Which Foot Control do I need, Electric or Variable Speed?
A popular question that we are asked at Profitable Hobbies is, “Which foot control should I use?”
Basically, the electric foot control is just an on/off switch that is operated by foot. It is most commonly used to turn a continuous running compressor on and off as you engrave. When you press the pedal down, the compressor turns on, release and the compressor turns off. You do need to keep your foot on the pedal for the power to be delivered to whatever you have plugged into the foot control. It can be used to operate any 110v electrical device, but is most commonly used (in the engraving world) to operate a compressor.
The Variable Speed Foot Control is connected between the Filter/Regulator/Lubricator and your handpiece. As you press the pedal down, air is delivered to the handpiece. The amount of air delivered depends on the pressure applied. This is very nice for controlling the speed of the handpiece with your foot – instead of having to reach over and adjust your regulator. It is most commonly used with a tank type compressor, where you have air available all of the time. You could also use this foot control with a tank less compressor if you have the compressor running all the time, but you would not want to be trying to turn the compressor on with one foot, and control the speed of your handpiece with the other foot – this might be awkward.