Airbrush help.

Discussion in 'Scratchin' & Bashin'' started by Syncman, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. Syncman

    Syncman New Member

    Have a large air compressor, used for nail guns. Pressure cannot be regulated below about 50-60 pounds. Is there some way to rectify this with some kind of "inline" regulator, suitable for airbrushing?
  2. gbwdude

    gbwdude Member


    If you were to go to any home improvement store or maybe even Harbor Freight Tools they probably would have one. I was in the same situation about ten years ago when I got my airbrush. The regulator I picked up strictly goes from 0-30 psi, which 30 psi is about the max you'd wanna push through an airbrush without damaging internals.

    Hope this helps you out.

  3. Zathros

    Zathros Guest

    You may want to make something to separate water though.
  4. Haereticus

    Haereticus Member

    I've never actually airbrushed, but a tutorial I read said that specially designed airbrush compressors are designed to keep the cyclic pressure fluctuations to a minimum, because normal compressors were not consistent enough - so that may be a consideration.
  5. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    I assume your compressor has a decent sized tank on it, and the normal operating pressure is a lot higher than 30PSI. If my assumptions are correct, the second regulator will just tap air from the tank. The compressor will cycle as necessary to keep tank pressure well above 30PSI, but you will never see those fluctuations at 30PSI or below. The air brush will use far less air than a nail gun, and I don't believe your air brush could possibly bleed off enough air to the point where the compressor couldn't keep up. As mentioned, a water trap is essential in many climates.

    Fred W
  6. rogerstillicksr

    rogerstillicksr CNWMRC member

    big compressor, small airbrush= needs stuff to fix air supply...

    Have been using an old 1/4 hp Devibes oil-less compressor for a really long time... it powered a small air gun and paint spray kit. it runs constantly with a 20-30 psi unloader
    bypass air pressure regulator...
    the thing blows dust off models and 1/2 cup spray gun works ok for shooting base coat paints, However the hot, pulsing air supply is useless for powering any airbrush as the airbrushes spatter and the hot air dries the paint too fast...
    So a trip to the local Marine / Industrial parts and supply store...
    1= they suggested 2 each 1/2 copper intercoolers hooked in series at the output of the compressor ( about 10 ft of coiled up copper tubing w heat fins, each unit costs under 20 dollars )... now have room temp pulsing air coming out of the second intercooler...
    2= they suggested a 4 way copper coupling with in-port, out port, top accumulator port, bottom water drain port w / drain petcock ( under 6 dollars )...
    3= gave me a used 6 lb chemical fire extinguisher and some copper tubing fittings and an
    epoxy kit to make an air accumulator tank ( under 10 dollars )... the completed tank screws into the top port of the 4 way copper couplings... the volume of air in the accumulator tank smooths out the air pulses to a steady, cool flow at the output port of the 4 way copper coupling...
    4= they suggested an inline 0-30 psi pressure air regulator ( under 25 dollars ) at the output port of the 4 way copper coupling...
    5= they suggested a copper tee with a small pressure gauge at the output port of the inline regulator... the output of the t is cooled, precisely regulated air suitable for an airbrush...
    Hook up a garage air hose long enough to get that noisy compressor out of the hobby room, get a quick disconnect fitting to screw into the airbrush hose adapter and you can run 3 airbrushes at once, quietly...
    please note that 500 dollar airbrush units don't have features like this, and it will run pretty much forever= mine is 30 years old...
    print this out and take it to the store with your compressor if needed, it is a good cheap fix... if enough folks want pix can do... good luck ! !

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