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Old 06-02-2004, 10:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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onboard air tank "ideal" size

Obviously everyone has different needs, but I'm curious what recommendations you guys have regarding what size tank you think is appropriate for a trail rig. My buddy has a Viair setup with a 2.5 gallon tank, but even at 120psi or so, that's hardly enough air to fill just 1 tire. Even a fast compressor is slower than than a full tank. I plan to use my setup for airing up 36's, powering a semi truck air horn, running air tools, inflating my blow-up doll for those lonely nights out on the trail, and any other use I may find for onboard air.

What do you all use on your rigs? A buddy of mine just told me that Kragen has some 11 gallon tanks for cheap. I haven't checked them out yet, but before I buy anything I thought I'd see if you guys have any recommendations. I don't have a spare tire under my 85 4Runner anymore, so I have plenty of room for a big-ass tank. I just don't know if there's a point at which a tank's size is "overkill."

Also, I'm curious if anyone has had any long-term usage of the "fake" Extreme Outback compressors that were mentioned on this board a couple months back, wondering if they hold up worth a fawk. I don't want to try to shoehorn a York under my hood, so I'm looking for a 12 volt compressor to mount in the back of the rig.
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Old 06-03-2004, 12:29 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Well as a comparison my 11 gallon tank will loose 10 psi when my 225/60-14 tires will gain 10 psi so this smallish tire is approximately 11 gallons. Figure your truck tires are 3-4 times or more bigger in volume and you can see 11 gallons is about the minimum size you'd want to even consider.
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Old 06-03-2004, 06:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I am running a 5 gallon tank from Walmart, I was going to replace it with a new one because of some hard years, but they dont make the same one anymore. The 7 gallon and 11 gallon they sell now are a little large but ideal. I never had a problem with mine on tires and tools. I am sure a 7 or 11 will suffice. and only like 25 bucks.
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Old 06-03-2004, 07:46 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Find a big rig junkyard and check out their air tanks. Almost perfect for off-road vehicles. Most the same diameter (about 8") length varries from about a foot to couple feet long. Mount right inside a frame rail or behind a seat. Price is also usually good as they have no real call for the tanks. An added benefit is that they have really great mounts. Also lots of great nylon air lines, valves, etc.
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Old 06-03-2004, 08:28 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I used to run a 2 gallon tank and it worked well as a buffer on the pump but not any real reserve on it. I had an 8 that worked out well and I currently run a 5 Gallon tank that seems to be OK. I would like a bigger tank but I do not want to trade off the room.

I use a York compressor off of the engine.
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I had 2 2.5 gallon ones under the back and the entire cage was drilled/plumbed to be an air tank (with drains at any bottom that was not a port) and when i did a guestamate of volume was like 20 gal or so.It worked fine with a york.

remeber anything hollow can be used if sealed right (cage,front and rear bumpers,tube work) and its not taking up any extra space

for the cage i welded it up as normal and then drilled threw the tubes to the joints i wanted to make air passages threw and then welded back up the hole on the outside tube. just make sure to put drains on any dead tube so you can drain out any moisture not caught by the seperator
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I have a 5 gallon tank after a york compressor. No problems here at all if the engine is at about 2500 rpm's. I can fill up a 36" tire pretty quick. I can run my impact pretty good too.
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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whats the conversion from cubic inches to gallons?
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:44 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I don't think the 12 volt compressors are going to put out the same cfm as the york - so a big tank would probably be ideal - just keep it filled so it doesn't take 30 minutes to fill when you want to air up.
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:48 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnob
whats the conversion from cubic inches to gallons?
1 US gallon = 231ci
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:51 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Have you thought about using an Oasis? They're heavy but put out 8-16 cfm. I run one of these on my tow rig with an eight gallon tank and it allow me to use air tools at full capacity, two huge horns and arb's. I run a 2.5 with my York on the Jeep and it seems to work pretty well. I would go at least ten gallons with those Viair compressors.

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Old 06-03-2004, 10:38 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glfredrick
Find a big rig junkyard and check out their air tanks. Almost perfect for off-road vehicles. Most the same diameter (about 8") length varries from about a foot to couple feet long. Mount right inside a frame rail or behind a seat. Price is also usually good as they have no real call for the tanks. An added benefit is that they have really great mounts. Also lots of great nylon air lines, valves, etc.
I work for Volvo Trucks, so you know where I got my tank. They are about 9 gallons and have great flat mounting pads with studs welded to the bottom. We offer aluminum tanks on our trucks too, so of course that is what I use.

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Old 06-03-2004, 01:46 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm using a QA2 with a walmart 7 gallon tank in my 4Runner and it works pretty good. but I need more compressor since I've bumped up to 36" IROK's, thats why I got a York waiting to be installed.....


My buddy uses a York and the same 7 gallon tank for his Yota on 37 MTR's and it works GREAT. At least twice as fast as my setup and he has enough reservior to run air tools on the trail.


On my 2wd Pre-runner I'm using a York and a 7 gallong wallmart tank. Its still in th garage but it should be identical to my buddies setup except that the pre-runer has smaller tires.
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Old 06-03-2004, 02:25 PM   #14 (permalink)
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here is what I have found

you pump up the tank while wheeling it gets one tire filled before it the pressure drops to a semi unuseable level. then the compressor has to fill both the next tire and the tank volume. the only avantage of the tank after the inital filling is it will fill up as you are moving from one tire to the next. as well as a buffer for air tools.

so you are probably better off with a faster compressor / smaller tank than a slow compressor / bigtank

I also like using bumpers, and rock sliders as air tanks (no aditional weight or space taken up)
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Old 06-03-2004, 02:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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20 lbs. CO2... lasts a long time. have you thought about using a york and spinning it with a 12v motor , like drag racers do on the water pumps. mount it any where and great output.I wonder if a york and a sbc starter would couple up with a direct drive.
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Old 06-04-2004, 04:55 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I wonder if a york and a sbc starter would couple up with a direct drive.
One of you dudes with the machine shop capability make some collar to couple these two... Would be an interesting experiment. Also, what about a Sanborn style with a starter motor - would be more compact, almost the same overall size as the truck air tank. I'd really like to see if this works. There is also a place on the web that sells winch motors - to as much as 6+ HP. They would surely pull as much air as anyone could want. I powered my home-built shop compressor with dual yorks and a 1 HP industrial (large frame) motor and it did really well... The trick with the Yorks is that they take tons more RPM than a regular air compressor head. I drove them fast (3450 motor).
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Last edited by glfredrick; 06-04-2004 at 04:56 AM.
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Old 06-04-2004, 09:43 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peesalot
I wonder if a york and a sbc starter would couple up with a direct drive.
right around 1.5 min.

well before mine started smoking anyway

a winch motor or same style from a hydo pump might work but i dont have one of them to try. i used a comonly available flex coupler to connect the two
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