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Air Venturi compressor review (ongoing)

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  • #22628
    genet
    Participant

    My Air Venturi compressor landed today. I intend to make this thread an ongoing review, so I’ll start with my initial impressions and follow up with my continuing experience as the occasion warrants.
    First, I have pics – looks like I need an external host – any suggestions for hosts that play well with this board?

    I should note that I am strictly a user of compressors and bring no in-depth knowledge or background to the table. Other than my ‘standard’ (135psi) air compressor, I have no previous compressor experience, so I can’t comment on how this compares to any other 4500psi compressors nor would I likely notice any missing or under-designed desirable components and features. (I’m happy to become educated – just letting you know where this review is coming from.) I’d be happy to inspect things not requiring disassembly as requested if you have specific questions.

    That said, I have a full shop, I know what quality casting, machining, and fabrication look like, and I am familiar with many of the cost tradeoffs made in import equipment.

    The compressor came adequately packed in a stout cardboard (emphasis on the “board”) box/crate. It appears that it should withstand all but the most careless handling. The box walls were further lined, on all six sides with ~3/4″ closed-cell foam. Everything showed up intact (though I was not so certain at first – read on).

    First impressions, it appears very well manufactured and “produced” – it doesn’t look like a home job or a prototype at all. It’s a rather handsome machine. The crate contained the compressor, a parts bag, and a manual.

    Upon closer inspection, I was alarmed (perhaps because I know little about HP compressors) to see that the pressure gauge appeared to have either been injected with oil, or been filled with oil and leaked some. (pic, once I know how to post one). My heart sank and I envisioned the hassle of sending ~70 lbs back and all the hassle and wait that might entail. Fortunately, as I read the manual I found the picture inside to look pretty much the same, so apparently this is ‘normal’ – at least for this machine. That’s the one part of the tool that doesn’t look first-rate.

    I have not powered it up yet, as I don’t have everything ready. For those ordering one, have the following on hand for quickest startup:
    1. 5W40 or Compressor oil
    2. 1.25 gallons distilled water
    3. Silicone grease
    4. (optional, but I think a good idea) an electric use hour meter. I ordered this one: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01G58R6QG )

    The parts bag came with all kinds of goodies, only a few of which are mentioned in the manual: a few parts to complete assembly (oil breather cap, pressure relief valve knob, allen wrench etc), a few parts for general use (m-m and m-thread air adapters) and a lot of rebuild and replacement parts (o-rings, gaskets, burst disks, air filter, washers, pin wrench). That’s great to see, but the manual doesn’t say a lick about how to replace any of them (except the air filter) – that appears to be left as an exercise for the reader…

    The connection whip is nice – much nicer than the photo in the other thread about this compressor. It works smoothly (better than the fill yoke on my tank…) and looks nice. If it holds air (TBD) then it’s better than my others. (I probably wouldn’t have even commented on this except for the crappy looking one in the other thread). (pic once I know how to post one)

    Tomorrow after I can get some oil and more distilled water (I only had a gallon on hand) I’ll fire it up…

    To be continued…

    GsT

    ETA: images

    #269356
    genet
    Participant

    Some pics here: http://imgur.com/a/wndf7.

    GsT

    #269388
    genet
    Participant

    So, I performed the 10 minute “run-in” of the compressor today.

    To begin with, you remove two panels in order to access the oil fill port and the coolant (water) tank. The panels had nice gaskets on all contact surfaces to keep vibratory noise down. The “carbon fiber” look appears to be a “hydro dip” as you can see where the film (think ‘decal’) wrapped around the edges.

    The water tank was described as taking 5 quarts (1.25 gallons) of water, but actually took a bit less. The oil was described as taking 1/3 quart (~10.67 oz) but took close to 16 oz. I filled a bit and waited a bit to see if it took time for the oil to settle to the sight glass – the wait was inconsequential, the sight glass appearing to register pretty much immediately the correct fill level.

    Once filled with fluids, and capped, as instructed, I turned on the coolant circuit and watched the water begin to circulate in the tubes. The air was flushed out very quickly, except for some small bubbles and a few taps on the hose and those cleared as well. Once the hoses were purged, I switched on the compressor. At the start of the run in, the temp was 16.1*C.

    The compressor is medium noisy. It’s more quiet than a lawnmower, and you don’t need hearing protection, but if you actually tried to have a conversation in front of it, you’d end up speaking quite a bit louder than normal. You certainly won’t forget that it’s running if you’re in the same room. During the run-in there’s the additional hiss of air escaping the hose – a thumb over (or even near) the opening eliminates the hissing and makes the noise much less objectionable.

    Every few minutes (per the instructions) I opened the vent valve to allow “air and oil” to discharge – pictures of the “napkin” in the photo gallery linked.

    After 10 minutes, the temperature was 30.5*C. That completes the run-in. No odd problems or anything yet…

    I’ll try to keep this a running list:

    PROs:
    * Well packed.
    * Looks great.
    * Appears to be quality.
    * Electrical components properly mounted and secured.
    * Clear instructions.
    * Rebuild kit included.

    CONs:
    * No instructions for use of rebuild kit.
    * Top-mounted power-entry module (plug in).
    * Should have hour meter, since maintenance is spec’d in hours…

    Refer to pics:
    http://imgur.com/a/OWhsE

    #269525
    genet
    Participant

    Sorry for the delay in following up. I ran a fill on my 80cf scuba tank today going from 2400 psi to 3000 psi. The fill took ~11 minutes and the temperature (per the meter) reached 56*C (I added “Water Wetter” to the tank – 5 oz – 1/qt). Given Guyko’s advice elsewhere, I ran the compressor for a few minutes afterward, bleeding occasionally, to flush water and oil out of the system.

    The adapters provided with the compressor did not fit an Air Venturi “whip” that I had, but did fit the tank yoke directly, or I would not have been able to fill. Just a note, and a minor disappointment as all products are Air Venturi.

    I’ve determined that the compressor is loud enough that I prefer to wear hearing protection while operating it. No big deal for me, but you should probably take any claims about it being ‘quiet’ with a grain of salt. It’s still not as loud as my shop compressor, but that doesn’t mean you really want to listen to it…

    That’s it for my basic review. I will follow up here if, and when, there are issues, or just to discuss the inevitable rebuild etc. (i.e. I will not be following up every time I fill, assuming it is uneventful). If you have specific questions or concerns feel free to ask and I will answer as best I can.)

    Also, no one has responded to this thread – that means that everyone is anxiously watching, or no one gives a rat’s patoot. Let me know if this is of value to you (I’m a big boy, you don’t need to tell me I’m doing great work, but I’d rather not waste the time if no one cares).

    Cheers!

    GsT

    #269528
    anomad
    Participant

    I use imgur too. When using it view the image you wish to choose for your post and select the BB Code link from the right hand side menu.

    Good luck with your compressor and happy shooting.

    quote GeneT:

    My Air Venturi compressor landed today. I intend to make this thread an ongoing review, so I’ll start with my initial impressions and follow up with my continuing experience as the occasion warrants.
    First, I have pics – looks like I need an external host – any suggestions for hosts that play well with this board?

    I should note that I am strictly a user of compressors and bring no in-depth knowledge or background to the table. Other than my ‘standard’ (135psi) air compressor, I have no previous compressor experience, so I can’t comment on how this compares to any other 4500psi compressors nor would I likely notice any missing or under-designed desirable components and features. (I’m happy to become educated – just letting you know where this review is coming from.) I’d be happy to inspect things not requiring disassembly as requested if you have specific questions.

    That said, I have a full shop, I know what quality casting, machining, and fabrication look like, and I am familiar with many of the cost tradeoffs made in import equipment.

    The compressor came adequately packed in a stout cardboard (emphasis on the “board”) box/crate. It appears that it should withstand all but the most careless handling. The box walls were further lined, on all six sides with ~3/4″ closed-cell foam. Everything showed up intact (though I was not so certain at first – read on).

    First impressions, it appears very well manufactured and “produced” – it doesn’t look like a home job or a prototype at all. It’s a rather handsome machine. The crate contained the compressor, a parts bag, and a manual.

    Upon closer inspection, I was alarmed (perhaps because I know little about HP compressors) to see that the pressure gauge appeared to have either been injected with oil, or been filled with oil and leaked some. (pic, once I know how to post one). My heart sank and I envisioned the hassle of sending ~70 lbs back and all the hassle and wait that might entail. Fortunately, as I read the manual I found the picture inside to look pretty much the same, so apparently this is ‘normal’ – at least for this machine. That’s the one part of the tool that doesn’t look first-rate.

    I have not powered it up yet, as I don’t have everything ready. For those ordering one, have the following on hand for quickest startup:
    1. 5W40 or Compressor oil
    2. 1.25 gallons distilled water
    3. Silicone grease
    4. (optional, but I think a good idea) an electric use hour meter. I ordered this one: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01G58R6QG )

    The parts bag came with all kinds of goodies, only a few of which are mentioned in the manual: a few parts to complete assembly (oil breather cap, pressure relief valve knob, allen wrench etc), a few parts for general use (m-m and m-thread air adapters) and a lot of rebuild and replacement parts (o-rings, gaskets, burst disks, air filter, washers, pin wrench). That’s great to see, but the manual doesn’t say a lick about how to replace any of them (except the air filter) – that appears to be left as an exercise for the reader…

    The connection whip is nice – much nicer than the photo in the other thread about this compressor. It works smoothly (better than the fill yoke on my tank…) and looks nice. If it holds air (TBD) then it’s better than my others. (I probably wouldn’t have even commented on this except for the crappy looking one in the other thread). (pic once I know how to post one)

    Tomorrow after I can get some oil and more distilled water (I only had a gallon on hand) I’ll fire it up…

    To be continued…

    GsT

    ETA: images

    #269542
    dwarthog
    Participant

    I’m following with interest here. Thanks for taking the time to let us know how this new compressor is performing.

    Being among the 1st to give this new compressor a shot isn’t being ignored as no doubt there are more than a few interested folks waiting and watching to see if this new compressor is the answer they’ve been looking for in a reasonably priced air solution.

    #269598
    mjp
    Participant

    I’m a regular compressor nut, everyone of these compressor threds are interesting and are followed even if I dont intend to buy one.
    Great review so far. What I’m interested is the long term usage how will it cope with that.

    Marko

    #269731
    jman2311
    Participant

    Why are you using motor oil as opposed to a proper compressor oil? I highly recommend at least a synthetic iso vg 68, preferably an iso vg 150.

    #269739
    genet
    Participant

    I’m using compressor oil.
    The manual says 5W40 _or_ compressor oil.

    No real update – still at low hours, no new findings.

    GsT

    #269769
    jman2311
    Participant

    I see now the “or” that I guess I missed. Glad you like it. I hope you still like it 6 months from now. I am still considering other compressor options. Altaros is at the top of my list but the AV and Omega are catching my eye as well.

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