Cheap Airbrushes??

Discussion in 'Modeling' started by r2800doublewasp, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. r2800doublewasp

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    Hi, I am considering getting an airbrush for my models. What are good airbrushes to get that are cheap and easy to use? Also, are there airbrushes that do not use a compressor? Thanks R2800
    (Btw could someone give me a quick tutorial on how to use them, that would would be very helpful)
     
  2. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    I can't really advise on what's available in the US, as there will be many price variations. But, there are probably more airbrushes available now than here were around three or four years ago, and some very good deals to be had, due to their use in such places as beauty parlours, believe it or not! Here in the UK, a reasonable double action brush can be obtained for around £30 to £40, with prices climbing to around £200 !! You don't neccessarily have to buy an expensive, top of the range well-known brand but, as with any tool, try to buy the best you can afford to meet your current and future needs. Names such as Badger, Aztec, De Vilbiss etc are a start point, and they all offer reasonably priced units alongside their more expensive 'professional' brushes. I use an AB, which is made by a small company in the UK, looks like a copy of an Iwata, and works beautifully - and was only about £30. (My first brush was £75 over 30 years ago!!)
    Before rushing out to buy one thouigh, consider what you'll be using it for. If it's just, for instance, for overall single colours, clear coats etc, then perhaps an inexpensive, single action, suction fed brush will do. If you want fine line capability and, for example, mottle camouflage in small scales, then a double action brush might be best.
    (The single action type normally have a spray pattern, depending on the nozzle fitted, between around a quarter of an inch and two inches. Double action, gravity fed brushes are normally around one inch down to as little as half a millimetre.)
    Most air brushes can be fitted with an adaptor to allow them to work from cans of Air Brush Propellant. However, there is little control over these cans, and they start to loose pressure, and therefore efficiency, once the contents drops to below about 50%. The main thing is their cost - they are relatively expensive and, on average, the cost of about 8 to 10 cans wouls buy a reasonable compressor. The average 1/48th scale aircraft model would use most of one can, allowing for preparation and cleaning.
    As for learning to use an airbrush, some kits, such as the Badger range, often have a small booklet showing basic tips, and their are books available (try the library) covering virtually all aspects of airbrush work. However, all the reading in the world will not replace practice. When you get a brush, obtain some cheap water colour paints or ink, and practice spraying various patterns etc on paper or card. If the paper is thin, then you'll notice the paint/ink will spread as it's absorbed, so a stiffer paper will be better. Always better to practice and test for an hour if neccessary, than spend ten seconds ruining a model!
    Hope this helps a bit, and I'm sure other will throw in some words of wisdom!
     
  3. r2800doublewasp

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    Thank you!!! That was very helpful. I think I will probably go with a double action for I have several Luftwaffe aircraft in my stash! :)
     
  4. kgambit

    kgambit Active Member

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  5. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    Try to keep the compressor small too. You don't need a giant 150 dollar one, just one that puts out enought PSI for your needs..
     
  6. r2800doublewasp

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    Thanks B-17, I saw your do 217 build(which looks great btw) and I was wondering-What type of airbrush do you have , like the make and model and compressor etc. Thanks, Jack
     
  7. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    Hi Jack. I have two airbrushes. The Badger 200 is the airbrush I am using now. I also have the Aztek A4709 which was an expensive one given as a gift, so was the Badger. I think the Badger is around 40 dollars in most shops.

    The Compressor is the Paasche D500 which was given as a gift as well. It's about 70 dollars

    Also, you need a cord to connect airbrush and compressor

    I think though, if you look around on ebay you can find some VERY cheap compressors and airbrushes.

    Hope this helps.
     
  8. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    with the compressor, I bought a good regulator and a glass bowl that removes the moisture from the air. Having a constant pressure and dry air is more important to me that a fancy spray jet

    I have a huge compressor, a 2 hp job that I bought for $30 (AUS) on ebay. I dont just use it for modelling, but I did spend quite a bit of time and effort getting the regulator and the air driers (???) working the way I liked.

    I actually bought the cheapest airbrush I could find.....$22 Australian at a sale at the local hardware store. They couldnt sell the thing, and finished selling at a loss I think. Works fine for me....no big spatters or dribbles, but doesnt block either....just applies the paint nice and even

    But I am just a learner myself
     
  9. r2800doublewasp

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    Thanks everyone for the suggestions!
     
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