ABR Sidewinder 12V Compressor REVIEW
According to the Sidewinder website the air compressor has a max flow rate of 150L per min and is capable of pressures up to 150 PSI.
This compressor appears alongside others in the January 2009 edition of Overlander 4wd. It performed well in testing and was the basis of my purchase.
The carry bag and components look as they do on the website. The bag and zips are fairly light, and would be adequate for light use. I do not have confidence the zips will last for long. The compressor unit itself feels robust. The handle is strong and folds down out of the way. The round plastic cap in the top of the compressor holds a couple of attachments for inflating air mattresses and sporting equipment. It only lightly sits in the top and will probably be the first thing to be lost.
The air hose and gauge are adequate and unfortunately my hose had a crimped o-ring which meant a significant leak when connected to the leader hose. Derek from ABR has been very responsive and helpful via email and with his help I pulled the connector apart and reseated the o-ring. He promptly sent a new o-ring by mail.
The gauge doesn't appear to read anything useful whilst inflating/deflating and appears roughly accurate otherwise. The chuck has the ability to deflate without disconnection with a simple twist.
The switch is a little interesting on this unit. There is a box with the on/off switch and a reset for the circuit breaker. I found on a couple of occasions that the on off switch once didn't turn the unit off whilst it was operating, and once didn't turn the unit on. A disconnect and reconnect from the battery sorted that situation out. I'm yet to follow up with ABR what may cause this.
Inflation of four 31x10.5x15 tyres from 19 to 36 PSI took around 1min 30 per tyre. A nearby Patrol was airing up from his onboard ARB compressor (used for his lockers as well) and we both started and finished at more or less the same time.
The compressor didn't appear to slow down at any point, and when I had finished the 4th tyre, the heat sinks were hot, but not unbearably so. I was comfortable putting the compressor back in its bag.
From a noise point of view, I don't have much in the way of quality units to compare against, though I can say it's about as loud as my old $50 kmart unit.
ABR sells these direct from their website and ebay. I picked up mine for $200 delivered. For my uses on occasional 4x4 weekends it appears to be well suited. Time will tell as to the hardiness of these units.