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Airbrush - die Aztek A430 / A470

by Wolfram Bradac

Aztek A470 (Set with wood case)
Which airbrush shall I use? This question arises as soon as you have decided to use an airbrush in the future. You can choose among many models with different kinds of functions and each one has its advantages and disadvantages. But definitely sure is that the so-called sets for beginners are not right for painting models on a scale of 1:72.

I started with a BADGER 150, a useful airbrush of conventional style. The cleaning of instruments of this type - most important for each airbrush - however, is quite a lot of work. And the adjustment to other nozzle diameters is relatively expensive. About two years ago I saw an Aztek airbrush (A430) first time and was fascinated right away. The Aztek system offers a lot of advantages:
Simple cleaning (impervious to all known cleaning agents)
Simple change of nozzles 
Paint cup can be put right or left and turned in each direction
Gravity-feed or syphon-feed operation
Model A 470 has also a separate paint volume control
Aztek nozzleThe difference to other airbrushes (e.g. Badger, Revell or similar models): the needle and the nozzle-head are an entity so that a change is simple and not complicated at all. For this type sealing rings are not necessary and the whole thing is insensitive to thinner. The nozzle has not to be disassembled but only blown through with thinner. The red nozzle wrench which is added to the nozzle-head can also be used for cleaning - this looks quite good on the video which is also enclosed, however, in practice I use a bristle brush number 10 for cleaning the nozzle feed. The also included paint cups can be fixed either on the right or left side. The main attraction of this airbrush (A430/A470): Depending on the cup type fixed you can use it either as Gravity-Feed or Syphon-Feed (see explanation below). Both Aztek A430 and Aztek A470 are of course Double Action airbrushes. The difference between these two models is the ergonomic handle and the separate paint volume control of model A470. By the help of the paint volume control you can set a constant paint jet and use it practically as a Single-Action airbrush. In Austria only the A470 is offered generally.

I have both airbrushes and can recommend them most warmly. In Austria normally you can buy only the A470 in the above shown wooden storage case at about EUR 153,--.
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Cleaning StationA recommendable accessory is the cleaning station. The cleaning station consists of a jar and a cap with an interchangeable paperfilter. As you can see from the picture the airbrush is just inserted and blown through with thinner. A neck for other airbrushes is also included.

In the past I always sprayed the thinner into a filter paper - but of course now it is much easier with the cleaning station.
  Some explanations for airbrush-beginners:  
  Single-Action / Double- Action:

A Single Action is an airbrush with which you can only regulate the air volume by the help of a control lever and the paint volume just by a separate control. A Double Action airbrush like an A430 or A470 has only one lever: By pressing it down you can regulate the air supply. By turning it back (at the same time) you can regulate the paint volume. You need some practice to do so, however, nothing prevents you to regulate the air volume through the compressor. Therefore in my opinion it's better to use a Double Action airbrush from the beginning.

Syphon-Feed / Gravity-Feed:

These are definitions for the kind of paint supply. By Syphon-Feed the paint is sucked in by subpressure (e.g. jar with a hose), by Gravity-Feed the paint is streaming through the gravity (e.g. cup on the side). Gravity-Feed is the more proper system for precise detail works. With these two Aztek airbrushes both modes are possible.

Internal- / External-mix:

These are definitions for the different kinds of paint/air mix. By the external mix it happens outside of the nozzle. The advantages of this method: You don't need a nozzle, the airbrush is simply built up and easily to clean. The disadvantage: You can spray only larger areas. By the internal mix (A430/A470) it happens inside of the nozzle. The assembly of the airbrush becomes more complicated, but through this system the paint can be atomized very finely and therefore most accurate works are practicable with it. The so-called beginner airbrushes (e.g. from Revell) are mostly airbrushes with external mix and therefore not to be used for spraying of camouflage paints.
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  meet the author      

Wolfram Bradac

  I was born in 1962 in Vienna. During my school time I started modelling with Airfix kits. After a long break I restarted modelling. My main subjects are aircrafts of the German Luftwaffe of WWII, also military vehicles.

Like most other modellers I stored a lot of kits, more than I built. Beside modelling photographing is my main subject.
  Wolfram Bradac  
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This page:  THEMES: Airbrush - die Aztek A430 / A470 - by Wolfram Bradac
was last modified on: 02/14/2001
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