that. But, if it does not drive the nails all the way in, that would bum me out. It says that it has a 70 psi minimum working pressure. I want a portable compressor as the rest of the tools need much less pressure. I don't want to get a monster just for the occasion that I use the framing nailer.

What is the difference between SCFM and CFM? I can't seem to get a good answer.

Thanks, first post here and you guys Rock already!
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Bamzxz View Post
The nailer shows me 4.1 SCFM @ 90 psi for 16 nails per minute. I will not be using this for speed nailing, more for confined areas under my house where I will need the other hand for something other than holding nails. If it is just a question of waiting for a recharge, I am fine with that. But, if it does not drive the nails all the way in, that would bum me out. It says that it has a 70 psi minimum working pressure. I want a portable compressor as the rest of the tools need much less pressure. I don't want to get a monster just for the occasion that I use the framing nailer.

What is the difference between SCFM and CFM? I can't seem to get a good answer.

Thanks, first post here and you guys Rock already!
Air nailers do not require a constant supply of air, unlike other pneumatic tools. The compressor will supply enough air to operate the nailer properly. It will not be able to keep up with production work.

SCFM (Standard Cubic Feet Per Minute) and CFM (Cubic Feet Per Minute) are interchangeable for air compressors.

For a framing gun get a full head nailer and check into the combo deals for a compressor and nailers, their prices are hard to beat.
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:37 PM   #6
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47__47 - Thanks. I have looked for combos with the compressors but they are all with finish or brad nailers. I have the Iron Force 4-pack from Lowes. Good deal, good reviews, lots of options. Just looking for a good compressor.

Tell Lancaster NY that I said "Hi", if you are in the Southtowns. That is where I grew up, living in NC now. GO BILLS!
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:45 PM   #7
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Bamzxz,

I have a freind who used to live in Depew, but now lives in Waynesboro, NC. It seems like the smart ones are leaving the area.

Good luck with your projects.

Mike
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Old 02-10-2010, 11:06 PM   #8
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I just bought a Porter Cable set from Home Depot for about $250-$275. Came with compressor, brad nailer, staple gun, and finish nailer - great deal! I bought the Porter Cable framing nailer separate for $199. Check it out.
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Old 02-11-2010, 09:48 AM   #9
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Thanks all for the posts. I picked up a 2HP, 8 gallon, Central Pneumatic compressor (5 SCFM @90 psi) from Harbor Freight for $99. Added hoses and accessories, an impact wrench, and 2000 framing nails for the nailer for under $200.

So I have a framing nailer, finish nailer, brad nailer, stapler, and compressor for just over $400.

Thanks for all of your help, I am ready to get to work, if it ever warms up
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Old 02-11-2010, 04:10 PM   #10
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Air compressor question


FWIW, SCFM (standard cubic feet per minute), means that the manufacturer has rated his compressor against a known standard for air density/pressure. For example, a cubic foot of warm dry air in the high desert has a much lower density than a cubic foot of cold damp air at sea level. A compressor operating in the desert will have a lower CFM rating than the same compressor operating at the sea level location. A reputable manufacturer will use the SCFM rating rather than just "CFM".
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Old 04-15-2010, 09:59 PM   #11
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I saw that porter cable combo set today. For an extra 100 they throw in a 16 and 18ga aniler and a stapler. It looks like a good deal. I wonder how the perform.
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Old 04-16-2010, 07:32 AM   #12
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The Porter Cable compressors are LOUD--Hu? What?---Could you put that thing out side loud--

They work all right --I like their guns --I insist on using my own compressor if I see a PC noise maker on a job.--Mike--
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Old 04-16-2010, 09:05 AM   #13
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Are they loud because they are oil free, or are they loud compared to other oil free models. What are the advantages to oil free, are they just less maintenence. I'm may be interested in getting a palm nailer but I dont think the 6-gallon PC is up to the task.
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Old 04-17-2010, 08:50 AM   #14
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I've used--and worn out--four Campbell Hausfield oil less compressors--All were tolerably quiet and gave long service, $70.00 worth of parts and they would be as good as new.

I have no idea why the Porter units are so loud---Maybe it just costs more to make a quieter unit.

Oiled units have a longer life--if you change the oil and don't tip them over and lose the oil.

I have a big compressor in my shop that is over 25 years old--it is an oil bath.

I have two portable oil bath compressors that I use as back-up compressors for work.

The reason I don't like the oil baths for work---It gets cold around here ---they won't work when they are frozen--oil to thick for the motors.

Some times the compressors get tipped over ---I don't like to worry about the oil level--no oil,dead compressor.

For a homeowner who can control how the tool is handled --an oil bath is a fine choice--
As long as you keep it warm.--They do have a longer life.

For me--with different people using the compressor--and living in a truck--I will gladly take the oil-less.


-----Mike---
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Old 04-17-2010, 06:58 PM   #15
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Thanks for the insight Mike. A small oiless will probably serve my needs. If I have one I will find more uses for it. It is definately getting very time consuming to get home renovations done without air tools.

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