Cheap generic airbrush: A double edge sword

tatocorvette

Mac-Valve Maestro!
Hello,

As with many other inventions, the airbrush has been copied and made available very cheap. The concept and base designs are really well over a century old. Like many other tools, today we have our top quality brands that command higher costs in one end, and the generic knockoffs copycats from overseas that are spitted in massive numbers at the other end of the spectrum. I have always considered this a double edge sword. On one hand it can make the tool and technology easily available to the masses. However, on the other hand, a low quality tool can leave a bad impression in a first time user who will most likely loose interest quickly.
I am a product of that myself. My first airbrush (and only one until recently) happened to be a Korean made knockoff and it has worked flawlessly for 30 years and counting. A lot has happened in the last 30 years. Today I see a flood of cheap generic airbrushes online in such numbers that I think they seem to be single use disposables.
As I was wondering about that, I found a cheap generic gravity feed airbrush kit, complete with 3 full needle/nozzle setups (fine, medium and heavy), hose, 1/4" adapter, wrench and plastic dropper for $19. That's what I paid for my generic airbrush back 30 years ago!
Is it any good? Let's find out!

So first thing I noticed is the cheap packaging. No case. Just a bubble wrapper over shrink wrapped plastic.
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Simple and basic documentation
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The foam really does little after the shrink wrap is removed
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The airbrush itself feels solid... until you operate the trigger. Significantly distant from "smooth"
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Noticed the nozzle is not properly centered and the needle could use some TLC.
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Needle chuck, shank assembly etc. are all wobbly and cheap feeling. Far from a quality feel.
In the first quick test it would spray even if all the way forward. The needle was not seating properly. I took everything apart, cleaned it, polished some parts, adjusted and tweaked it.
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Still not perfectly centered but a little better
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I haven't played with the fine and heavy setups, but I was able to make it work decently with the medium setup. As received, this would most likely cause a new comer to walk away. But at the end, it can be an emergency backup or a general purpose unit.

Conclusion: It can work if properly adjusted, but will never feel like a high quality airbrush.

Thanks,
Ismael
 
Yeah, those Chinese WD-Veda Whatever are not great... certainly not reliable or sustainable.
They make for a fantastic gateway drug, however.... they're cheap, hence no regrets ... and create great appetite for more.
It was the case for me starting off with airbrush, in any case.
 
Yeah, those Chinese WD-Veda Whatever are not great... certainly not reliable or sustainable.
They make for a fantastic gateway drug, however.... they're cheap, hence no regrets ... and create great appetite for more.
It was the case for me starting off with airbrush, in any case.
that's me, started with a Veda, it taught me well on how to fully dismantle and reassemble without the fear of ruining a good brush. After a week I knew I was hooked and bought the Eclipse CS, continued to use the Veda until I realised the tool was holding me back so switched over to the Eclipse and I was then confident in dismantling if needed. when I grabbed the Veda a few months later the needle had seized to the nozzle, possibly not dry when I put it away and it got me hooked into something that I still do some 11 years later, boy that went by fast !
 
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