Air Dryer for air compressor

What kind of Air Dryer set up’s is everyone using? I’m waiting on my Pro to show up but want to get my air set up in the mean time.

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I haven’t got my table yet but I have my compressor feeding a 22 feet of black iron with a drip leg going to a Schulz ADS20 then at the plasma cutter a motor guard filter and finally a desiccant filter.

BTW I live in Tennessee and humidity is hell in the summer so I went all out…


I live in Ohio so it can also get really humid. I was looking at the HF Air Dryer but wasn’t sure if it was a decent one or not. Just don’t want to waste money on junk. Thanks for the input.

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I looked at it too Schulz has 10 and 15 CFM units that are 50 & 100 less than the one I got for 749

I run the HF refrigerated dryer and it’s fantastic for the money. Down stream I have a 1 quart desiccant dryer and then a Motorguard right before the Plasma. My desiccant does pick up a little moisture that slips past the refrigerated dryer but not much and only on really humid days. I don’t anticipate having to change out the beads more than once a year. You could probably get away with a smaller one.

You’ll want a .01 micron filter between the desiccant and plasma. The Motorguard is .01 or there are other options online but they cost just as much or more. .01 will remove oil mist if you’re running a oiled pump. And having the filter downstream of the desiccant will prevent bits of the blue beads from getting into your torch and consumables. And it does happen, there are a few blue specs on my Motorguard filter here and there.

The Motorguard will also catch moisture but being a sealed unit it has no way to get rid of that moisture. If you live in a humid environment and rely on the Motorguard to remove moisture, you’ll end up with a soggy filter that looks like a wet roll of toilet paper every couple weeks and needs to be replaced or dried out.

The poor mans air dryer works great for me, I have a motorgaurd behind it and it is always dry as a bone.
A bit of work to assemble it but it was kinda fun.
Once crack the valves on the bottom and cut away.


I’m in Utah and have yet to research much about air dryers or what my setup will require. Probably time I do that. I really don’t want to have to do a long run of pipe like above. Obviously it’s effective, I just don’t want it on the wall.

@SWomack where in TN do you live? I’m in Murfreesboro.

I may go this route. Thanks for the info. Does anyone know if the Hypertherm Air Filter Filtration kit is the same as the Motorguard?

Between Tullahoma and Winchester.

No, it’s a 1 micron filter/water separator.

So would it be a bad idea to run both of them? I’m new to this. Just trying to get the best set up i can. Especially since i’m looking at adding a Powder Coating set up in the future.

Technically, if you have too many inline filters, water separators, or fittings and connections of any kind it can cause pressure drops and/or restrict your overall volume. I personally don’t run the Hypertherm filter on mine. It’s unnecessary after the Motorguard. If you have an oil less compressor you could probably skip the Motorguard and run the Hypertherm filter.

I don’t have an oil less compressor. I’ll just but the motorguard. Its cheaper than the Hypertherm anyways.

Thanks for the info.

I use the clamshell type filter, which takes the toilet paper roll looking cartridge (we know they are in short supply at the moment…). I am able to get excellent cuts of a thermal dynamics cutmaster. I dont have an air dryer. Having previously used a smallish compressor, I think (IMO) that air volume is key.

Moisture really is key IMHO. I moved from a little 30 gallon single stage Huskey to a 80 gal 2 stage 240 compressor and my cuts were remarkably better. But to get the perfect cuts, practically no bevel, and no dross, it took completely dry air to do it. It’s completely dependent on your environment of course and it’s fairly humid here.

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That makes sense- quite dry for me here in Southern Australia. Incidentally how much is an entry-level dryer for you guys in the US?

The common one for us hobbyists is the Harbor Freight refrigerated dryer and it’s $399 + tax. Not terrible and has worked great for me.

I am using a Sanborn 5hp motor 60gal compressor and just ordered the Everlast 52i cutter. I am in Tennessee and am curious as to what kind of dryer/filter system I should go with. Any suggestions?

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I replied to this above and the paper filter in my motorguard is dry as a bone. The air dryer has no problem with Tennessee humidity.