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Help Me With My Setup and Accessories

Discussion in 'Beginners Airbrush Questions!' started by JatoTheRipper, Feb 6, 2019.


  1. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    I bought a Harbor Freight airbrush a year or two ago with the intention to paint RC car bodies. I played around with it, but never did much with it. A friend suggested trying water based paints so I could paint in my basement all year long. I figured that I should get a good airbrush if I want to give this a serious try. As such, I ordered up a Badger 105 Patriot after getting feedback on this site as well as directly from Badger.

    I will be spraying water-based paints from Proline Racing and Parma.

    Now I want to get the other things I need - regulator, moisture trap, MAC valve, etc and that is where I am asking for help.

    I have a Husky 4610A 4.6 gallon air compressor (Rebranded California Air CAT-4610A). I will put a moisture trap directly on the output of this compressor. I'm confused about what, if any regulators and moisture traps I'll need upstream near the airbrush.

    I see Sparmax offers Silver Bullet moisture traps and MAC valve combos. Those look nice, but then I wouldn't know if I should choose the one with the MAC valve or the one with the bleed valve.

    Thank you.
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  2. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Very Likeable!

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    I have this one from sparmax:
    [​IMG]

    And I am not able to close it totally. It's made to bleed air all the time. That mac valve or whatever you see there, is just so you can put more or less bleed. Totally useless in my case. Cause of this bleed valve, when I had smaller compressor, my compressor was kicking in from time to time cause of this. Now, when I have bigger compressor I don't notice compressor starting cause of it, but I know it still bleeds air.
    I need to remove this from my setup, I totally forgot about this thingy...

    Now the main problem with this in my case is: When I use bottom feed, my bottles and this pistol grip take to much space very close to each other so it's frustrating when I was changing bottles(I don't use it any more close to the airbrush-I moved it 3meters down the hose.). Even quick connect with mac is in the way(which I use now-before I used quick connect with mac valve and pistol grip-that was frustrating...), when changing bottles and stuff. I have this one:
    https://www.air-craft.net/acatalog/Airbrush-Quick-Connect-1-8th-Male-with-FC.html#SID=843
    I think lol

    So as my understanding goes, the longer your hose is the more water you will get in your hose or at the end of your airbrush. I for example have 15 meters hose. So my setup is: compressor > pressure gauge moister trap > 15 meters hose > pressure regulator close to my work bench with moisture trap > pistol grip on that moisture trap(yea yea, I know, I should remove it from there, I was to lazy :p I was testing something with bleed, didn't work, cause I bought bigger compressor :D) > 3 meters of hose > quick connect with mac valve >airbrush

    with this setup if I disconnect hose from second regulator and moisture trap and I put on my Air gun, I get for like 10 seconds of water spraying when I need air for dusting something... While when I use airbrush with my setup I don't get any water.

    So theory about how long is a hose and how much water you get is correct if you ask me. Probably others will help you better with this.


    So here would be my ideal setup for my case:

    compressor > pressure gauge and moisture trap > 15 meters hose > pressure regulator and moisture trap at my work bench > 2.5 meters of airbrush hose > pistol grip moisture trap with mack valve(not bleeder) or pistol grip moisture trap and one quick connect with mac on it(just brainstorming!) > 0.5 meters of hose > quick connect without mac valve so I have space for bottom feed bottles > airbrush

    Here is practical example of my case and few theories. As you can see it depends. I don't have a clue what kinda airbrush is yours. My bottom feed doesn't like pistol grips. Unless I would buy the expensive(cause they charge 25 euros for shipping) one, which @crewchief227 linked one day:
    http://www.foxystudio.com/product/airtex-hand-grip-filter/

    didn't see it in person, but looks like this could work for me. Design is very clean.


    Damn I hate those threads. Whenever I see threads like this, I know I will lose some money if I go and read them -.-


    Husky's out. This thread just cost me one quick connect without mac valve and probably 2 hoses and few parts as well.
    Bljaaaaaaah lol
    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2019
  3. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    With that compressor you should not need an in line trap. Just one at the compressor. Only reason you would need one by the brush is if you were running an excess amount of hose. Even a Mack valve is a plus, but not needed if you are right next to the compressor. I have one on my Micron SB and rarely use it. The one I bought I believe was from Createx. Biggest thing I would get is a SharpenAir! I actually just used mine and saved myself from ordering a new needle for my Micron. A lot depends on the type of painting you are going to be doing. Since you are spraying water based paints I would highly recommend a box of hollow bodied q-tips for clearing tip dry. Also a good set of cleaning tools from Coast Airbrush Supply. Not too much else’s is needed until you determine where you want to go with airbrushing. One last things you definitely want a regulator but as far as I know most California Air Tool Compressors have a regulator. At least mine does.


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  4. DaveG

    DaveG Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    I have the California 4610A, and have been using it for about 6 years now. I do not have a moisture trap on it, nor on my airline - and I have never had a single issue with moisture out of this compressor. I do drain the tank occasionally, especially during the warmer, more humid months. Adding one (a moisture trap) to the output will not harm anything, and may give you piece of mind... I set my pressure on the compressors regulator, and then use a MAC valve connected to my air hose to reduce it when needed. I have probably not touched the pressure gauge in maybe 3 or 4 years... The MAC valve I use constantly. Add a quick connect to the brush - will make things easier in the long run - a MAC valve with a QC is a great thing.

    Someone else mentioned a Sharpenair, and I think that is a brilliant suggestion - I use one all the time. But, there is really nothing else you "need". Get the brush, and use it - use it A LOT. Practice, practice, practice is the most important thing, at this point. Things that you feel you need will come into view as you learn.
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  5. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    Lots of great info! Thank you.

    Yes, my compressor has a regulator. Not sure how low it will go.

    How do you regulate the MAC valve without a gauge? All by experience and feel?

    What's the SharpenAir!? To repair needles?

    Which cleaning kit would you recommend?

    Oh and, husky, spending money is fun!
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019
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  6. DaveG

    DaveG Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    I generally set my compressor for 30-35psi, and then use the MAC valve to regulate down to (sometimes) just about zero. You will develop a feel for where it needs to be set by what you brush, and paint are doing.

    Yes, the Sharpenair is a needle repair tool.

    I know everyone will tell you to clean, clean, clean your brush - I am going to tell you that EVERY newbie worries too much about cleaning their brush, and usually winds up doing more harm than good in the process. It is a natural thing. You will need a soft bristled paint bush for helping loosen paint in the bowl while doing color changes, or cleaning at the end of a session. A clean out jar, or pot are good to have so you are spraying stuff into the room you are - most are about the same. They sell brushes for cleaning, and such, but I find small inter-dental brushes meet the need just as well, and are easy to find in the pharmacy isles...
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  7. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    I guess I will order the Grex G-MAC.B. That seems to be a very popular valve.

    In most of the hobbies that I have had over the years the cleaning kits are usually overpriced conglomerations of items and often some of those never get used. So I'm looking for the basic cleaning kit without wasting money or taking up space in my house with items I'll never use. I already do enough of that! :laugh: But I am fine buying a starter cleaning kit if you guys can link me to a specific one you'd recommend.

    The brush and some paints are scheduled for delivery tomorrow. If so, hopefully I'm making a mess this weekend! :)
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  8. erwin de pan

    erwin de pan Mac-Valve Maestro!

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    My cleaning kit
    Q-Tip`s (make them wet with cleaning fluid before use)
    Paper handkerchief, to clean the needle.
    And a few different small inter-dental brushes.
    1 stop at the supermarket and you have everything you need.
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  9. DaveG

    DaveG Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    sounds about right, to me :)
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  10. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    Thanks for the info! Which cleaning fluid do you suggest?
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  11. DaveG

    DaveG Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

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    OK, I had to look up the paint brands you listed to try to figure out what would work best - cleaner - water. Lots of water. After water, you can use 91% Isopropyl Alcohol available from the drug store isle, to get the real stubborn remnants. If you want something more brand specific, they do make a reducer, which is largely Butoxyethanol - the same main ingredient of many of the reducers on the market. Any of the alcohols, including the reducers should be sprayed into a clean out pot, and not into the room for you to breathe.

    I also use airbrush cleaner - no particular brand, as they pretty much contain the same sort of ingredients. My most recent bottle is Medea Airbrush Cleaner.

    I dump out as much paint as possible. Add water to the bowl, and swish around with a soft bristled paint brush, and pour that out. Add more water, and spray out. Maybe more water, another swish with a brush, rinse and repeat. Pull the needle and wipe in a paper towel, and spray some more water - till everything looks clean. I may do a wash with cleaner, or alcohol after my first rinse with water, just to help break stuff up a bit more, but it is not always needed...
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019
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  12. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    Good to know! Sounds like the cleanup will be easy enough. Thank you!
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  13. jord001

    jord001 Air-Valve Autobot!

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    @huskystafford can you stop the air from bleeding on it? Or does it have to bleed all the time?

    Lee
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  14. JatoTheRipper

    JatoTheRipper Young Tutorling

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    I was wondering the same. The air bleeding would be annoying at the least.
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  15. jord001

    jord001 Air-Valve Autobot!

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    The reason I ask is because I think I have one still in the packet. If its going to hiss at me all day im going to leave it there. :)


    Lee
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  16. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Very Likeable!

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    it bleeds all the time. I contacted sparmax for this. This was their reply:

    *******************************************************************************************************
    Thank you for contacting us.


    Silver Bullet Plus releases excess pressure to deliver stable and constant pressure during operation. Even when it’s closed, slight air leak still occurs. For your information, in order to control the product quality, our Q/C inspect each piece of Silver Bullet Plus before dispatch to make sure they function well and the air leak is within the standard tolerance.


    Further to your inquiry, without viewing your actual Silver Bullet Plus, it is difficult for us to determine if the air leak is within tolerance. However, we would suggest you to first try and check if there is any crack on the blue, transparent lower body. If not, please provide following information for our Q/C to check further:


    1. Photos of 2 o-rings in Silver Bullet Plus as the attached photo.


    2. A video to show us air leakage.


    3. Please let us know which compressor (brand and model) you are using with it.


    Looking forward to your reply.

    *******************************************************************************************************

    This was quite an issue while I was running 8 liters tank on a fridge compressor. Now I don't care cause I am on 90 liters compressor. To be honest I forgot about this, until I seen OP thread. Like I already told, I need to take this thing off my hose. I just don't get to do this. I guess I been quite spoiled with bigger tank lately.

    I think this post will help you decide guys :)
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  17. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Very Likeable!

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    jord If you figure out how to close that little ARGHHHHHH cant write this or I will be censored :D, I would be glad to hear how you did it. I guess I would get trap without bleeding. I don't need mac valve.
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  18. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    Home made airbrush cleaner

    1 cup Rubbing Alcohol
    4 cup Water
    1 cup Glass Cleaner (non ammonia)
    5 drops Glycerine
    1/2 bottle of nail polish remover (Acetone)


    Reduced in 1/4

    1/4 cup Rubbing Alcohol
    1 cup Water
    1/4 cup Glass Cleaner (non ammonia)
    1 to 2 drops Glycerine


    AIRBRUSH REDUCER

    3 parts Distilled Water
    1 part Denatured Alcohol
    1 part Ammonia Free Window Cleaner (Clear is best)
    Drops of Glycerin (see notes)




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  19. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    Hi Fred,
    Just a couple of things
    ..... how big is the bottle of nail polish remover? I can see i need half a bottle but that could be anywhere between 1/2 oz and 3 oz. it’s also missing from your “reduced to 1/4” recipe

    Also what were your notes regarding the glycerine :)

    FORUM DISCLAIMER: 'Home brews' or suggestions of 'tweaking' a commercial product can be hazardous to your equipment, your health or the health of those around you. Persons using the information contained on this forum do so voluntarily and at their own risk and should ensure appropriate precautions are taken by using the recommended Personal Protective Equipment and ventilation.
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  20. Airbrush Dreams

    Airbrush Dreams Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    Oh sorry about that. I think when I modified this recipe I did a 8 oz bottle but I increase it when I separate from my gallon jug into my smaller 16 ounce bottle I usually add an ounce or two more. It is even okay to use straight nail polish remover, but I prefer to use the recipe.
    With the Glycerin you don’t need much at all, just 2 to 3 drops for using as a reducer. However it can be used in the cleaner. In fact this is what is in Media airbrush cleaner. That’s why you get that bubbly soap suds look if you back flush. Just avoid ammonia window cleaner.


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