so i need an air compressor on top of making the little dragon?

  • Major Contributor

    Any compressor that fullfill the pressure requirements will be ok. Do not get hang up on brands or places. Even a husky compressor from Home Depot will do. Make sure it is a dry pump air compressor and not an oil lubricated pumps. The oil lubricated ones always leaks a small amount of oil into your air, even with the best filter systems, and you dont want oil in your soap.

  • Joe, I agree.

    Examples help:

    Home Depot

    4 Gal. Portable Electric-Powered Air Compressor


    Air Delivery SCFM 2.7 @ 90PSI

    Lubrication Type = Oil Free

    Can those that are making AirCrete add some examples of compressors they are using along with Pro's and Con's?

  • Major Contributor

    craiglist. got a 30 gallon 5HP oilless compressor for around 30 dollars because the piston was not working. Bought piston new seals for around 30 dollars at ebay and for 60 dollars got a 30 gallon 5HP compressor. It all depends on your searching and fixing skills. If anyone is planning to do a project like this, they should have a varied skill set. This is not a project to build skills. You dont want to gamble your life in a roof falling over your head because you did not know what you were doing. Research and more research is needed for every step of the build as well as standarized engineering tests about the compression and tensile strengh of the final product. Sometimes I feel this kind of projects can be dangeorus to people that see the videos and think this is so easy and nice. Im not trying to put anyone down, but I have seen some questions in this forums that are so simple that makes me question if some people could do this with minimum risks. People that ask at this forums should sit down and read all around the net about the different types of building techniques, materials and tools available and their functioning, before attempting anything like this. If a lot of the people here dont have the skills to sit down and understand basic tool functions, measurements and be able to do some comparisons, they have no business building a dome that could actually kill them in the process if they do a wrong step. Chosing a compressor or any other tool should be the least of the problems anyone building this should have to face. Understanding first what you are actually doing and putting together a proper building plan with real strengh characteristics should be the basic first. Just my .2 cents.

  • Major Contributor

    I'm around my compressor all the time and the noise can drive you crazy it's so loud! I use my compressor indoors a lot for my laser machine. When I changed from my old loud compressor to this new It was like finding Gold it literally changed my life. I no longer had to wear ear protectors, I didn't have to hear how loud it was from other people.

    You don't need 90 psi to make aircrete you need about 15 - 30 Psi.

  • @Joe
    every time im learning something esp. when it comes to building or a specific skill, we always start on something that is not the main project doing projects that the focus is on learning the craft and its fullest capabilities...i agree that its important to have a certain level of knowledge on these sorts of things...and if one hasnt learned what is needed before they get into it, they have to learn at some point...btw in our case...we are not building a dome...i want to use the aircrete as a ground insulator for a passive solar extension on our i dont have to put styrofoam blueboard into the ground...i feel its safe to say that not everyone here is building domes...plan on building other things with aircrete...tbh we will be exploring the capabilities and our familiarity with aircrete in creative and artisitc ways first...such as sculputres or garden stepping stones, walls etc. and again joe i agree...but one has to start somewhere and aircrete is something that can be of use for so many different purposes...and we are going to learn and learn untill we feel "concrete" lol...about our knowledge on applying aircrete to whatever its needed for...and if it takes years then so be it...also just because i am not familiar with one side of construction doesnt mean that we do not have knowledge in other departments...for instance ive spent a lot of time in the direction of free standing stone archways that does not require the mechanical world...we all have our own strengths and our own starting points...and the a start to a of luck and thanks for the suggestions...


  • @Joe
    sounds good...many thnks

  • Major Contributor

    The compressor is what actually makes the foam. The little dragon is just a water pump to take the soap and water solution to the inlet of the tube that mixes the water with compressor air to make foam. I think but have not tried it , that even a gravity feed system for the soap solution will also work if you can get a 5 gallon bucket high enough. Inside the tube there is steel wool mesh to act as a filter to better disperse the water/soap/air mixture. I have a carbonator pump bought at ebay for another purpose, but it works just fine to move a soap solution and have adjustable output. Some carbonator pumps can be get from 10-50 dollars at ebay. The size of the bubbles is very important so your pressure along with the type of steel wool filter you use will impact bubble size and consistency. Start by making a lot of cubic or cylinder samples and add different fibers and rebars. Try different proportions and them maybe send them out for compressive and tensile tests, and you will find the perfect ratio for whatever you are building. Magnesium oxide cement, if you can get it, makes for a thinner concrete with higher strengh, so you could actually use less to do more, but it is more expensive. There is a video on youtube of a guy that actually takes a little dragon apart and shows all the inner tubing, look for it. Since you are looking for an insulator, maybe you could use mineral wool, that comes under different trade names like rockwool, and incorporate it into the aircrete mix. It is made of basalt fibers which are volcanic mineral, so they are completely natural, wont rust, and you wont need to use styrofoam. Good luck in your testing.

  • @Joe
    great advice joe
    will look into rockwo such a good idea!
    thnks again


  • California Air Tools suggestions are good, a 1750rpm motor spinning around 700-800rpm pump will always be more quiet then those typical "5hp" big box store compressors.

    Champion is a great choice, but Emax Compressors have been impressing me lately. Check them out- Silent Series, made in USA, lots of nice features:

    Emax Silent 5hp 1ph 80 gallon - ESP05V080I1

    Read more about air compressors in this review!

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