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Booster compressor vs. stand alone compressor economics

Forums Air Tanks, Pumps, & Compressors Booster compressor vs. stand alone compressor economics

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    Profile photo of Humdinger
    Humdinger
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    Over the years I’ve become as interested in compressor options and setups as much as  in PCP’s.  Our sport has been fortunate because manufacturers see the potential  for affordable high pressure PCP compressors with each year providing  more options for us to consider.  Prices of affordable compressors are getting within reach of the single user who wants  his own source of high pressure air.

    Shoebox was the first manufacturer to offer a reliable compressor booster when the first generation Shoebox came out for $299.  More options and better designs have been introduced over the past few years so the future looks bright for better, cheaper, and more reliable compressors aimed at our sport.

    I am amused and baffled to see buyers who still opt for booster compressors to save money.  What they end up with is a fill system that costs as much as a stand alone compressor but fills slower and requires more assembly, setup, and servicing.  It must appeal to their inner Rube Goldberg to assemble elaborate plumbing and filtration systems to get dry air.  Elaborate, overcapacity pre and post moisture filtration systems are overkill since a water separator does most of the moisture removal.  It costs just as much or more to assemble a slow filling booster system as it does to buy a stand alone compressor which will fill much quicker an doesn’t require outside filter assemblies, plumbing, and servicing.

    An Altaros, AV Booster, or Shoebox F10 plus the costo of a quality first stage compressor, plus plumbing, plus filters, is as much total cost as a Carette or  Air Venturi compressor. Unless someone buys a first stage compressor for other uses, why spend the money and have to hook up all of the extra components?  Elaborate filtration assemblies are costly, unnecessary, and defeat the purpose  of an economy fill system.  Refrigerators, oversize Wilkerson desiccant filters, and multiple water separators, filters, etc. are more Rube Goldberg devices than requirements to get dry air.  Before I upgraded to a Carette, I ran a Shoebox for years with a $50 Wilkerson desiccant filter on the input side and had never had any moisture from the air output side

    I am just as befuddled at guys who buy Chinese or Turkish made PCPs then spend hundreds more with tuners or for modifications to get their rifle to shoot like a name brand PCP.  It’s the old “you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear” story.  It’s the same with fill systems.  Stand alone compressors are becoming more affordable.  It is a false economy to buy a booster, adequate first stage compressor, filtration, and plumbing instead of a standalone compressor in an attempt to save money.
     

    • This topic was modified 2 months ago by Humdinger.
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    Profile photo of Hynzie
    Hynzie
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    right on target  with your post Humdinger let the truth be told

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    Profile photo of Deja
    Deja
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    soo i gather you tried em both hynzie? 

    that said i think there might be some thruth to his post

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    crittahitta
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    I just got an AV compressor a few months ago and love the freedom. But after reading all the posts about moisture filtration and the expense it brings makes me crazy and worry, almost making me think I made a mistake. But after many fills I have not noticed any moisture and try to keep calm. I think people do like to tinker and make things perfect but when a novice like me reads all the posts it makes you wonder who is right. Quakenbush did a test and filled one of his guns with a certain amount of water and filled it with air and shot it. After opening up the gun it was almost empty. I think he said not to go crazy. 

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    Hynzie
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    no just the av compressor,, but 2 different freinds wish they had compressor only    …..that pointed out,, when they did there set up there werent as many options ,,so at that time it may have been the right option ,, but today my opinion is a compressor only is the correct choice for me   ,,,others may be in a differrent situation,and take a diferent road,,,,,   after all Deja its just a bunch of hot air,,,

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    jlc
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    The compressor options have changed over the years and have come up with some affordable models.

    When i got into air gunning in 2010, i was already a scuba diver, since the mid 70’s and had equipment.

    So for me it was a natural option to use scuba tanks for air, shooting and diving.

    I didn’t spend much time on the internet but when folks started mentioning SCBA tanks my first reaction was who needs them.

    A dive shop 25 miles away and shooting a 177 and 22 Marauder, i found my guns sweet spot at about 2300 to 2400 psi, so 3000 psi tanks worked well and i was cascading before i knew it had a name.

    Then after about 6 years the Dive shop closed, still two others around about 45 miles away, starting to get too far for convenience.

    Then I bought a 25 cal; Armada M, and now needed about 2800 psi, so 7 years after getting into A Guns, i decided to revisit this thing called the SCBA, so I could have enough pressure for the Armada and some mobility.  (Scuba tanks are pretty heavy, 80 and the 117 cu foot can hold 3442 psi, but the 117 is not fun carrying around)

    So i decided that if i was going to keep air gunning it was time to commit, without Air or worrying about running out of air etc, has a tendency to diminish the fun/use factor.

    Therefore i decided to buy the Daystate 2 compressor and a 75 SCBA tank.

    I fill my scuba tanks from 2200 to 3200 psi and my scba from 3000 to about 4200 when ever i want and each tank takes about 5 to 6 minutes to refill.

    I use the scuba tanks in my 20 yard shooting area in the basement for the 177 and 22 (so they stay in the basement where i do most of my shooting) and i use the scba in the basement for the 25 and the scba outside for all of the guns.

    And i fill my own scuba tanks for diving, i have tanks that i only use for scuba.

    In summary the Daystate 2 compressor has made air gunning very enjoyable, providing good, dry air in only a few minutes.

    I get that everyone doesn’t want to invest in a Daystate/Coltri compressor but to me it makes more sense to have one good gun and a good compressor than 2 or 3 high end guns and having to cobble something together or spend a day driving to get air that will last a week or two with limited shooting.

    Having a good compressor will change your enjoyment factor by a factor of 1000.

    My guns are only Marauders, but IMHO, they are as accurate as the high end guns out to 50 yards, the 177 and 22 are gen 1 guns, the 25 Armada is also stock and a half inch group gun out to 50 yards, which is pretty much my limit, targets only.  Three reasonably priced accurate guns and one pretty expensive outstanding compressor, and a lot of pellets.

    http://www.airgunnation.com/topic/25-cal-armada-and-a-dime/

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by jlc.
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    Profile photo of Maineiac
    Maineiac
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    Boosters still make sense if you:

    • already own a shop compressor
    • need a shop compressor for other purposes 
    • need to justify purchases to a spouse and a shop compressor that can do other things is easier to swallow than $1300 for a compressor for only airguns.

    more options are better IMO!

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    allan_wind
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    @Mainiac just pick up scuba diving for a 2nd justification (but then you will have no money left for pellets).

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by allan_wind.
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    Imold
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    No place to fill within at least 80 miles of me and the VFD’s in the smaller towns around me only go to 3200 psi but one said they were updating in a year maybe but that doesn’t do me any good,sure I could of bought a Shoebox and rigged up my 6hp oil less compressor but then it would still take a day to fill a 74cf tank so really no advantage there being I want my tanks full whenever I go out to shoot and that could be twice a day so my answer was to invest in a full size PCP compressor and be done with it. Sure 1300 bucks is a good chunk of money but for the convenience to be able to fill fast and whenever is just the topping on the cake for me. 

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    Dirte
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    I like my little Shoebox because I can bring it to work and use all the air I want, with an industrial dryer getting a low dew point. The Shoebox is also a easy to service unit and if I have a big issue I can talk to the owner of the company that can have me the parts in under a week.
    I also think a big percentage of people already have a air compressor in their garage. So It fits my mold well.

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by Dirte.
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    Imold
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    That is a nice set up you have.

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    Richard1
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    I’m new to the forum but have been shooting pump guns for some time.  I ordered the Gauntlet (march 5 and still waiting…..) so I thought it may be time for home fill capacity.  Has any one on the forum done a recent comparison for price and quality?  I’m retired and gave up shooting any thing but “air” due to cost of ammunition.  Now I sit on the porch and scare the hell out of targets and the occasional Crow.  So… any one with an opinion? 

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