Compressor and impact wrench

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  #1  
Old 04-25-17, 07:58 AM
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Compressor and impact wrench

I have purchased a compressor from Tractor supply a few years ago, its like this one: https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/pr...r?cm_vc=-10005

I have an impact wrench to make jobs easier, but it doesn't seem like it has any power to do anything.

I am wondering if my compressor is just too weak, bad impact wrench, basically looking for advice to see where its going wrong.

I do have the pressure setup as high as it will go, 125psi.

I am using 3/8" hose. 100ft so I can leave compressor in basement and run hose out.

Thank you in advance,

Steve
 
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Old 04-25-17, 08:19 AM
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Problem with compressors like yours(mine also) is they don't hold enough air for a useful run. Air guns use a lot of air. I have a Ingersol 1/2 gun I used as a wrench turner for many years but will not work well at home. I can rotate tires if I take time to wait on compressor.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 08:42 AM
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Combination of three things.

Too little CFM (cubic feet per minute) from the compressor, too long a hose, too small a hose.

That compressor is rated at 4cmf, impact wrenches need 8-10 cfm to work well.
Good news, you CAN get high cfm from a small compressor, that's why there's a tank,
to accumulate air. But to do that, you need a big, short hose.
You're not going to get good flow through a 3/8 hose.

The work around is an accumulator tank.
That's a ~5 gallon air tank with a 1/2" whip hose (say 3' long at at most)
AND a ball valve and quick coupling to connect to the 3/8 hose and compressor.

A 5 gallon tank at ~120 psi holds 40 gallons of air at ~120psi.
The short 1/"2 hose will give you the 10 cfm you need to run an impact wrench
at full power for about eh, 1 minute.
At full power, you shouldn't need more than a few seconds with an impact wrench.
Then you'll have to wait for the tank to refill.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 08:43 AM
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Back when I used a 1hp, 11 gallon compressor with my impact it did fine. Is there an adjustment knob on your impact? Do you know what the specs are for your impact? Some have less torque than others. How soon is the compressor cycling?
 
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Old 04-25-17, 08:56 AM
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Ok, I understand what you are saying, I have a 26Gallon tank on it, if I were to get a 1/2" 25' hose, would that work, or does it not accomplish the same thing?

Do you know if I could replace the compressor that sits on the tank in the future to make things work better?
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:06 AM
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Does your impact work well on the first lug/bolt?

IMO when it comes time to replace you'd be better off with a bigger tank, bigger motor and a belt driven pump.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:07 AM
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Impact gun could be issue, my kids bought me an inexpensive Craftsman gun and even with my big 60 garage compressor it cant even take off a lug nut!

A good tool will be much more efficient!
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:18 AM
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No, can't usually even get off first lug nut. going to look up specs on gun when I get home. Need to rotate tires and change shocks so hoping to save my arms some.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:25 AM
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Sounds like it's the gun. Try using it with less air line [closer to the compressor] to see if it works any better.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:31 AM
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3/8" or 1/2" hose?

Thank you,

Steve
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:34 AM
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1/2" is always better but the main thing is seeing how it does with a shorter hose. You loose pressure and cfm the further you get away from the compressor. Bigger hose/line helps to lessen the effect.
Is this impact gun new? has it worked well before?
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:38 AM
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I purchased it a few years ago when I got compressor, works same now as it did then, like you mentioned, think I will invest in shorter 1/2" hose and inspect gun for torque ratings to begin with.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:42 AM
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Should I change the nipples on the gun and tank as well? I think they are 1/4"

Quick lookup makes it looks like 1/4" is standard?
 
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Old 04-25-17, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by shathaway
Should I change the nipples on the gun and tank as well? I think they are 1/4"
Yep change to larger.
1/4" is ok for low-flow-tools, nail guns, air-chucks, small speed wrenches etc.
Go with the larger 3/8" connector and short 1/2" hose whenever you have anything power hungry-
impact wrenches, air drill, pneumatic jack, descaler, grinder, air chisel.

An impact wrench on a 3' section of 1/2" hose is a totally different tool than the same wrench after 100' of 3/8" hose. For really air hungry tools, I bypass the regulator and run a 3' whip directly from a quick connect at the tank.

As an aside, I found that mounting the pressure regulator via quick connects gives much more flexibility. I can run high pressure air from the compressor to a 5 gal accumulator tank at the end hose, then click in the pressure regulator at the very end -
Which means usable air flow and pressure even at the end of 200' of 3/8 hose.
 

Last edited by Hal_S; 04-25-17 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 04-27-17, 03:33 AM
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Check at or around the trigger for the gun, there should be a knob you can turn to increase/decrease the speed. The more I think about, the more I think that knob is turned to slow. If that isn't the issue it has to be a defective gun or insufficient air supply.
 
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Old 04-27-17, 06:43 AM
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Impact Wrench

Make sure wrench is set to "lefty loosey" rather than "righty tighty".
 
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Old 04-27-17, 07:36 PM
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Before you do anything else a short experiment is in order. Buy a 1/4 inch pipe tee, a 1/4 inch by 4 inch pipe nipple and a pressure gauge that measures about 150 psi maximum. Remove the quick connect stud from the wrench and screw it into one end of the tee. Screw the nipple into the opposite end of the tee and then screw this assembly to the wrench. Finally, screw the pressure gauge to the side port of the tee.

Connect your air hose and let the wrench run without load while noting the pressure at the wrench. Then do the same while attempting to remove a lug nut. If the pressure drops below 90 psi under either test, as I suspect it will, you have an air delivery problem. Most pneumatic tools are designed to work on 90 psi AT THE TOOL and increasing the air pressure beyond this will rarely do anything but waste air and cause significant wear in the tool.

It should NOT be necessary to replace a SINGLE 1/4 inch quick coupler (at the tool only) with anything larger for any home-shop pneumatic tool. Only tools with larger than 1/4 inch tappings require a larger quick coupler. However, having multiple lengths of hose all connected with quick couplers and/or also using one on the beginning of the hose WILL contribute to excessive pressure drop and reduced flow. Using a 1/2 inch hose should help significantly but you do NOT need to connect the 1/2 inch directly to the tool. Using a short "whip" hose of 4 to 8 feet between the tool and the larger supply hose is acceptable.

Also, be sure to lubricate the tool according to the manufacturer's instructions. If no instructions then use ten drops of AIR TOOL oil directly into the air inlet prior to using the tool for that day. If you use it pretty regularly throughout the day add another ten drops after four hours of use. DO NOT USE WD-40 UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES AS IT WILL SEVERELY DAMAGE THE TOOL!

Air tool oil is available at most of the big box mega-mart homecenters as well as Harbor Freight Tools.
 
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Old 04-28-17, 04:28 AM
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If no instructions then use ten drops of AIR TOOL oil directly into the air inlet prior to using the tool for that day
Isn't that overkill?? I've always used 3-4 drops on all my pneumatic tools and haven't had any issues. I have used 3in1 oil when tool oil wasn't available. My impact gun is over 30 yrs old and still works as good as it did when new. Furd, I'm not doubting your expertise - just wanting to understand better.
 
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Old 04-28-17, 12:05 PM
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Ten drops overkill? Perhaps, but oil is cheap, especially compared to tool repair or replacement. As I recall the rule is to have a very fine mist of oil at the exhaust port after having used the tool a few minutes. No actual droplets of oil but just enough to make a stain on a rag wiped across the exhaust.

The 3in1 oil is probably okay, what you do not want to use is an automotive engine oil that is loaded up with additives. Steam turbine oil (MilSpec 2190T) would be ideal but probably fairly hard for the average person to locate.

I use ten drops at the beginning of my work period and IF I use the tool fairly continuously for several hours I will add another five drops. That doesn't happen very often these days. I have a heavy-duty industrial needle scaler that has a price in the mid $300 range that I use when welding. The needles are pretty much covered in oil so I probably am over-oiling the tool but I don't EVER want to have to replace it.
 
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