Aztec or Badger 200

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Aztec or Badger 200

  • I'm getting back into modeling after 30 years away from it. I just joined FSM last week and I'm trying to learn all the new techniques being used today. In the past all I've used were rattle cans. I would like some suggestions on which airbrush would be better for a beginner such as myself.

     Thank you!

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  • Hi Tedtool,

    Welcome back to the hobby. I, too, was absent for many years but I did use an airbrush on other airplane modeling projects (FF, rubber powered, stick'n'tissue), That said, recommending a specific AB can be difficult because I think the choice is so personal. You might want to look at DON WHEELER'S SITE. In addition to various AB reviews he has lots of tips. Between the two in your post title, I'd pick the Badger but I've not owned an Aztec. Dependent upon your budget you can spend anywhere from $15 to $300 or more. I'd recommend a dual action AB (harder to learn but much more versatile) with a needle/nozzle of 0.35 to 0.5 mm.

  • The only Aztek I have used is the plastic Testors/Aztek version.  It worked nicely but I got a lot of jams from it being hard to clean (although new nozzles were pretty cheap).  My main airbrush is a Badger 200, about forty years old. It is bulletproof!  I have abused it at times- still works fine. Very easy to clean.  Only replacement parts in it is the teflon washer. I keep a stock of them on hand- it does need a new one periodically.  I can dial the paint flow WAY down for overcoats and weathering.

    Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Bick

    Dependent upon your budget you can spend anywhere from $15 to $300 or more. I'd recommend a dual action AB (harder to learn but much more versatile) with a needle/nozzle of 0.35 to 0.5 mm.

    I second that. Starting out with the proper tool gives you the highest potential to develop proper skill to take full advantage of airbrushing.

    I had a highend Aztek for a short time. The plastic part developed a leak within a month. I never go back. I prefer a good metallic airbrush. You get what you pay for. Stay with good name brand.

    Badger 200 is ok if you get the old style one. It is single action.

  • Thanks for responding . What is the difference in the old style Badger 200? Is it still available?

  • For what it's worth I've used both.  The Aztek was okay, but I got tired of shelling out $10.00 for new tips every so often.  Now the Badger 200, I may be the exception to the rule, but that is on dang fine airbrush.  The 200 was the first airbrush I ever used, is reliable, easy to maintain and just an overall great airbrush.  I've since moved into double actions for most of my work, but when ever I do large area painting it's the 200 I reach for.  Recently Michaels liquidated their airbrushes and I snagged a new 200 and 150 for $20.00.  I didn't notice any real difference between the new 200 and the one I used 20+ years ago.

    "Ahh the Luftwaffe. The Washington Generals of the History Channel" -Homer Simpson

  • tedtool

    Thanks for responding . What is the difference in the old style Badger 200? Is it still available?

    It looks to me as if the siphon feed tube joins the main body at a different angle, but have never used one of the new ones.

    Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Don Wheeler posts on his site that the new one is the 200NH. It has a different nozzle/head design than the original 200 and head/nozzle parts are not interchangeable between the two. Otherwise I think they're the same. Don't know if the original is still available.

  • Thanks Bick for sending me to Don Wheelers site. Truly an amazing amount of info. I'm now thinking of a dual action AB as you suggested

  • Buy Iwata. Everything else is JUNK!

    "Lacquer Head feeds his one desire, Lacquer Head sets his brain on fire."

  • There are lots of other brands that are just as good as Iwata. Some even better.

    Better an airbrush in the hand, than ten in the car....Stick out tongue

  • More pros use Iwata than any other brand in the world.

    "Lacquer Head feeds his one desire, Lacquer Head sets his brain on fire."

  • I use a DeWalt with all the bells and whistles on it to reduce preasure.I do have a Badger whirlwind but don't use it for much these days.....

  • Pros use Iwata because they are paid by Iwata. Not that Iwata doesn't make nice airbrushes, they do, but they also spend more money on advertising than any other airbrush brand.

    Better an airbrush in the hand, than ten in the car....Stick out tongue

  • The best airbrush for the beginner, or returning airbrusher is the one that feels best in your hand. Brand doesn't matter that much. But I would recommend to try out a couple of gravity fed double action models, preferably with nozzle/needle setups at between 0.3 and 0.5mm.

    Better an airbrush in the hand, than ten in the car....Stick out tongue