REVIEW: ABR Sidewinder 12V Compressor - AUSJEEPOFFROAD.COM Jeep News Australia and New Zealand

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Old 19-01-2009
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pugsly  pugsly is offline
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Default REVIEW: ABR Sidewinder 12V Compressor

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.

Initial impressions:

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.
Old 21-10-2011
Thommoed  Thommoed is offline
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Curious Pugsly,

how has this held up over time?
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Old 29-10-2011
Yom  Yom is offline
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I bought one in 2008. They haven't changed alot. a few upgrades and fixes in the weak spots I guess. However mine is still going strong. It is a great unit. I have only stopped using it because I have onboard air with an ARB single cylinder compressor.

BTW, my ABR Sidewinder twin ran rings around the larger model ARB single cylinder I have and is much cooler to the touch after inflating 4 tyres. You could cook an egg on the ARB.
Old 30-10-2011
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Default Warning - abr - warning don't honour warranty

That is all fine, just be advised if you ever have a problem with your ABR Sidewinder they will not come to the party.

Mine was purchased for a Cape York trip, was not used as we need fuel when we needed to air up and used servo.

mine was first used after a weekend wheel, my invoice was dated 13mths prior to the first use, over heated after tyre 3, let it cool down then jammed on and melted the wires from the + terminal - lots of smoke while i jumped up to disconnect it, obviously an issue within the electrical box.

ABR Sidewinder were impossible to deal with, would not allow me to bring the unit in, had to post it, they wanted $60 up front to look at it and then would charge for the repair, est at $60. so i still have the unit, purchased an ARB compressor, maybe not quite as fast, but at least they have warranty.

Just as a side note - setting up my dual battery i spent over $700 with ABR sidewinder buying battery box (Flyer) Deep cycle battery anderson plugs and many other terminals, wire etc. Yet they would not help with my $195 compressor.
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