I found that it took more than a 2:10 ratio for thinner:paint for me to get the paint to the proper consistency to self level itself. Overthinning will cause the mixture to dry quickly (thinner evaporates quickly) and also cause blockages. There are, Some paints are not meant to be thinned, like shades or contrasts (, Neither glazes nor shades (also commonly called washes –. Wondering what paints I prefer? You can find the answer here – and I explain why they’re my favorite! With a recent test build, I used Tamiya, Italeri (Vallejo), Gunze Sangyo Aqueous (Mr.Hobby) and Akan acrylics, all thinned with this mixture. I thin using Vallejo thinner or 20 to 1 water and liquitex flow aid. The badger Regdab or Iwata Superlube is really good for that and helps a lot with preventing dry tip. Whether you are using a brush or an airbrush, you should thin your paint, or you might have to deal with: In case you’re still on the fence deciding which airbrush you should get, I give you a complete breakdown of the best models out there in my article, “The Best Airbrush for Painting Miniatures and Models.”. If I spray Daler Rowney artist inks there is no clogging problem, which is why I suspect the paint consistency as the issue. AK/Mig Airbrush Thinner Alcohol-based thinner that works for AK/Mig paints, as well as Tamiya Obviously the more thinner you add, the less paint will be used. Even if you don’t plan on using an airbrush, you should still be thinning your paints. I really have to remember to do a bit of research before posting a silly question. Also, the more thinner you add, the slower the paint application dries, especially if you have added a flow enhancer/retarder to it. Use an old, cheap brush to mix the two. One 200 ml bottle of concentrate equals whooping 500 ml of ready-made product! Vallejo Airbrush Thinner Model Brand: Vallejo. Vallejo Model Color Thinning Ratio. With 1 part paint, 0.5 thinner and 0.5 flow improver. 18psi is fine, and ensure you never pull for paint without the air flowing before and after. Don't mix in the airbrush cup, use a glass container. They are VERY smooth through the airbrush. It is recommended to first prime the surface, and then apply Model Air in several layers. Some paints are thicker than others and you’ll need to thin them down to get the milk-like consistency you are looking for. These days I eyeball it and mix it in the airbrush cup, largely because I’m impatient and Tamiya paints are amazingly forgiving. I clean by Vallejo air brush cleaner (incredible) or soap and hot water in an ultrasonic cleaner (I still use their cleaner if it's too dirty). The thinner can also be used with Mode Colour and Game Colour. As an Amazon Associate, TactileHobby.com earns from qualifying purchases. It allows you to mix a small amount of paint if you aren’t looking to use much or if you’re unsure how much thinner to add. If you are willing to spend a little more money, airbrush thinner is the best way to go. However when I’m simply practicing, or working on lower value projects I’ll use … If you’re unfamiliar with mediums used in miniature painting, head over to this article for a complete guide to the different types of mediums. It is worth knowing a little about these techniques so you can have the best experience using an airbrush with your miniatures. This is more complicated than I expected. Airbrush thinners will give you the best consistency in your paints. Vallejo Airbrush Thinner This is my main thinner for paints. Typically I’d thin Tamiya acrylics with the purpose made Tamiya acrylic thinner X20-A to a ratio of around one part paint to one part thinner (1:1), and airbrush the paint at around 18 psi. 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. I didn't thin it at the start and had some trouble with clogging. If your needle tip is exposed that makes it easy to just use your fingers to pick the tip clean too. I do mix separately (outside the cup). 14 people found this helpful. I use lacquer thinner to thin Scalecoat I, and it works well when airbrushing even plastic, and also speeds the drying time somewhat. Mix with distilled water to produce your own sure-fire airbrush thinner. Thinning your paints in a small cup, like those little, free-sample cups at the grocery store, is a common technique. I shoot it unthinned, at 15-20 psi (I have a pretty bad compressor), and it works fine. The rule of thumb is to start with a thinner to paint ratio of 1:1 and adjust from there if needed. I have no problem using Vallejo's own thinner and thinning model color to shoot through the airbrush, some colors it is 60% thinner, other colors it could be as much as 80-90% thinner, just depends on the color, and the saturation of the pigment. Vallejo Model Color How To Airbrush Tutorial Scale Modelling Now Another thing you could do is dilute the model color with some actual airbrush media first in a separate container until you get a “skim milk” consistency, and then use the thinner and flow improver as needed. Some paints are specifically made for airbrushes, so they don’t need thinning at all. Even if you don’t plan on using an airbrush, you should still be thinning your paints. I have been using Flow Improver for thinning more often lately. We recommend the addition of a few drops of Model Air Thinner to the colours while airbrushing. All of the dilutions provided in this article pertain to Vallejo Model Air. I do mix outside the cup first. The paint responded extremely well out of my airbrush. If you’re brand new to the hobby or are still in the midst of getting your feet wet, knowing what are absolutely must-haves and what you can get away with skipping can be pretty confusing. I find, oddly, their regular thinner is somewhat thick and I do not care for it. This will cause a backflow that will further help mix the paint and thinner. How do you thin acrylic paint for an airbrush when painting miniatures? Then test how well the mixture runs down the inside of the glas. There is no set formula for thinning base paints. As well share ideas, experience, and techniques in this highly versatile painting medium. The recommended compressor settings are around 15-20 PSI or 0.5 to 1 kg. I usually thin until it runs nicely but has a little resistance. Thanks! Mix with an old synthetic brush. Oh wait. This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. Thanks! I have a persistent clogging problem. 4.8 out of 5 stars 483 ratings. Only variation of the ratio of thinner is required. Never mind. I not only cover what essentials you really do need, but I offer DIY solutions to save you some money too. Consider paint retarders. Usually 10 to 3. For what it's worth, I am an airbrush novice, and this issue quite frustrating. Note you need to use Tamiya Thinner with Tamiya paints, don’t use acrylic thinners or flow improvers to thin it. To mix into your airbrush cup, you should: Following these simple steps should turn your acrylic paints into airbrush paints. to be fair, though, that's the first thing I've ever run though this brush so it might have just needed a good cleaning before I got started. This is especially true for denser paints, like Tamiya, and when mixing in lacquer thinners (which many acrylics can handle). It is reassuring that this is a fairly common problem. That’s exactly why you should grab your copy of my comprehensive guidebook, The Miniature Painting Level Up Guide. The Vallejo Airbrush Thinner will provide you with excellent results and can be used for both your airbrush paints as well as your normal acrylics. Report abuse. As mentioned earlier I keep the tip clean using the Vallejo thinner. Then you can regularly clean the nozzle/needle if you sense a change in paint flow due to drying paint causing resistance/decreased smoothness. You can add airbrush thinner (I use the vallejo one to be consistent), you can set the PSI of the compressor up to be higher (mine sits at around 50-60 psi when I do priming), and you might need to assess your trigger action with the airbrush. Another breakthrough in my airbrushing has been trying Tamiya paints. I've enjoyed painting miniatures for a while now but remember being overwhelmed when starting out! Agreed shake the hell out of the paint. Hmmm. I’ve used Vallejo Surface Primer for years for painting miniatures. Why mix and then transfer to the airbrush when you can just mix right in the airbrush? For those who are more confident of the thinner to paint ratio, you can mix a large amount into a bottle, so you don’t have to thin every time you use that color. You’ll also learn: Everything you need to get started and then quickly up your game – all in one place. For airbrush applications, the suggested thinner-to-paint ratio is 1:4, although you may need to experiment a little to achieve the effect you want. Overthinning will cause the mixture to dry quickly (thinner evaporates quickly) and also cause blockages. It is best to err on the thin side and paint multiple coats because you cannot correct if it is too thick. If you really want to use water but are scared of the effect hard water will have on your paints, go with distilled water. Use a 1:1 ratio and mix your rubbing … I will try the 1:1 ratio. August 8, 2019 colorpaints Leave a comment. Don't mix in the airbrush cup, use a glass container. There are different paints and different ways to mix. Some paints are not meant to be thinned, like shades or contrasts (more about contrast paints here). What issues are caused by letting off the air and paint at about the same time? There are a variety of things in which you can mix the paint and thinner depending on what you are comfortable with. Model Color. If you need to thin these, you should use a specific medium made for thinning those paints. I think Vallejo paints with tap water or Vallejo airbrush thinner. To thin this type of paint I wouldn't use water either, but airbrush medium/thinner. This 60+ page book will show you: Where to start, how to improve instantly, the best skills to work on and give you a step by step guide. Shoot that through and it will coat the needle. I wish I had it when I was starting! It is best to err on the thin side and paint multiple coats because you cannot correct if it … Add 2-3 drops of water or thinner to the paint. Water based acrylics, especially hobby paints are fast drying so tip dry is a persistent issue especially with 0.3 and smaller needles. . Airbrushes can clog if the paint isn’t thin enough for the nozzle. It serves two purposes:  Thinning, and stopping paint from drying on your needle. You can find out more and pick up your copy right here. Either a damaged brush or a clogged airbrush. Vallejo airbrush thinner is one of the best ways to thinning mediums for surface primers (those in bottles, not spray cans). 96. The substances you can use range in price from free to around $15. It is important to take the time to thin out all your airbrush paints (, If you are willing to spend a little more money, airbrush thinner is the best way to go. Companies like Vallejo and Citadel make paints specifically for airbrushes. I like the cotton swab idea too. Different companies and even different colors will have varying thicknesses. Whew. I did try a few shots of acrylics straight out of their bottles to see the difference in … Helps prevent tip dry. Don't rush between stages as your thinner paints will be quite wet anyhow. Cover the nozzle with your finger, and move the lever back. To thin Vallejo Surface Primer, you can use water or flow improver additives, such as the Vallejo Thinner. If anything I would highly suggest trying a few drops of flow improver in the brush before you paint. Never considered that the thinner might actually cause the drying problem to be worse. Before you go, remember to check out my complete miniature painting guide. As much as I love the control a brush gives, I needed a way to speed up the process as I have many small armies waiting for attention. I never get dry tip. Continue to add water or thinner a drop at a time until you get the consistency of skim milk. Thick paint can lead to a lot of undesirable results. Tip: The quality of your gear can have a huge impact on your finished results. It can be tedious measuring in drops. And…. The steps are a little different in order to keep the airbrush as clean as possible. Thinning the paint is an easy process in theory. Whom you should be following on social media for tips and demos. I put in enough flow improver or thinner to give the bottom a full but thin coat, then add a few drops of paint, depending on what kind of paint it is. Then transfer them to the airbrush. Referring to PennCentral99's chart, the thinner for Scalecoat II is similar in chemical make-up to that of Scalecoat I, with only the proportions of the chemicals varying. Note that I disassemble and clean thoroughly between colors. Mixing paint in the airbrush cup is problematic; causes clogging. It's harder to determine the ratio of paint to thinner if mixed in the airbrush cup. Specifically I love the Tamiya Flat White when I am zenithal priming. Mixing ratio is 2 parts thinner 3 parts water. It is a very usable option, but if your tap water is too hard and filled with minerals, it might affect the color of your paint and how the paint behaves. It removes all of the impurities that might mess with your paint. With 1 part paint, 0.5 thinner and 0.5 flow improver. This method of thinning acrylic craft paint for airbrushing is very effective and affordable, as it only costs about 77 cents a bottle. Here are the two most common ways of thinking. Make airbrush thinner all by yourself! You are not going to thin all paints in the same way. Have you applied lubricant to the needle recently? The only thing that is going to perfect the process for you is experience. I might try a drop of thinned retardant in addition to some lubricant, a cotton swab at the ready, and a better mix of paint to thinner ratio. How and Why to Thin Acrylic Paints for Models and Miniatures, Best Paint Racks to Hold Acrylic Paint Sets for Miniatures. I am thinning my Vallejo Model Color acrylic paints in equal parts paint / Vallejo airbrush thinner / Liquitex flow improver (so, a 2:1 thinner to paint ratio). What is that? Thick paint can lead to a lot of undesirable results when painting miniatures. Neither glazes nor shades (also commonly called washes – more on washes in this article) need to be thinned. My first attempts I wasn't thinning enough and did have blockages due to thickness causing the problem. 1. For more tips for using an airbrush and to find the best products out there, be sure to visit my airbrush page for more how-to articles and guides. How to improve immediately with a few simple steps. Don’t be afraid to experiment, because the more you see what different mixtures do, the better your ability to create the right consistency for your paints will become. I would go with a 1:1 ratio. 10 drops to 2 drops: again only Vallejo Flow Improver. The needle lubricants will also help too. They are non flammable, non toxic and designed to adhere to plastic and metal. I'm a hobby enthusiast with a real love for painting miniatures. For average airbrushing jobs, I dilute Vallejo Model Air (not Vallejo Model Color) and LifeColor to roughly ~30% or ~1/3 paint in the appropriate Thinner-Liquitex mix. This product is trusted by experienced hobbyists and leads to much better outcomes than water will. I would go with a 1:1 ratio. When using an airbrush, the colors are often reduced by up to 400% (Auto Air Reducer 4: 1 Auto Air Color). 2. Rereading your suggestions, I glossed over “airbrush media”. 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