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Doc72

Airbrushing Humbrol Acrylics? Or water and airbrushing in general.

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Hello everybody,

did anyone succeed in airbrushing Humbrol acrylics?

I found this paint cannot be thinned with ethanol, my favorite airbrush-thinner. It rather turns into a sludge or does not disolve in the ethanol. Water, on the other hand, works very well with Humbrol acrylics. Citadel seems to be similar in this aspect.

But I never succeeded in airbrushing anything thinned with water, as the paint immediately forms beads or tiny puddles on the model's surface.

I have more or less the same problem with water, water with detergent, window cleaner (a German variety, I can't get Windex here, but it is probably similar) and even 70% IPA (=30% water). The problem seems to be that the water does not evaporate soon after hitting the surface as other, more volatile thinners do.

On the other hand, I often read that people are using water or water-containing thinners for airbrush, so i wonder how it works. Ands sometimes it would be nice to be able to spray Humbrol or Citadel. Actually, the problem arose with a Folland Gnat that I had planned to spray with a Citadel silver (looks better than Tamiya's) and Humbrol's Fluorescent Red.

Do you have any experince on this subjects?

Thanks in advance,

Ole

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Hi Doc,

Vallejo airbrush thinners will work with Humbrol acrylics as will Ultimate Thinners. I must be honest and say I think Humbrol acrylic paints are a waste of time and money. There are better paints on the market that give more consistent results; Vallejo and Lifecolor are but two of them.

Best Wishes,

Will.

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Sadly, I have also come to the conclusion that Humbrol acrylics are a waste of time & money. I simply can't get anything approaching consistency when using them - even to the extent that some colours seem to spray reasonably OK whilst others simply won't spray at all. I have tried all kinds of thinners, at varying ratios, different air pressures, different airbrushes....all to no avail.

Even at their best (least worst?) all I've managed is to spray large areas - forget about fine lines, freehand cammo etc.

It's a pity because I'd love to be able to use them as I'm familiar with Humbrol's colours in their enamel range but would prefer to use acrylics these days. If anyone here can give sound advice how to spray Humbrol acrylics, I'm all ears.....

Jon.

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Hi Jon,

Yep, I did the same as you did and worked at it for a long time simply because I could get Humbrol acrylics at my local Hobbyland. It didn't work, I found Vallejo and Ultimate thinners would thin them, and even reconstituted a new tin full of congealed muck into something that looked like paint. However, brushing and airbrushing results were hopeless, and I binned the lot. As I said in my post above, try Vallejo or Lifecolor at least they are consistent in their quality from bottle to bottle; more than I can say about Humbrol.

Best Wishes,

Will.

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