Got the Viair onboard air installed - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 01-20-2014, 04:43 PM
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Got the Viair onboard air installed

I actually finished this up a few weeks ago. I installed the constant duty system from Viair with the 2.5 gallon tank. It was an absolute PITA to drill the small holes in the frame to mount the compressor and tank while on my back with a 18v hand drill. I used Viair's bracket to mount the compressor, and I fabricated a few mounting arms for the tank from some thick angle. The hardest thing about using this location (passenger side under B pillar) is the DPF/exhaust is right in the way blocking the open side of the frame. Tightening bolts required some creative contortionism. I have air couplings under each front door with the line run across the truck in the transmission cross member. The compressor is powered by the #2 upfitter switch.

This will come in great for airing up/down tires for towing vs. putting around once we are there in addition to any other handy use I can think of.

Coupler:





Tee for air lines and front tank mount:



Tank:



Compressor:

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Old 01-20-2014, 04:48 PM
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Thanks for the post, this is on my to do list
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Old 01-20-2014, 04:51 PM
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Wow that is simply awesome! How does it run?
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Old 01-20-2014, 04:53 PM
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Can you post some pics of how you wired it to the upfitter switches?
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Old 01-20-2014, 05:18 PM
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It runs really nice. It's a hum you can hear while driving, and it takes a bit over three minutes to fill the tank. It includes a pressure switch to turn the compressor on/off automatically as needed. I positioned the tank drain at the back and the tank is mounted slightly uphill to encourage condensation to collect at the drain. It also has a safety pressure valve on top of the tank to prevent over-filling the tank. Obviously, the compressor will need to run for anything more than a few psi in a tire, but it will do the job. I usually go from 60psi unloaded to 70-75 when towing, so this can do that if I'm not near my big compressor. Also, having a blow gun at hand is always handy for a number of things.

The tank is tucked up snug under the cab with a small clearance so that bumps don't cause it to hit the cab. The compressor is directly behind the cab mount bushing which adds extra protection. I couldn't mount it on the driver's side due to the e-brake cable and numerous lines run on the inside channel of the driver's side frame. The air intake and filter for the compressor run up through a factory grommet behind the passenger back seat and into the cab to keep a clean air supply.

As for wiring, it was really simple. The compressor simply has a power and ground. The tank-mounted pressure switch has a power supply, remote (switch) wire, compressor power lead, and ground. I tied the grounds in together and grounded them to the frame, and I hooked up the compressor power lead to the compressor. I tied the remote and power supply lines together and simply ran a single wire up to the upfitter leads under the drivers dash. That way, when the switch is on, the compressor runs until full. There is a factory grommet in the floor to the inside of the B-pillar that was directly above the pressure switch. I simply ran the power lead up through that grommet, through the passenger door channels, fished it through the dash to the driver's side, and connected directly to the 25 amp #2 upfitter lead. No problem at all. If I want the compressor to run, I simply lift the switch and keep it up as long as I need the compressor (which switches on and off automatically to keep the tank full). When I'm done with it for a while, I flip the switch off and bleed the pressure off the tank.

Like I said, drilling the frame was a red blooded beech. Laying in drill chips is no fun either. This led me to promptly upgrade my creeper to a much better unit. Other than that, the hardest part was getting the bolts snugged up with no clearance between the frame channel and the DPF/exhaust. Also, getting the grommet back in place for the air supply line behind the back passenger seat was a PITA.

--nathan

Last edited by siver_pilate; 01-20-2014 at 05:22 PM.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:00 PM
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Which compressor did you go with? Or do you have the part #'s?
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:03 PM
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Sweet! I helped my buddy install the Vlair air system with train horns on his dodge...pretty sweet set up. I plan to add this as well later this summer.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:12 PM
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Nice! I like how you mounted the coupler beneath the door. This would be a handy addition to my truck down the line.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:26 PM
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I got the onboard kit which has everything you need. Viair has them listed on their site. I went through Amazon and picked it up for a little under $360. It has a 450C constant duty compressor. The compressor draws 19 amps at peak and outputs 1.66 cfm at 0 psi. It's not a shop compressor, but it will get the job done out and about, and it beats the pants off of the cigarette lighter cheapos.

This This
is the kit I bought, slightly higher in price.

There's a video that EpicCowlick posted of the Viair inflating his 315/60/20, 35" tire (he also has an install video I referenced before the install). The onboard system inflated the tire from 18 psi to 62 psi in 8 minutes. For comedy sake, he tried it with a little cigarette lighter pump. At 30 minutes, it had inflated to 23psi and melted. To be fair, the cheapo pump was an 8-minute duty cycle pump that was more appropriate for bicycle tires. Other pumps will do a better job and not fall apart, but Viair does make a well built pump.

--nathan
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:45 PM
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Nice install. As for drilling into the frame, a way to avoid doing that is to get a piece Of aluminum or steel or whatever to use as an adapter plate. You drill holes in it to match up to existing holes in the frame, and attach your compressor bracket to that bracket.

I bet after a few times of using it you'll want the 5 gallon tank. I have a 5 gallon tank and even that hardly gives me a few blasts with the air took, you'll see how quickly it goes with a 2.5 gallon tank, same thing applies when airing up tires. Lol and then you'll want a bigger a compressor to fill up the tank quicker, get a 480C when you get to that stage

Nice work!


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