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If Money was no object!?
Porsche
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 10:18 AM UTC
Hello,

I'm starting to get into modeling again. Going to do 99% WWII armor. I want to buy an airbrush and compressor, etc. Whole Nine Yards.... I know I'm a novice at the moment... however, I want to buy really good tools. I don't want to wake up in 6 months and realize my airbrush/compressor really _does_ suck. Therefore, I want to buy a great one now. Any suggestions!? :-)

Thank you VERY much.
Andy
pipesmoker
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 10:37 AM UTC
Hello Andy and welcome back the the wonderful world of plastic.
An airbrush and compressor set up is a somewhat subjective thing.
Depending on space available, ventilation of paint fumes (if using enamels), noise levels, etc.....
I am using a single action Paasche H with an old WR Brown compressor. I am upstairs and close to opening windows. Noise is not a factor nor are the paint fumes. If you have small children both noise and smell would have to be reduced or eliminated
There are several "noiseless" compressors available, Check Fine Scale Modeler archives on their website.
, I believe they did some comparisons on both airbrushes and compressors. For armor airbrushing I find my "H" model is sufficient. However I know several modelers that use Iwatas.
Everyone has their preferences. Do a Google search on rec.models.scale newsgroup under "airbursh" and you will find as many opinions as there are posts. All I can say is research, and talk to other modelers.
I sure hope I didn't confuse you too much
Sabot
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 10:52 AM UTC
Think outside the box when choosing a compressor. Apparently there are larger compressors available at stores like Sears and Wal-Mart that are relatively inexpensive compared to airbrush compressors (around $100). I've got a Testors compressor that suits me fine for the amount of airbrushing I do. Check out sites like www.dixieart.com for your airbrush needs. Also check out www.modelexpo-online/catb for compressors.
staff_Jim
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#002
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 11:45 AM UTC
Rob,
DixieArt??? So I assume this is one of those items Squadron doesn't handle?

Yippie. I am finally a Major! :-)
TreadHead
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 11:54 AM UTC
Howdy Andy, glad to have you back 'in the ranks'.

Pipe & Sabot both have valuable suggestions. Compressors themselves have gone thru incredible changes over just the past year or so. Used to be you had to buy a decent size 'construction' or 'automotive' style compressor. Now they make itty-bitty 'pancake' style compressors for the hobby. Unfortunately, as Sabot said, they are quite pricey.

Another alternative (one I use) to consider is, to get a small air storage tank, (available from any Home Depot) and fill it with air previous to spraying. It will generally hold enough air for one normal session of airbrushing, plus it is almost totally silent.
As far as the airbrush itself, I use an Iwata. Best investment I ever made. Don't have to clean it everytime you use it (with regular clean-out after each use), and it handles almost every application, from very thinlines to general mist coats.

Hope all that makes sense.

Tread.
TreadHead
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 11:55 AM UTC
ohhhhh, congrats Major Starkweather!!
GunTruck
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Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 10:45 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Hello,

I'm starting to get into modeling again. Going to do 99% WWII armor. I want to buy an airbrush and compressor, etc. Whole Nine Yards.... I know I'm a novice at the moment... however, I want to buy really good tools. I don't want to wake up in 6 months and realize my airbrush/compressor really _does_ suck. Therefore, I want to buy a great one now. Any suggestions!? :-)

Thank you VERY much.
Andy



Well Andy, you did ask if money was no object...

I have one of the Badger Million-Aire silent air compressors - and I use a quick-connect air line for a Badger 150 and a Paasche VL airbrush. I find the Paasche VL best for general airbrushing and the Badger 150 for weathering effects and finer patterns - like you'd use on a WW II German AFV. I was fortunate to shop around and get both airbrushes under $100 dollars - and the VL is almost 8 years old now. Both are rugged and dependable, and I see no value in going to the Iwata line.

The Badger silent air compressor - on the other hand - was considerably more. I paid $600 dollars for my model. However, money was no object at the time and I haven't been disappointed in the least with it. On standby I have two WL Brown air compressors that I haven't had to use since going silent, but when I did they were great. They ran, shipping and all, around $130 dollars each. I even had an older Paasche air compressor that hung on for 8 years - and I ran it with the bleeder valve shut all the time! I didn't know I wasn't supposed to, and I eventually burst the diaphragm. Saying that air compressor was rugged is an understatement. If you get one, you'll be fine.

Just my two cents...

Gunnie
NeilUnreal
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 02:13 AM UTC
If money were really no object, in my current living situation (high-density apartment), I'd go with:

1) SilentAir 50TC Compressor
2) Iwata Custom Micron B
3) New Iwata Gravity-Feed Eclipse

If money were a little bit of an object I'd substitute a Sotar 20/20-1 for the Custom Micron and a 30TC for the 50TC.

If I had a heated/air conditioned garage or some other workshop, I'd substitute a big tool-grade compressor and airtank (with a precision regulator) for the SilentAir. That way I could use it for air tools also, and the compressor noise wouldn't be an issue.

-Neil

p.s. I've also had good luck ordering from DixieArt.
Sabot
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 02:34 AM UTC

Quoted Text

DixieArt??? So I assume this is one of those items Squadron doesn't handle?

Squadron's selection of airbrushes and compressors is not that extensive. I get kits, reference books, aftermarket sets and the like from Squadron, Model Expo or Great Models. Sometimes you've got to go where you get the best selection.
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:52 AM UTC


I am studying/reserching all the thoughts people have had for me. I'm looking around- Iwata and Badger seem to be the market leaders. Anyone know of a soups to nuts "How to" build a model book/resource. I'm talking detail to the point where they tell me to first do this, then do this- for painting and detailing (weathering, rust, washing, etc)!



Andy
This should be fun!
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:54 AM UTC
Thanks, Ron. I'm definitely getting the sense that it is subjective. I'll check Fine Scale Modeler's site. Thanks for the thoughts. I'm already confused, don't worry...

Andy
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:56 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Think outside the box when choosing a compressor. Apparently there are larger compressors available at stores like Sears and Wal-Mart that are relatively inexpensive compared to airbrush compressors (around $100). I've got a Testors compressor that suits me fine for the amount of airbrushing I do. Check out sites like www.dixieart.com for your airbrush needs. Also check out www.modelexpo-online/catb for compressors.



Rob, thanks a lot the thoughts and site!

Andy
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:57 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Howdy Andy, glad to have you back 'in the ranks'.

Hope all that makes sense.

Tread.



Thanks Tread, makes sense. I think the IWATA is the call.... that's what I'm leaning towards.

Andy
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:58 AM UTC
[quote
Well Andy, you did ask if money was no object...

I have one of the Badger Million-Aire silent air compressors - and I use a quick-connect air line for a Badger 150 and a Paasche VL airbrush. I find the Paasche VL best for general airbrushing and the Badger 150 for weathering effects and finer patterns - like you'd use on a WW II German AFV. I was fortunate to shop around and get both airbrushes under $100 dollars - and the VL is almost 8 years old now. Both are rugged and dependable, and I see no value in going to the Iwata line.

The Badger silent air compressor - on the other hand - was considerably more. I paid $600 dollars for my model. However, money was no object at the time and I haven't been disappointed in the least with it. On standby I have two WL Brown air compressors that I haven't had to use since going silent, but when I did they were great. They ran, shipping and all, around $130 dollars each. I even had an older Paasche air compressor that hung on for 8 years - and I ran it with the bleeder valve shut all the time! I didn't know I wasn't supposed to, and I eventually burst the diaphragm. Saying that air compressor was rugged is an understatement. If you get one, you'll be fine.

Just my two cents...

Gunnie
[/quote]

Great thoughts- thanks a whole lot!
Andy
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 05:59 AM UTC

Quoted Text

If money were really no object, in my current living situation (high-density apartment), I'd go with:

1) SilentAir 50TC Compressor
2) Iwata Custom Micron B
3) New Iwata Gravity-Feed Eclipse

If money were a little bit of an object I'd substitute a Sotar 20/20-1 for the Custom Micron and a 30TC for the 50TC.

If I had a heated/air conditioned garage or some other workshop, I'd substitute a big tool-grade compressor and airtank (with a precision regulator) for the SilentAir. That way I could use it for air tools also, and the compressor noise wouldn't be an issue.

-Neil

p.s. I've also had good luck ordering from DixieArt.



Thanks, Neil! Appreciate the ideas. I may go with your whole deal- but, I noticed some people use different brushes for different uses?

Andy
GunTruck
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 06:21 AM UTC

Quoted Text



I am studying/reserching all the thoughts people have had for me. I'm looking around- Iwata and Badger seem to be the market leaders. Anyone know of a soups to nuts "How to" build a model book/resource. I'm talking detail to the point where they tell me to first do this, then do this- for painting and detailing (weathering, rust, washing, etc)!



Andy
This should be fun!



Badger sells a couple of books on airbrushes and how to use them. Pretty good for just starting out using any airbrushing equipment.

Shep Paine's book on armor modeling is perhaps the all-time favorite for modelers starting out in this area of the hobby. It isn't expensive, but I'll wager nearly every armor modeler has one. A bit more expensive, but a good next step, would be Tony Greenland's Panzer Modeling book. Again, a lot of how-to's and photos for the builder to follow and try out themselves. Combined, these two are probably the best books for an armor modeler to have as related to learning basic armor modeling skills and techniques.

Gunnie
NeilUnreal
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 08:35 AM UTC
Porsche, my airbrush setup is a little bit of an overkill for modeling alone, but it is selected for maximum versatility (you did say money was no object!). In real life, I decided on the Sotar over the Custom Micron, since I had to save money for at least a few model kits :-) I also have an Iwata HP-C, but my impression is that the new gravity-feed Eclipse might be more ergonomic.

After lots of trial error, I'm a big believer in the two-brush system: one for details and one for general-purpose use. Brushes have different "personalities," and it's hard to learn more than two! If you do really big stuff (e.g. 1/24 planes, large illustrations), a wide coverage brush would be handy at times.

Every airbrush is really just an approximation of the "ideal," and every airbrush I've ever bought has been bought to address some inadequacy I perceived in my other brushes. Everyone's "ideal" is different, and it may take you some time for you to figure out exactly what setup works for you. I would say: start with one good general-purpose brush, use it for a while, figure out what you love and hate about it, and then buy the next brush to fix the hate without duplicating too many things the first brush does well.

It's hard to go wrong with a Shep Paine book. To GunTruck's recommended Shep Paine book, I would add the Shep Paine book on dioramas.

And check out this how-to book from Testor's, "Model Master Technical Guide." They've recently put it on their website for download (albeit as huge PDF files):

http://www.testors.com/tips_tech_guide.asp

-Neil
Porsche
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 09:31 AM UTC
Thanks again everyone. Badger and/or Iwata! That is the question....

Andy
Sabot
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Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 10:37 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Anyone know of a soups to nuts "How to" build a model book/resource. I'm talking detail to the point where they tell me to first do this, then do this- for painting and detailing (weathering, rust, washing, etc)!

Osprey does a series called Modelling Compendum Manuals that run the gambit of basic, intermediate and advanced military and aircraft modeling, figure modeling, airbrushing, modeling postwar tanks and aircraft. Even a couple of books that specifically look at a single model type (i.e Sherman and StuG III). www.militarybookclub.comcarry many and if you sign up for their club, you can get most for 99 (regularly about $15-17)