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White Sprits

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  • Member since
    July 2019
  • From: Northern IL.
White Sprits
Posted by Bob D on Friday, November 17, 2023 9:10 PM

Is white spirits good for cleaning the air brush. I use Acrylics. Tried LT and gumed up the airbrush. 

fox
  • Member since
    January 2007
  • From: Narvon, Pa.
Posted by fox on Friday, November 17, 2023 10:39 PM

I use Vallejo acrylics and other craft acrylics in my airbrush. I use distilled water as a thinner (if needed), and Windex to clean the airbrush followed by a short shot of distilled water.

When I use regular brushes for painting small parts, I clean them with Windex also. Been using this system for many years and never had a problem with it.

Hope that this helps.

Stay safe.

Jim Captain

 Main WIP: 

   On the Bench: Artesania Latina  (aka) Artists in the Latrine 1/75 Bluenose II

I keep hitting "escape", but I'm still here.

  • Member since
    November 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Saturday, November 18, 2023 5:09 AM

When I use acrylics then I clean the airbrush first by blowing hot tap water through it and get any liquid paint oout that was left in it.. Then I clean with Iwata Medea Airbrush Cleaner I get from Hobby Lobby pretty inexpensively ( I have home brew methods too but this is easy and effective). It does a great job. Then rinse with water. Only back flush the Medea though, the mist from it can really be like Fatastik on steroids. Or spray it into one of those airbrush cleaning tubs they sell. I use a tissue box lined with paper towels, the ones with the slot in the top ( I do the same with lacquers). Stick the head of the airbrush in there and spray through the brush. The mist is contained inside the box and absorbed by the paper towels.

The airbrush sparkles after using that Iwata product for acrylics or lacquer thinner for lacquer and enamels.

  • Member since
    August 2005
  • From: Mansfield, TX
Posted by EdGrune on Saturday, November 18, 2023 7:39 AM

Bob D

Is white spirits good for cleaning the air brush. I use Acrylics. Tried LT and gumed up the airbrush. 

All acrylics are not the same.  Tamiya works well with lacquer thinner.  Vallejo (and similar) gum up with it.  The general recommendation is to use the brand's own thinner products. 

That being said, I use windex with Vallejo/Reaper/ScaleColor as initial clean up.  Blow out color, spray several cup-fulls of windex until it sprays clear.  And Change colors.   An end of session final clean may involve a q-tip dipped in lacquer thinner to clean needle and passages.  

  • Member since
    June 2023
Posted by burrito king on Saturday, November 18, 2023 8:32 AM

For Tamiya acrylics I use IPA for thinning and cleaning. I also use a lot of cheap craft acrylics like Artist's Loft and Folk Art. For those I use distilled water for thinning and cleaning. Sometimes when everything is nice and clean I'll shoot some LT or white spirit just to get the water out of the airbrush.

  • Member since
    September 2017
  • From: Roanoke Virginia
Posted by Strongeagle on Saturday, November 18, 2023 9:30 AM

Bob D

Is white spirits good for cleaning the air brush. I use Acrylics. Tried LT and gumed up the airbrush. 

 

Ahoy Bob D.  The immediate answer to your specific question about white spirits is No.  The way I understand it, 'white spirits' is the British term for what Americans call Mineral Spirits which would be used for enamel paint such as testors, Model Masters and Humbrol enamel. So unless you're using enamel, white spirtis is out.

I've used hardware store lacquer thinner to clean my airbrushes for years without problems.  And that means enamel, Tamiya acrylic, Vallejo, etc.

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Saturday, November 18, 2023 12:52 PM

White spirits or mineral spirits, IMHO, really aren't much good for cleaning an airbrush of any kind of paint.  Not even the enamel paints it works well with as a thinner.  When you say "acrylics" the best cleaner is going to depend on whether its an acrylic lacquer like the old school Tamiya paints (which, as Burrito King said) can be cleaned from your airbrush using isopropyl alcohol.  If its a water-based acrylic like Vallejo and a lot of craft paints, or an ammonia-based acrylic like the nasty Testors Acryl line (heh...not a fan of those...LOL), Windex is like a magic bullet...awesome stuff for cleaning that type of paint.  I actually use Walmart's generic equivalent of Windex, which is not only cheaper, but does a better job because it has less garbage in it.  Ammonia can damage airbrush parts though, so be careful with it.  In my case, I have an external mix Paasche H airbrush...and a 6 dollar needle, cap, and air cup set that will last for 5 or more years, even being abused...so I don't get too concerned about ammonia damaging my airbrush parts.  Because of the fact that I have the Paasche H, my preferred cleaner for everything but water-based acrylics is MEK.  I can safely use it because I'm not flushing it through my airbrush into the air to clean it.  Never been a fan of flushing anyway, with any chemical.  I just pull the paint contact parts off the airbrush (only takes a 5/64" allen wrench to loosen the whole assembly for removal) and drop the parts into a sealed pickle relish jar to clean them in an ultrasonic cleaner tub.  That stuff does a great job, but you definitely have to be careful with how you use it.  Its not the "killer monster chemical" that is the subject of a lot of myths where its often confused with another solvent that IS pretty horrible, but it is definitely a lot more toxic than isopropyl alcohol.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    July 2019
  • From: Northern IL.
Posted by Bob D on Saturday, November 18, 2023 11:32 PM

Thanks gentlemen. I'll stick with Windex. I always use it, but i gumed up the Iwata and thought something stronger would clean it up. I soaked it in hot water and soap and scrubbed it out with one of those long thin brushes. It works ok again. Thanks again for the advise. 

fox
  • Member since
    January 2007
  • From: Narvon, Pa.
Posted by fox on Sunday, November 19, 2023 12:05 AM

That's what we're here for.

Stay safe.

Jim Captain

 Main WIP: 

   On the Bench: Artesania Latina  (aka) Artists in the Latrine 1/75 Bluenose II

I keep hitting "escape", but I'm still here.

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