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Selecting Your Airbrush

Introduction Required Materials
Preparation      Application
Curing Coating
Selecting Your Airbrush    

To view an application chart that details which airbrush model is specifically designed for which application, please Click Here.

Below is a key to help you find the right airbrush for you.

INTERNAL MIX: indicates that air and paint mix inside the airbrush, producing a thoroughly atomized “fine dot” spray pattern.

EXTERNAL MIX: indicates that air and paint mix outside the airbrush producing a larger, coarser spray pattern than internal mix airbrushes.

SINGLE ACTION: refers to airbrushes on which the trigger controls only the air flow. The amount of fluid is regulated by turning the needle adjustment screw. When the trigger is depressed, a pre-set amount of fluid is sprayed.

DUAL ACTION: refers to airbrushes on which the trigger controls both air and color (down for air, back for color). This style airbrush allows for varying line widths while spraying.

GRAVITY FEED: refers to airbrushes with top-mounted color cups in which gravity draws paint into the airbrush. Less air pressure (as low as 8-16 PSI) is required to operate this type of airbrush.

BOTTOM FEED: refers to airbrushes on which paint enters through a siphon tube or color cup attached to the bottom of the airbrush. This type of airbrush requires at least 20-30 PSI to operate properly.

SIDE FEED: refers to airbrushes on which a small color cup fits into the side of the airbrush. This type of airbrush requires at least 20 PSI to operate.

Airbrushes are available in varying needle/nozzle configurations accommodating a range of sprayable materials:

FINE: Best suited to spray thinner materials such as water colors, inks, dyes, food coloring and gouache.

MEDIUM: The most popular choice; will spray airbrush ready paints, such as Badger’s Air-Opaque,Air-Tex, Modelflex, Freakflex, Nail Flair, and other properly reduced acrylics.

LARGE: Ideal for heavily pigmented and/or higher viscosity materials such as enamels, lacquers, reduced glazes, gesso, and varnish.

VISCOSITY: When reducing mediums to sprayable viscosity, the recommended consistency is comparable to 2% milk.

Before choosing an airbrush, consider the factors unique to your particular situation. What type of work will the airbrush be used for? What type of materials will be sprayed through the airbrush? What is your level of experience? etc? 

The list of terms, and the reference chart will help you select the best airbrush for your intended application. If you have questions, you can always e-mail us at enquiries@abac.co.uk or join our discussion Forum at: www.abac-support.co.uk/forum.