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Author Topic: Buying an Airbrush  (Read 5246 times)

Sonparc

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Buying an Airbrush
« on: March 13, 2010, 03:16:26 PM »

I have never used an airbrush but would like to improve my boat painting so have been thinking about investing in an airbrush kit.If I was to spend about 100 would I get something worth having ( including a compressor ) and which make would anyone recommend?

I have  happily used Halfords spray cans so far but with so many cars now having metallic paint the choice of colours is much reduced. Also of course they are unsuitable for detail painting.

Thanks
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Roger in France

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2010, 07:38:08 AM »

Hi Sonparc,

I think you would be most unlikely to be able to buy a complete set up for 100.

With airbrushes and compressors there is no truer fact than you get what you pay for. A good airbrush is a precision tool and that does not come cheap. A decent compressor which is not too noisy to have running beside you is not to cheap.

I would recommend plenty of research before you buy. Two books I would recommend are "How to use an Airbrush" by Robert Downie and, rather more advanced, "All About Techniques in Airbrush" by Barron's.

I would also recommend a specialist airbrush retailer for advice. Have a look in the "Mayhem Traders Directory".

You can use a basic, cheaper airbrush for many jobs, especially when covering medium to large surfaces but any fine work requires something better.

A last bit of advice, when you have an airbrush and you have cleaned it really well, clean it again!

All the above from bitter experience!

Roger in France
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essex2visuvesi

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2010, 08:25:56 AM »

Hi Sonparc,

I think you would be most unlikely to be able to buy a complete set up for 100.

With airbrushes and compressors there is no truer fact than you get what you pay for. A good airbrush is a precision tool and that does not come cheap. A decent compressor which is not too noisy to have running beside you is not to cheap.

I would recommend plenty of research before you buy. Two books I would recommend are "How to use an Airbrush" by Robert Downie and, rather more advanced, "All About Techniques in Airbrush" by Barron's.

I would also recommend a specialist airbrush retailer for advice. Have a look in the "Mayhem Traders Directory".

You can use a basic, cheaper airbrush for many jobs, especially when covering medium to large surfaces but any fine work requires something better.

A last bit of advice, when you have an airbrush and you have cleaned it really well, clean it again!

All the above from bitter experience!

Roger in France

Seconded on all counts

Also dont use air in a can
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2010, 10:57:15 AM »


I Have heard some great reports about these , the company is good to deal with i use them for tools and had some air brush parts as well but not a compressor as i already had one but I would buy of them if I did.

peter

http://www.rdgtools.co.uk/acatalog/AIRBRUSH_KITS_AND_SPARES.html
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dougal99

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2010, 09:03:24 PM »

Take a look at

http://www.everythingairbrush.com/index.html


No connection just thought they do good deals

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Peter Fitness

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2010, 10:45:23 PM »

I agree with Roger's comments about buying quality, but I've been very interested in the comments about the Hobby King twin action airbrush which, at US$18, sounds like a steal. The blog by users of this unit can be found here http://www.hobbycity.com/hobbycity/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=5728 together with some examples of the art work created using the airbrush. You would still need to acquire a compressor.

I have a Badger 200 unit which I bought back in the 70s, and it has been very good, although it doesn't do very fine work too well any more, but perhaps that's just me  :-) I am using a compressor that I also use to operate an air wrench, as well as inflate car tyres etc, which has an adjustable pressure control. I operate the airbrush a about 40 psi or less. I am considering ordering one of the HK airbrushes when new stock arrives, as all the reviews have been very positive.

Peter.
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Sonparc

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2010, 03:50:53 PM »

Many thanks all for your info. and advice, I am researching your suggestions and going to the library in search of the books.

Sonparc
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tt1

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2010, 04:49:20 PM »

Hi Sonparc, have to agree with Peter (HS93), rdg tools are good to deal with and their current offer of two airbrushes complete with compressor for 80 is excellent value. I have the the compressor as advertised following Peter's link - excellent piece of kit, well regulated ,consistent pressure output and quiet.
       Considering Roger's point, be sure in your mind what you want the airbrush to do, i.e. is it for use as a fine quality spray gun or will you be venturing down the 'arty' path also using inks etc? no point paying the earth for ultra fine pieces of kit which graphic artists would be proud of if you don't get the best use out of it.
       Good quality paints will go a long way to achieving a good spray finish with all but the really bottom end airbrushes. There are some excellent tutorial sites on the web for info and demonstration - try also youtube- there's plenty on there.
             
                         Regards, Tony.
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2010, 07:03:33 PM »

I reckon a lot of people don't actually know the capebileties of an air brush , some think it can replace a paint can from halfords and that you can spray a hull no problem some actually can but the majority of people by air brushes more suited to plastic modeling and for covering very small area's  I got hold of one to save getting the big compressor out for doing small stuff could not take to it and nor do a lot of people try and borrow one first or go and see someone who uses one and get the same type of kit..


peter
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Ticonderoga

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2010, 10:40:57 PM »

Hi Guys,

I don't have too much experience painting large hulls and superstructures (1:96 Tico Cruiser), none really, so this might sound like a lame question, but I am assuming that an airbrush would be the way to go from the beginning, given I have no previous bad habits.... :D  ?

I was slowly wandering down the Badger track, but maybe the HK would be good. The review on the other thread seemed to point out excellent detail work, but I am wondering if the same device would be good for larger areas, i.e. hulls etc. I am assuming that varying nozzle sizes, dictate fineness of spray (Jet) (Peter F?)

BTW are there some good resources about paint schemes? By that I mean, surface preparation, types of undercoat, smoothing techniques, sealing etc?

Regards,

Tico
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knoby

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2010, 11:33:22 PM »


I have to agree with HS93, you really need to decide what you want to paint before considering what type of airbrush to get.

If your main requirement is painting of hulls & superstructures then I personally wouldn't go for an airbrush, a miniature spray gun would be far more suitable. To get a good finish on a hull , a spray pattern of a least 40mm is desirable, whilst some airbrushes are capable of giving this size, the small size of the airbrush pot can mean several refills to apply 1 coat.

mini spray guns are capable of delivering small spray patterens as well as larger ones, & tend to be easier to get the hang of using. The larger pot size, usually around 125 ml, also means that you can complete a coat in one go. another advantage of srayguns is that they can handle thicker paint types, i.e. enamel, polyurethane & car paint due to their relatively large nozzle size.

i am not suggesting that an airbrush is a bad idea, just thought it worth mentioning that other forms of spraying equipment are worth considering. I'm lucky as i have the choice of guns & airbrushes, but find i use the gun for over 90% of my model boat spraying requirements.

Hope this helps rather than confuses. Glenn.
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Ticonderoga

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2010, 11:49:44 PM »

Glen thanks for the advice. I had not even considered a "mini spray gun". Do you have any links to vendors or makes handy so that I can do some research here in Aus?

Thanks in advance.
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Ticonderoga

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2010, 11:52:58 PM »

Glen,

Just found this link, first look, is this the kind of device you are referring to?

Regards,

Tico
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tt1

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2010, 01:12:06 AM »

Hello Tico,
           there's a fair range here that just about covers most requirements be it airbrush or spraygun,
     
                      http://www.simple2trade.com/prod5.asp?ID=264&offset=&prod_id=85

                 Regards, Tony.
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Ticonderoga

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2010, 01:50:22 AM »

Thanks Tony,

The prices are much better in the UK, even with the shipping costs they are much cheaper than what I have found so far. Admittedly after only a cursory look.

http://www.airless.com.au/ATOMEX%20Mini%20Spray%20Gun.htm

I will get on with the hunt. i think I will get a mini gun to start with, then look at the airbrush as the need arises.

Now to figure out the right paints, thinners and filler materials that are available in Brisbane. No Halfords here (I think)

Thanks again,

Tico
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knoby

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2010, 07:21:08 PM »

Hi Tico, I'm not really sure whats available to you in Aus, but a few pointers might help you.

A gravity fed gun ( pot on top of gun) is probably the best way to go, as this enables small amounts of paint to be used without the it spitting. suction feed guns ( pot on bottom) require larger volumes of paint & are prone to spitting as the level gets low.

A nozzle size of 0.8 mm on a mini gun is ideal for the sort of things you will be painting, altough 1 mm would do OK too. Make sure the gun you choose has a flat spray pattern, some have round patterns making even finishes on flatisn panels hard to achieve.

Ideally the gun should have adjustable spray pattern & trigger travel. The trigger travel will limit the amount of paint that comes out of the gun & is very useful when using smaller spray patterns as these concentrate the amount of paint being applied to one place.

Adjustable air flow is also desirable but not essential as you can always turn down the  air pressure at the compressor.

 I have been a car painter for 25 years. My personal mini gun is a devilbiss SRi, this is a top quality professional gun & completely over the top for our model requirements. equally good results are achievable with cheaper guns.

Feel free to ask or pm me if u require any more help, hope this has been of some use though
cheers Glenn
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Peter Fitness

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2010, 09:01:00 PM »

I am assuming that varying nozzle sizes, dictate fineness of spray (Jet) (Peter F?)

That's right, Tico.

There are no Halfords in Australia, as far as I know they are only in the UK. Auto accessory shops generally stock a good range of auto spray cans, some of which are suitable for model use, however, Bunnings are also a good source of paint, as well as the dedicated paint specialists.

BTW, I have ordered one of the HK airbrushes, so I will let you know how it performs once it arrives.

Peter.
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Ticonderoga

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Re: Buying an Airbrush
« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2010, 05:39:38 AM »

Cheers guys, thanks for the tips. Feel like I am on the right track.

Will be grateful for a heads up on the HK, thanks Peter.
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