A Guide To Understanding The Technical Terms Of An Airbrush

What Are The Key Features Of An Airbrush?

An airbrush is a useful versatile tool that can provide the finishing touches to a range of projects, as well as being used for diverse purposes such as spray tanning. Some of the terms are very specific to the tools involved and therefore, somebody new to the activity wouldn’t be as sure of what they are looking for and as such some of these terms are explained here:

 

  • Mix – airbrushes can be either internal or external mix. This refers to where the airbrush mixes the paint. External mix airbrushes mix the paint and air after they have left the tip of the airbrush. Internal mix will combine paint and air whilst they are still inside the airbrush.
  • Action – this refers to the type of trigger that is used to control its function and the spray pattern. A single action airbrush, will spray both air and the paint with one pull of the trigger. Double action airbrushes require two actions, one for air and one for paint. Dual action allows for better control of the volume and coverage of the paint which in the hands of someone with experience is an advantage, whereas it may be better for those new to the hobby to try a single action airbrush.
  • Air Source – this is what propels the air into you airbrush and allows it to function. There are a number of different types available. Many people use compressors, and these are available in a range of sizes and shapes for different uses. Alternatively you can use cans of propellant if you don’t do a huge amount of airbrushing. In terms of quality, a compressor will provide clean consistent air and works out as a better long term investment.
  • Feed – in order for paint to be sprayed, it needs to be fed into the airbrush first. There are three different types of feed:
  • Gravity Feed – this is where paint is drawn through gravity, and the paint chamber is on the top of the airbrush. This makes the finished paint job more accurate as less suction and pressure
  • Siphon Feed – also called bottom feed is where a siphon draws paint from the colour chamber, which means that changing the colours that you’re using is quick and easy to do. Siphon fed airbrushes can also hold larger amounts of paint so are ideal for big projects.
  • Side Feed – these airbrushes are popular due to their versatility and the advantage that the colour chamber doesn’t block your view so you can produce great results!

 

There are of course other parts that are involved in airbrushing, however these are some of the main areas that need to be taken into account when you choose the equipment for your project.

One idea that can be taken into consideration, is that of an airbrush kit. These tend to provide all the essentials that you need in order to get started; and there are specific kits for different requirements, so if you want to decorate cakes from straight out of the box, there are sugar craft airbrush kits; similar with those for model making; and for spray tanning. An airbrush kit is a great way for someone to get started in the world of airbrushing.

 

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