Originally Posted by Minnewaska
I'm curious, what first stage pressure do you run the compressor at? I presume it just cycles on and off if you aren't drawing enough?
Depending on how many hours are on the compressor, I'll run it at 75-100 psi. As the piston rings wear, it needs to be turned up, until I rebuild it. Also, when going deep (15'-30'), I'll always run it full blast. The compressor runs continuously while I'm in the water. Both model compressors have an overpressure valve that exhausts excess air pressure when I'm not drawing on it. You will find some commercially available hookahs with reserve tanks (and divers using cheapo hotdog-style air compressors) that will cycle on and off as the pressure in the tanks varies, but this kind of extra plumbing and weight is unecessary. My compressors run for many thousands of hours without maintenance and at the depths we're talking about, there is really no need for a reserve tank as your air hose will hold enough air for you to get back to the surface should the compressor shut down for some reason.