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Please help with acrylics

Discussion in 'Paints' started by Mike115, Nov 3, 2021.


  1. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    I've done loads of painting with solvents from zero paints, gravity colours and splash paints never had any issues with making them flow, today I went as low as 10psi for detail work without any issues.

    Then I switched to acrylics to give my head a rest from the smell of solvent paints.

    Even at 40psi I just couldn't make the damn stuff flow, so gave up and went back to solvents.

    So, what am I doing wrong that means I have a perfect relationship with solvents and not acrylics?

    I don't use the same airbrush (I did once and it took hours to clear the gunk)

    Do you mix water? Please help before I go crazy.

    Sent from my M2007J1SC using Tapatalk
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  2. Ronald art

    Ronald art Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    most acrylic airbrush paints need to be reduced with the reducer recommended by the brand you use to get them to flow real good
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  3. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    Ah.... So not using them steight outta the bottle like the solvents?

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  4. SiRoxx

    SiRoxx Party Boy UK Style Staff Member Mod Very Likeable!

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    Ron is correct. Most need to be reduced by some method. Check the manufacturer’s info for the recommended reducer and don’t be afraid to play with it. I have to reduce all of the Createx lines quite a lot more than they recommend.
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  5. pshit

    pshit Gravity Guru

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    I have little experience but I found that Golden High Flow paints are easy to use. I add Golden Airbrush medium and it works fine.
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  6. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    which brand are you using ? Createx can have a bit of a learning curve and switching from solvent to createx will make that curve more noticeable.
    definitely reduce water based brands for most uses, the exception is if you are using a .5 needle or higher at a PSI of 40+

    Yes acrylics are a different beast than solvents, just like automatic cars are different to manual transmission. Trial and error will be the norm for a little while but you'll get there if you are already successful with solvent.
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  7. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    Thanks so much for the help guys, I was so crazy frustrated today with valehjo acrylics, I'd totally forgotten about the basics again, thanks very much

    Sent from my M2007J1SC using Tapatalk
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  8. 2Diverse

    2Diverse Needle-chuck Ninja Very Likeable!

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    I've struggled with this myself. I am so familiar with lacquer paints. I know how to use them and what to expect when I do:D.

    I've tried water based paint twice and gave up out of frustration:mad:. I'm sure I didn't give it a long enough chance.

    I may be trying it one more time. It's got to be easier once you catch onto the learning curve, rightlol?
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  9. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    I've had no exposure to solvents so can't use that as an excuse for my frustration with getting good flow with Createx, but I persevere :)
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  10. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    Gonna set sometime aside today and try my best to not give up and reach for the solvents, thanks all

    Sent from my M2007J1SC using Tapatalk
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  11. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    So I didn't have any reducer but I did have flow improver I assume it's close enough?

    A few drops later and bingo it was flowing like crazy

    Thanks giys62

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  12. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    Vallejo Airbrush Thinner or Flow Improver would be appropriate for the Vallejo Acrylics :thumbsup:
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  13. Karl Becker

    Karl Becker Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    It's all about the consistency of the paint. If it's too thick, you get blobs. If it's too thin, it looks like water with a little color hitting the canvas. Gotta feel it out. We've all been there. Some more recently than others. :)
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  14. Mike115

    Mike115 Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    Thanks guys, I'm getting there now

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  15. Electric Cat Dude

    Electric Cat Dude Gravity Guru

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    Acrylic paints have always been notoriously difficult to work with using an airbrush, chiefly because it tends to clog the airbrush unless it is thinned severely, which can weaken color. Flow improver products may help, but in general, it was usually best to use water based paints for best results.

    Now if you’re using an airbrush to apply paint to a plastic model, or on metal, or glaze to ceramics, etc., water based paint will not be an option. Acrylic paint can be thinned to flow properly through an airbrush provided you were not doing a large amount of fine detail or fine lines as you will see a lot of tip buildup doing this. The only solution here, is to periodically wipe off the tip to get rid of the build up during use. I usually keep a cotton ball soaked in the air brush cleaner and dab off the tip every 2 to 3 lines I spray. This seems to help but really is only a Band-Aid for the problem of acrylic paint.
  16. SiRoxx

    SiRoxx Party Boy UK Style Staff Member Mod Very Likeable!

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    There are several water based paints that can be used on models, either plastic or metal. Createx, Citadel, Mr Hobby can all be used on multiple surfaces. Wether they are as nice to work with is another matter lol. But they can be used.


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  17. Visual Realm

    Visual Realm Skull King Very Likeable!

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    The difference in a lot of acrylics are how fine the pigments are ground. The finer the ground pigments, the better. This tends to lead to less clogging, and tip dry. Which opens it up for better flow and a bit less reducing to keep color saturation up at a high.

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