Has anyone tried acrylic craft paint in their airbrush? I tried some water based and thinned it with water, didn't work well. Ive seen some videos that show thinning with windex, but I know the amonia isn't good for my airbrush. I like all the color options, and of course the dirt cheap price. What I also found is that what little paint I did get to lay on didn't dry well. Was thinking about thinning with just straight isopropyl alcohol.
Acrylic Craft Paint In Airbrush
32 replies to this topic
Posted 17 February 2013 - 12:01 PM
Paints that are designed for airbrushes have their pigments ground to a smaller particle size than other paints. Grinding the pigment to a smaller particle size is one of the reasons dedicated airbrush paints cost more. You may find that some craft paints will work in airbrushes. Especially if your using a bigger nozzle size, but just thinning is not going to change the size of the pigment particles allowing them to be used in airbrushes with small nozzles.
Posted 17 February 2013 - 12:34 PM
I started out with craft acrylics and a large tip airbrush. Yes, it was cheap. But you have to be careful when thinning it to get them right. And some paints - you won't know which before you try them - have paint particles that are too large and will clog just about any airbrush. If I were still doing just an occasional lure, maybe the hassles would not drive me crazy. But I paint easier, paint faster, and get a better paint job with airbrush paint. And airbrush paint is only a tiny fraction of the cost of building a crankbait. The stuff lasts a long time even if you're doing a hundred lures every year.
Posted 17 February 2013 - 03:28 PM
Thanks for the input. I have been using createx, and it works great. but the color options from where I get it are limited, i will have to order some. I have been buying a pack of primary colors, and for lures I want to have real vibrant colors, they have been great, but I have'nt had much success with mixing more realistic colors from the primary set.
Posted 17 February 2013 - 05:06 PM
Mixing paint to come up with different colors is an art unto itself. A color wheel will help get you started. One thing that will help you "sneak up" on the color you want is to always mix your "weaker" colors into your "stronger" colors. Colors like black and blue are considered strong colors. In other words it will take much more yellow to make a blue turn to green than it will to add blue to yellow. Another example would be in mixing white and black to get grey. It will take more white to turn black to grey than it will black added to white.
Another thing to remember when mixing paints is that they won't look the same in the mixing container as they will sprayed onto a lure. I still struggle with this when trying to match the paint job on an existing lure. I use a white base coat most of the time and when mixing paints a quick wipe on a paper towel of the color that's being mixed will usually get it fairly close to what you will see when sprayed. If you'll learn which colors are stronger than others, and mix in small amounts, it will be easier to get the color your looking for.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 10:52 AM
Here's a site that sells lots of different brands of air brush paint.
It's only an example. There are lots more:
Here's another with life-like paints:
Google air brush paints and you'll find lots of choices.
The paints I've had the most success with are Createx, Wildlife Colors, Apple Barrel, and Folk Art.
Both Apple Barrel and Folk Art need to be thinned (I use Auto Aire 4011 Reducer), and their pigments are larger, so sometimes I have to back the needle off a little in my .035 gun to get them to spray well, but they have color others don't, especially the Folk Art metalics.
Edited by mark poulson, 18 February 2013 - 10:53 AM.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 02:56 PM
I use Createx when possible because it is the most consistent in airbrush paints. But like you, I think their color palette is limited, plus I don't want to have to mix colors when I can avoid it. I get many colors from suppliers of taxidermy paint, who formulate acrylic colors that are designed for fish. My favorite is Smith Wildlife but I'll try any brand as long as it's a color I want to try. Taxidermy.net is a gateway site that has links to many taxidermy paint suppliers.
btw - an excellent base white airbrush paint is Polytranspar Superhide White. It covers quickly and dries fast to a hard gloss
Edited by BobP, 18 February 2013 - 03:03 PM.
Posted 19 February 2013 - 08:19 AM
Thats great info, thanks a lot.
Posted 04 March 2013 - 12:31 AM
I think all the Dick Nite colors are lacquers? I use water based acrylics for safety reasons and because that's what I learned to airbrush with and I don't want to start from scratch again. The lacquers do offer more vibrant colors If that's what you're looking for. I tend to favor more muted, naturalistic patterns.
Posted 04 March 2013 - 10:48 AM
I use acrylics all the time and love them. I am going through a divorce and paying through the nose to keep my kids in same school district etc so paint has to be cheap for me to use it!
Posted 03 August 2013 - 12:14 PM
Also check out Taxidermy supply sources. This art/craft also uses airbrushes and may have colors you seek.
Posted 04 August 2013 - 09:33 AM
I use the "cheap acrylics" on my baits. I thin with water about 50/50. It works okay especially for smaller accent colors. The paint will run because it is very thin. Due to the thinned pigment it sometimes takes two coats.
Posted 04 August 2013 - 03:32 PM
Thanks for posting that link Pete. It was one of the MANY I lost during the computer crash a few months ago.
Posted 04 August 2013 - 04:03 PM
I told you washing your computer wouldn't clean out the bad stuff!
Posted 04 August 2013 - 09:28 PM
I use cheap craft acrylic myself and thin it applying several coats. A clog every now and then doesn't bother me. It all depends on what you are trying to accomplish. You get what you pay for...
Posted 04 August 2013 - 09:38 PM
But I didn't wash it Mark. I sent it out to be dry cleaned.