Craftsman has quietly introduced a new V20 cordless air compressor, model CMCC2520M1. Here’s the first thing on my mind – is this a clone of Dewalt’s FlexVolt cordless air compressor?
The short answer is no. Dewalt’s FlexVolt cordless air compressor is powered by a FlexVolt 60V Max Li-ion battery, while this Craftsman is powered by a V20/20V Max battery.
There are a lot of differences, starting with the control panel. Dewalt’s was unique, with a one-turn air regulator, while Craftsman’s gauge and regular panel is configured similar to that on Porter Cable’s typically $99 pancake-style air compressor, but with a single air outlet port.
The Craftsman cordless air compressor has a smaller tank than the Porter Cable corded compressor – 2.5 gallons compared to 6 gallons. Dewalt’s FlexVolt air compressor is the same size – 2.5 gallons.
Here are the Craftsman CMCC2520M1 specs:
- 2.5 gallon tank size
- 125 max PSI
- 1.3 SCFM at 40 PSI
- 1.0 SCFM at 90 PSI
- Weighs 19.4 lbs
- Can drive up to 700 nails on a single charge
- Brushless motor
- Oil-free pump
The “M1” kit comes with the CMCC2520 air compressor, a 4.0Ah battery and 4A charger.
Price: $269 for the kit
(Dewalt’s FlexVolt kit is currently $299.)
Let’s look at the competition.
Ridgid’s 18V air compressor might have a small tank, but that also makes it light and highly portable. It has grown in popularity over the years, and it’s ability to work with one or two batteries adds to its versatility.
While not quite as pro-oriented as the Ridgid cordless air compressor, Ryobi’s comes at a very attractive price point – it’s currently $158 for the 2.0Ah kit, $179 for the 4.0Ah kit, or $129 for the bare tool.
Metabo also announced a new cordless air compressor in 2019, but it doesn’t seem to have hit the USA market yet.
Craftsman is showing off their new cordless air compressor being used with an impact wrench to remove lug nuts off a car or truck wheel, but that seems a bit extreme of an application for an air compressor of this size and capacity, cordless or not. From what I’ve seen, smaller and weaker air compressors can drive impact wrenches, but it can just be a very slow process.
Compressors of this size and airflow are often much better suited for construction-related tasks, such as driving air nailers, than more continuous-use air tools such as impact wrenches or die grinders. They’re also great for tire fill-ups, although cordless inflators are often more convenient, especially those with auto shut-off pressure sensors.
Powered by a 20V Max Li-ion battery, this new Craftsman compressor is going to be less powerful that Dewalt’s FlexVolt compressor. Still, it can reach a max pressure of 125 PSI, which is respectable. Dewalt’s FlexVolt air compressor can fill up its 2.5 gallon tank with a max pressure of 135 PSI, which means it’ll hold a bit more air.
The 2.5 gallon air tank of Craftsman’s new V20 compressor gives it an advantage over Ryobi’s 18V compressor, although it’s likely priced higher. To Ryobi’s advantage, they have 2Ah, 4Ah, and bare tool versions of their compressor. It’s unclear as to whether Craftsman’s air compressor will also be available in bare tool format, but after 2-1/2 years there’s still no FlexVolt bare-tool.
Overall, I’d say this is a nicely-spec’ed cordless air compressor from Craftsman, and it should serve DIYer’s needs quite well. It might not have as fancy a regulator as Dewalt’s FlexVolt, but the 2-gauge and separate regulator knob is typical.
Update: We’ve learned that the kit is priced at $269. Dewalt’s FlexVolt kit is $299.