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Why air compressors in engine rooms?

Discussion in 'Technical Discussion' started by Prospective, Apr 28, 2020.

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  1. Prospective

    Prospective Senior Member

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    Just curious and killing time. But in looking at lots of boat listings I see many yachts with air compressors in the engine room. It doesn't appear universal and seems it might be more common with older yachts with Detroits but not sure on that. I've never had a use for a compressor on my boat. I know people blow out water lines for winterization. These compressors don't seem big enough to run substantial air tools.

    Is there some process or procedure that would require a compressor? Anyway just wondering and sure plenty on this board can let me know.

    Thanks
  2. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Usually for horns but can also come in handy for maintenance. Some older boats also had air windshield wipers
  3. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Yep, Horns, air tools and AirPush windshield wiper motors.
    35 gallon tank with 3hp electric motor that runs from the gen-set or shore power and direct drive Detroit compressor while running without gen-set.

    While running on shore power or gen-set, oil-less compressor in use, I have proper air filters installed so I run a hose over the side and can dive the boat on a Hookah Rig.

    Once you start using a mini air ratchet, you will wonder how you ever worked with out an air tool.
  4. d_meister

    d_meister Senior Member

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    Then there's Microphor toilet systems:(
  5. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Had to look it up. Ahh, Err, Uhh,,,
    Needs air, yes.
    But;; Not on my boat.:(
  6. rtrafford

    rtrafford Senior Member

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    Agreed, run it for air horns, air wipers, ER maintenance, pneumatic tools, a port to re-fill my deflatable fenders, and long hoses to help service and maintain the air handlers about the vessel (cleaning as well as clearing drains). Air is a very handy tool itself...
  7. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I forgot about fenders, rafts, inflatable toys, inflatable boats, charging Hynautic controls (80psi) and back blowing restricted thru-hull pick-ups.

    Does not take much to get some task done if your not in a hurry.
    I remember an old Roamer House Boat with a small DCv compressor (1 gallon tank). Worked like a champ.

    I have been tinkering on bikes, cars/trucks and boats my whole life.
    Every projects starts with the same question, Where's the air compressor ?

    I'm sure once member Prospective thinks about all of these responses, He may ponder a compressor on his ship.
  8. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    There's nothing more old school and cooler than listening to a boat dock with pneumatic air controls, the pssssttt just adds another dimension of captain coolness :)

    New one - Air balloons for Bluefin Tuna kite fishing if you don't want to carry helium tanks on board.
  9. Prospective

    Prospective Senior Member

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    Thanks folks. I had not considered the air horns and had no idea about the wipers. As to all the rest, I guess there are a lot of potential uses depending on the operator and equipment.
  10. rtrafford

    rtrafford Senior Member

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    Cleaning the ER as well as pneumatic tools are way up the list, even beyond the air horn, I think...
  11. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    For Valhalla I picked up a Porter Cable pancake for $99. Could take it where needed for fenders to air systems to tools. Don't leave home without it.
  12. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    You convinced to bolt one in your ship yet?

    Down here you just make a small cut under a gators skin and blow air in there. Puffs the whole skin off of the meat. Fastest way to skin the lizards.
    Als%20gator.jpg
  13. DOCKMASTER

    DOCKMASTER Senior Member

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    My compressor is in the storage locker on the flybridge. I have a smaller Rollair unit that is pretty quiet. Air is plumbed to the horn and we have an air line that goes to the master stateroom with an air cylinder that lifts the bed frame and mattress to access storage underneath. The frame is very heavy so you have to have some type of lift device. The air cylinder works great! We also have an air line that goes to the engine room but it never gets used. With today's battery operated tools I can't remember the last time we used an air tool. Occasionally use air for shrimp pot buoys or similar things and to blow out lines for winterizing.

    Capt Ralph you got me thinking; wonder if I can use your air method to skin my next big Halibut? :)
  14. gr8trn

    gr8trn Senior Member

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    You are talking Barn Doors right?
  15. DOCKMASTER

    DOCKMASTER Senior Member

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    Yeah but we try to let those go if they are not hooked too badly. Generally only keep under 100#'s. The barn door fish are big female egg factories and the meat is not the greatest due to age of the fish.
  16. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Have a friend with a full chest freezer, G31 batteries, heavy patio furniture, mini fridge and now an air compressor all upstairs in and on his extended fly bridge.
    So he ask; What's wrong with his NAIAD Stabilizers???
  17. cleanslate

    cleanslate Senior Member

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    I think I know this boat, are you talking about M/V Broach? :rolleyes:
  18. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Most compressors don’t handle large inflatable toys very well because of the volume.

    one of the best tool I keep on board is a Ryobi 18V compressor / inflator. It delivers high pressure for tires, hynautic tank, fenders etc as well as high volume low pressure for tubes and larger inflatables. Uses the same batteries as other Ryobi tools.
  19. gr8trn

    gr8trn Senior Member

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    :)
  20. wdrzal

    wdrzal Senior Member

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    Maybe the air compressor is for the Air Motor, anyone else remember that thread...……..:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes: