A reliable portable air compressor for tire fill (1 Viewer)

Joined
Nov 24, 2014
Messages
5,232
Location
Traffic Land
 
If you don't use it often, as in many off-road outings, the cheap Masterflow/Superflow MF-1050/MV-50 will do the trick.

Why do I say often?
Having 4 35" or 37" tires to go from 16 - 36 will take a while. Maybe 7-8 minutes per tire.
It has a 40 minute duty cycle so you are right at the edge there, depending on the environmental conditions.

It has a great track record, inexpensive, really easy to re-wire (and get more power out of it that way), fits nicely inside a .50 cal ammo can with all the accessories.

There are a lot of options. This forum has gone through almost all of them.
Masterflow has a more powerful model, which larger and more expensive too.
Viair has a few good choices at much higher price points.
Puma is a great one too.
Smittybuilt has a really powerful one (hard to believe the specs) and really inexpensive compared to others in the same category.




 
Joined
Dec 16, 2006
Messages
195
Location
Atlanta
 
 
I used one of these for a couple years in Dubai. Filled 8-16 tires every weekend. The version I used was marketed by Bushranger, but appears to be the same kit.

https://www.amazon.com/Viair-Automa...d=1519482772&sr=1-8&keywords=viair+compressor

ARB also makes a portable version of their single and twin cylinder compressors. I have used both and currently have an ARB twin hardmounted in the cruiser. The ARB twin is faster, but we had to rebuild it a couple times over three years to keep it that way. The Viair single cylinder was not as fast, but it was just as fast after two years of abuse as it was the day we bought it. Anecdotally from talking to other members of the club we were in over there, I would say the Viair is significantly more reliable.
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2008
Messages
327
Location
Asia
 
 
Anecdotally from talking to other members of the club we were in over there, I would say the Viair is significantly more reliable.
That's interesting. Most of the stuff I have read says that the ARB compressor is more popular for extreme usage.

ARB benefits from all of the marketing around their other products, although I do think their compressor is quite good. Viair doesn't do much in the way of marketing- at least to consumers.
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2006
Messages
195
Location
Atlanta
 
 
Ours were probably getting hammered pretty hard for recreational users. We did 1-3 rides almost every weekend for about 4.5 years. Every ride would involve filling at least four and rarely as many as 12 tires from 9psi up to 35 psi in hot, dusty, sandy conditions. My wife and I each had an ARB twin, and both had to be rebuilt. We tried to protect them by mounting them inside the cabin so they were breathing filtered, air-conditioned air instead of hot gritty air in the engine compartment. No problems with the motors, but over time, the ARB's would just not push as much air.

Both also blew the maxi fuses once, but never repeated that problem. The twin unit has two Maxi fuses. One (fuse-A) is in the circuit that controls the unit overall and powers one of the motors, the other (fuse-B) is in a circuit that just powers the second motor. So you can blow fuse A and the unit will keep running, but just fill slower. If you blow fuse-B, you lose everything, but can switch fuses and get back in business. When my wife's blew a fuse it stopped the compressor, and we didn't know enough about it to swap fuses. When mine blew a fuse, it just stopped one side, and the compressor kept going, it just produced less air. I only noticed it because it was taking so long to fill the tire.

We had several friends that had hardmounted and portable versions of the ARB twin compressor. Many of them also had them rebuilt at some point.

Club members probably five times as many of the Bushranger (Viaire?) compressors being run in the same conditions. The only problem I know of is that mine cut out due to heat once and I had to wait for it to cool down. That was on tire number 6 in about 125 deg heat. I can forgive it.

Bottom line, they are both good compressors, and most users probably would not see the problems we did on the ARB's. But under hard use, the ARB's lost performance where the Bushrangers kept on chugging. The ARB twin has some built in redundancy that is somewhat appealing, but the Bushranger never needed it.
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2008
Messages
327
Location
Asia
 
 
We did 1-3 rides almost every weekend for about 4.5 years. Every ride would involve filling at least four and rarely as many as 12 tires from 9psi up to 35 psi in hot, dusty, sandy conditions.
I trust your direct experience. I'll take a closer look at Viair. Their pricing is more reasonable than ARB's for compressors (at least in the US.)
 
Joined
Feb 7, 2013
Messages
1,780
+2 on the Masterflow 1050 for the $$. I've had mine for going on 7 years now. The first 4 saw fairly heavy use. 3 - 4 trips a week in spring/summer/fall.

My air up times are a bit shorter - 18 to 36 a 35" 305/16 in about 4 minutes.

Just put a quick connect on the hose or get another hose, and re-do the wiring with a heavier gauge for a bit more power.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Dec 28, 2010
Messages
883
Location
Moscow, ID
 
I'm really happy with my Puma. It was a little too bulky with the tank, so I converted to a tankless setup last fall, which makes it pretty dang compact. Next step is to hard-mount it in the rear cargo drawers/platform I'm planning to build. Right now I power it with a cannibalized set of jumper cables, but I also have an Anderson connector, so I can just have another matching plug near its 'permanent' home while keeping the jumper cables for things I can't get within air hose range of (but have a 12v battery handy).
 

RFB

97 FZJ80 LIFTED SC DUAL BATTERIES,37s
Joined
Mar 7, 2017
Messages
3,716
Location
Nahant Ma.
viair 3oo P pump works like a champ lights up 37 in mud grapplers from 16 to 35PSI all four in like 7 minutes and they are tough literally drove over mine and it still works.
 
Joined
May 10, 2005
Messages
2,406
Location
Calgary, Alberta
 
 
 
I just got that model.
I've only used it once on the 31s on my van but it worked great.
I got it because of the great reviews.
They recommend it for up to a 33.
Like RFB said, they work on larger tires; it just takes longer to air up than the 400 model.
 
  • Like
Reactions: RFB
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
3,919
Location
Denver, CO
 
 
I recommend the Viair 88P for a good budget friendly compressor, and I gave mine to my bro in law after I upgraded to the Viair 450P. It's still serving him well, and it's been used pretty consistently for about 5 years now. The 450P is great, but it's pretty big and not quite as fast as I expected. Viair is a great product though and hard to beat for the price.
 
Joined
Feb 7, 2013
Messages
1,780
The Viair 330 (I think) is on my short list for when my MV50 goes belly up. I have a feeling though that Im gonna be stuck with it for a long while. I use it less these days, and its still strong as ever. The damn thing actually fills faster as it goes. No idea why but the last tire always fills twice as fast as the first. That started around year 2 or 3. As I said Im on year 6-7 now.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top Bottom