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Another treasure arrived!

Discussion in 'Airbrushes' started by Kim McCann, Jul 29, 2020.


  1. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    After a month of terrible delivery problems, I am getting spoiled rotten with new (old) stuff arriving daily!

    This time it's a 1942 model Paasche AB, complete with the original tools, case and receipt. (purchased in '45).

    Sadly no manual, but... the seller was kind enough to include a quick release adapter to modern hoses. Good, because my three existing Paasche hoses don't quite fit without leaking a lot, but the adapter works with my existing quick release couplers.

    It was caked with decades old ink which seems to have protected it, because after a 3 rounds with the ultrasonic, and a bit of TLC with some metal polish and q-tips, it came out sparkling with just the tiniest amount of corrosion on the inner bottom edge of the ink well. Even the needle was in excellent condition once I freed it from being welded on to the cam with old paint.

    It sprays well, but certainly need some tuning. Going to get into the cam driver, give it a good soak, clean and lube over the weekend.

    I may consider re-dying the faded velvet when I go in to clean up the oxidization inside the case (under the top satin cover), but I kind of like it the way it is. May just leave it be.

    Happy as a clam. Two beautiful brushes for the collection in as many days. A rare treat!

    20200729_131146.jpg
  2. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Staff Member Admin Very Likeable!

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    oh, this one is special. I was reading on internet about this airbrush.
  3. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    It's kind of a unique design. The round part is an air operated spinning bit that drives a cam arm that moves an absolutely tiny needle in and out of the nozzle spray area. It was a super successful design that was pretty much unchanged from the 1930s to the 1980s because it worked so well for what it did.

    With very little effort you can get hair lines like you would with a modern custom micron 0.18 or infinity 0.15 maybe finer. It was used mostly for technical drawings, photo retouching or other extremely fine work.

    It's a bit odd as it sprays sort of parallel to your hand instead of in front of it, but this allows you to see easier, but takes a lot of getting used to.

    The later models changed the angle of the ink well and cup, replaced the handle with newer materials, but other than that the design remained largely unchanged for 50 years.

    The are a complete b-word to maintain if you have to adjust the cam, and when I say the needle is tiny, I mean TINY, and very, very easy to damage.

    So their use pretty much restricted to people willing to put up with that as a tradeoff for being able to do incredibly fine detail.

    This one needs a bit more TLC and tuning, but I'm going to do a spray-off between this and a CM-SB .18 to compare them when I am done tuning it.

    :)
  4. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Staff Member Admin Very Likeable!

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    do you know by any chance how old is your airbrush? Just wondering.
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  5. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    The model dates to 1942, the original owner bought it in early '45. So somewhere between 75 to 78 years old by the math. I hope I am in half as good a condition when I am 78. :)
  6. jord001

    jord001 Air-Valve Autobot!

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    Nice bit of kit there Kim, Beautiful airbrushes but take some tuning to get them dialled in. Hopefully you don't have too much trouble. I look forward to seeing the comparison with the CM-SB.

    Lee
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  7. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Staff Member Admin Very Likeable!

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    :eek:
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  8. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

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    I have the same brush, with a lower serial number - it's a 10xxx. I do know it is from the earlier part of the 1940's, but that is about as close as I can date it. Cases are different, as you can see. This one is what they called camel back, with some nice contouring details along the front and back edges. Came with the tools, a tube of grease, and a oiled paper envelope of needles.

    PaascheAB lines1.jpg
  9. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    My case is later and the grease was long since gone as well as the spare needles. That's fine as Paasche still sells needles and parts.

    I like your case better and it looks like it is in much better condition than mine. Looks like you also have the little jar of extra air fittings.

    Did yours come with that airbrush hanger or was that an extra?

    I also got an airhose wrench and a screwdriver for the turbine.

    My serial is a 16xxx number so yours is probably very close and slightly younger than mine.

    This model shows in the '42 instruction manual, and mine was bought in a store in '45, so yours has to be from before 45. Maybe 42 or 43. Not sure how many they minted per year.

    Guess it depends on how many units they shifted



    Sent from my SM-N920W8 using Tapatalk
  10. SiRoxx

    SiRoxx Party Boy UK Style Staff Member Mod Very Likeable!

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    Sweet! You’ve got some great stuff coming through the post lol.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  11. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

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    Yes, mine came with the small jar of air hose fittings. They appeared unused, although the brush did show signs of at least occasional use. Older, round bottom, one piece bottle - which appears to be age correct for the brush. The hanger was in the case, but I have no idea if it was OEM, or if someone added it along the way. I do have a few V's from the same era, and they too have the same hanger...

    I don't suspect production numbers were terribly large - especially during this time period. I would feel comfortable guessing that they at least came from maybe the same half decade or so ;).
  12. Electric Cat Dude

    Electric Cat Dude Double Actioner

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    Yeah, and it looks like it’s in good condition, though I think I like the red handles better (an easy problem to solve). No worries about the instructions - you should be able to find them as a PDF on the Internet. I miss the days when consumer products came in high-quality cases like that and showed the attention to detail and craftsmanship that those old air brushes do. These days it’s all shrink wrapped plastic molded crap.
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  13. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Staff Member Admin Very Likeable!

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  14. Electric Cat Dude

    Electric Cat Dude Double Actioner

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    They still remain THE BEST airbrush for doing reliable, repeatable, fine lines - in the 127 years that airbrushes have existed I haven’t yet seen a design which can compete with an AB in this department. This capability can be improved by carefully sharpening the needles using wet stones or a very high grit emery cloth. I also like the REPEATIBILITY you get from a tuned AB; the results don’t vary between trigger pulls, so you can focus your attention on work as opposed to tip buildup, etc. But what really makes an AB unique, besides the mechanism itself, is the wide range of stray patterns you can achieve right at your fingertips by just adjusting two little screw valves. It goes from coarse stipple patterns to fine atomization. And then you can control the rate of paint delivery by changing the speed of the turbine. If you can build the trigger time on an AB, you can really achieve unique results.

    But like you said, Turbos are a tinkerer’s airbrush and are fussy if not tuned right. It turned off a lot of artists who weren’t mechanically inclined - or just didn’t want to put up with the headaches associated with it. I recall Andrea Mistretta started with an AB but quickly tired of it and switched to an Olympos Micron thereafter for her work.

    BTW What is the coat of arms on the left section of the inside of the case lid? It looks like it reads “RICE PLEADERS OF THE WORLD ASSOCIATION”.
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  15. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    It says "By Invitation Member" It's a really old Paasche trademark. I like your version better. LOL.

    I have tuned mine up and everything you say is true, to a point. Of all my fleet of brushes, only one beats it. My carefully calibrated Custom Micron 0.18. With that, I can get a tiny bit better control over very fine lines simply because I can get the needle to almost touching the paper and spraying at 5 psi.

    The AB unfortunately needs some space for tbe reciprocating needle so you can't get quite as close, even if you are touching the surface with the ball on the needle guide on the paper itself.

    But we are talking differences in the lines so small that it is literally splitting hairs.

    No other brushes I have are in the same class. My infinity comes close, but the AB and micron ou class it for consistency.

    Now that being said, the unique design of the AB makes seeing what you are working on so much easier, and it is easier to lock a line width in place with the screws.

    It amazes me how well it works too after nearly 100 years and clear neglect. A bit of cleanup and it may as well have just rolled off the factory floor.

    Amazing piece of retro tech!

    Sent from my SM-N920W8 using Tapatalk
  16. Electric Cat Dude

    Electric Cat Dude Double Actioner

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    I see the ‘By Invitation Member’ but I’m looking at the lower ribbon on the coat of arms. I can’t make out what that says.
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  17. Kim McCann

    Kim McCann Needle-chuck Ninja

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    It reads

    Rice Leaders of the World Association

    That was a business ethics association that was set up around 1914 if memory serves. It was kind of like a Better Business Bureau of the time. Rice was the name of the founder (Elwood E. Rice). Basically they invited companies with a stellar track record to join the association, and those that joined could display the RLWA coat of arms. You'll find it on a number of high end goods of the era.
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