Air Compressor hose question


Old 10-09-04, 07:32 AM
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Air Compressor hose question

hello all, new here, can anyone tell me if it makes a diff using a 1/2 hose (got a great deal on it) instead of 1/4 " for my compressor
thats the link to my compressor, thanks anyone!

Last edited by twelvepole; 10-17-04 at 07:29 PM. Reason: Link to commercial website
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Old 10-09-04, 11:19 AM
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Hose size

The ½ in hose will move air faster. That is about the only difference. The other difference is going to be finding fittings that fit. But that should not be a real big deal. If you have the proper fittings it should not be a big deal at all.
Old 10-12-04, 07:55 AM
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How about 3/8? Split the difference.. 1/2 takes up a lot of storage space and is harder to drag around, 1/4 is too restrictive for some tools. 3/8 is perfect for a portable compressor.
Old 10-22-04, 08:18 AM
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Question New question!!!

I'll tack my question onto this one as it seems appropriate. I just bought a Craftsman 150psi oilless (I know oilless aren't the best) hobby compressor and $30 Companion 3/8" impact ratchet. I'm brand new to this stuff and the manuals are not all that forth coming for a newbie.

The ratchet guide says I can use a 3/8" hose for 8ft or less, but need a 1/2" hose plus a 3/8" for longer than 8ft.

Well, unfortunately the hose that came with the comp. and the hose that came with the adapter kit I bought are both 1/4" it seems. Silly me, I thought I had everything I needed.

Well, can I use this 1/4" hose with this ratchet? Will it explode on me? Or will it just not deliver maximum air pressure?

One hose says the limit is 150psi, the other says 200psi and the ratchet requires 90psi while the pump goes to 150psi max.

Just so you know, I bought all this stuff ($200 worth) because I can't get two bolts off my brake caliper on my car! Aaarrggh!!! Will these puny hoses work to take off two bolts or do I have to go chuck down another $20 for a 3/8" hose?

Any help is much appreciated. I really need to get my car fixed today 'cause my other one has a shaft and bushing going out. Lucky me.
Old 10-22-04, 08:20 AM
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Oh, and do I need to put that PTFE tape on all thread connections, or just some? What happens if you don't use it? Will the connections leak?
Old 10-22-04, 10:03 AM
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expensive brake job

But a good investment.

For a 3/8 gun, I BIELIVE 3/8 hose will do. It's when you get into the 3/4 and 1 inch range, you'd need to upgrade the hose to 1/2. 1/4 hose may not deliver air required to move the gun efficiently. You could try it, it won't hurt anything and the hose isn't going to burst.

Use the regulator on your compressor to set the pressure to 90 psi. Do you have a filter? I recommend one if you are going to use tools. Maybe not today, but definitely down the road. Also, tools require special oil. Put a few drops in the wrench before using it.

Use the tape on all threaded connections or you'll have leaks galore. Good luck.

You didn't specify the cfm output of your new compressor.... I just hope it matches or exceeds the number required by the gun. For two bolts, just give it a shot. And let us know.
Old 10-23-04, 12:38 AM
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What gets me is most fittings are one size smaller than the hose. Most common air hose is 3/8" with 1/4" fittings. This is what I got when I first bought my compressor. Then I got a nice 1/2" IR twin-hammer impact gun... which I can't get enough air to it.

You can get 3/8" quick-couplings that fit the 1/4" NPT on 3/8" hose for slightly better flow. Even better is to get the industrial 3/8" hose with 3/8" NPT ends, and put on 3/8" quick-couplings.
Old 10-23-04, 08:09 AM
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3/8 hose with 1/4 ends will be fine. Its what 95% of people are using anyway. My compressor has a 60 foot 3/8 hose and has no problem powering my heavy duty (over 800 ft/lbs) impact gun. It has never been stopped at 90 psi but if i ever run into something that does stop it, i'll just turn the regulator up on it.

120 psi on a 3/8 hose should deliver about the same amount of air as 90 psi on a half inch. 1/4 hose is restrictive for most tools.
Old 10-23-04, 08:50 AM
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Don't feel too bad, my projects are piled up higher than my two story house.


It sounds as if what you will be asking your new impact gun to do will be at the edge of it's capabilities.

I would crank up the pressure as suggested and certainly try the 1/4" hose that came with the kit.

markiz37 makes a good point about checking to make sure the compressor can keep up with the gun.
There should be specs included with both to verify this.
A quick test is to have the air tank fill and the compressor shut off.
Put the gun under load and hold the trigger on the gun. When the compressor starts the tank pressure should not drop below 90 psi while the gun operates.
If it does then your compressor is too small.

Most times I can get away with about 100' of 3/8" hose for outdoor projects but if I power out with that, 1/2" hose won't make that much difference.
I have an old 50' 3/4" id hose (reduced to 1/4" ftgs) and 3/4 impact I got at an auction that if unsucessful at turning something, is telling me that heat is needed to prevent breakage.

Bolts on a brake caliper can be a nasty challenge sometimes.
An impact is required because you need the impulse to break it free.
If the threads extend out the back of the caliper, do a good job of cleaning the threads with a wire brush or they will jam when they get pulled into the housing.

Use what you have, crank up the pressure and let us know how you make out.

What model and year is the vehicle?

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