Go Back  RCU Forums > RC Airplanes > RC Scale Aircraft
Reload this Page >

Airbrushes for scale modelers

Notices
RC Scale Aircraft Discuss rc scale aircraft here (for giant scale see category above)

Airbrushes for scale modelers

Old 11-21-2005, 10:37 AM
  #1  
tlroliff
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (38)
 
tlroliff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 102
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default Airbrushes for scale modelers

I am curious what types of airbrushes folks are using? I build RC scale and scale plastic models so I would like to get something that has interchangeable nozzels etc. for various size jobs etc. I never really owned a "good" airbrush so I am going to treat myself to one. I am told the Badger 150 is a good choice by some fellow modelers. I intend to buy a "real" compressor as opposed to one of the little "airbrush" jobs. Appears I can spend the same money and get something that can be used for much more than airbrushing.

Any comments and suggestions are appreciated.
Old 11-21-2005, 11:56 AM
  #2  
Kmot
My Feedback: (24)
 
Kmot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Northridge, CA
Posts: 10,957
Likes: 0
Received 4 Likes on 4 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

This can turn out to be one of those "Ford versus Chevy' type arguments.

I have three airbrushes. An antique Binks Wren I bought in 1966. A Testors Aztec I got a couple years ago. And an Iwata Eclipse I got last year.

I recommend the Aztec that comes in the wood box with multiple tips that screw in. From very fine to very course. Several bottles and cups come with it as well as the air hose and it is a dual action airbrush. I love mine, it is very easy to use, gives great results and is very inexpensive for all you get. I strictly use water based paints now and so I can spray inside my house, there is absolutley no odor and clean up is ridiculously easy. I just keep a cup of water on my bench and drop the tips/bottles in there in between colors and give a final rinse when I am done.

BTW, my Binks diaphragm air compressor (original, now nearly 40years) is what I still use. They don't make them like the used to, lol...
Old 11-21-2005, 04:35 PM
  #3  
CafeenMan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Spring Hill, FL
Posts: 4,734
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Depends on what you're spraying. I have a handful of airbrushes because I had the money at the time and was looking for the "perfect" airbrush for any given situation. Cost a lot to do that, but I actually do have what I was looking for.

For R/C stuff, I use my Aztec more than anything else. A lot of people don't like it, but mine works flawlessly and sprays a nice coat. The cups are large enough for what I do. For example, the 1/2 ounce cup was plenty to do the 6-5/8" wheels on all sides with paint to spare.

For plastic model work, the Aztec doesn't get quite fine enough. For example, if you want to shade panel lines you'll need a very fine tip in a fine airbrush. For R/C scale work (which is much bigger) you don't need anything that fine.

Here's more information from my site:

[link=http://www.airfieldmodels.com/information_source/model_building_tools/air_brushes_and_air_supplies.htm]Airbrushes, Spray Guns and Air Supplies[/link]
Old 11-21-2005, 09:07 PM
  #4  
BobH
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Springfield, VA,
Posts: 8,049
Received 21 Likes on 21 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

I use a badger 150 double action brush. It has changeable tips and needles to go from fine to heavy materials. I like it and use it often. I have two of them actually and they both have given me good service. A decent regulator and moisture trap are important too, don't forget them.
Old 11-21-2005, 09:27 PM
  #5  
iaclmac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Red Oak, IA
Posts: 262
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Man!!! Have you opend a bucket of worms!!! There is no right or wrong answer here. It is largely a matter of personal preference. CafeenMan has got good information on his site. I would suggest you take time to read it. The only thing I would add is this. There is NO definitife answer to your question. I have several airbrushes and spray guns. They are for various applications. Having just one airbrush to do all your scale painting is like saying you have only one screwdriver for all types of screws. Having said the obvious, I can offer a little more definative insight. First, I see a need for a HVLP spraygun. This is good for large coverage areas. Frankly, it is good for most airplane applications. However I do like my Pasche model H external mix airbrush. There are a number of tips you can get so you can paint in all the details as finely as you like. Since I do not and will never monocoat, I use the airbrush for all the artwork and sunbursts and pinstriping applications. It is a personal preference with me ... I like the look of a finely painted plane. You did hit the nail right on the head ... all these choices will demand a compressor capable of handling it. I would suggest that you find the airbrush and/or spraygun that fits your need. You will note that the guns and airbrushes are rated in Cubic Feet a minute (CFM). You need to make sure that the compressor you selectis capable of delivering that volume. Finally .... if your treating yourself to a good setup .... treat yourself to a good airflow valve and gague assembly along with a moisture filter trap. It is invaluable to be able to adjust the air flow to the paint being sprayed. Also the moistrue trap will keep the gawd awful splatter droplets from messing up your masterpiece. Good luck with your decision
Old 11-22-2005, 08:02 AM
  #6  
Helijack
Senior Member
 
Helijack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Washougal, WA
Posts: 296
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Paschee VL series is the best bang for your buck.
Old 11-22-2005, 08:53 AM
  #7  
Steve Collins
My Feedback: (8)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: St.Charles, MO
Posts: 2,809
Received 11 Likes on 10 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Here is another vote for the Paasche VL airbrush. Works flawlessly every time. It comes with three different needle sizes and more are available.
Old 11-22-2005, 09:53 AM
  #8  
Dead Eye Dick
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Wales, UNITED KINGDOM
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Hi you really have opend up a can of worms. Now you don't know what to do?

I have several air guns and air brushes. Really depends on size coverage and detail you want to do and how much you want to spend.

If it's covering large aircraft with primer, then a touch up gun with 1/2 pint capacity (Not the big 1 to 2 pint jobs) from your auto spray supplier is the right size. The right price and can be used for other jobs as well.

If you want to cover a smaller area, but not small detail, then you need a medium size gun but you may be able to get away with either a bigger or small air brush depending on coverage and the guns ability.

If your doing fine detail then I use Aztec 4709 boxed kit. Plenty of nozzles to use for various uses. I think they cost $130 last time I looked at Bobs Hobby Centre, Florida. I have used badger but the Aztec is superior to me.

One thing to warn you about. Be careful with some solvents as they can harm some makes of cheap airbrushes. A professional painter once told me, try and always get a gun thats all metal!!

Thats my pennyworth!
Old 11-22-2005, 01:52 PM
  #9  
eagledancer
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,032
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

well guess its time for my 2 cents, i have several airbrushes (i use them for custom painting on cars and trucks) my favorite is a iwata eclipse revolution, its decently priced yet will do from 1/16th line (remove the front shield) up to large areas if you up the airpressure a bit. dont expect a airbrush to do a complete paint job on a large model but they are great for small parts or detail work. one of my favorite things about it is it has a cup on top with a cap to keep from spilling paint, not having to worry about knocking off a bottle from some of the other types
Old 11-24-2005, 01:07 AM
  #10  
omcusnr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Medford, OR,
Posts: 123
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

ORIGINAL: tlroliff

I am curious what types of airbrushes folks are using? I build RC scale and scale plastic models so I would like to get something that has interchangeable nozzels etc. for various size jobs etc. I never really owned a "good" airbrush so I am going to treat myself to one. I am told the Badger 150 is a good choice by some fellow modelers. I intend to buy a "real" compressor as opposed to one of the little "airbrush" jobs. Appears I can spend the same money and get something that can be used for much more than airbrushing.

Any comments and suggestions are appreciated.
Most of the guys have covered the brushes pretty well. I have a Paasch VL & like it very well. Its a "double action" internal mix, and provides very good control for a varity of media.

But a further word on the compressor. If you have the room, I highly recommend that you get as "big" as your budget will allow - I'm talking $300+. Get one with a 25 gal tank, 2 horse (continuous) motor, & able to deliver 6.5 cfm @ 90 PSI as a minimum. You won't need all that for just the airbrush, but its about one of the best tool purchases you can make, and believe me, you'll grow into it. The tank acts as a buffer between pump strokes, so you don't get air pulses down the line. Put a good in-line water trap in front of the regulator. Moisture in paint is a killer. I'd also recommend that you stay away from the direct drive, oiless compressors so popular at Home Depot/Sears/Lowes, etc right now. They are noisy & will not last as long as one with a belt/pulley drive.

I have one of these: http://www.eaglecompressor.com/_egl0...120H1-CUS.html
and it was a good balance of price performance for the stuff I do in my shop. It came in right at $300.

Some other advice, if you haven't done much air brushing - keep moving, and slow is better. Start your stroke moving your hand/arm, keeping parallel to the work. If you have a double action ab, air on, pull back & paint flows. Reverse as your stroke ends - cut the paint, then the air then finish your stroke. NEVER STOP MOVING YOUR ARM/HAND UNTIL YOU'VE STOPPED THE PAINT 1st. Have cleaner/slovents handy to keep the tip(s) clean. And remember, paitence in painting is a real virtue.

Have fun & good luck w/ your new brushe(s).
Old 11-24-2005, 02:20 AM
  #11  
autothrottle
My Feedback: (69)
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Allen, TX
Posts: 57
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

I also have the Paasch VL double action airbrush. It is the only airbrush that I have ever bought, and I bought it 5+ years ago. Not to say that its the best one out there, it just happens to fit my needs. I use it for painting t-shirts for the kids as well as airbrushing my R/C planes. Don't skimp on the compressor, spend the extra bucks and get a good one.
Old 11-24-2005, 10:42 PM
  #12  
BobH
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Springfield, VA,
Posts: 8,049
Received 21 Likes on 21 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

One thing that may or may not have been clear is that you START and STOP your paint OFF your subject. You never begin ON the subject. You'll end up with splatters etc that way. Same for the ENDING ..go Past your subject and then end the stroke.

Most of the Major brands will get you were you want to go. The compressor, regulator and water trap are all important too. The most important part of the equation is YOU. Just like any other aspect of the hobby.. good luck and have fun.
Old 11-24-2005, 10:50 PM
  #13  
omcusnr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Medford, OR,
Posts: 123
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Bob,

Good catch. I did not make that clear, and it is vitally important.[sm=eek.gif]
Old 11-25-2005, 12:51 AM
  #14  
Jimmbbo
Senior Member
 
Jimmbbo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Fresno, CA
Posts: 1,180
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

ORIGINAL: tlroliff

I am curious what types of airbrushes folks are using? I build RC scale and scale plastic models so I would like to get something that has interchangeable nozzels etc. for various size jobs etc. I never really owned a "good" airbrush so I am going to treat myself to one. I am told the Badger 150 is a good choice by some fellow modelers. I intend to buy a "real" compressor as opposed to one of the little "airbrush" jobs. Appears I can spend the same money and get something that can be used for much more than airbrushing.

Any comments and suggestions are appreciated.
Lessee... Ford vs Chevy, Cessna vs Piper, Boeing vs Douglas, Democrat vs. Republican... Any other worm cans you want to open?

My $.02 -

In pursuit of the perfect airbrush over the years I have acquired (and still have) a Paasche single action (first airbrush - 30 years ago), Iwata HP-C double action (10 years), Badger 150 (5 years) and Aztek 470 (3 years).

I REALLY like the Paasche for large areas (sprays well, predicatable results, easy to clean - As my first 'brush, it also did a reasonable job on smaller projects with smaller tips, but has been relegated to the "big mama" jobs after I started buying double action brushes).

For my current work (RC sport, RC scale and plastic scale - mostly 1/48), I like the Badger and Iwata for smaller/finer work (more finicky to clean and set right, but I have figured out how to make 'em paint decent size areas and lay down fine lines consistently)...

I like the ergonomics and "new design" of the Aztek but am still on the learning curve because I have been spending too much time working and too little building, so any limitations on its usefulness is likely operator-related . For me, its weight (or rather the lack of it) is weird, mostly because I am used to having several ounces of brass or steel in my hand when spraying, and have developed my stroke movements accordingly )

If I were to recommend one of them, either the Badger or Iwata have been good for me, but for a single 'brush, I would lean toward the Badger because it's more common and fewer $$$... For me, the jury is still out on the Aztek, mostly due to my yet being comfortable with it, but with some time I expect it will do very well.

IMO, a key to success with any airbrush is to learn (by experimentation on scrap model parts, guided by informaton available on the Web) what ratios of paint/thinner, pressure and application distance and stroke speed technique works for each brush, paint and surface type. Along with that, a pressure regulator with water trap and pressure gage is absolutely essential, as is a dedicated notebook to record your successful setups as you learn. It takes a while to load all that data into your brain, but gives the best results. To me, airbrushing is as much art as it is science, which makes it fun to do.

I have used dedicated airbrush compressors and went with a "regular" compressor with a 1.5 gallon air tank to get more air for fewer $$$... It's noisy, so I put it in a foam lined enclosure in an adjacent room and run an air hose to the work bench when I need to paint... HTH

Cheers!

Jim
Old 11-27-2005, 10:04 AM
  #15  
tlroliff
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (38)
 
tlroliff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 102
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Default RE: Airbrushes for scale modelers

Thanks everyone for your input. I didn't realize that this was such a popular topic! I purchased a Badger 150 "Pro" set that has the three tips and needle sizes etc. Now to get a compressor. That will have to wait until after Christmas (or maybe Santa will bring me one!) I have been on the web and there are tons of "How to" websites out there. And the shop I bought the brush from offers beginners classes too. Should be fun. I will report on my progress down the road.

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.