carolinaboy

Airbrush Care/help

15 posts in this topic

Ok so I've been using my Iwata Revo. BR for about a couple days now painting some lures, mainly shad colors. But I've noticed that I am getting splatter and my paint is not always spraying out evenly. I am using a big compressor for contractors. Could this be a problem? Not being able to adjust the air very easily? IDK, what I need to do. I am using Createx Paint, and cleaning out the cup with water in between colors and back washing it to get all the color out. I am using a wet paper towel to wipe the needle off extremely carefully.

So what else do I need to be doing? I am just trying to practice a while and I don't know if I am missing anything. I am honestly teaching myself so I could be doing something extremely wrong possibly unsure.gif

So you guys got any suggestions?

Thanks

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every once in a while (at least once a week if you paint a lot) you need to take your brush apart and clean inside the air cap and nozzle and such, to make sure that the air has a clean path too. Another possibility for the splattering is the paint could be too thick, if thats it just try thinning it a little more, but it sounds more like there is paint that your not cleaning out. Good luck, and there should be instructions on the Iwata site on how to get to those parts if your unfamiliar.

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I also use an Iwata Revolution BR and shoot Createx at 30-40 psi with no problem. When you say 'splatter' you need to know whether it is spraying out of the a/b inconsistently or whether you may be holding the a/b too close to the lure, causing the paint to blow around and bounce off the target area onto lower areas on the lure. If you are getting a consistent stream of dry air from the compressor, there should be no problem. I assume it has a moisture trap and an oil trap (if the compressor uses oil). Water or oil in the air stream can cause splattering.

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I also use an Iwata Revolution BR and shoot Createx at 30-40 psi with no problem. When you say 'splatter' you need to know whether it is spraying out of the a/b inconsistently or whether you may be holding the a/b too close to the lure, causing the paint to blow around and bounce off the target area onto lower areas on the lure. If you are getting a consistent stream of dry air from the compressor, there should be no problem. I assume it has a moisture trap and an oil trap (if the compressor uses oil). Water or oil in the air stream can cause splattering.

Yeah I have a water/oil trap on there it is on the base of the brush. I also have been shooting at 25-30psi, maybe that could be my problem?? Should I be cleaning it out with any solvents(if so which ones?) What should I use to thin the paint? Bob, how often do you break about your brush and clean it out? What do you do?

Thanks Guys, Iwata's website was very telling on how to do all of this :blink:. Thanks A lot guys!

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Carolinaboy, my gut feeling is that you may be getting moisture and/or oil in your brush from the compressor. If your oil and moisture trap are small in-line filters mounted on the base of your airbrush, that may not be enough if you're connected to a big compressor. They also aren't in the best position to absorb the considerable amount of moisture a big compressor generates. Ideally, a moisture trap should be sized to the compressor and attached at its air outlet. The outlet is where moisture "happens" as the compressed air expands into the hose. Also, I'm no expert but aren't an oil trap and a moisture trap two different things?

I shoot 95% of airbrush paint straight, without thinning. If you're trying to shoot cheap "hobby paint" instead of airbrush paint, you do have to thin that always. When I do thin it, I use plain water (which is what Createx recommends for thinning their standard airbrush paints. If you're shooting Createx Auto Air paint, they recommend Createx 4011 reducer as a thinner. I shoot a color, clean out the cup with water from a spray bottle, shoot a cup of water through the brush, then backwash the brush by holding my finder over the tip while shooting half a cup of water. If there's still color in the cup when you backwash, you need to repeat until clear. Takes longer to say than to do. At the end of the session, I take out the needle and wipe it clean with a cloth dipped in acetone, then use a Q-tip dipped in acetone to clean the nozzle and the spray tip, and wipe a drop of oil on the needle when reassembling the brush. You don't want to be unscrewing those tiny little paint nozzles off the tip of Iwata brushes unless you have to - they're easy to damage or can just disappear! Whenever the mood hits me or I feel the brush is not operating to peak form, I'll disassemble it completely and soak everything in airbrush cleaning solution for 24 hours.

Some guys use Windex to clean out their brush. Iwata doesn't recommend that because ammonia eats chrome and all the Iwata brushes are chrome plated. Pressure - I start out at 40 psi for color basecoating and all-over colors. I dial it down to 20-25 psi for applying area colors. For really fine shading, I dial it down to 15-20 psi. It depends on the thickness of the paint. Shoot a little paint through the brush to insure it's flowing right before you hit the lure. Hope this helps.

Edited by BobP

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Carolinaboy, my gut feeling is that you may be getting moisture and/or oil in your brush from the compressor. If your oil and moisture trap are small in-line filters mounted on the base of your airbrush, that may not be enough if you're connected to a big compressor. They also aren't in the best position to absorb the considerable amount of moisture a big compressor generates. Ideally, a moisture trap should be sized to the compressor and attached at its air outlet. The outlet is where moisture "happens" as the compressed air expands into the hose. Also, I'm no expert but aren't an oil trap and a moisture trap two different things?

I shoot 95% of airbrush paint straight, without thinning. If you're trying to shoot cheap "hobby paint" instead of airbrush paint, you do have to thin that always. When I do thin it, I use plain water (which is what Createx recommends for thinning their standard airbrush paints. If you're shooting Createx Auto Air paint, they recommend Createx 4011 reducer as a thinner. I shoot a color, clean out the cup with water from a spray bottle, shoot a cup of water through the brush, then backwash the brush by holding my finder over the tip while shooting half a cup of water. If there's still color in the cup when you backwash, you need to repeat until clear. Takes longer to say than to do. At the end of the session, I take out the needle and wipe it clean with a cloth dipped in acetone, then use a Q-tip dipped in acetone to clean the nozzle and the spray tip, and wipe a drop of oil on the needle when reassembling the brush. You don't want to be unscrewing those tiny little paint nozzles off the tip of Iwata brushes unless you have to - they're easy to damage or can just disappear! Whenever the mood hits me or I feel the brush is not operating to peak form, I'll disassemble it completely and soak everything in airbrush cleaning solution for 24 hours.

Some guys use Windex to clean out their brush. Iwata doesn't recommend that because ammonia eats chrome and all the Iwata brushes are chrome plated. Pressure - I start out at 40 psi for color basecoating and all-over colors. I dial it down to 20-25 psi for applying area colors. For really fine shading, I dial it down to 15-20 psi. It depends on the thickness of the paint. Shoot a little paint through the brush to insure it's flowing right before you hit the lure. Hope this helps.

Thanks Bob! I think you might be right on the compressor. I have thought a/b getting a small airbrush compressor from Harbor Freight they had a 100psi compressor for $70 plus I have a 20% coupon off, so I could control it a little more I would think. SO we are talking $56 plus tax OTD

I will look into doing more maintenance on it. I am just so scared about messing with that tiny little needle. I need to find instructions on how to disassemble it. I didn't see anything in the paperwork they gave me...

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I think a lot of guys who have used airbrushes for years like using a big compressor because the air stream it generates doesn't pulse like a small compressor tends to do and because most of the time, the compressor is not running. So I wouldn't be too quick to move to a small unit.

Airbrushes are simple with only a few parts. There are no "gotchas" to worry about as far as disassembly. Screw off the rear handle, loosen the nut that holds the needle, and the needle slides right out the rear of the brush. The needle is very sharp and easy to damage if you drop it or bang its tip into anything, but it's not really fragile. It's made from ductile stainless steel. The crown cap and needle cap screw right off the tip, exposing the nozzle. I don't recommend unscrewing the nozzle unless you're going to soak the brush parts overnight. With the caps and the needle removed, you can do sufficient cleaning at the end of your painting session to ready the brush for next time. There is a schematic of your airbrush available at dixieart.com in the airbrush parts section.

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Thanks Bob, this helps a lot. I need to get a oil/ moisture trap and I should be good to go. I will start tearing down the airbrush more often B)

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Most of the time, when I get splattering, it's because dried paint is clogging the nozzle opening where the needle comes out.

I have a tupperware full of water next to my paint station, and a cheap artists brush with plastic handle floating in it all the time. Whenever I change colors, or clean my gun, I grab the brush by the bristles, and use it to clean out the nozzle.

I also use water with a couple of drops of dish detergent in a spray bottle to clean my brush, and dip the water brush in my cup once it's filled with the detergent water to help clean out the nozzle.

Take a look into the nozzle, and you should be able to see if paint is dried there.

Clean the brush more often than you think you need to, and you'll avoid a lot of problems. And the cleaning routine will become second nature, and much faster, as you do it more often.

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I've noticed that Createx white seems to give me more cleaning issues than any other color. Not sure if this is true of other brands of paint or not. After base coating several lures with the white Createx I rinse and back flush as normal and then repeat the same with acetone. It's amazing how much more gunk comes out with the acetone. Even after back flushing with water. I have since made rinsing and back flushing with acetone a part of my normal painting process. I don't use it every time, but after 2 or 3 color changes or whenever I use the Createx white. This process has made a lot of my airbrush issues disappear.

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Paint companies know white is used for color basecoating so they often produce it with more pigment so it will cover better. I use Polytranspar SuperHide White, which is also heavily pigmented - thus the "SuperHide". I disassemble the brush after shooting it because it definitely is harder to clean out than other paints.

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Paint companies know white is used for color basecoating so they often produce it with more pigment so it will cover better. I use Polytranspar SuperHide White, which is also heavily pigmented - thus the "SuperHide". I disassemble the brush after shooting it because it definitely is harder to clean out than other paints.

Thanks for the info Bob. I've been wondering about this for quite a while.

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Paint companies know white is used for color basecoating so they often produce it with more pigment so it will cover better. I use Polytranspar SuperHide White, which is also heavily pigmented - thus the "SuperHide". I disassemble the brush after shooting it because it definitely is harder to clean out than other paints.

Well maybe my problem is the white, I need to clean her out tonight

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Well maybe my problem is the white, I need to clean her out tonight

I use a siphon feed Badger with a .5 tip when I'm spraying white basecoat, or any solid opaque that I don't want to thin too much. Also for pearls.

Those paints seem to have larger particles, or maybe it's just that they're thicker. I still spray multiple light coats, and heat set each coat. But usually I don't get splattering with the .5 tip. Of course, if I let the brush sit too long between coats, I can still have problems, so I watch that, and clean the nozzle with my cleaning brush and water if I think it's been too long.

When I switch to a gravity feed brush with a .3 tip, even with thinned paint, I am careful to clean the nozzle after each color, and I even use the cleaning brush on the nozzle between coats, if it's warm, or I think I've let the brush sit too long. I don't typically have a problem with internal drying, as long as there's some paint still in the cup, but the nozzle dries out pretty fast.

The smaller the tip, the more critical thinning and cleaning become.

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I use a siphon feed Badger with a .5 tip when I'm spraying white basecoat, or any solid opaque that I don't want to thin too much. Also for pearls.

Those paints seem to have larger particles, or maybe it's just that they're thicker. I still spray multiple light coats, and heat set each coat. But usually I don't get splattering with the .5 tip. Of course, if I let the brush sit too long between coats, I can still have problems, so I watch that, and clean the nozzle with my cleaning brush and water if I think it's been too long.

When I switch to a gravity feed brush with a .3 tip, even with thinned paint, I am careful to clean the nozzle after each color, and I even use the cleaning brush on the nozzle between coats, if it's warm, or I think I've let the brush sit too long. I don't typically have a problem with internal drying, as long as there's some paint still in the cup, but the nozzle dries out pretty fast.

The smaller the tip, the more critical thinning and cleaning become.

Thanks for the info

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