View Full Version : May have saved the old girl

05-19-2015, 08:19 PM
Many many years ago (at least 20) a co worker of mine gave me his old beat up homemade air compressor. It served me well for many years with never a failure to take big air and make it fit in a small space.

A few months back well it decided to give up the ghost and quit working. Well I say quit working, it would run up to about 20 psi and then bog down. And we all know 20 psi ain't good for nothing, that is unless you want to inflate Tom Brady footballs that is. I have a small back up compressor that I use to air up tires so for what's worth I used it for the small jobs I needed big air small spaces for and just let the compressor sit in the corner with not much of a chance or a desire to really work on it. I figured that it probably needed a new motor.

Well tonight I figured I might as well work on it so I picked up all the scrap wood, moved the jack stands and even moved the car ramps out of the way and pulled her out of the corner a little. First thing I did was turn it by hand to make sure it was still turning and it was. I took the belt off and the motor turned just fine, so my next course of action was to check the compressor part, you know the big air small space maker part. I scraped off enough dirt and grime (that was the way it came with a little extra by me) to find the oil cap and checked the oil which of course was empty. So I pulled it out a little more and started scrapping dirt and grime off of it so that I could take the compressor off and clean it up.

As I was scrapping the dirt and grime off (remember that was the way I got it over 20 years ago) and come to find out it ain't really rusty but rather it is blue! So I keep scraping and when I get around to the other side and clean more grim off of the compressor I see that there is a big hole in the back of the compressor. Looking around underneath I find a rubber plug that is covered in the same dirt and grime and fits perfectly in the whole in the side of the compressor. Now I ain't no genius but I figured it went there so I cleaned it up and put it there and continued to scrap some more until I actually even uncovered the manufacturer's label and much to my surprise it isn't even homemade that is unless your home is called Emglo.

With it cleaned up just a little I figured what the heck and I found some 20W50 motorcycle oil lying around and I dumped it in and turned it over a few times by hand. Hhmm, strange thing, it seems to be turning over easier. So I put the belt back on and flip the switch and wow would you believe it once again takes big air and makes it fit in small spaces!!!!

You just never know what is lying beneath all that dirt and grime till you get down on your hands and knees with a scrapper and start scrapping it off. It was so dirty and rough looking I just had always assumed it was a home built. My Dad and Uncles would make stuff like that all the time so it didn't surprise me at all. But I was surprised to see that it is an actual store bought machine and even more surprised that I didn't actually kill it with my neglect. I guess I need to do a little research and find out what the proper oil is and fill 'er up the good stuff.

BTW she looks a lot like this one only dirtier.



05-19-2015, 08:27 PM
Here she actually is.

https://scontent-atl.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xat1/v/t1.0-9/11215860_839379789433240_6068817971696112955_n.jpg ?oh=f59a3b6864b4ea557f16a58690ded25f&oe=55CA0F4C


05-19-2015, 09:14 PM
That right there is what we call a classic! Nice job saving her.


05-19-2015, 10:17 PM
Now give her a wax job, set her up on a pallet, and make her feel special!

05-20-2015, 12:08 AM
Now give her a wax job, set her up on a pallet, and make her feel special!

Isn't it Dale Hamilton who renovates the forklifts?

Chad, you need to do the same thing to your old compressor. ;)

05-20-2015, 06:18 AM
LOL I can't say I did anything special to save her. In fact she was probably is such bad shape due to my neglect. I just kept her in the corner and she just did her thing. It is kinda like being married where you take it for granted that your wife is going to get up every morning and make you biscuits and gravy and you only notice something is wrong when you wake up one morning with microwave oatmeal instead. LOL


Paul Pless
05-20-2015, 06:26 AM
Did you just compare your wife to an air compressor? Even I know better!

05-20-2015, 06:28 AM
I think the difference is your wife is a member of the forum here and mine isn't. LOL


Jim Ledger
05-20-2015, 07:00 AM
Compressors generally like thirty weight non-detergent oil, Chad, so if you're in the mood to pamper the old gal...

05-20-2015, 11:59 AM
I use #30 hydraulic oil.
Engine oil has additives that are not needed for air compressors. Although there are similarities in construction, air-compressors do not burn anything, and most of the additives in engine oil are not useful or needed.
A major anti-wear additive "Zinc", is now phased out of engine oil because it destroys catalytic converters. Hydraulic oil does not have this issue and contains heavy-duty anti wear additives that would cause havoc in an modern automobile engine. It is better in this application, and actually is better in almost any lubricating application except internal combustion. The "other name" for hydraulic oil is "spindle oil" which I use in and on all my machinery, lathes, and etc.

Years ago I used to use engine oil and noticed a slight white film on my lathe ways after a cold night, and learned that the engine oil was actually pulling water vapor out of the air and emulsifying it on the lathe. Bad...

(I have to maintain a half dozen air-compressors, from 10 cfm to 200 cfm and was forced to "read the book"! - Before I made an expensive mistake...)

On the Emglo Compressor there is a pinch-bolt that holds the flywheel tight on the crankshaft. Check that...

Michael D. Storey
05-20-2015, 05:24 PM
Here she actually is.

https://scontent-atl.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xat1/v/t1.0-9/11215860_839379789433240_6068817971696112955_n.jpg ?oh=f59a3b6864b4ea557f16a58690ded25f&oe=55CA0F4C


A thing of beauty

05-20-2015, 08:25 PM
I just picked her up a new belt and some hydraulic oil and will fix her up good tomorrow. What you can't really see is that belt is a tad short and don't let the motor completely square up.