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Vortex Mixer

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  • Member since
    March, 2017
  • From: East Texas
Vortex Mixer
Posted by gtshadow on Monday, April 03, 2017 8:06 PM

I bought a Vortex Mixer off Ebay and just received it today. I thought I would share some thoughts. First here is a picture of it.

It is, as you can tell, used. These are selling on Ebay, used, for $50-$90 and up. I think new ones are $150 or more. But if you are like me, you always look for a better deal. I got this one for $37 including shipping. The only thing wrong with it is the broken on/off switch, which, because it is broken in the on position, isn't needed. They have a whole bunch of these, apparently from closed labratories, on Ebay right now. They also have a mini version on Amazon for $67 new, but I couldn't really tell how big it was so I was wary of getting it.

I was wanting a paint shaker, but the only one readily available, I could find, was the Robart shaker. I thought about getting one, but quality really seems hit or miss on those and though I'm sure some use it without problem, I don't usually have that kind of luck. In one of the reviews for the Robart I read, someone mentioned the Vortex mixer, so I checked it out. These are apparently made by several different companies, but they all, in general, look the same to me. Since they are made for a labratory environment, my thoughts are that quality should be very good.

These are made for shaking and mixing the contents of test tubes, but have apparently found other uses. While searching I only found one video of someone using the Vortex mixer for model paint. I should mention that I am in no way endorsing this video or the product the guy is selling. From what I can tell, the "Typhoon" mixer is just a used Vortex mixer that has been cleaned up, repainted and rebranded and higher priced than I was willing to pay, but the video does show the mixer in action, so I thought I would add a link.

https://youtu.be/WdH8t2dBL4o

I just finished trying mine out on some Vallejo paint bottles and it mixed them very well as far as I can tell. Mine works just like the one in the video. Just drop the bottle into the cup (making sure you hang on to it lest it go flying. Don't ask how I know.), it vibrates and twirls the bottle. It is always hard for me to tell when the paint in those bottles is mixed, but I squeezed some out of the bottle and it looked well mixed to me and that bottle has been sitting for awhile. I didn't try seeing if the stuff in the bottom of the bottle had mixed because it would be a pain, but it seemed to me it was.

I only have one problem, so far, with the mixer. The rubber cup you put the bottle in is made for test tubes. The Vallejo bottles are the perfect size to fit in the cup. I tried putting old style Testors and Model Masters bottles in and no go. The bottles are too big and don't get the same mixing action if you try to hold them on the cup. I will have to see if there is some way to buy or make a bigger cup for the bigger bottles. I hope to make this work well for them too since half the paints I have are MM.

Once again, I am not trying to sell or endorse these mixers and my opinion is mine and could be wrong. Overall I think these are nice to have to give your paint a quick mix, provided you get it for a reasonable price. I am less sure that they would thoroughly mix MM paints that have been sitting for years. I will have to give an update if I can figure out how to get a cup they will fit in. Hope this info helps some of you.

Greg

Just skating along on the thin ice of modern life...Cool

  • Member since
    April, 2004
Posted by Jon_a_its on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 4:24 AM

Since you have to hold it in place anyway(???), thought about putting them in cap side down, if the caps are VJ shaped they taper?

  • Member since
    March, 2017
  • From: East Texas
Posted by gtshadow on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 6:44 AM
Well, that is one of those things where you just shake your head and wonder why the heck you didn't think of that. I guess it is too obvious. LOL. I just tried it. The MM paints are about the same size, top and bottom and they still won't fit unfortunately. The Testors bottles do fit, but the square sides make it hard to hold. You either have to hold it too tight and stop the rotation or hold itlooser and it tends to pop out of the cup. I did note that the little bit of shaking I got, did nothing to break loose the muck at the bottom. I'm thinking that even if I get the bottles to rotate properly, it won't be able to mix the very old paint without first stirring with a stick. Still, I think, even with those limitations, it will be a useful tool. Thanks for giving me something to try though. I don't know why I didn't think of it. Greg

Just skating along on the thin ice of modern life...Cool

  • Member since
    January, 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 11:57 AM

Why go through the trouble wasting a ton of money on that when you could have gotten this instead:

http://www.micromark.com/Cordless-Mixer-for-Model-Paints

Or even this:

http://www.micromark.com/product/1426

 

 

 

  • Member since
    March, 2017
  • From: East Texas
Posted by gtshadow on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 1:01 PM

I didn't consider it a ton of money for this shaker I got and I did consider the stirrer from Badger. I just think the stirrers are wasteful of paint, especially if you were to use it often. I guess, like James Bond, I want it shaken, not stirred. Big Smile

Greg

Just skating along on the thin ice of modern life...Cool

  • Member since
    January, 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 1:13 PM

Stirring the paint helps loosen the sediments at the bottom of the paint jar. Shaking it doesn't do the job well enough. Almost everyone stirs their paint before shaking it. I made it a practice to do so to get the most out of my paint coverage. I'm sure everyone will agree with me on this.

  • Member since
    March, 2017
  • From: East Texas
Posted by gtshadow on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 1:56 PM
I agree that it should probably be stirred if the paint has been sitting awhile, but I still want to shake it before every use. I think it would be wasteful to stir with every use. Like I said before, it is just my opinion and everyone can choose for themselves. Greg

Just skating along on the thin ice of modern life...Cool

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