Compressed Air Cleaning of Electronics

Quick question. Do you know of any compressed air source to clean dust out around electronics that does not cost an arm and a leg like the compressed air cans used for cleaning the inside of computers? For example, maybe some sort of device that can pumped up with a bicycle pump and reused?

Many small handheld vacuum cleaners can have the hose connected on the "exhaust" end, thereby creating a nice "blower". I often use mine this way.

You could also blow up a large baloon with a straw in the end. Pinch the straw to stop airflow, release a bit to let air out.

Another thought would be a cheap baloon pump. It has a pointy end that could be directed at the equipment and gently pumped to blow. Or, you could use the cheap baloon pump to inflate baloons to use (along with a straw) in the above example.

Humm, how about a small airbrush unit? I've never used one, but it could do the trick....

Or how about this one from eBay (refillable):

Or this one:


Buy a small compressor with an air and oil/water seperater and adjust the pressure and blow with a blower nozzle. You can use it to fill your car tires too.
It refills itself when it is empty.
How about a 1-gallon pancake air compressor? They're small, portable, and inexpensive for a tool of this flexibility and usefulness. $49 or so at Walmart or other big box stores - that's what I paid for mine. They usually come with a few attachments/nozzles. Compared to cans of compressed air, a mini air compressor such as this will pay for itself in no time, as it is reusable. They also do not leave residue or freeze up like canned air can.

Downsides: extremely noisy, and the air pressure can be quite substantial (depending on gear or circumstance, it can be too high.) You may want to blast off some of the air from a loaded tank before pointing at your equipment. Then again, pressure this high can be quite useful for blowing out very dusty electronics.

I use mine quite a lot, esp. on vintage equipment and computers. I don't miss the expense and poor performance of "canned air".
Thanks for all creative and thoughtful suggestions. Audiogon is great !
Hi Noel, this is Duke from Madison. I had a friend at school that cleaned his old tubes using my airbrush rig, a Paasche. I am pretty certain they are all very similar, and he used to go at 35 PSI and under.

You have a lot of control over the spray tip and PSI. They all seemed to come with inline filtration.

Hope you can get a used one that works for you. I still have that Toshiba you sold me. Thanks a lot!
If you use an air compressor even with a water/oil aware there is still much moisture in the air stream! Dry air is only had if you can remove the "heat" from the air. This process leaves the moisture behind in a collector. Canned air is expensive and a hassel to use...but it is dry.