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That's it - I've had enough of Harder and Steenbeck


Chris Jephcott
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Well it's finally happened...

After a year an a half of stuttering, spitting, clogging, breaking, poor performance and total inability to have any sort of fine line, no matter what the pressure is, I've had enough of my H+S infinity 2 in 1 airbrush.

So... Useful suggestions please as to which direction to go in with an airbrush?

I fancy an Iwata, needle size 0.15mm for fine detail, and something that isn't H+S. Preferably without having to write to the bank manager asking for a loan.

Can anyone advise please?

Chris

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Which paints are you using? Thining ratios? Have you spoken to someone like Paul at Little Cars? No, not every brush works well for everyone, but, something sounds really wrong here.

.15 are prctilly for artists inks IMHO...so, it requires a lot of thinner.

Edited by Av8fan
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Would reccomend Iwata, had a HP-B ( 0.2mm) for a few years and I love it!

Happily spray 1/144th camo freehand

Saying that, i've also got my faithful Badger 200, runs a treat too

Best investment was a regulator/moisture trap for my compressor....invaluable!

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Check with Paul at Little-Cars. I've heard nothing but good things about H&S, And was thinking about getting one, but I may reconsider.

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Hi Paul - will drop you a line tomorrow afternoon/morning depending on whether I get called for work or not.

Paint wise, I use a mixture of types.

My normal is Vallejo model air, which I thin with their own thinners (should it be needed!).

I also use Tamiya paints thinned with water, or tamiya thinners (if the budget allows!)

I'm regularly using Alclad sprayed at a low pressure - and cleaned with cellulose

And enamels - testors and white ensign. Cleaned and thinned with white spirit or enamel thinners.

So it's a mixture of stuff really.

There's chance that the seals in the brush need a clean up, and some will probably need replacing. However, I am getting a little bit fed up with regularly having to take it apart and find the source of the blockage again and again (especially as I sometimes have to thin the paints well beyond normal thinning levels). Normally after about 30 seconds of spraying!!

Any help is appreciated, but I strongly think I'll be considering an Iwata from now on... :(

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What kind of compressor and do you have a moisture trap?

My gut feeling is buying an Iwata may not solve the problem but that there's something going on with all the paint you're using, possibly stuff sitting in the system which reactivate and reacts to other types of paint.

FWIW, my Premi-Air G35 - a sub £40 airbrush - has only ever had Model Air through it, I tend to thin paint with Vallejo's cleaner rather than thinner, give it a good blast through using an airbrush cleaning station, then leave the brush in situ with cleaner in the cup, ready for next time. No blockages, and when I do strip and clean, it takes a couple of minutes because the brush is virtually spotless anyway, which I think is down to it only every seeing one type of paint.

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Will cellulose not damage the seals on H&S? Really need a moisture tap if you don't have one, If your using it alot you will get water in your airline and that'll congeal with certain paints. Good luck with sorting it, touch wood in the two years I've used H&S I've never had a problem.

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The compressor I use is only a cheap one, but it does have a moisture trap. How successful it is at collecting the moisture is a matter for conjecture, but it would explain some of the spitting perhaps?

It's an interesting idea re. The model air only airbrush. I've taken to leaving it clean and full of cleaner after I've finished using it - but what is crazy to me, is even just after using model air, how the airbrush needs a deep clean before I can use another colour - a really painful (and fun destroying move).

So, even if the airbrush is spotlessly clean, with model air in it, it clogs up at once.

As a test, I've just tried tamiya paints too - at the normal low pressure I use (15-20), and they all seem to spit and gloop. The white (a notorious colour) even clogged it up when thinned to a very level.

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Really don't think so!!! :banghead:

You didn't quote everything I said, I said 'If your using it alot you will get water in your airline'. Not really needed if you only use it from time to time.

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Chris - have a look at your nozzle under magnification, and check for cracks. I had this once and it was down to a hairline crack down my nozzle. :S

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Mike, I've even tried that - I replaced the nozzle with a brand new, factory fresh, still sealed one - and it was the same problems again!!

I'm not sure what to do about it really... Maybe I'm just not destined to ever really get on with an H+S.

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Well, I'd look at the paint before the brush. I've had no end of trouble with Model Air in my Iwata, and it does tend to gunk things up. Just as an experiment, how about trying some enamel thinned with artists turps through the brush? Much as it stinks, I've never had any issues spraying enamels, Zero Paints or Tamiya Acrylics thinned with lacquer thinner (which, contrary to certain published tables, works absolutely fine...) with the Eclipse. Vallejo paints, be they Model Air or not, when thinned with their own thinner, are much more temperamental, and even if they spray OK, require much more thorough clean up every time they are used, in my experience. With the stinky paints, a couple of blasts of liquid reamer and a backflush with Zero Airbrush cleaner is enough between colours. Also, it may depend on which Vallejho thinner you have. It's recently changed, and is now clear, watery and fragrant, rather than the white, milky "ultra-thin PVA" that it seemed to be before... The new stuff is significantly better.

bestest,

M.

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things that caused spitting for me:

1 bent needle tip - gently drag it backwards ONLY on a fine micro mesh pad to restore tip.

2 dried paint on INSIDE of nozzle - soak in lacquer thinners overnight and carefully clean it out with a stiff brush.

3 end of nozzle damaged - replace it. Once its damaged thats it.

4 too thick a paint through too small a nozzle - 0.15 is too small i think. ok for inks and REALLY thinned paint. This is the main cause.

5 water in the air supply - you will know it when you see it.

Does it spray neat thinners, neat IPA, (or even neat water) without spitting? If it does then number 4 is probably the answer.

Edited by noeyedears
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Hello again,

I'm looking at the paint as the issue really, but equally, having tried all of my varieties yesterday, they all exhibit the same behaviour - which is a curious spitting and puddling effect. However, it is clear that Vallejo Model Air is a bit iffy - I was very aware of the cleaning issues when I got into the paint, and have been using the new Vallejo thinner and cleaner (it's the clear stuff!), however, the paint does tend to dry into a pretty nasty film which makes cleaning very difficult as it's a pain to clean out of a nozzle and nothing seems to shift it when it happens! I thought this might have actually been the issue with the nozzle originally, but gave it a very thorough cleaning and still had the same problem.

I'm inclined towards the 0.15 needle being too thin for Vallejo model air actually - it would explain a fair few of the problems that I've encountered with it. With this in mind, would anybody be able to suggest a needle size for spraying Vallejo model air? Would a 0.2 be more workable with?

If that's the problem of course!

Many thanks guys,

Chris

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You didn't quote everything I said, I said 'If your using it alot you will get water in your airline'. Not really needed if you only use it from time to time.

You wrote TAP not TRAP . . . the complete opposite of what you meant (I thought)!! :winkgrin:

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4 too thick a paint through too small a nozzle - 0.15 is too small i think. ok for inks and REALLY thinned paint. This is the main cause.

When I was looking a new brush, this one one of the concerns I had. I'd never gone down as low as .2mm needle before, and I apprehensive about Tamiya being to thick for the needle. Also, the instructions state a working pressure of between 40-60psi, and I'd never worked over 20psi before. However following all the instructions to the letter seems to have worked for me. Maybe try a higher pressure, and thinner paint. I'm no expert by any stretch, just trying to come up with a solution

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