Hints and Tips for the beginners

Items regarding general airbrushing techniques, not having to do with specific paint types/
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#1 Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 21:12 pm

Just to keep this a quick read, let's keep this too a single item per post. Feel free to make as many posts as you like 8-)
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#2 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 21:13 pm

Don't make an expensive airbrush your first.

If you like, definitively your second.
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#3 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 21:19 pm

Three most important items in airbrushing?

THIN, THIN, THIN

The viscosity you want, that I hear mentioned the most, is equivalent to skim milk. Here is an important extra. Don't just assume you know what that is like, pour some room temperature skim milk in the reservoir of your airbrush, swirl it around a bit. Try shooting it and see what pressures you need.
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#4 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 22:16 pm

Don't set your air pressure too high.

Besides damaging the airbrush, you'll get better paint flow with a lower setting
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#5 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 22:30 pm

Canned Propellant is expensive! Unless you already have the knack and are maybe out on the road, Canned Propellant is worse than rattle cans. I attribute this to the eco-nuts who know better in this world what is good for the Earth and the individual. Now if you aren't getting Ozone Safe Propellant for Airbrushes, you are a climate change denier.

Well without going down that rabbit hole, there are at least two alternatives to buying a compressor. One is a tire, preferably a car tire (truck tires are much too heavy to lug around every time you need to refill them and bike tires don't last long enough). Much more convenient are the compressed air containers. These are air compressor tanks, without the attached compressors.
Just be aware, in all likelihood you will be running around town looking for a place to refill your tire or tank with a rocket almost 90% painted at home.
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#6 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Sun, 05 Aug 18, 22:38 pm

Following up on the propellant supply,

Most of the compressors I have seen that come with airbrush sets are tankless. In the end you want a compressor with a holding tank, unless you want to go deaf. I understand the decibels of running tankless compressors have dropped significantly, but the constant noise if not that loud, still has an effect on your hearing.

Inexpensive Compressors of the oiless and requiring oil type, can be found at Harbor Freight and/or Home
Depot.
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#7 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Tue, 07 Aug 18, 16:17 pm

needle size is important!

Without knowing what I had purchased, I was trying to lay cover coats to a Big Bertha with a 0.3mm dual action airbrush. That's like trying to paint a house with a trimming brush. :shock:
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#8 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Tue, 07 Aug 18, 23:26 pm

Now, I have heard this oft repeated statement about airbrushing, but in my experience I have not found it to have an effect. That statement is if you use an airbrush for oil paints, you cannot use it again for acrylics or it will cause fish eyes.

I'm not all that familiar with the exact nomenclature for all paints, but I would say that the aircraft dopes used in model rocketry are some of the most aggressive of the oil based coverings. Now it may be that I am just so OCD in my cleaning, or that there is such a long delay between my projects that I have never had the issue with an acrylic finish "fish-eyeing" after applying dope. I may have been lucky or as previously stated some other reason, but in my experience it is not an absolute.

YMMV
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#9 Re: Hints and Tips for the beginners

Post by bernomatic » Mon, 03 Dec 18, 02:07 am

If you go on youtube or visit other places looking for hints or tips on airbrushing, one such "help" you may find is to remove the handle covering the needle. Almost everyone I have watched has it removed. It makes it simpler and easier to make some adjustments and to clean the brush and a whole host of other operations while using the airbrush.

I learned my lesson tonight on why not to do it.
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You guessed it. With my luck (or lack thereof), I ended up dropping the airbrush and the needle ended up getting bent. :cry: What makes me upset at myself is that today is the first day I was not putting the handle back on after clearing/cleaning the airbrush. I was thinking to myself how much faster things were going, and basically patting myself on the back for finally getting with it and being more like the airbrush wizards. I put the the airbrush into the holder while getting ready to do some other stuff, when it slid out and sought the floor like a Mosquito on a A3-4T. :shock:

Not only did the needle get bent, but it was driven up into the needle nozzle and stuck such that I had to use a pair of pliers to pull it out. These needles, nozzles and nozzle caps are machined to a precise diameter. It was obvious that that diameter for the nozzle and nozzle cap had been deformed, and even though the nozzle wasn't cracked (which makes the airbrush basically useless), it was no longer the fine 0.2mm that I need on occasion. So even if I did straighten the needle out, there would be other issues using the airbrush.

The replacement parts run about $10 for the less expensive version and will be delivered by Wednesday (three days) if I order within the next 18 hours.
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