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General Aircraft: Tips & Techniques
Discussions on specific A/C building techniques.
airbrush 101
jaypee
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Scotland, United Kingdom
Joined: February 07, 2008
KitMaker: 1,699 posts
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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 - 03:33 AM UTC
I've just acquired a cheap airbrush off ebay. An aztek 1000s. It is just a little plastic thing.
I've never used an airbrush or even seen one used.
It came with a can of propellant which I'll use for now and look into other sources later.

But here's where I can benefit from the collective wisdom here.

How should I set up my workspace for experimenting with the airbrush? I'm working on the kitchen table just now and don't want to get paint everywhere or my guts will be garters.

I think I'll be OK once I get started, but what sort of things should I try out before committing paint to a model?

[Update]
Sorry put this in the wrong topic. Will repost there if no responses
[/Update]
thegirl
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Alberta, Canada
Joined: January 19, 2008
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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 - 02:28 PM UTC
No worries JP , I used to have the same setup before and you will fined that the cans of air, you will not be doing very much airbrushing with them . The cans get cold really fast so it's best if you have a room temp of water in some kind of saucer or small bowl . This will help in keeping the cans warm . With each can you might be able to do about three models until you have to get a new one . I would find another source for your air supple . Clean up will be easy staying with acrylic paint .
Working by the kitchen table ! you are a brave soul on doing that . So your guts don't become garters lay some plastic down so if you do spill paint clean up will be a snap ! Hence , saving your guts ! It wasn't that long ago that I got a compressor with three airbrush on line . So I know that not everyone can afford these tools . I did get good results using the cans of air . If you have a old model around some where partice on that or you can use what ever. paint should be thinned to the Constance of milk just remember that what you are mixing is better to have more then not enough . it can be a pain to have to remix paints to match what you had before .

LongKnife
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Jönköping, Sweden
Joined: April 25, 2006
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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 - 07:13 PM UTC
No guts - no glory JP.

First step is to buy a computer. Then you slice up the box it came in, and voila - a simple spraybooth. It can be equipped with extra walls to avoid paintdust floating aroumd, but if you (like me) have to put your work space up and down it has to be simple. Otherwise it won't be used at all.

AirLedge
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Cork, Ireland
Joined: July 26, 2007
KitMaker: 292 posts
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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 - 07:15 PM UTC
Hi JP,

Once you've started down the path of airbrushing there's no turning back ....
No seriously, they're great things. I got mine last year and felt exactly like you do. Everything terri says is spot on. I've been using cans to power mine and am on the verge of getting a compressor (12 months of begging my wife has finally worked!). The only thing I'd add is it's a good idea to have a second can as they do get cold quite quickly which causes the air pressure inside to drop, meaning you can't paint anymore; really frustrating if you're in the middle of something. The bowl of warm water helps and I use it to heat up the stand-by can if it's needed. Regarding airbrushing in general I don't think anyone gets it perfect first time so don't be discouraged if you have a few teething problems. Getting the right mix of paint/thinner is important. Unfortunately with the cans of air you can't really regulate the airflow from that end. I hope this helps,
Happy airbrushing,

Mike.
LongKnife
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Jönköping, Sweden
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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 - 11:22 PM UTC
By the way JP. Brett Green on Hyperscale has made a bunch of short videos that you can watch or download. He's quite into Aztec, so you might find ideas an tips there. I sure did.

http://www.scaleworkshop.com/workshop.htm
jaypee
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Scotland, United Kingdom
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:19 AM UTC
Perfect Tony thanks. I'll take a look at those. And I have plenty of boxes to build a spray booth with.
Is it really that messy?
Can't wait
LongKnife
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Jönköping, Sweden
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:47 AM UTC
No, it's not messier than you do it, but things can happen.

I use Tamiya acrylics and mix with window polish to the right thickness. It should be like milk is often said, and I mix so it returns slowly when I tilt the container to wet the wall of it, just like milk in a glass. Occationally I tip a bit too much and then the box sucks the paint up.

I also have experienced paint build-up on my needle (i have a Badger) and two ways to clear that is to have a wet q-tip in the free hand and sweep the needle once in a while, and also to spray full blast for a second on the back wall. Then too is the box handy.

Finally, when you spray large surfaces it's wise to start well outside on one side and end (or turn back) well outside on the other. Changing directions directly over the model causes thick spots. By using the box I don't have to concentrate on more than my pointy finger and the model.
jaypee
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Scotland, United Kingdom
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:58 AM UTC
Great, I'm looking forward to having a go with this.
The YouTube vids are great. Love the turn and hi I'm brett green LOL
LongKnife
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Jönköping, Sweden
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 03:49 AM UTC
Hi Brett

Good luck with the trials. One thing though. I started off on a spanish (all-over-grey-green) Bf 109 which turned out good paintwise. Next step was a test of feathered cammo, which didn't really work that well at all. Third time I did Marseilles tan and blue 109 för Aces high here and that went really well with large surfaces and rather sharp demarcation lines.

My point is - keep a steady but rather flat increase in your challenges, and you will be a happy scotsman.
AirLedge
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Cork, Ireland
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 05:21 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The YouTube vids are great. Love the turn and hi I'm brett green LOL



Yeah, did you notice how he holds the airbrush?
jaypee
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Scotland, United Kingdom
Joined: February 07, 2008
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 08:27 PM UTC
Mike : I know, looks impossible. But you can't argue with his results

Tony:
I'll never be a happy scotsman.
1. There is no such thing. only dour scotsmen
2. I'm Irish I just walk among the scots.

Had a bit of a go last night drawing lines and scribbling. I'm not ready to put it on a model yet.
But the first one will be Molders condor legion Bf109D, I'll try the preshading and all over grey.

Thanks for the pointers.
LongKnife
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Jönköping, Sweden
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Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 10:02 PM UTC
Hi again JP.

Good choice to start with one single shade on the airplane. Then you can start off on the bottom and gain a feeling for it to the topside.

Your origin however brings old sayings to mind. "If whisky hadn't been invented, the Irish would have ruled the world".

One final thing on the spanish 109. It's easiest to paint the rudder (and wingtips) white before you fit the stabilizers. That way you reach better with the masking tape on the rudder. Small tip, but can be handy if you haven't made final assembly.
AirLedge
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Cork, Ireland
Joined: July 26, 2007
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AeroScale: 265 posts
Posted: Friday, August 22, 2008 - 05:19 AM UTC



Quoted Text


Mike : I know, looks impossible. But you can't argue with his results
"If whisky hadn't been invented, the Irish would have ruled the world".



Mr Green does indeed do some great stuff.

Oh, by the way, we actually do rule the world, but don't tell anyone