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  • Airbrush progress.

    I have had a bit of time on my hands of late and have decided to teach myself how to airbrush. The plan is to get good enough to airbrush my project bike within a few years.

    I hope to keep this thread updated with my attempts, from the first one being my banged up old helmet through to murals on a bike in the future.

    So today I went and bought a Supercrap Auto's airbrush and some really cheap ass paints and thinners, and did a rough prep on the helmet.

    I am not looking at a high quality of finish on this first one. I am just going to use it to get used to the airbrush, so no picking on my prep work.^_^


    Strip out the guts


    Cut off the crappy logo's


    The adhesive just rubbed off with my finger.


    Masked and sanded. I used 800 wet/dry.


    Painted with a silver base coat.


    I have been watching a fair few tutorials on Youtube and are taking their advice and starting off with a ghosted finish. I am using a silver basecoat, with a skull detailed in black. There will be some detail work done in white and bone, but once I have practiced in a few places on the lid, the whole thing will be covered eventually in a red or orange candy. Hopefully, this will hide my amature attempts at shading.

    So, I searched the net and printed out a skull. From this, I cut it out with a scalpel from one of Shuboops suture kits. Shhhhh..


    I will use this as a stencil to shadow the outline, and deep black internals.


    I will print out a good copy and use that to give me model to copy the shading and fine detail from.

    Hopefully an update tomorrow night.
    Last edited by Shortfuse; 16-08-2009, 12:56 AM.
    It has a dual purpose. ~ Tom Smitheringale

  • #2
    Im keen to see how you go on this one. Can you draw or are you artistic to begin with?

    P.s. Did you find those keys?
    My mum always used to say, when life hands you lemons "kill mob within spell duration with a soul gem of adequate quality for the mob's level to trap its soul"

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    • #3
      I can replicate from a picture or object pretty well, but struggle to draw from a picture in my head. This is new territory for me, so I am really looking forward to it.

      No key. No worries.
      It has a dual purpose. ~ Tom Smitheringale

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      • #4
        Cool.( cept the keys thats not cool).
        My mum always used to say, when life hands you lemons "kill mob within spell duration with a soul gem of adequate quality for the mob's level to trap its soul"

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        • #5
          Awesome stuff mate, I love people using their skills.
          May I suggest airbrushing the skull onto something else first before tackling the helmet?

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          • #6
            Nope.

            I will be doing some brushstrokes on a piece of card for everything new that I want to do, but the helmet is the one I came off whilst wearing and I have cut the straps. It is just as handy to use that as it is to try to find something else. If I fuck up, it is a quick sand and basecoat and go again. Otherwise, I will have a scratched up cheapo M2R helmet with cut straps gathering dust on the shelf.

            I have a few spare sidecovers etc that will be used to paint in the future too. I am learning this to use on bikes, so what better to learn on than bike parts.
            It has a dual purpose. ~ Tom Smitheringale

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            • #7
              just jumped on board. keen and waiting mate
              Lost and on reserve

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              • #8
                Hey shortfuse, gearing up on the airbrush myself for some other things.

                Looks like you're setting yourself up for success there - you've made the outline nice and simple, masking properly, taking your time etc etc etc.

                :edit:

                Have you bought some cheap water based acrylic and gone through the simple control exercises? Circles, crosses, barbells, daggers? I set up and practised one night whilst we watched a movie. Couple of hours and the difference in control is amazing.

                I just bought (thanks, fleaBay) a couple of new brushes to replace my supercheap ones. Only difference seems to be a slightly better build quality, a gravity cup and interchangeable needles/seats which I'll probably not use anyway. (apparently the needle size is pretty much matched to the thickness of the paint, so easier to just use the 0.25mm needle with thinner paint unless you're trying to spray flake etc, in which case the biggest needle I have is probably too small anyway!)

                Gravity cup is fkn awesome if you're trying to use a single brush with multiple colours - pre mix the colours, and eye dropper enough in to do each pass. Works beautifully.

                Interested to see how it goes, please keep us posted
                Last edited by Captain Starfish; 16-08-2009, 10:36 AM.
                "Once upon a time we would obey in public, but in private we would be cynical; today, we announce cynicism, but in private we obey."

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                • #9
                  keep practicing,try using varying degrees of air pressure and viscosity of your paint.
                  you'll hit on the perfect air/mix of colour,and be able to write with that brush.....worlds your oyster then


                  Straightline2ten your motorcycle and motor car repairer for smash repairs

                  insurance or private work, plastic welding,resprays, restoration and classics

                  dianella 93703770

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                  • #10
                    makin a good start but u will struggle with a poor quality airbrush. Have a look on ebay US you can get an Iwata HP-C airbrush for under $200au.

                    I decided to have a go at airbrushing using a single action supercheap airbrush, thing was a massive fail. was ok if u wanted to paint something like a model car all one colour but you had zero gun control. Dual action allows you to first engage the air by pressin the button then the fluid amount by pulling the button back at the same time, hence dual action. this allows you so much more control.

                    Once you break down airbrushing there is a small amount of skill required but the final product comes more from patience, stencils and the ability to look at an outline of a drawing and being able to see the finished work and all the layers that make it.
                    B19 Oakford V.B.F.S

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                    • #11
                      With a dual action siphon airbrush ($30?) from supercheap and a few hours practise with well regulated air from a steady (not pulsing) source, ie a scuba tank, I can now get decent coverage of paint from about a 1" band down to about 0.5mm line. It's still a bit wobbly, but that's 100% my steadiness of hand etc, nothing to do with the airbrush.

                      Given that the cheap and nasty brush can give that range, WTF is an iwata at $200 plus going to do extra? Paint the thing for me?

                      I ask because I know that you tend to get what you pay for, I just don't understand what gets better with the super duper air brushes.
                      "Once upon a time we would obey in public, but in private we would be cynical; today, we announce cynicism, but in private we obey."

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                      • #12
                        I'll be watching this one with interest Shortfuse.
                        I have never thought about air brushing, I'll see how you go and maybe have a go myself. keep the pics coming.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Captain Starfish View Post
                          With a dual action siphon airbrush ($30?) from supercheap and a few hours practise with well regulated air from a steady (not pulsing) source, ie a scuba tank, I can now get decent coverage of paint from about a 1" band down to about 0.5mm line. It's still a bit wobbly, but that's 100% my steadiness of hand etc, nothing to do with the airbrush.

                          Given that the cheap and nasty brush can give that range, WTF is an iwata at $200 plus going to do extra? Paint the thing for me?

                          I ask because I know that you tend to get what you pay for, I just don't understand what gets better with the super duper air brushes.
                          thats a good point.
                          i bought a $750 colour hvlp gun in 1992, it still works well.
                          ive bought a few cheaper ones since then and they dont even do primer as well as a $500 hvlp gun i bought back in 1992.
                          the cheap stuff doesnt last at a guess?

                          depends how much you do?


                          Straightline2ten your motorcycle and motor car repairer for smash repairs

                          insurance or private work, plastic welding,resprays, restoration and classics

                          dianella 93703770

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                          • #14
                            Subbing in, keen to see how you go
                            - Spuddy: Music, motorbike, gaming, socialising and drinking enthusiast. Man about town!
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                            • #15
                              Looking forward to further posts and progress/tips....
                              User contains traces of nuts.

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