Making your own needles

JuanRi

Needle-chuck Ninja
Let's see if I can explain how I make needles. As always, this works for me personally, it may not work for you, but I hope it does. In this tutorial, sharp material and tools are used, please take all the necessary precautions not to hurt yourself, you could still have an accident, be careful.

I've been studying all the posts on DaveG needles, awesome source of wisdom, thanks so much for sharing your knowledge, lucky to be able to read you.

Some initial considerations: I made needles that fit Aerograph Super 93, Super 63 and Sprite airbrushes (nozzle 0.12mm). But perhaps you can adjust this procedure to your own needles.

The diameter of the needle's body of these airbrushes is 1.3mm if I'm not mistaken. I got some 1.2mm needles, which were the most similar to the original ones. These needles are used in surgery and are called Kirschner wires. They may also be called trocar pins. They come in various diameters and sizes, and are made of excellent quality stainless steel (316LVM also called AISI 316LVM steel). I've read that this steel has industrial applications as well, so I suposse it can be obtained through several ways on internet. One notable difference is that the steel of the Kirschner wires is harder than that of the original needle, and it can be polished very well. My impression is that the original needle is easier to bend than the Kirschner wires.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 13.19.40 (1).jpeg

I bought 10 needles of 30 cm each (€52/$50 total price). I can make 20 airbrush needles from these 10 Kirschnner needles. May be you don't need this amount of needles and you can save some money. I use them on 4 airbrushes... not as many as DaveG's, but not bad, lol

The first thing is to cut the needle as needed, in my case, in two halves (15cm each).

The second is to sharpen the needle. With the Dremel attached to the table and a stone bur, the needle is sharpened as close as possible to the original tapering.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 17.57.02.jpeg
I have tried to sharpen the needle with sandpaper only, but it did not work for me, since steel is very hard. With only the Dremel and a stone bur I achieved a reliable sharpening, very patiently and very slowly. It is important that the Dremel is at the minimum speed and that the pressure of the needle on the stone is done with the finger. The angle with the surface's bur must be as close as possible to the original, I am doing it by eye and finally it's achieved! Be patient and don't rush. It can take 15 minutes or so to have a sharp needle, but I think it's worth it. What I do with the Dremel is use it as a lathe, I attach it to the table as in the photo.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 13.19.40 (2).jpeg

At the same time the diameter is reduced, I am testing if the tip fits the nozzle well and the length of the tip that comes out of it.
When the tip sticks out of the nozzle roughly like the original (although a bit more, because it's hard for me to taper just like the original) I polish it.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 13.19.41 (1).jpeg
Above: only the needle at the bottom is the original. The rest of them has been polished yet. You can notice the difference on tapering between the original one and made ones. On painting, I didn't notice any difference.

To polish it, I start with 500 grit wet sandpaper, then 2000 and finish with 5000, and I look with a magnifying glass to see if it is well finished.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 13.19.42.jpeg

I think the needle's polishment has been treated several times in the forum. Perhaps there's another way to do it that adjusts better to your own goal. To me I obtained better results taking the sand paper between the fingers and then rotate the needle.
WhatsApp Image 2023-05-03 at 13.19.41 (3).jpeg
There are some differences between them but they work fine.
I hope you can take profit from this tutorial and thank you for reading it. :)
 
Thanks Kingpin and tatocovette¡
Additional Information: much cheaper 316 steel welding rods (1.2mm) are available. I don't know if they will have the quality that I have, but I suppose so. ;)
 
Thanks palk¡ yes it's a matter of patience, I enjoy a lot to do it¡ By de way, I love doing my lures too, this was the trigger for airbrushing to me some time ago, show you a picture of the last I made this season (17 cm length). Sorry if the picture doesn't fit here... 😅

IMG_17791.jpg
 
Let's see if I can explain how I make needles. As always, this works for me personally, it may not work for you, but I hope it does. In this tutorial, sharp material and tools are used, please take all the necessary precautions not to hurt yourself, you could still have an accident, be careful.

I've been studying all the posts on DaveG needles, awesome source of wisdom, thanks so much for sharing your knowledge, lucky to be able to read you.

Some initial considerations: I made needles that fit Aerograph Super 93, Super 63 and Sprite airbrushes (nozzle 0.12mm). But perhaps you can adjust this procedure to your own needles.

The diameter of the needle's body of these airbrushes is 1.3mm if I'm not mistaken. I got some 1.2mm needles, which were the most similar to the original ones. These needles are used in surgery and are called Kirschner wires. They may also be called trocar pins. They come in various diameters and sizes, and are made of excellent quality stainless steel (316LVM also called AISI 316LVM steel). I've read that this steel has industrial applications as well, so I suposse it can be obtained through several ways on internet. One notable difference is that the steel of the Kirschner wires is harder than that of the original needle, and it can be polished very well. My impression is that the original needle is easier to bend than the Kirschner wires.
View attachment 83253

I bought 10 needles of 30 cm each (€52/$50 total price). I can make 20 airbrush needles from these 10 Kirschnner needles. May be you don't need this amount of needles and you can save some money. I use them on 4 airbrushes... not as many as DaveG's, but not bad, lol

The first thing is to cut the needle as needed, in my case, in two halves (15cm each).

The second is to sharpen the needle. With the Dremel attached to the table and a stone bur, the needle is sharpened as close as possible to the original tapering.
View attachment 83254
I have tried to sharpen the needle with sandpaper only, but it did not work for me, since steel is very hard. With only the Dremel and a stone bur I achieved a reliable sharpening, very patiently and very slowly. It is important that the Dremel is at the minimum speed and that the pressure of the needle on the stone is done with the finger. The angle with the surface's bur must be as close as possible to the original, I am doing it by eye and finally it's achieved! Be patient and don't rush. It can take 15 minutes or so to have a sharp needle, but I think it's worth it. What I do with the Dremel is use it as a lathe, I attach it to the table as in the photo.
View attachment 83255

At the same time the diameter is reduced, I am testing if the tip fits the nozzle well and the length of the tip that comes out of it.
When the tip sticks out of the nozzle roughly like the original (although a bit more, because it's hard for me to taper just like the original) I polish it.
View attachment 83257
Above: only the needle at the bottom is the original. The rest of them has been polished yet. You can notice the difference on tapering between the original one and made ones. On painting, I didn't notice any difference.

To polish it, I start with 500 grit wet sandpaper, then 2000 and finish with 5000, and I look with a magnifying glass to see if it is well finished.
View attachment 83256

I think the needle's polishment has been treated several times in the forum. Perhaps there's another way to do it that adjusts better to your own goal. To me I obtained better results taking the sand paper between the fingers and then rotate the needle.
View attachment 83258
There are some differences between them but they work fine.
I hope you can take profit from this tutorial and thank you for reading it. :)
Awesome. Thank you JuanRi - much appreciated. I just did a search on 'repairing bent needles' and came across this post. Great timing, as I just received a Badger Anthem 155 in the mail from eBay today that wasn't exactly in, "excellent condition," per the seller (bent needle tip). Thanks for the, uh, tip! 🍺
 
I've been playing around making my own needles lately. After upgrading some Chinese Brushes with Creos PS-771 heads I decided to upgrade the rest of my Chinese airbrushes with Creos PS-289 0.3mm heads. The PS-289 head mounting section has the same diameter and thread as the 771 ( and Iwata Micron heads for that matter) so I knew they would fit. The only problem was that the PS-289 needles have a larger diameter than the Chinese needles. I tried stock Chinese 0.3mm needles but these projected too far forward. I then hit on the idea of reshaping the points of 0.5mm needles to match taper the original needles. The needles were chucked in a slow speed drill and I used a variety of diamond files and sanding pads to do the hard work. Once I had a profile that I was happy with, the needles were poilished and tested. So far I've done 2 but I have one more to go.
 

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Nice report @Lance Whitford ¡ I have a PS-771 as well, beautiful brush. Yes, I think you can get some problems if the needle doesn't fit well: if the needle is too thin, then it can protrude a lot. And a second problem could be passing thorough the gland nut. If the needle is too thin you have to adjust the diameter of the o-ring (or PTFE washer) at the gland-nut, and if it is too thick, the needle doesn't pass thorough.
 
Thanks palk¡ yes it's a matter of patience, I enjoy a lot to do it¡ By de way, I love doing my lures too, this was the trigger for airbrushing to me some time ago, show you a picture of the last I made this season (17 cm length). Sorry if the picture doesn't fit here... 😅

View attachment 84323
That is some nice work with the foil dimpling and some fine airbrushing
I paint mine 400 at a time and sell them so I tend to keep them a little basic and lots of masks takes about 7 days from moulded body to box.
 
That is some nice work with the foil dimpling and some fine airbrushing
I paint mine 400 at a time and sell them so I tend to keep them a little basic and lots of masks takes about 7 days from moulded body to box.
Wow, thanks @palk , yes it's a lot of work to do, I spend a lot of time painting them, to me this is the best part. Thank you¡
 
Nice report @Lance Whitford ¡ I have a PS-771 as well, beautiful brush. Yes, I think you can get some problems if the needle doesn't fit well: if the needle is too thin, then it can protrude a lot. And a second problem could be passing thorough the gland nut. If the needle is too thin you have to adjust the diameter of the o-ring (or PTFE washer) at the gland-nut, and if it is too thick, the needle doesn't pass thorough.
The PS-771 conversions were really easy as needles are a perfect diameter. Unfortunately the PS-289 needles are too thick to even get through the needle chuck. Thanks to seeing what is possible in this forum it was easy for me to overcome with home made replacements
 
Wow, thanks @palk , yes it's a lot of work to do, I spend a lot of time painting them, to me this is the best part. Thank you¡
I have to say when I first started I was worried most about painting
Boring me silly
But found it the best part of making lures and very therapeutic. Thou I have to say, installing 800 split rings and trebles then folding 400 display cards the least gratifying thing i have ever done.
 
o_O 800..... ohh God, this has to be a very heavy task... It seems your bussines is working on¡¡ :p Congratulations¡
 
o_O 800..... ohh God, this has to be a very heavy task... It seems your bussines is working on¡¡ :p Congratulations¡
I can make 400 in a week, depending what time of year it is.
It takes me about a month or two to sell them.
But my Beer supply is secured 🥴 😂🤣😂
I have fished all my life and Never had to remove a treble from my ass.
Since making lures, lets just say YouTube video's "how to remove trebles" is a well researched topic.
 
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