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An Airbrushing Question

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So I just recently got an airbrush and I have a few questions, specifically about thinning. I've been able to spray down some Tamiya primer, but tonight i tried some Gunze Mr. Color thinned with some water, and it just kept clogging the brush.

 

So my questions are, in no paticular order:

 

What sort of paint to thinner ratio is good for a base coat? And I know that I need different ratio depending on what effect I'm going for.

 

If my brush is clogging, what sorta things do I need to look at? The ammount of thinner? The air pressure? I just don't know.

 

I have purchased a book about airbrushing, and it gives a nice ammount of information on painting techniques and maintaining my brush, but it gives little to no info on thinners and how to properly use them.

 

Sorry if this seems a bit basic to all of you, but it would really help me out if you all could give me some pro tips!

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Ok Tamiya suggest a 1:3 ratio of paint to thinner and I believe Gunze Mr. Color is the same but most will suggest thinning to a consistency of milk for a solid colour more so if you are building up layers. For some of my post shading work on WWI aircraft I'm going as thin as 1:8 ratio of paint to thinner.

 

also make sure you are using the correct thinner - Tamiya can be thinned with Vallejo thinner but Vallejo turns to gunk with Tamiya Thinnners so be careful.

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Thanks! I now realize that I put way to much paint into the mix. Also, for good measure I'm gonna go ahead and pick up some Mr. Color thinner.

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Yeah, it'll take a lot of practice and patiences, but what in this hobby doesn't? I'll get the hang of it at some point. Once again, thanks for the help!

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Agree with Paulster,  Mr. Color Leveling Thinner is excellent when it comes to airbrushing Gunzye or Tamiya acrylic paints. I also spray a very light and fine coat of pure leveling thinner directly over the paint coat I just laid down before it dries, I find that it really provides a smooth and even final finish.  Just don't touch it for a few hours as this type of thinner slows the paint curing time down.  I also use the Tamiya yellow cap lacquer thinner for thinning Tamiya acrylic's, drying time is faster then with the Mr. Color and works well for painting smaller parts.  I had pretty much given up on airbrushing Tamiya acrylics as I never had good results with them using the Tamiya X20 thinner.  Then I learned that they are not actually true acrylics and are lacquer based, switched over to thinning them with the lacquer thinners and never looked back, made a huge difference in the manner in which they performed through the airbrush and the final finish.  They are now my favorites in addition to the Gunzye line of paint.

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So I just recently got an airbrush and I have a few questions, specifically about thinning. I've been able to spray down some Tamiya primer, but tonight i tried some Gunze Mr. Color thinned with some water, and it just kept clogging the brush.

 

So my questions are, in no paticular order:

 

What sort of paint to thinner ratio is good for a base coat? And I know that I need different ratio depending on what effect I'm going for.

 

If my brush is clogging, what sorta things do I need to look at? The ammount of thinner? The air pressure? I just don't know.

 

I have purchased a book about airbrushing, and it gives a nice ammount of information on painting techniques and maintaining my brush, but it gives little to no info on thinners and how to properly use them.

 

Sorry if this seems a bit basic to all of you, but it would really help me out if you all could give me some pro tips!

 

Just now seeing this but...DON'T THIN MR. COLOR WITH WATER! Water is a passable thinner for the acrylic Gunze line but you'll want to use lacquer thinner for the Mr. Color line. Mr. Color Leveling Thinner is fantastic stuff.

 

For your other questions...

 

P-T ratios...in large part this depends on the paint and even the color within a paint line. I paint 90% with Gunze and Tamiya, and my starting ratio is 2:1 thinner to paint. I usually thin more than that - but for a simple base coat, if you're not terribly concerned with shading, 2:1 is a good starting point. 

 

Clogging is generally 1) paint not being thinned enough 2) tip dry with acrylics, where the paint literally dries on the end of the tip 3) insufficient cleaning in the nozzle and paint channel or 4) paint with thick particles that can clog narrow-diameter airbrushes. I typically encounter the last with Alclad. Air pressure shouldn't be a clogging issue unless you're down to like 0 psi. BUT if you have the pressure cranked up and airflow out of the brush seems limited, that can point to a clog somewhere.

 

My recommendation - thin, and then thin some more. Especially with Gunze and Tamiya, the paint can be pushed a long way with lacquer thinners without separating out, so you can build up colors very gradually if you wish (and do some great shading work). 

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Once again, to all of you, thank you! It's great that so many have come to anwser a new guys question. And I dont think Im ever gona try water as a thinner, just gonna stick with the brand thinner. And my clogging issues where definetely thinner problems, now with proper thinning my airbrush sprays pretty well.

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I had the clogging issues with using Tamiya X20 thinner with their own line of acrylics, but as I mentioned previously, I discovered that they are not true acrylics.  For thinning true acrylics, like Vallejo, AK Interactive, MIG, etc., I have been thinning with a mixture of 50% of the brands acrylic thinner and 50% distilled water and it has worked fantastically with my Iwata airbrushes. 

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I have to say, I've had pretty good luck using AMMO and AK paints with their thinners or like products (Vallejo's airbrush thinner is pretty solid). Tip dry is a lot less pronounced than acrylics I've used in the past. But I find they still have reducability limits and aren't as reliable for "spraying small". 

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What pressure would be best without the paint hitting the surface too hard to prevent puddles? I use Revell Aqua

And thin to a 50:50 ratio. Although airbrushing large areas works really well, it's the smaller parts that sometimes

Make painting difficult.

Cheers

Cees

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