For Every Airbrush Artist!

Want to see more forum, less google ads ? Then register for free

Register

Looking for help!

Discussion in 'Airbrushes' started by UraniumPidgeon, Oct 14, 2020.


  1. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    I need some help please. All of a sudden I am having issues with my Sparmax Sp-Max-3.
    When I first pull the trigger paint flows perfectly fine. PSI is fine.
    But after about 20 seconds it flows as if there is a blockage, paint barely flows. If I cover the nozzle cap and backflow air the paint starts flowing again for about 5 second but then goes back to essentially not flowing.
    I have cleaned the parts very thoroughly. No block in the nozzle, cap or cup. I cannot figure out what the issue is.
    I noticed my needle was bent so I replaced it and within 20 minutes that needle was somehow bent too. I hadn't even put this brush down. Could something inside be bending the brush? Could this be linked to my issue above?
    Any help is appreciated as I am pulling my hair out.

    Sorry if this is in the wrong place I couldn't found anywhere better
    jord001 likes this.
  2. Karl Becker

    Karl Becker Needle-chuck Ninja

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2020
    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    297
    Trophy Points:
    61
    Location:
    Northern IL, USA
    No expert here, but I have a few thoughts.

    First off, needles don't just bend without coming into physical contact with something. Are you sure the new needle wasn't bent already when you installed it? I suppose if the nozzle was damaged it could affect the needle, so maybe have a good look at that.

    As for the paint flow issue, it sounds like either the paint is too thick or the pressure is too low.

    Again, I'm not a doctor, I just play one on the internet. I'm sure someone much more knowledgeable will be along shortly to straighten you right out!
    UraniumPidgeon and jord001 like this.
  3. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2012
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    13,482
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Mt Barker, South Australia
    jord001 likes this.
  4. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2017
    Messages:
    2,193
    Likes Received:
    4,185
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    West Virginia
    Did the brush work ok before today? What compressor are you using? When you installed the needle did it slide in easily, and smoothly - or did you maybe hit the trigger or packing screw with the tip when installing it?
    UraniumPidgeon and jord001 like this.
  5. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja Staff Member Admin Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2017
    Messages:
    4,340
    Likes Received:
    5,420
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Slovenia
    Hi Uranium, would you be kind enough and introduce yourself here:
    https://www.airbrushforum.org/introductions/

    No worries, we don't bite. We all made an introduction, it's something we do, so you can check few from other members so you get a feeling how to make one.

    Welcome dragon.jpg

    And don't go flying pidgeon on me now, it's easy to make an introduction :D

    Pidgeon
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Jump to navigation Jump to search
    Not to be confused with Pigeon or Pidgin.
    For the album or band, see Jobriath.
    [​IMG] Look up pidgeon in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
    Pidgeon is a surname from an archaic spelling of pigeon
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2020
    JackEb, jord001 and markjthomson like this.
  6. Franc Kaiser

    Franc Kaiser Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2018
    Messages:
    2,001
    Likes Received:
    4,177
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Shanghai
    I had similar issues with my Sparmax Sp-20. I also couldn't figure out what caused those frustrating blockages. I solved elegantly it by buying an Iwata, and didn't look back on it since.
  7. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    I'm about 100% sure the needle was straight when it went into the brush. The paint I'm using is the same I have always used and it was never an issue. However I considered it might be too thick so I thinned it down and it still does it. I have also turned the pressure up and its basically no change.

    I am now thinking its the cap.
    jord001 likes this.
  8. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Before it started doing this the brush worked perfectly fine. I'm using a Fengda FD 186 compressor with a tank. The needle slid in fine. I didnt notice any catch at all.
    jord001 likes this.
  9. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2017
    Messages:
    2,193
    Likes Received:
    4,185
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    West Virginia
    do check your nozzle cap to make sure there is no paint built up around the edges of the exit hole. There is no mechanical mechanism that would bend a needle once in position in an airbrush - unless you have something assembled incorrectly - like a nozzle being off center, forcing a needle to rub the nozzle cap. It would be difficult to get it together this wrong, however...

    When you are not releasing air, it is normal for the pressure to climb in the hose, and tank - higher than what you have your regulator set up for. When you first press the trigger higher pressure air is released for a little bit, until pressure normalizes to the set pressure. You can normally see the needle on your pressure gauge drop when the trigger is pressed - If you get good paint flow with the initial blast of air,a n then it drops off, I would be suspecting that thee is an issue with the flow of air over the nozzle rather than a paint blockage. Could be the nozzle is off center, or the nozzle cap is not installed far enough to allow a good off-set between it and the nozzle, or that paint has built up in or around the exit bore interfering with air flow...
  10. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Cleared out the nozzle, no paint in there but I'm concerned its damaged somehow so I have a new one on the way.

    I have my last spare needle... this one is 100% straight so I will have to try this one out and see how it goes once the new cap arrives.

    If I take the nozzle cap off and blast air it comes out consistently and fine which makes me think the problem might lay there in the cap. The flow of good paint lasts longer than that initial drop in pressure so I'm not sure.

    Another deep clean of it tonight in advance of the new cap :(
  11. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2012
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    13,482
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Mt Barker, South Australia
    Just a random thought... you are setting the compressor regulator with the trigger pressed and air flowing aren’t you ? If you set the reg at 25psi without airflow it will drop lower once you press air, maybe to low for your paint. Water will normally always spray well - no pigment to get in the way :)
  12. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Yea I tried it at a bunch of PSI
    jord001 likes this.
  13. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2012
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    13,482
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Mt Barker, South Australia
    I thought you might have, just trying to cover all possibilities :)

    while we wait for your new cap to arrive, what paint are you using ?
    if the pigment in the paint is to large its not going to flow through a small needle setup no matter how much you thin it. although yours is a .3 so it shouldn't be to much of an issue
    Its not impossible for you to have multiple issues. Just me thinking out loud so apologies if you've already considered / resolved some of my questions
    jord001 and UraniumPidgeon like this.
  14. UraniumPidgeon

    UraniumPidgeon Young Tutorling

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Im using Ultimate modelling products ultimate primer black. Ive used it countless times before and it was always fine :(

    Im happy for ALL ideas as i am literally pulling my hair out lol

    Thank you :)
    JackEb and jord001 like this.
  15. Karl Becker

    Karl Becker Needle-chuck Ninja

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2020
    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    297
    Trophy Points:
    61
    Location:
    Northern IL, USA
    Another random thought that I haven't seen mentioned. Make sure you aren't leaking air anywhere, whether it's between the compressor and the brush, or on the brush itself (nozzle cap, air valve connection, etc.). Regardless of what the psi is at the compressor, a leak anywhere would lower the pressure coming through the nozzle. I had an issue with that on one of my brushes a while back.

    That wouldn't have any impact on the needle problem, but could explain the paint flow issue. Grabbing at straws here...
    JackEb and jord001 like this.
  16. twood

    twood Detail Decepticon! Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Messages:
    1,920
    Likes Received:
    3,561
    Trophy Points:
    111
    Location:
    Glen Morris, Ontario, Canada
    Another issue would be tip dry....Sprays great until you get dried paint on the tip of your needle....
    JackEb and jord001 like this.
  17. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2012
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    13,482
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    Mt Barker, South Australia
    because we are waiting for your new cap to arrive and I have never heard of Ultimate modelling products, and I'm probably not alone in not knowing every single paint brand out there, I hit google...
    The web page for the primer states the following

    • Shake well before using
    • No thinning needed
    • Best applied with a 0.4 or larger needle
    • Spray at 20psi - 30psi
    • Spray light layers
    • Allow to dry 10 minutes between coats
    • Model is ready for paint after 30 minutes.
    • Allow 24 hours to fully cure
    • Always remember to close cap properly
    • Clean your airbrush immediately after use with Ultimate Airbrush Cleaner
    The last point indicates to me that if you aren't careful you will get build up in you brush very easily. maybe you've had build up in there and its hardened and that is what is causing you needle to bend ? @DaveG, does that sound possible ?
    Even if its not possible to bend the needle from dry paint,

    If the bottle has been in use for a few months its possible that its binder is evaporating and thickening the paint, possibly causing microscopic lumps..
    a pair of cut up stockings as a strainer is always a benefit.

    Every single suggestion made in this thread is a possibility and sometimes we get so frustrated that we overlook the simple possibilities.
    - I was having air issues one day... it was fine while I was standing at the compressor checking pressure with the airbrush in hand. when I sat down and settled into painting I then started having air issues..... after scratching my head for a good 10 minutes it turned out that my chair (old office chair with wheels) was on the airline. definite facepalm moment but goes to show that sometimes you think you know what the problem is (I thought a dying compressor was my problem) but in reality it has nothing to do with the problem.
    jord001 and DaveG like this.
  18. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2017
    Messages:
    2,193
    Likes Received:
    4,185
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Location:
    West Virginia
    I will get my Sparmax Max-3 out tomorrow and see if anything jumps out at me. Things don't just start happening on their own without cause...

    That primer is re-branded Badger Stynylrez? I have a love/hate relationship with the stuff. Have you tried reducing it just a touch with water? I shoot that stuff a lot out of .2 brushes without much issue, after reducing just a tad. I have also heard of people soaking the bottle in hot water for a few minutes before use to improve flow.

    I have found that changes in humidity can effect the way it sprays quite a bit.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2020
    jord001 and JackEb like this.
  19. SiRoxx

    SiRoxx Party Boy UK Style Staff Member Mod Very Likeable!

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2017
    Messages:
    5,587
    Likes Received:
    7,687
    Trophy Points:
    126
    Hi Uranium,
    Looks like you’ve gotten lots of suggestions so I hope we’ll get to the bottom of it.
    In the mean time just a gentle reminder to shoot off a quick intro on the thread. Doesn’t have to be much, just helps with us suggesting products or suppliers.
    Most of all welcome!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    jord001 and JackEb like this.

Share This Page