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First airbrush and compressor - kit?

Discussion in 'Tabletop Games, Wargaming and Scale Modelling.' started by PardonTheWait, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. PardonTheWait

    Capodecina

    Joined: Aug 26, 2003

    Posts: 23,893

    Hello,

    Had a quick ask along these lines in the Airfix thread but didn't get any replies, so I thought I'd ask a similar question here as lots of people paint.

    I'm looking to get an airbrush for painting some model car kits and also for painting 3d printed movie prop type items.

    Looking at an AS-186 compressor, and the Iwata Neo airbrush as they seem recommended for beginner/budget setups.

    However most of the AS-186 compressors are just a few quid more with one or two unbranded/chinese clone airbrushes. Question being - these airbrushes, are they total junk? Does anyone have experience with any?

    I'm thinking at the moment that I might get the compressor for Christmas with a bundled airbrush/hose etc, and try the airbrush out. Then if I enjoy it, get the Neo for myself shortly after.

    The work I want to do, at first at least, is very basic, just single colours per piece and some very very basic shading. Will one of those brushes at least get me started, or should I literally just disregard them?

    Also - any recommendations for a general starter kit of paint? The Vallejo model air sets look good?

    Thanks :)
     
  2. wildman

    Soldato

    Joined: Nov 7, 2002

    Posts: 5,276

    Location: pantyhose factory

    one of the biggest mistakes is getting a cheap no name airbrush. They generally are inferior quality and end up giving you nothing but headaches to the point where you just give up on trying to airbrush. This is the exact mistake I made. I tried to use one of those chinese knock offs and I thought this airbrushing malarky is a more hassle than it is worth, so I binned it all off. The about 3 months later i went to my firedns house and he uses Harder and Steenbeck airbrushes, he had the 2 in 1 ultra where you can swap between 0.4 and 0.2 needle sizes and he was sporting a bambi bb8 compressor. It was a completely different experience.

    the As186 should be fine as it has a tank, but I would honestly advise you to ditch the no name generic brush and get something relatively decent such as the neo or pick up a H&S ultra 2 in1. The H&S 2 in1 ultra canbe had for 80quid and has interchangeable parts.

    vallejo air range is pretty decent, i use game colour for my 40K modelling and citadel for a lot of the special colours you can't get a decent match on
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2019
  3. Werewolf

    Commissario

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 27,327

    Location: Panting like a fiend

    Definitely avoid cheap airbrushes from no name chinese importers, and whilst you can get away with a cheapy quiet compressor if you do, make sure you buy it "local" the QC on them varies massively for the unbranded ones so it's worth being able to lug it back into a shop ;)
    Depending on where you are, and how much you're willing to travel you can potentially get a refurb bambi or similar dental compressor cheap which tend to be very good but they're much larger than the normal airbrush compressors (also keep an eye open for things like tattooists and spray tan people that are upgrading/shutting down they often use the likes of Iwata compressors).

    You can get a H&S Ultra for about £50 which can have the needles etc changed, or the more versatile Evolution series from about £80-100 with the 2in1 versions from about £120 (two needle/nozzle assemblies, and two paint cups).
    I really like the fact the H&S brushes can be upgraded/varied so much just by buying additional needles etc, for example my 2in1 has ended up with it's original pair of paint cups and needles, then I added a 0.5ml cup, and a 30ml one as well as a different nozzle head (I actually ended up buying the aluminimum version as well, but had an enforced break from the hobby for a couple of years and haven't used it yet).

    I'll try and either post a bit more later, but I've posted a few times in the Warhammer/Games workshop threads about it..
     
  4. PardonTheWait

    Capodecina

    Joined: Aug 26, 2003

    Posts: 23,893

    Thanks both - I've asked for the H&S Ultra 2 in 1 (0.2 & 0.4mm) from mother dearest and I'll get the compressor on its own and get a hose as well.

    The two needles in the Ultra 2 in 1 appeals because sometimes I'll be painting 1/25 cars, and sometimes larger bits from the 3d printer so hopefully that should do me. I don't think it will see a tremendous amount of use (but we'll see) so I think a good quality but basic airbrush is best.

    I will have a look and see if there's a local shop I can get the compressor from - there's a good art shop in the town I work in which might stock something.

    Thanks again
     
  5. Werewolf

    Commissario

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 27,327

    Location: Panting like a fiend

    You'll probably find that once you start using the airbrush you end up using it for a lot of things you didn't think about;)

    Ours was bought mainly for GW vehicles, but it's ended up being used to rapidly batch paint/first coat hundreds of 28mm scale infantry, including some quite complex ones that would have taken me 10+ minutes each by hand and the brush did them in 1-3 minutes, larger scenery, wooden stuff my dad made etc :)

    If you're doing RC cars the Ultra is probably a good choice over cheapy brushes as from memory it comes with teflon o-rings for the paint seals these days (IIRC they changed over after I bought my Ultra to put the entire range onto the same o-rings*), so if you end up using some of the harsher but harder wearing paints that are solvent based it's handy, as the teflon seals don't absorb solvents and expand like rubber ones can.


    *IIRC most of the H&S brushes can use the same needles and most of the same o-rings (I think the Infinity and Evolution can also use the same nozzles).
     
  6. Doug2507

    Hitman

    Joined: Sep 13, 2013

    Posts: 795

    Location: Aberdeen

    I went for a sparmax 620 and grex genesis top feed. 1st setup I've had and very much like it! Airbrush choice was purely on Kenny bouchers recommendation when he changed from iwata.
     
  7. spoffle

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 4, 2012

    Posts: 16,107

    I've got the air compressor you've been eyeing up. I've had it for about 4 years and and it's been fine. I've also got a range of airbrushes. I've got some high end Iwata airbrushes, and I've got a few cheap Chinese ones. I use one of my cheap Chinese ones over anything else. The cheap Chinese Airbrush I have is a "BD-180" and it's just as high quality as my Iwata airbrushes, for £20.

    There's even a BD1-181, it's a variant with a larger paint cup. They'll do more than get you started, as I said above I don't bother with my Iwata ones any longer, because a new needle on my Iwata airbrushes is the same price as one of these BD Chinese airbrushes. The lines they can spray are very fine, the spray quality is smooth and grain free. It know people are wary of Chinese brand mechanical tools, but these are top quality.
     
  8. BUDFORCE

    Hitman

    Joined: May 3, 2012

    Posts: 872

    Firstly as I "dip my oar in" I know nothing about airbrushes.

    But when it comes to chinese products in general, I will agree with the above post, and that chinese stuff can be a minefield, say about 90% of it is a cheap crappy junk, but 10% of the cheap crappy junk can actually be really good stuff.

    You just have to know what to look for.
     
  9. spoffle

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 4, 2012

    Posts: 16,107

    Yep. I think the manufacturer does OEM for "name brands"
     
  10. robfosters

    Caporegime

    Joined: Dec 1, 2010

    Posts: 27,882

    Location: Welling, London

    You can shout about the Chinese stuff all you like, you’ll never rip the Iwata Eclipse out of my hands. A thing of beauty.
     
  11. spoffle

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 4, 2012

    Posts: 16,107

    Funnily enough, the BD180 appears to be an Iwata Eclipse clone, and it's a really good one.
     
  12. montymint

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 29, 2006

    Posts: 2,606

    Location: Newcastle, UK

    Santa has treated me to some amazon vouchers so I'm taking the plunge and trying out airbrushing.

    Going to give the following a go:

    [​IMG]

    Due to work commitments tomorrow I'm going to have it delivered on Wednesday, so will not be able to have a play until next weekend
     
  13. Lord-Jaffa

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 29, 2004

    Posts: 5,190

    Location: UK

    Not much pictures of people's work using said airbrushes! :(
     
  14. Pookie Bear

    Soldato

    Joined: Jun 28, 2006

    Posts: 5,042

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    My friend gave me his old compressor and airbrush this weekend - he gave me an hour of tutorial when I picked it up, but I'll need to watch some videos, I think!

    Not sure I should make my first model using it my Bloodthirster though!
     
  15. robfosters

    Caporegime

    Joined: Dec 1, 2010

    Posts: 27,882

    Location: Welling, London

    Give it time, now the forums been renamed to include wargaming ans scale modelling, there should hopefully be more people showing off their work.
     
  16. montymint

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 29, 2006

    Posts: 2,606

    Location: Newcastle, UK

    I'm hoping to try mine out on a Finemoulds savoila S.21 model (from the film Porco Rosso)
     
  17. robfosters

    Caporegime

    Joined: Dec 1, 2010

    Posts: 27,882

    Location: Welling, London

    You don’t appear to have any primer in your shopping list.
     
  18. montymint

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 29, 2006

    Posts: 2,606

    Location: Newcastle, UK

    Thats on another order elsewhere with the italian red i need :)
     
  19. montymint

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 29, 2006

    Posts: 2,606

    Location: Newcastle, UK

    Although I've got my self a spray booth - I've realised I've not bought a mask yet!

    What do you guys use when spraying? I'll be indoors, but using the booth and near a window - however my other half will be across the room from me (it's our craft / office space)
     
  20. Werewolf

    Commissario

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 27,327

    Location: Panting like a fiend

    I tend to use a Scott half mask with particulate and vapour protection, it's probably overkill for the airbrush but when using the spraycans it does help (having said that our graphicair spraybooth is strong enough it's generally not bad even without).
    I suspect your other half should be ok across the room with airbrushing if you've got the extractor running:)

    IIRC you can get facemasks fairly cheaply with replaceable filter carts, the Scott ones are about £15 for the mask then £15 for the filters, in theory with the vapour protection filters you're meant to change them every 6 months.