Is my 2 year old compressor ready for the tip?

Discussion in 'Parts 'n Stuff' started by Nautonier, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. Nautonier

    Nautonier Eats Squid

    I purchased a Spear and Jackson compressor from Bunnings a couple of years ago and have used it maybe 3 times per year to install tubeless tyres. I've been topping up the oil as per the instructions, but when I went to use it recently, the motors sounding like it was grinding and after a couple of minutes there was a loud bang and the oil plug ripped itself out of the housing and shot skywards, never to be seen again. At this point I promptly turned it off and ran inside to change my underwear.

    I contacted the Spear and Jackson 'hotline' and they told me that they no longer stock parts for that model. I know nothing about compressors, but it would seem that the oil plug is under pressure, so unless I can get the thread rebored and a new, larger plug installed, is the compressor useless? If there's no easy fix for it, people are welcome to grab it for parts (if you're in Melbourne).


    It was a total drag when it failed to have to take my tyre to the servo to pump it up tubeless. I think my next purchase will be one of those high pressure floor pumps with the reservoir - such a great invention.
  2. mark22

    mark22 Likes Dirt

    Oil plug does not have to be threaded as long as you put something in there with a vent hole in it. (Cork with a hole drilled in it)

    I assume you have the oil level to the center of the clear window, too much oil will cause a problem.

    Give it a try with no oil cap, maybe a rag over the hole. If you are then getting heaps of air coming out of it it could be terminal.

    Some air leaking out through the hole is normal.
  3. Flow-Rider

    Flow-Rider Eats Squid

    If you heard grinding noises before it went bang good chance that it's a throw away. You can buy parts for some models on ebay but for the price of a new one most likely not going to be worth playing with.
  4. spikenet

    spikenet Likes Dirt

    just pull the head off it and check the reed valves are not buggered. Maybe one of them is stuffed and pressure is blowing past the piston rings... you will see pretty quick if its a lost cause!

    I have similar cheap compressor and it is obnoxiously loud, gets super hot, still going tho and giving good pressue :)
  5. hathill

    hathill Likes Dirt

    Why where you needing to top up oil?

    Why were you topping up the oil? Where was it going? Are we talking copious amounts or just a few drops?

  6. Spike-X

    Spike-X Grumpy Old Man

    You're right, it's a complete mystery.
  7. Lazmo

    Lazmo Likes Dirt

    Do they have oil?
  8. born-again-biker

    born-again-biker Likes Dirt

    It shouldn't have been using much oil...?

    Whatever the case, there's no harm taking the head off & having a look at the reeds & gaskets. Check the top of the piston(s) too.
    If there's any carnage just chuck it & buy a small belt drive unit. The cheap direct drive comps are not real good.

    Sometimes the head gasket will fail & air will move across between suction & discharge -which is cheap/easy to fix, but anything more than that isn't worth your time & hassle.

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  9. BT180

    BT180 Eats Squid

    What's the warranty on that thing? Worth a shot returning it to Bunnings..
  10. born-again-biker

    born-again-biker Likes Dirt

    Yeah that's true. Bunnings sell a lot of cheap junk, but they are generally excellent with returns (in my experience)

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  11. Rossm

    Rossm Likes Bikes

    The stated warranty is 12 months. Bunnings won't help if its 2 years old, and they will definitely want to see a copy of the invoice for the goods anyway.
    However, there is no limitation on warranty term IF (and its a big if) the fault was caused by defect in original manufacture. The problem would be to prove that.

    Under Australian Consumer Law, there is a "Guarantee as to repairs and spare parts" - The manufacturer of the goods will ensure that spare parts and facilities for repair of the goods are reasonably available (section 58). Interpretation of "reasonable" varies depending on value of goods. But generally the ATO tax depreciation is a good guide as to what is considered useful life. In case of compressors, it is seven years (

    So, you can possibly kick up a stink with Spear & Jackson as if they won't repair it & don't have spares, they are in breach of consumer law. They do have the option of replacing it. You could threaten to take them to small claims. They can't send a lawyer, they would have to have a management person represent them at any hearing. You may get lucky!!

    (Advice is gratuitous - I'm not a lawyer, but have been involved in these things in business settings over the years)
  12. Rossm

    Rossm Likes Bikes

  13. Nautonier

    Nautonier Eats Squid

    Thanks for the replies, much to think about. It's possible I overfilled it with oil, to be honest it's very hard to see what the level is doing with the crappy little window that is covered in crap (on the inside). I definitely think something is up with it to have enough pressure building up to blow the oil plug sky high.

    I'll have a tinker with it over the weekend and see if there are any obvious issues as mentioned. I'll also try it on with Bunnings, Spear and Jackson definitely weren't interested in a warranty replacement.
  14. rowdyflat

    rowdyflat Likes Bikes and Dirt

    you may have overfilled it but Bunnings sells cheap punter's rubbish.
  15. Nautonier

    Nautonier Eats Squid

    You get what you pay for I guess. Given the number of tubeless installs I've done with it and what it cost me, it's still been way cheaper than taking my wheels to a bike shop.
  16. flamin'trek

    flamin'trek Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Unless you use the compressor for anything else I'd ditch it and buy a hand pump with reservoir. At least they work at the trail head without power (or at 5am without waking the neighbours)
  17. born-again-biker

    born-again-biker Likes Dirt

    So THAT'S why they don't talk to me?!

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  18. Nautonier

    Nautonier Eats Squid

    Damn good point, mine was super noisy (I'm sure the neighbours hated it) and not very portable. It would be awesome to do a tubeless install at the trail head on a ride day when I've slashed yet another EXO casing sidewall...

    Funny, I had a good run for quite a while being able to install tubeless with a floor pump and all of a sudden every tyre needed the compressor. I think it must have been those tight-beaded DH (wirebead) tyres that pumped up easily, unlike the loose fitting tubeless-ready ones.
  19. link1896

    link1896 Eats Squid

    Piss off the motor and a few plumbing bits and you can make the old storage tank into one hell of a quick shot storage tank for tubeless installs.
  20. rowdyflat

    rowdyflat Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Good idea link .
    Otherwise if you dont need a compressor for spray unit, nailgun etc I have had success w those 4WD tyre pump compressors which run off 12 volts best direct connection to car battery.
    60 litres per minute pump up car/tractor tyres good quality = eg Bushman about $90+.
    Can just go to local servo w a valve adapter that works well.

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