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Clean up my airbrush after usage

Discussion in 'Airbrushes' started by Nathalie, Jun 13, 2019.


  1. Nathalie

    Nathalie Double Actioner

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    Hi everyone,

    I need advice on cleanibg up.

    I clean my airbrush until the cup is clean and I do " backwasn" too by blocking the nozzle and shooting.

    But after that when I unassemble my airbrush there is paint on the needle.

    So I don't know how to clean thorougly to ensure the interior is really paint free.

    Thanks in advance for your advice.
  2. Nathalie

    Nathalie Double Actioner

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    After search, I found out that the best is to de-assembled the airbrush. Clean it up : that's it.

    But with my problems with the needle screw I was afraid that the airbrush needle screw could not sustain daily unassembly.

    Seem that there is no problem to do so. !!!

    Have good airbrushing
  3. AndreZA

    AndreZA Elite Member! Elite Member! Very Likeable!

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    This is what I do.

    Between colours
    1. Dump or spray out the remaining paint
    2. Fill cup with cleaner (10% alcohol + 90% water) and spray out
    3. Fill cup with cleaner again and do backwash.
    4. With the cleaner still in the cup, wash the inside of the cup with a brush, dump dirty cleaner. DO NOT SPRAY IT OUT AGAIN. You've loosened the dry paint on the inside of the cup and if you spray now it will clog the nozzle.
    5. Fill cup with plain water. Spray half out, backflush and dump the rest.
    6. Ready for next colour.

    This takes about 30 seconds.

    For cleaning after project
    Step 1-6 above.
    7. Remove head, loosen needle chuck and pull nozzle out the front.
    8. Push needle in from back and out the front a few more times.
    9. Clean inside of nozzle with rigger brush
    10. Assemble and spray cleaner through followed by water.
    11. Wipe clean and put away till next project.

    This whole process is about 5 minutes.
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  4. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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  5. Franc Kaiser

    Franc Kaiser Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    As so often, I am learning something new on this forum every day. Step 4 is so obvious but I don’t think I was ever aware of it.
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  6. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    Actually back washing is bad for the airbrush. It can send cleaner back into the body and past the packing bearing. If cleaner gets down into the trigger and plunger it can wash away the lubricant on the plunger and cause a sticky and slow rising trigger.


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  7. Franc Kaiser

    Franc Kaiser Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    I am guilty of committing that crime, too!
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  8. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    Yep I have had too many sticky triggers in the past. When I first started airbrushing in the 1970s my Paschee VL3s would have paint all the way back to the trigger. Trip dry was a constant issue using AquaFlow and Createx when it came out in the 80s. Painting T-Shirts at 45 to 55 psi on the strip demanded quick clean to keep painting so back flushing was common to keep the paint flowing. I miss painting in Ft. Walton.


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  9. Electric Cat Dude

    Electric Cat Dude Young Tutorling

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    I always found that during color changes, you should dump or spray out the excess paint, then fill the color cup with cleaner (commercial cleaners or Windex will do well for this) and scrub out any color in the cup using a Q-Tip. Run the cleaner in the cup through the brush until the cup empties then wipe any additional pigment from the color cup using a paper towel or Q-Tip. Run that load of cleaner through the gun until the color cup empties, then run some sterile water through the cup, and wipe out any moisture from the color cup. The gun is ready for a new color.

    For end-of-the-day clean up, I recommend tearing the brush down to its individual components and cleaning each one out carefully. I found using twisted up tissues worked best for cleaning out small spaces like nozzles, color cups, airbrush bodies etc. If you can get your hands on one, I'd recommend running all the fluid head and detachable color cups through an ultrasonic cleaner overnight as this really helps to get the gunk out. Yeah, it'll take you about an hour per brush to really do a good job, but maintenance is an investments and time spend here can prevent the brush from sputtering paint all over your artwork and destroying a lotta of hours worth of labor.

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