Installing An Air System For Tools, Lockers, and Tires
When we put an air locker in the rear of our Project Hatari! CJ-6, we decided to install a dedicated onboard air system not only to run the locker but to better complement this vehicle's alter ego as a do-all recovery vehicle. We already had the capability of running power tools and welding thanks to the Premier Power Welder. Then we figured with a 100-percent duty cycle compressor and three-gallon air tank, we'd have the capability of running air tools, inflating hundreds of tires, or keeping one of those dancing car lot gorillas gyrating at camp.
Since we already had an old three-gallon air tank on the shelf, we only needed a heavy-duty compressor. We wanted something with a 100-percent duty cycle that wouldn't fry during heavy, extended use. For protection from the elements and thieves we'd need to mount it under the dash on the firewall, so we needed a unit that could also run in any position. Finally, we needed something that could fill our tank quickly because we're impatient buggers.
The MaxAir 4.0 compressor from 4WD Products fit the bill. The compressor can be run upside-down and sideways if needed. The compressor head can be rotated for clearance (our application didn't need it) and the air filter can be installed either on the unit or remotely. Here's the system we put together. We're now a rolling repair shop in the back country looking for broken damsels in distress.