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Cleaning Airbrush-Lacqure_Acrylic_Enamel_Future-What are You Using


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I was wondering what you good folks have been using successfully to clear the above mentioned products from you airbrush. I have read several online articles & view a number of YouTube clips on the matter. It summation it appears Lacquer Thinner, Acetone, Ammonia (used to clear gun of  Future sprayed as a clear coat) are ALL bad for the longevity of your airbrush seals and packing.  Some of these even attack the brass wall of gun or outer chrome plating.

One online article stated quote:"...acetone should not be considered a fix, for removing enamel, lacquers from your airbrush, in the long term it will have a detrimental effect on your airbrushes internal rubber and plastic components."  

Note: Acetone is what is recommend for clearing Alclad II from you airbrush. 

Then I read a 2007 FSM post that stated..." I use Windex almost exclusively for cleaning "Acrylic paint" and "Future" out of my airbrush. Windex or any other ammonia-based window cleaner will work fine.  It's the ammonia that does the trick, the water just washes the ammonia away.  It`s the  Ammonia that really works to clean Future from your airbrush. Windex without ammonia will not work.."  

Note: I viewed this YouTube clip featuring Grex Airbrush Representative stating Ammonia does not play nicely with airbrushes electroplated brass interior. But he does recommend Lacqure Thinner as a good go to for cleaning up after a paint session.

 

Another 2019 post In FSM stated quote:  "...best product/substance for cleaning Future (Klear) out of your airbrush after clear coating session is Alcohol with a final flush of water...."

Another 2019 ARC post stated quote "...never used Acetone...I doesn't play nicely with inner brass bodies of airbrush so proceed with caution. First there is paint thinner, then lacquer thinner which is stronger than paint thinner and then Acetone; as you move toward acetone, the type of thinner gets stronger and more destructive. Every air brush is different so just use your best judgment. I use Tamiya X-22 clear gloss. I tried & love the stuff, I'll never go back to Future...."

I could go on & on & on but you get the idea...there a mixed options out here. So, I`m hoping to get a bit more clarification from you seasoned air gunners on the matter.

 

 

Edited by 69NovaYenko
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  • 69NovaYenko changed the title to Cleaning Airbrush-Lacqure_Acrylic_Enamel_Future-What are You Using

Lacquer thinner.

Been using lacquer thinner to clean my Badger airbrush for probably 25 years.

Hasn't hurt it at all.

Never replaced a single part.

Works as it did when I bought it.

 

 

 

Steve

Edited by StevenGuthmiller
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3 hours ago, StevenGuthmiller said:

Lacquer thinner.

Been using lacquer thinner to clean my Badger airbrush for probably 25 years.

Hasn't hurt it at all.

Never replaced a single part.

Works as it did when I bought it.

 

 

 

Steve

Ok then after cleaning airbrush with Lacquer do you run a finale pass through the gun with water to rinse the cleaning solvent out..

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1 hour ago, 69NovaYenko said:

Ok then after cleaning airbrush with Lacquer do you run a finale pass through the gun with water to rinse the cleaning solvent out..


I use just lacquer thinner and then leave to air dry. 

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I always use acetone or lacquer thinner (with and without acetone).  Always do it right after painting session.  Funny,m I just posted the same info for the same question in another thread, just few days ago.  Weird! Don't people look for answer anymore before posting questions? :wacko:

Also, all the seals which come in contact with paint (in my old trusty Badger 200) are made of Teflon (not rubber).  I would imagine the same would be true in more expensive airbrushes.  The only rubber seal there is in the air valve. No paint ever gets there.

Edited by peteski
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Future? hot water. If teardown, then MAYBE an ammonia wipe. Everything else, lacquer thinner, air dry. Cheap seals will deteriorate like on my $15 Chinese air brushes, good seals could care less.

Edited by Bills72sj
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Windex is only in there for a minute if that to flush out Future, then I follow up with hot water and flush good. I actually think the hot water alone would do it with a good flushing and back flushing. Enamels lacquers I use lacquer thinner, the hardware store variety. Acetone works as well. Acrylic paints I flush with hot water then alcohol followed by more water.

My finest spraying airbrush, best atomization etc is the Badger 200 with .25 tip and needle. I was gifted that by my now passed on dear wife back in 1977 or so. Still going strong.

Edited by Dave G.
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On 4/24/2022 at 1:19 AM, StevenGuthmiller said:

Lacquer thinner.

Been using lacquer thinner to clean my Badger airbrush for probably 25 years.

Hasn't hurt it at all.

Never replaced a single part.

Works as it did when I bought it.

 

 

 

Steve

X2... 

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2 hours ago, Dave G. said:

My finest spraying airbrush, best atomization etc is the Badger 200 with .25 tip and needle. I was gifted that by my now passed on deer wife back in 1977 or so. Still going strong.

Interesting. I have used my Badger 200 since 1981, and it has always been a faithful workhorse of which I am quite proud, but I have had no luck with the Fine .25 tip/needle. It was the only airbrush I had ever used until two years ago when I finally bought the gravity feed airbrush I had wanted for years, and which I absolutely adore.

As to OP's question, For the last twenty years I always clean enamel and lacquer with lacquer thinner, and acrylics with 99% isopropyl alcohol. I have never had any problems with seal or finish deterioration. In fact, the head/tip and the transfer tube (joins the bottle lid to the airbrush) are always stored in a jar of lacquer thinner. They have been there for may years with no detrimental effect on the finish or the base metal.

In most cases, if your seals or airbrush finish is negatively effected by hobby standard solvents, the problem is likely the airbrush rather then the thinners/cleaners. A quality airbrush will be equipped with solvent resistant seals. As for Chinese knock-offs of a highly precision instrument, well, "you pays your money, you takes your chances".

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