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Craftsman Antique Air Compressor Projects

Subzero97

Registered
Hi everyone, I have two different Craftsman air compressors from I would guess the late 1970s. One is called a true “air compressor” and the other is called an “air compressor/paint sprayer”. I’ve been using the latter for the past year and a half to run my garage. It is inadequate in the fact that the max pressure is 100psi and only a 11 gallon tank. I just picked up a same period 2 HP Craftsman 20 gallon compressor today for basically free. Only problem is it is 230 volts and my other one is 110 volts. My garage isn’t wired for 230 volts. I may have three options which I’m looking for help/opinions on. 1) Swap the 1hp 110 volt motor to the 230 volt compressor. 2) Wire a 230 outlet ( never done that before). 3) Rewire the current 230 volt motor to 110v ( if this is even possible). I have included 3 photos of the 230 volt compressor showing the motor specs, the underside cover of the circuit breaker showing a diagram, and the compressor itself( the green one). The brown compressor is my 110 volt paint sprayer. Thanks in advance for any help!
 

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dalmatiangirl61

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/10/2019
Your motor data tag indicates it is 230v only, the last pic looks like your pressure switch which can be wired for 115/230v. Your options are A. run a 230v circuit to garage B. Swap motor over from other compressor.

Edit: What is hp of the brown compressor? The 230v motor is 2hp, if brown compressor is running on 115v it is 1.5hp max. You could swap motors, but my guess is the motor pulley is smaller on the brown compressor, so you would end up with same output.

Edit again: Unless the new compressor is 2 stage, you will not get higher pressure, just more cfm (assuming 2hp motor is driving compressor faster rpm)
 

slip knot

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
12/27/2019
Am I the only one who feels really old when a 70s model air compressor is considered antique?

I would pull in a 230 circuit to run the bigger unit.:D
 

FWurth

One Millionth Post
Last Subscription Date
07/29/2019
They equipped those compressors with 220 motors for good reason, those compressors run fast to get the required recovery time. Also it takes a good bit of power to start the compressor when under back pressure in the tank, while in operation when the regulator switch kicks in. Just add the wiring to the garage, you'll be way farther ahead. We have a similar unit we got new way back in the late 70s, my son had one like the green one for a while till someone stole it from the garage. Good units for average home shop use. A couple of maintenance items to keep track of, drain the condensed water from the tank frequently, and check the compressor oil level often as those units when they get a bit of wear, will use oil.
 

ulgydog56

Registered
running a 240 outlet is easy just get a 240 volt breaker 20 amp the same brand as you already have in your box, it will push into both buss bars when you push it in giving you 120 volts from both bars each 240 volt total. run 12/3 wire, black to lug, white to lug and ground to ground. no nuterial, add a 240 receptacle to match the plug...good to go. note: if your not good with electric power have sum one do it for you....:D
 

grub54891

Registered
Age
63
Last Subscription Date
06/08/2010
Run the 230 volt wire. Install large enough wiring to run a welder also. If you don't have a welder, you may have to buy one!
 

Tracy T

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/16/2019
personally i dont think you are going to gain much if anything, really suprised no one has asked so i will. whats the cfm or scfm rating on both compressors?
 

Tracy T

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/16/2019
green one looks like 7.0 scfm @90 psi, cant make out what the brown one says but the compressors look identical. neither of these are going to give you much more than 100 psi 120 max anything over that the tank will be comprimised (think bomb!) you could use the second one for air storage. but it will take longer to fill both tanks. I have a 80 gallon 5HP 175 psi compressor and there are times its not big enough! I have a second of the same size but have not got around to hooking it up because i can live with waiting, its not often enough to justify a 2nd.
 

Subzero97

Registered
The green one is a couple more CFM than the brown one, also it is supposed to reach 125 psi while the other one barely makes 95 psi currently. The pumps themselves do look identical though. The bigger tank will help too. After reading the replies I do agree that adding a 230 volt outlet would be my best choice. I should be able to add one in my breaker.
 

dalmatiangirl61

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/10/2019
Unless one is a single stage, and other a 2 stage, the only difference in them is motor hp, pulley sizes, and where the pressure switch is set to cutoff.
 

Power

Registered
Had an identical looking green one with 1 1/2 HP 120 volt motor back in late 1960's. It was single cylinder.

Got neighbor complaints. Had to bring it back to Sears!

It would cause lights in the homes on our pole transformer to flicker in time with the compressor strokes!

Traded it for the green 4 cylinder model with 1 HP motor.
 

DustyBar

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
01/14/2020
Switching to 220/240 volts will cut the current draw in half which will help reduce light flicker. You neighbors might have been ok with that change.
 

Kentucky Riverrat

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/25/2019
They were made by Cambell Housfeld.Model VT.I have rebuilt two of them.They are still running today.
I think and spelling is probably wrong.:wave:
Mark
 
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