Recently I bought a small, cheap high-volume low-pressure (HVLP) paint sprayer for a project I’m working on. The sprayer came with a quick-connect “plug” threaded onto its standard 1/4″ MIP air inlet, so I started shopping for a matching pneumatic coupler to put on my compressor hose.
I was quickly confused by the selection of different air tool coupler systems. And because I’m pinching pennies, I also rued the cost of a coupler set in addition to the 1/4″ thread fittings that I was already splicing into my my old compressor’s hose. Because I have only two rarely-changed air “tools”—the sprayer and a tire filler—it seemed silly to buy into a quick-connect setup.
I resigned myself to keeping wrenches and thread tape handy, and just unscrewing the tools whenever I needed to change them.
But when I removed the coupler plug from the sprayer, I noticed the plug’s FIP thread cup had a washer, for a tight seal without thread tape. After a moment’s thought, I extracted the washer and stuffed it into the female end I had just installed on my compressor hose.
Now I can change tools without thread tape or wrenches. Unscrewing the hose takes a little longer than pulling a quick-coupler sleeve or snap ring, but I think it’s quick enough.