Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

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n1md4
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Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#1 » Dec 14 2017 06:41

Would the budget Iwata Neo be good at applying base coat to models? I'm thinking the large coverage of paint would be worth the budget cost (£65).
Last edited by n1md4 on Dec 15 2017 11:02, edited 2 times in total.
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TauMan
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#2 » Dec 14 2017 08:28

n1md4
I wasn't acquainted with Iwata Neo airbrushes but I do you use airbrushes for painting my models especially vehicles. But looking at the Iwata website I'd say you want to get the Iwata BCN airbrush. The Neo only has the gravity feed for painting; which is good for doing 2-D art or small detail on models. However, if you want to do base coats for either vehicle models or large number of single figure models; then you'll want to get the Iwata BCN as it uses a bottle to hold the paint.

You could use a gravity feed airbrush for doing base coats on a single vehicle or a few single figure models, but it is a real hassle to do large numbers of either.

I have one of each type of airbrush and use the bottle feed airbrush for vehicles and large numbers of miniatures. ;)

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namegiver
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#3 » Dec 14 2017 09:26

I use a Badger Patriot 105 and I'm pretty happy with it, though if I had to do it over again I think I'd go for the Iwata Eclipse instead. The Iwata seems a little nicer overall: better build, fit and finish plus has a nice protective shroud on the tip of the needle. I haven't bent mine yet, but without the shroud it just feels like a matter of time :dead:

I've never had a problem running out of paint from the gravity-feed cup (it's pretty easy to add when running low), but haven't ever bulk-painted a squadron of vehicles. Honestly, I think you'd be fine with just a gravity feed one but if you're planning on doing a lot of big stuff all at once maybe not.

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Ifrit
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#4 » Dec 14 2017 10:58

I have the the Iwata Neo CN for about 8 years now. (Well technically on my second one because I got a little overzealous tightening the tip back on and broke the threads off in it. :( )
Aside from that I only really use the small bowl because as name giver said it’s easy to add more. So my big bowl has remained unused lol. It’s easy to use and I rarely have to adjust the needle so you can leave the cover on or off. It’s really easy to clean because everything comes apart. I would invest in some cleaning brushes though.
Depending on the paint/mixture you might get a little bit of build up on the tip but you can hit that with a toothbrush.

Also not sure how long you’ve been painting/airbrushing but check out this guy. His stuff is really tight.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTfnfI ... 8sWck4sxvQ

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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#5 » Dec 15 2017 06:07

Not wanting to be rude, or poo-poo others advice, but Gravity feed is almost definitely the way to go.

I use gravity feed myself and did a lot of asking around before I shelled out for a brush and compressor. This is literally the only time I've heard anyone recommend bottle feed over gravity. In fact, I don't even know anyone that owns a bottle feed (other than the awful GW flamer one that was released a while back).

Also, if you are just starting out and intend to use it for just base-coating, it's hard to go wrong.

Personally I jumped straight in with a tank compressor and a fairly high end Badger airbrush, but a lot of the advice generally given for starting out is that a cheap one will do you fine for basecoating and learning. I also have a fair few buddies who basecoat with cheap eBay bundle special airbrushes and they work just fine for that.

It's all opinions of course and I could be wrong, but personally I wouldn't be comfortable recommending anything other than a gravity fed (top, not side) to anyone.

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n1md4
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#6 » Dec 15 2017 06:34

Thanks for all the advice, greatly appreciated.

I'm actually wanting to connect this brush to a 150 litre garage compressor. It obviously handles the pressure requirement, but aside from obtaining the correct couplings, is there any downside to setting up like this?
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#7 » Dec 15 2017 07:23

Not that I know of, make sure you have a moisture trap in the line as large tanks of pressurised air can do interesting things with moisture. As long as you have that and are limiting the PSI to something sensible for airbrushing you should be fine. I use a tanked compressor myself (albeit much smaller) and couldn't imagine using one without a tank. IMO a tank compressor is the ideal setup for airbrushing.

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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#8 » Dec 15 2017 07:31

I've a humidity filter at the tank.

Got the shopping list ready then:

Iwata Neo
1/8 hose 10ft
1/8 to 1/4 coupler
1/4 quick release

I've a regulator on the tank too, with about 15ft of 1/4 hose, is it worth adding another regulator after that hose, so closer to the brush? It would still have 10ft of 1/8 hose for pressure to drop. Should this present a problem?
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#9 » Dec 15 2017 08:58

Can't offer any advice there I'm afraid, my hose is only a couple of meters long. my compressor is a small(ish) portable with a very quiet motor and a 9l tank. I wanted something I could move around if needed and that I could use in the house nearby without being too loud.

I'm not sure how the long length on the hose will impact the pressure, although if I'm understanding you right, you are talking about changing hose diametre after the pressure regulator? If anything I'd be concerned about that messing with the pressure at the brush end.

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n1md4
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Re: Airbrush advice

Post#10 » Dec 15 2017 10:57

It is the pressure at the brush I'm wanting to be careful with. I'll get it set though and post results when I'm done... Christmas bonus this evening, so purchasing soon ;-)
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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#11 » Dec 15 2017 12:10

One thing to consider, if you end up with the problem, is a second moisture trap right at the brush itself (like this). I live in a very damp region and during long painting sessions would occasionally shoot a splat of water through the brush, even with the at-compressor moisture trap. It really sucks when that happens. Adding the second trap solved the problem.

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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#12 » Jan 30 2018 11:10

Is there a minimum of pressure you need and a minimum thickness of the needle for the paints of GW?
Can you use the "Air" colors as they are or do you mix them and make them thinner?
When mixing, with what?

Somewhere I read that the GW-colors are quite thick and though have special requirements.

Planned to start yesterday but my equipment didn´t work.
Before buying new stuff I would like to hear advices from the experienced painters. :fear:

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Ifrit
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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#13 » Jan 30 2018 11:17

I use the normal GWs (not the air line) and I typically get good results from a 1:1:1. Water:Paint:Vajello thinner. Although white is typically tricker. Most colors that mixture should be fine.

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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#14 » Feb 02 2018 03:02

Ifrit wrote:I use the normal GWs (not the air line) and I typically get good results from a 1:1:1. Water:Paint:Vajello thinner. Although white is typically tricker. Most colors that mixture should be fine.


Thank you for your answer :D
Following a much more stupid question:

What do you use to clean the airbrush-pistol?
Does it work with water alone?

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n1md4
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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#15 » Feb 02 2018 04:04

I use Vallejo airbrush cleaner and water. It's simple to disassemble too. The only part I've not cleaned is the air valve(?) it's more encased than the rest of the assembly.
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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#16 » Feb 02 2018 04:08

Clean water won't be enough (it doesn't remove dried up paint). You can buy specialized air brush cleaning solutions or just simply use alcohol (note this may reduce the life span of the rubber O-ring in the brush). In any case, you will still need a physical cleaning tool. You can buy airbrush cleaning sets that have a variety of cleaning brushes that can get into the many holes of an airbrush. I also recommend an old (dry) brush that you no longer use for painting.

The most budget way to clean and airbrush is rubbing alcohol, an old brush and a needle. If you have a cheap airbrush this should be enough. If you ever upgrade into something more expensive, buy the specialized cleaning tools too.

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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#17 » Feb 02 2018 04:18

Honestly it depends. If you finish air brushing and go immediatelyish to the bath room and start cleaning it, hot water pretty much takes care of everything. If you leave it and wait a couple of days it’s a little harder. Honestly the hardest part to clean (for me) is the little nozzle. So I do have some brush cleaner that I’ll soak that in for a day or so and then kind of use the needle to get it out, or you can thread a tiny string/thread through it and then pass it along the string and that’ll clean it out too.

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Re: Budget airbrush & garage compressor setup advice

Post#18 » Feb 02 2018 04:49

Shas'O Ora wrote:Is there a minimum of pressure you need and a minimum thickness of the needle for the paints of GW?
Can you use the "Air" colors as they are or do you mix them and make them thinner?
When mixing, with what?

Somewhere I read that the GW-colors are quite thick and though have special requirements.

Planned to start yesterday but my equipment didn´t work.
Before buying new stuff I would like to hear advices from the experienced painters. :fear:


For pressure I usually do 15-25 psi (depends on consistency to find the right pressure). For needles, I find .2mm clogs a bit too easily, but .4mm is generally fine, even for long painting sessions. Of course when airbrushing metallic paints you want to lean a bit more on the bigger side as the metallic flecks are generally bigger than regular pigments. And as with any paint you generally want to dilute it down 1:1 paint:thinner works best. As others have suggested, use Vallejo thinner. Way cheaper than GWs but fully compatible with their paints.

For cleaning, get a proper cleaning pot if you don’t have one. After emptying the cup I usually spray some water through to get the worst out, then put a bit of Medea Airbrush Cleaner through to get rid of the rest, then rinse out with some water again before putting some more paint in. Only takes a minute to do and helps keep things flowing longer.

And after every session you want to strip down your airbrush and give it a good clean. No matter how good you are during a session, there will always be build up (but if you've been good at washing through it should mostly be very watery and easy to clean by flushing water through). As always though, be careful with the needle.

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