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Diesel powers air compressor, generator on work truck

Diesel-powered compresserator from John Deere
DIESEL OPTION: You now have the option of a diesel engine for key tools you use to work on equipment.
Editors’ Choice: You can now put diesel fuel in the shop equipment you take to the field.

There is an art to equipping a utility vehicle that will serve as a repair truck. Most people have their own ideas about what needs to be included. Two items common to most trust utility trucks, however, are an air compressor and a generator. Two things you often need to get up and running again are air and electricity to power the tools that make the repairs.

Typically, air compressors and generators in utility repair trucks are powered by gasoline engines. John Deere has stepped up the game by introducing diesel power for those tools.

What’s the advantage? One huge advantage, John Deere representatives insist, is that you no longer have to carry two types of fuel.

Most equipment working in the field runs on diesel fuel, so most utility and supply trucks carry a diesel tank. Until now, the truck also had to carry a small gas tank to supply gasoline for the air compressor and generator. With this new innovation from John Deere, you can eliminate the gas tank. In most situations, all you’ll need is the diesel tank.

John Deere still offers gas engines on air compressors and generators, if you prefer. All of the company’s products for working on equipment are featured in the Home and Workshop Products guide.

You can now get a Kohler 9.1-hp overhead valve diesel engine on a unit Deere calls the “compresserator.” It features an air compressor that can produce 15.7 cubic feet per minute of air at 175 pounds per square inch and a 3,500-watt generator.

Electric start is standard. The diesel model comes with a glow-plug. List price for this combination unit with a diesel engine is $4,995. Visit

Three editors who chase down new products at farm shows every year reviewed this new product. They are Tom J. Bechman, Indiana Prairie Farmer; Lon Tonneson, Dakota Farmer; and Mindy Ward, Missouri Ruralist.

Tom’s take
This is another one of those “Why didn’t I think if that?” ideas. It seems like a no-brainer. If diesel engines are the most economical and dependable for farm equipment, then why not use them on the equipment that repairs farm equipment?

Lon’s views
I checked John Deere’s website and saw the advertised price of the diesel compresserator is about $2,600 more than a gas one for the same output capacity. Is it worth $2,600 to not have to carry cans of gas on the service truck?  I guess it depends on how much you’re going to use the compresserator in a day. If it’s going to take lots of gas, I can see the value in using diesel fuel from the fuel truck to refill the compresserator.

Mindy’s thoughts
I kind of like this idea. As a “gopher” on the farm, this would minimize those moments of deciding if I grabbed the right fuel can for the job. However, my husband might wince at the price and resort to using bigger markers for labeling fuel cans — I know color is everything, but in a hurry, I still sometimes forget which one is which.

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