FT Curtis Air compressors are energy efficient and yer reliable compressors. The FS Curtis brand may represent the new normal in the industrial equipment manufacturing field.
They offer a large range of air compressors from medium-duty to large scale industrial air compressors. In this buyer’s guide, we will review where are those compressors made, the product line, pros and cons, parts, service, and much more.
Where Are FS Curtis Compressors Made
One of the significant issues in today’s market is the question of the origin of the equipment sold by any manufacturer or distributor.
“Made in the USA” labels are often a considerable part of the decision on which piece of equipment to purchase. This is a reasonable question considering the sometimes questionable manufacturing and quality control coming out of some offshore facilities.
In 2005 Curtis -Toledo, as it was then known, was purchased by the Fusheng Industrial company from Taiwan. The company name was changed to FS Curtis to reflect this ownership.
Almost immediately, some of the manufacturing in the US was moved offshore to Taiwan. We should note that most of the larger parts of the FS Curtis line of compressors are still manufactured in the US and then assembled with some imported parts.
The question remains whether this constitutes “Made in the USA” or should these products be advertised as “Assembled in the USA?”
How do the Top Players Stack Up?
How do FS Curtis air compressors stack up against the competition? Good Question.
Making comparisons of industrial air compressors is a challenge because of the variables involved.
Making sure that you are comparing apples to apples is challenging when it comes to finding easily compare models and features among the different manufacturers.
Looking at the comparison data from these three manufacturers, you get an understanding of how difficult it can be to compare models from different manufacturers accurately.
The variables, features, and technologies included from each company work to create enough minor differences to affect the overall outcomes.
As an example, the FS Curtis ML10 is the most expensive of the air compressors in our comparison. On the other hand, it also offers twice the airflow as the other two compressors.
The airflow is a significant difference and may well be the deciding factor. Overall, looking at features and price, the major manufacturers compare favorably at features and price.
User Rating & Reviews
Comments about FS Curtis air compressors on user and manufacturers forums are excellent sources of information about the experiences of users of industrial air compressors.
In general, we found that the FS Curtis compressor users were happy with their purchases. Some of the comments and issues that users of FS Curtis air compressors report include:
Among the quietest compressors – Many users of FS Curtis air compressors rank them as among the quietest air compressors on the market.
Delivers more air than comparable compressors – The FS Curtis compressors typically deliver more air at a higher pressure than comparably sized compressor from other manufacturers.
Durable and reliable – Many users of FS Curtis air compressors point to the durability and reliability of these compressors. In some instances, users report that FS Curtis air compressors more than 20 years old are still running daily
On the downside, a few users report that on the newer FS Curtis air compressors built since the purchase of the company by Fusheng, there have been growing incidents of faulty small parts from the factory with relief valves being the most often reported problem.
Full Line of Industrial Compressors
A visit to the FS Curtis products page reveals a full range of compressors in all sizes and types. These include:
Rotary Screw Air Compressors
FS Curtis produces a full line of rotary screw air compressors from 8 KW to 260 KW. These rotary screw air compressors feature fixed mode operation, variable speed operation, direct-drive operation, single-stage, and two-stage designs.
Reciprocating Air Compressors
If a reciprocating style of compressor better fits your needs, the FS Curtis line has a wide range of reciprocating compressors.
With power options from 5 horsepower to 125 horsepower, the FS Curtis line of reciprocating air compressors is versatile and has a style and capacity for any job.
Oil-free Air Compressors
For those applications where air quality is critical, the FS Curtis line of oil-less air compressors is a match.
Horsepower ratings between 4 and 15 horsepower coupled with whisper-quiet operation make these compressors ideal for installations where air quality is critical, and reliability must be unquestioned.
Air-treatment and accessories – Speaking of air quality, you need not shop elsewhere for the components of your compressed air system. FS Curtis manufactures a complete line of air supply filters, dryers, and accessories including:
Aftermarket solutions – To ensure that your FS Curtis compressor keeps running reliably, a complete line of aftermarket solutions is available from FS Curtis. These products include: Maintenance Kits, compressor lubricants, extended warranties
Support and Service – When Things Go Wrong
FS Curtis is represented across the US by a network of authorized dealers. Dealing with warranty concerns and service issues must be through an authorized dealer.
FS Curtis does not deal directly with users of their equipment. Having made that clear, repair and maintenance parts are easy to source through dealers and on the internet.
Searching for FS Curtis parts returns hundreds of sources, offering parts of the entire line of FS Curtis compressors.
Cost-wise, parts of FS Curtis air compressors are a bit more expensive than the rest of the industry.
However, users report that the FS Curtis air compressors are comparable to other compressors in costs to operate and maintain on a long term basis.
As an example, we picked several common maintenance parts and looked at the comparable prices available on the internet.
Overall, the cost of maintenance parts and kits for the FS Curtis air compressors look to be higher than their competitors.
What this doesn’t consider the maintenance schedules recommended by the manufacturers for these parts. Depending on the duty cycle of these parts, the actual cost of maintenance may be lower.
Pros and Cons
To bring all this information together in one easy to understand the list is difficult, but we will do our best. Here are the Pros and Cons that we have seen most often when looking at the FS Curtis line of air compressors.
What We Like
- Mostly built in the USA
- Service and warranty work are easy to find with a wide network of dealers
- Service and Maintenance parts are easy to source
- Users seem to be satisfied with the reliability and durability of the FS Curtis air compressors overall
- Typically deliver more air at a higher pressure than comparable models from other manufacturers
What We DisLike
- More expensive
- Uses some parts manufactured offshore so should be considered Assembled in the USA
- Maintenance and Service parts may be more expensive in the long run
Parts & Quality Control
In the end, FS Curtis may represent the new normal in the industrial equipment manufacturing field.
Many industries are seeing the purchase of a long time USA based companies by foreign investors and becoming a part of a multi-national conglomerate. Economics is the driving force behind these types of consolidations.
How this plays out for the consumers is questionable. Product quality control that was once easy to manage when parts were made and assembled in one plant is now much more difficult.
Parts of a single product may be made in half a dozen different countries and shipped to one assembly point. Quality control can suffer.
Many user comments seem to find this true about the FS Curtis line of air compressors since the acquisition of the Curtis company by the Fusheng organization.
Time will ultimately tell how quality control and customer satisfaction are affected by these types of problems.
FS Curtis has been manufacturing industrial equipment in the Midwest of the United States since 1854.
Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, and known initially as Curtis and Hiles, the company went through several name changes before the introduction of their first line of air compressors in 1897.
This company prides itself on producing high-quality products that are mission-critical to many industries.
The FS Curtis stated the goal is to produce energy-efficient and reliable products at a reasonable price. Their vision is to meet these goals by incorporating the latest technology and engineering techniques.
Doing your due diligence and investigating as much as possible the background, quality, and market reactions to the industrial air compressor you are purchasing are the best means for making an informed and sound decision. We hope that the information provided in this article helps in that process. Good luck with your search.